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Gregory Abramov
Gregory Abramov


A cantina is a type of bar common in Latin America and Spain. The word is similar in etymology to "canteen", and is derived from the Italian word for a cellar, winery, or vault.[1] In Italy, the word cantina refers to a room below the ground level where wine and other products such as salami are stored.[2]


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Cantina was one of the foreign words that entered in from Renaissance Italy. During the 16th century, the Spanish Empire included large holdings in Italy.[3] Luis de Bávia wrote in his Tercera y Cuarta Parte de la Historia Pontifical y Católica (1621): "Perdiéndose en las cantinas y lugares baxos [sic] gran número de mercaderías..." ("Losing itself in the cantinas and places of ill repute a large quantity of merchandise...").[4]

In rural Mexico, a cantina traditionally is a kind of bar frequented by males for drinking alcohol and eating botanas (appetizers). Some cantinas are also known for being places where people gather to play dominoes, cards or other table games. Cantinas can often be distinguished by signs that expressly prohibit entrance to women and minors, as opposed to a club, salon de bailar (dance hall), or salon de mariachi (typified by the Salon Tenampa, at the Plaza Garibaldi in Mexico City) which are intended for socializing between the sexes.[7] Also, some cantinas explicitly prohibit entrance to dogs and men in police or military uniform. Some of the traditional restrictions on entry to cantinas are beginning to fade away. However, in many areas it is still viewed as scandalous for proper ladies to be seen visiting a genuine cantina.[8]

Specifically In the musseques (Rural Areas) a cantina traditionally is a corner shop or bar frequented by the locals where they drink alcohol and eat petiscos (appetizers). Some cantinas in Angola are places where people gather to dance or play games. [9]

A cantina in the U.S. is simply a tavern with a Southwestern or Mexican motif that serves traditional alcoholic Mexican drinks. In the 1890s, cantina entered American English from the Spanish language in the Southwest United States with the meaning of "bar room, saloon."[10]

Thank you for joining us at Cantina 76! We are an ndependently owned and operated restaurant with locations in Columbia, Greenville, and Kiawah, S.C., featuring a taqueria based menu in a lively, cantina atmosphere. We only use the freshest ingredients, and everything on the menu is made from scratch in house daily. Our Cantina also offers some of the finest beers, wines, and tequilas to compliment your meal. Cantina 76 wants to provide a quality, great tasting meal at an affordable price in a fun and friendly atmosphere. If we ever fail to meet those standards, please let us know as your feedback is always appreciated.


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