So who says that all Argentine men are male chauvinist pigs? Last Saturday, I was the terribly proud girlfriend of one said ‘Argie’, as we celebrated our fourth anniversary. At this juncture I have to point out that I, the ‘thoughtful’ girl, was the one that forgot the anniversary; he ambushed me with a plethora of gifts plus he took me for a surprise dinner in Puerto Madero! I honestly have never met a British man that has even remembered an anniversary, let alone all the other treats so in my opinion, Argentinean men are the best, especially after a long day of wine tastings in Buenos Aries, I was thrilled to be wined and dined by my hubby-to-be.
For those of you who do not know the area of Puerto Madero, I would describe it as the ultra luxurious and modern neighbourhood of Buenos Aires, but I have heard many a person refer to it as the generic side of the ‘Paris of the South’; you could be in any city in the world when you are in Puerto Madero, it’s not as charismatic as the regal streets of Recoleta or funky Palermo, but I say, so what? For me, Puerto Madero is a clean, functioning and safe area of Bueos Aires that is welcome relief from the hectic life that can lead to small emotional ‘break downs’ that I tend to suffer from while being subject to this crazy lifestyle. Plus, there is nothing more romantic than taking a stroll besides the river with your lover and stealing a quick kiss on El Puente de la Mujer.
‘Senor Rico’ as I like to call him, my betrothed, took to me to ‘El Mirasol del Puerto’ which is situated right along the river a restaurant that neither of us have tried before. My first impression as I entered the restaurant was that it was lit far too brightly and that the decor was a little dated but it had that traditional homely feeling of an old-school Argentine restaurant that I love. Waiters rushing around in their little penguin outfits, suited and booted managers bossing them about, dressed tables with mildly unattractive tablecloths, as well as mates and gaucho knives proudly displayed along side the Traditional brands of Argentine wines set the scene. We were shown to our table (ask for the river side window tables!!), and our rather metro-sexual waiter swiftly ran through the options, which I liked, no fuss, no embellishment here; just the brief, honest truth.
We decided to keep the whole traditional theme running throughout the night so chose very common Argentine dishes; starters were fried empandas filled with ground beef, egg and onions; I personally prefer baked empanadas but nonetheless, it was still a rich, satisfying treat, followed by a juicy lomo (actually cooked medium rare like I asked, rather than the frazzled piece of leather that I normally get in similar establishments, a rather unimaginative green salad and some crunchy chips, followed by the piece de resistance, a pancake full of dulce de leche. However, disappointment washed over me as I discovered the pancake was a little dry and the dulce de leche was over the top, to the point where we were smearing it over the plate rather than in our mouths because we felt so ill with the sheer quantity of it. It was all washed down with a bottle of Rutini’s ‘more afforable’ line of wines, Trumpeter Malbec/Syrah blend from 2010. For me the wine was the winner of all that we consumed that night. A wonderfully rounded number, with fresh red fruitiness of raspberries and cherries, complimented by its bitter chocolate and dark peppery finish. With structured tannins it stood up nicely to the weight of my heavy lomo steak.
All in all, I had a thoroughly enjoyable night, the waiters were attentive, the food was, in general, good, the company was outstanding and the people watching….well that was phenomenal. Watching some snotty portenos schmooze over dinner is high on my list on entertaining ‘things to do’ in Buenos Aires!
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