El Gaucho

El Gaucho tends to serve as little as possible of anything that is not meat, its main specialty

I invited Keren for an Argentinean birthday celebration at El Gaucho in Haifa. We walked into the restaurant through a wide porch overlooking the beautiful bay area, while inside we found an amazing space, large and beautifully designed, that allows for different types of parties – couples, families, friends and organized groups. A grill man juggled in front of the restaurant diners, and serves them generous portions of high quality meat.

Intoxicating scents of meat in the air aroused our taste buds, and we sat down for our own meal. We started out with Argentinean sangria, and prepared ourselves for a juicy steak. Only our lovely waiter had other plans for us, he offered El Gaucho's starters – stir-fried mushrooms for Keren and meat Empanada for me. The mushrooms came in a sizzling pan that spread fresh smells of portabella and champignon, garlic and fresh basil. My meat empanada was in fact a large half-moon of dough filled with meat and other surprises.

Once that our sense of hunger has subsided, we could think reasonably about our main order. We took a look at the grill man and knew exactly what we wanted: beef fillet for Keren and entrecote steak for me, red MR, thank you very much. Both were served a la plancha with fresh seasoned vegetable salad, and a side dish of potatoes and sweet potatoes, spiced with parsley, garlic and hyssop. El Gaucho tends to serve as little as possible of anything that is not meat, its main specialty. And about the meat – it was made just right, juicy, flavorful, and clear of fat. Another sign of its quality was the fact that we completely forgot about the chimichurri sauce that came with it, which would be a nice addition if the meat hadn't been so good.

We raised a glass of Copetin, another one of Argentina's alcoholic beverages, and our eyes began to wander towards the dessert menu. It was hard to choose, so we ordered the choros sticks (served with caramel) mini-soufflé and mini chocolate mousse.

As much as these desserts were great, they did not make us forget even for a minute the beautiful meat we just had. Happy birthday, Keren.