Gaucho Grill

The best place to eat steak in London (and Manchester)

Where? 89 Sloane Avenue, London SW3 3DX (020-7584 9901, www.gaucho-grill.com)

Mood? Slick and classy. However, the reliance on cowhide chairs and wall coverings mean this probably isn’t the best place to take a vegetarian (that and the fact the menu revolves around a dizzying array of steak).

Why go? For melt-in-the-mouth steaks and delicious, taste-bud dazzling cocktails

What to wear? You can dress up – and many do – but it’s not essential. A cashmere knit from Joseph, say, with 18th Ammendment dark denims should fit the bill.

To eat? There are fish and chicken dishes on offer, but to eat anything other than the Argentinean beef is rather missing the point. First though, sample a selection of empanadas – small savoury pastries, rather like mini Cornish pasties, filled with ground beef, spinach and goat’s cheese or tuna, as eaten on the streets of Buenos Aires. Beef is served in three sizes – 225g, 300g and 400g (larger steaks can be ordered, but you’d better be feeling really hungry). Before making a selection, from rump, sirloin, fillet and rib eye, you will be shown the raw beef cuts to give you a better idea of what you’re eating. There is also the option to enjoy a churrasco steak, which has been spiral cut and marinated in herbs, oil and garlic.

To drink? All the wine on offer comes from Argentina (did you know the country was the world’s fifth largest producer of wine?). The 2005 Malbec, from the Salta region, is an elegant accompaniment to the red meat dishes on offer. Cocktails, meanwhile, are top notch. The Brisa de Buenos Aires, with aged Cuban rum, fresh lime and passion fruit, and Pata de Vaqueros, created from gin, orange bitters and fresh mint leaves, both come highly recommended.

Need to know? There are seven Gaucho Grills across London including Hampstead, Piccadilly, Canary Wharf, Richmond and Tower Bridge. A little further north, Gaucho Manchester is situated on St Mary’s Street in the city centre (0161-833 4333).

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