New Restaurant Alert: Gaucho Cocina Y Vinos Argentinos at Robinsons Magnolia, Quezon City
Get the full Argentinian experience at this new dining destination
Gaucho Cocina Y Vinos Argentinos
3/F Robinsons Magnolia, Doña Hemady corner Aurora Boulevard, New Manila, Quezon City
Tel. No. 654-3148
Open from 11 a.m. to 12 a.m. (Monday to Friday), 11 a.m. to 2 a.m. (Saturday to Sunday)
Enjoy the sights and smells of Gaucho.
(SPOT.ph) You’ll smell it before you see it.
Located at the far side of Robinsons Magnolia, Gaucho Cocina Y Vinos Argentinos isn’t the easiest to spot from inside the mall. But sniff around for the smell of barbecue and you’ll find the two-floor Argentinian restaurant that will take you on a sensorial journey of good food, mouthwatering scents, and a pretty sight. From its location on the corner, guests are treated to a lovely bird’s-eye view of Robinsons Magnolia’s The Park garden, but the rustic decorative elements inside the restaurant provide a more intriguing sight.
The space is part upscale Argentinian, part rustic
A touch of modernity courtesy of the chandelier
Gaucho takes its design cue from a hunting lodge-dark wood, iron fixtures, deer head mounts on the wall. A rose gold chandelier takes away some of the rough-hewn quality by giving it a cool edge while checkered floors and warm shades of red maintain its Latin American flair. At the center is a glass-encased fire pit holding the day’s fresh roasts and giving off all kinds of smoky yummy smells.
A trio of empanadas
Tempting as the roasts are, the menu isn’t all about macho meats-though choosing among the noteworthy dishes might prove to be a challenge. Prepare to be torn between familiar items like gambas and tuna ceviche; dishes with a twist like lamb and sautéed spinach empanadas (P180 for three flavors; beef and pork are also available) and the chickpea-flour pizza called fugazetta; and totally new experiences like the Yuca Chorreada (P240), a baked cassava with chorizo, tomatoes, and cheese.
Ensalada de Chipirones
A few items are culturally adapted in the menu, but the appetizers are strictly Argentinian. Straight from the coal-fired brick oven is the Pimientos Rellenos (P280), a pair of medium-sized red bell peppers stuffed with lamb ragu and baked to melt-in-your-mouth fork-tenderness. The subtle sweetness of bell peppers complements the spiced ground lamb, while raisins and carrots add texture to every bite. Less is more in the Ensalada de Chipirones (P260). Mixed greens are tossed in tangy Italian dressing before being topped with crisp fried onions and grilled baby squid. The components are comparatively fewer than other restaurants’ signature salads, but what it lacks in ingredients, it makes up for with punchy flavors.
Tira de Asado
A signature spice rub and a little moment on the grill give the Beef Short Ribs or Tira de Asado (400 grams/P390) fall-off-the-bone meat and an intense char that paints a crusty, intensely smoky flavor. Newly chopped parsely in the chimichurri sauce dabs on some delectable freshness while the pickled vegetables (onions, eggplant, and cucumber) add a tangy sweetness that cuts through the heaviness of beef.
Panqueque con Dulce de Leche
Any dessert would have to work overtime to cap off the powerful flavors of all the meat, but it only takes the wonderfully light finish of the Panqueque con Dulce de Leche (P190) to relieve the palate. Crushed toasted nuts and crumbled cornflakes are tucked in between soft crepes that are wading in a puddle of velvety caramel sauce. A hefty scoop of unabashedly cinnamon ice cream crowns the delectable dessert, like a final stamp of the bold flavors you’ll find at Gaucho.