I was having dinner with friends this week and they asked me if I knew of a place to go. Without hesitation, I chose Chimichurri Grill West in Hell's Kitchen, considering the fantastic feast, prepared by Chef Carlos Darquea, I had the week before at Chimichurri Grill East where I was invited for a blogger/influencer dinner. So yes, my expectations were high and I was not disappointed.
The two places are clearly different, the West location being much smaller and with a more casual feel than its sister restaurant that is very elegant. We went early and nobody was there, but then, around 7:30pm, it started to get crowded, with only one table left at the time we were leaving.
Food wise, you will find more or less the same Argentinian dishes on the menu in both locations (by the way, the ribeye is also offered, but you will not find it on the menu), with a predominance of meat; if you are vegetarian, they do have few options and would probably accommodate small changes. We started off by ordering some wine and settled with the Pinot Noir Luca, 2013 that I tried and loved last week. I am going to stop there by saying that they have a nice selection of Argentinian wines, picked by co-owner and Wine Director Alicia Rodriguez. In fact all their wines are Argentinian at the exception of one, probably in case a dinner is not too adventurous...
We then shared some empanadas: they come by pair and we decided to pick a beef one and a manchego cheese one. I tried the former that was very good: the shell was deliciously flakey and the filling tasty and moist. I might I found an alternative to my top beef empanada found at La Isla in Hoboken!
Then, we got the Trios De Chorizos Caseros, a trio of sausages: from left to right, it was blood sausage, Argentinian pork sausage and red Spanish chorizo. They were all good (people were not that keen in eating the blood sausage, so I got a nice portion), but I admit that my favorite was the red Spanish chorizo that was succulent. Know that you can pick ay combination of sausages, especially if you are not into blood sausage...
The last appetizer was the Albondigas Finas, that are grass fed beef meatballs in a spicy marzano tomato sauce topped with oregano: there were quite good meatballs and the sauce, that was not really spicy, was delicious, with a robust flavor.
At that point we decided to change wine and opted to a Malbec, BenMarco 2014.
For the entree, I hesitated a lot: burger or steak? Their burger has sweet breads on it and I was curious, but I got tempted by their Lomo Fino Pampeano, an 8oz filet mignon served with a blue cheese sauce. I ordered the steak medium-rare, but it came more on the medium side. Well, I was still not disappointed, to the contrary: the 32 days wet-aged filet mignon was very tender, juicy and tasty, definitely a delicious piece of meat. Combined with the blue cheese sauce that was quite strong, I was in heaven. Needless to say that I inhaled it...
For sides, we went for their seasoned fries (papas fritas) that were a crowd pleaser, being crispy and cooked all the way through, the sautéed mushrooms with garlic and thyme (Hongos Salteados - note: people started to take some before the photos, so the portion does not reflects how it came) and the sautéed kale with garlic and olive oil (Col Risada).
Last, they offered us the dessert and the dessert wine: the dessert was the Panqueque De Manzana, a thin caramelized apple crepe topped with caramel ice cream, that was sublime, delightfully sweet and deliciously buttery. The dessert wine was the Santa Julia Tardio- 2012, from Argentina.
I finished the meal with a decaf espresso and left that place full and satisfied to have found that place for dinner. I definitely like Chimichurri Grill: the food and wine there are great, each location having its own identity. I still need to try their burger, so I guess I will have to go back...
Enjoy (I did)!
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Chimichurri Grill West - 609 9th Avenue, New York, NY 10036