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June 22, 2000

FOOD FOR THOUGHT: Rincon de Buenos Aires



5300 W. Spring Mountain Road


During the Falkland island war (remember that one history buffs?), the people of Argentina were described as a bunch of Italians who speak Spanish, think like Germans wish they were British and act like they’re French. I know nothing of these things, but I do know that one of the tastiest and best meals I’ve had lately was at the rincon de Buenos Aires on West Spring Mountain Road. If you think too much about that description, you might not want to venture to the country —or to one of their restaurants. But for the stout hearted---and meat-eaten’ both are the place for grilled beef at its best… About the only thing I knew about Argentinean food when I went there was that it's beef is prized throughout the world, and vegetarians are about as welcomed as the British army….besides beef, the other addictively good foodstuff from the pampas is known as chimchurri sauce, an oily, garlic and herb laden relish that makes even shoe leather taste good. Argentines (or is it Argentineans?) suggest smearing it on the bountiful cuts of meat that come comprise the barbecues for which this country is famous. The good news is that—at Rincon de Buenos Aires-- they’ll grill anything from sweetbreads to broccoli and the ensaladas are highly enjoyable as well. They’re full of green leafy things to assuage your guilt and plant some roughage inside you, lest your innards go into cholesterol shock. All of this tasty stuff is featured at prices that don’t require a second mortgage, like a beautifully seared skirt steak with fresh mashed potatoes for well under twenty dollars. The French call this thin cut of meat the onglet, the British call it a hangar steak, but how ever you slice it (which isn’t always easy) it is the most intensely beefy cut of meat that ever overmatched a flimsy steak knife. You can fault the owners of Rincon de Buenos Aires for their cutlery….but not their attitude….and the friendly informality of this place should make all of us forget the Falklands.

This is John Curtas.

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