Buenos Aires Comes to Deansgate
Seeking South American steak in Manchester? Head to the old Methodist church that now houses Gaucho
Review by Catherine Ferguson
Anyone who knows me will tell you that there are few things in life that I love more than good steak and disco. So just imagine my delight as I walked through the doors of Gaucho and heard the dulcet tones of Nile Rodgers, floating up the stairs of the stunningly restored former church.
Whilst Gaucho might be a familiar sight on the streets of London, their Manchester steak emporium is one of four regional restaurants outside of the Capital. They’ve retained some of the Methodist Hall’s original features, with the magnificent church organ, an unlikely bedfellow next to the glamorous chandeliers and legendary Argentinian cowhide décor.
Just a stone’s throw from hustle and bustle of Deansgate, guests are welcomed into an alluring mirrored bar, which Gaucho believe, “harks back to the heyday of Buenos Aires, when the rest of the world was struggling with prohibition.”
I just loved the variety of the cocktail menu and the exclusively Argentinian wine list. It’s so easy to think that Mendoza is all about the Malbec, but my aperitif begged to differ. 100 per cent Chardonnay, the Familia Zuccardi Blanc de Blancs from the Uco Valley had all the brioche, butter and toasty notes that you might expect from a great Champagne. A big fan of an Old Fashioned, my companion harked back to a recent trip to Argentina and opted for the Banoffee Old Fashioned – Bumbu rum stirred over ice with banana sugar, chocolate bitters and dulche de leche. Perhaps a little on the sweet side, but still delicious, though it might have been a better choice for pudding.
From the hosts to the waiting staff and the sommeliers, the staff were a delight – unobtrusive and knowledgeable. The Scallops Succotash were at the top of the bill for me: roasted fresh corn, nduja, smoked paprika and fresh lime were a light, but mouth-watering start. For the star of the show, I plumped for the fillet: lean and tender with a delicate flavour, 300g was the perfect steak with French beans and a rustic chimichurri.
Granted, the prices are at the upper end of the scale, but there’s something wonderfully decadent about a night at Gaucho. From the tipples at the bar to the style and glamour of the restaurant, it’s everything you could want in a date night. Great drinks, even better food, fantastic staff and disco on tap. Oh, what a treat.
Enquiries: Gaucho, 2A St Mary’s Street, Manchester, M3 2LB / 0161 8334333 / www.gauchorestaurants.com/restaurants/manchester/