Argentina is as well known for the quality of their beef as Texas, but the twelve hour flight would mean leaving today for dinner tomorrow. A simpler solution is to go to Buenos Aires Grill in the San Fernando Valley (two locations) and order something you can eat within minutes instead of hours. After a day running errands, a friend and I decided we wanted to eat some beef, so we went to Buenos Aires (the Grill, not the city).

Our waitress Marcela was the epitome of fun, describing the dishes she liked with so much animation and zest that we had a hard time deciding what we wanted from the selection of specials and menu items. While we mulled over our choices, we munched on some delightful bread and a zesty tomato relish and a chimichurri sauce.

My friend decided on one of the specials, the short rib with garlic mashed potatoes, and when it arrived she gasped in delight when she saw the tender meat literally fall off her fork. This dish is the ultimate comfort dish for meat and potato lovers with a perfectly balanced sauce and absolutely delectable meat. there were wild mushrooms under the mashed potatoes which added even more rich luxury to this winter favorite.

I ordered the skirt steak done rare, hoping that in Argentina (and Argentinian restaurants) they understood rare to me is red in the center. I was thankful not only for the rare steak that arrived, but for the light seasoning which brought of the flavor or the meat without hiding it. The sauteed creamy spinach was a bit rich for me with parmesan cheese, but the tartly vinegared pimentos were a nice counterpoint to the meat.

With a glass of Malbec and a glass of Sangria, our entire meal was about $75 with tax and tip, a very good price for a very good meal of meat. We both took half our meals home, so the value in portion size makes this a wonderful deal. Add to that the absolutely fun server Marcela and this becomes a priceless dinner. Go to Buenos Aires soon, it is well worth the drive!

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