Recently Cam and I had the luxury of trying out Charango Barbacoa on Bree Street. If the name sounds familiar, it’s because it has been around for some time but recently got a bit of a revamp and menu change! The decor is looking fresh, the place has a great vibe and the food is deeeeeeelish. So, it’s pretty much the perfect combo for a casual Saturday or Friday night.
Charango Barbacoa- the grillhouse you need to try ASAP!
Charango Barbacoa is a South-American inspired grillhouse with a menu that’s simple yet punchy. If you’re a foodie, well listen up because the flavors and combinations in this menu will definitely pique your interest. Cam and me are simple diners – a good steak, crispy fries and a good cocktail (in Cam’s case, a cold beer) and we’re happy campers. However, we all know that a good steak isn’t always as easy as it seems.
I’m still thinking about that pork taco!
For starters their variety leans a lot on seafood dishes such as ceviche, tataki and prawns. However, meat lovers need not fear because they have a carpaccio (delish, we tried it!), chicken livers and wings as well. We actually ordered a pork taco as a starter to go with our carpcacio – the portion size is a bit bigger than your average starter but was great for sharing! The taco was very flavoursome, not as spicy as I usually like my taco but still very good! The burnt pineapple salsa and spicy tomato aioli on the pork taco was literally one of my standouts of the evening. If you know anything about me, this was extremely unusual because I don’t eat pineapple with savory food. But that is how good the Charango Barbacoa chefs are. They got this boring gal to love a sweet sour combination. Hats off to you!
If you’re looking for an after work drinks spot, you’ll be pleasantly surprised at their drinks menu. It has a good cocktail selection along with a nice variety of different wines and beers. I started with the Forever Summer which literally is like summer in a glass. It was super light and refreshing, not overly sweet and super cute in colour. It definitely got the evening off to a good start. I also thought their cocktail menu was quite reasonably priced, starting from R55.
Definitely on the list of best steaks in Cape Town
Let’s talk meat! I’m sorry to all my vegetarian friends out there but I really do enjoy a good fillet. Charango Barbacoa is pretty much a meat lovers dream as they have a wide variety of different cuts and includes the most incredible ensembles of wet rubs, butters and sauces. I love how it gives you as the consumer the ability to get creative when it comes to the flavor you’re after.
Wet rubs include chimichurri, salsa picon, red pesto, salsa verde and more. As for butters, you’re quite spoilt with yummyness such as chipotle, espresso, bone marrow, truffle, chilli and garlic, roasted tomato and more. I went the more classic route and stuck with mushroom sauce, my favorite. Cam went a bit more adventurous and tried the chilli and garlic wet butter as well as a chimichurri wet rub.
As far as cuts go, I went for fillet and Cam had a rib eye on the bone (it was monstrous!) The rib-eye on the bone is definitely a more fatty cut, but Cam said it was perfect. So if you enjoy your meat with a bit more fat- you must try the rib-eye on the bone! The meat was deliciously soft and tender, and the sides that we ordered with our dish were equally delicious. Basically we couldn’t pick any fault with our dishes!
Make sure to leave space for dessert because it’s just TOO good!
You can’t go to Charango Barbacoa (Especially on cheat night, in our case!) and not try their dessert. Guys, Cam had the deep fried ice cream and it was HUGE! Isn’t it the worst when like the look of your partners meal more than your own?! The deep fried ice cream is a large ball and it’s rolled in rice crispies and finished with a dark chocolate ganache. Man, that dessert was decadent! However, when I took a bite of mine I was very happy with my choice as well. I’m a serious caramel-flavoured anything girl and the Dulce ticks all the boxes. Dulce de leche ice cream, crushed candied almonds and dulce de leche ice cream. It was YUM to say the least and I finished every last morsel. You have to make sure to try these desserts!
Honestly we were seriously full at the end of our meal. Charango Barbacoa are very generous with portion sizes, which makes the food fairly good value for money. Cape Town foodies will be spoilt for choice here!