You can never have too many Argentine BBQ restaurants, that’s our motto. Palermo is the latest project from the guys behind San Telmo and Pastuso—a classy, subterranean, asado-powered Argentinian steak joint.
If you haven’t been to Buenos Aires, Palermo is a district, a little like Fitzroy. Funky, delicious, with a strong Italian/Sicilian influence, and those flavours and beats have worked their way into the kitchen. It’s here you’ll find head chef Ollie Gould, stoking the giant fire pit or searing steaks on the parilla grill.
Most dishes are built to share. Maybe a little plate of white fish ceviche with jalapenos and fennel, or suckling pig croquettes (our favourite) with a dollop of chipotle mayonnaise. Veggos should make a bee-line for the Broccoli: fried broccoli dusted with pecorino. If all vegetables tasted like this, Australia’s children would have vitamins coming out their ears.
Of course the main event if the smoky, spark-spitting asado pit. You can order either Asado de Cordero (Gippsland Suffolk lamb) or Asado de Cochinillo (Milbrook suckling pig). Both come in two sizes: 250g or 450g. Ten guesses which one we recommend.
The fingerprints of San Telmo are everywhere. From the drinks list down to the fit-out. If the place looks familiar, that’s because you probably spent a sticky, booze-fuelled night boogying on the dancefloor here—this used to be The Apartment (may she RIP). Although the transformation is pretty stunning—dark timber, baby-soft leather, marble bar and portraits of Argentinian screen star Coca Sarli.
For drinks? It’s got to be one of three things: an ice-cold Quilmes, a big bucket of Sangria (it doesn’t come in buckets, but you get the idea), or our personal choice: a hefty Malbec that makes your eyes roll back.
Image credit: Annika Kafcaloudis