Gaucho: Enjoy Date Night on the Pampas Without Leaving London

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Gaucho is an Argentinian word for the cowboys of the South American pampas, so it makes sense that Gaucho, an upscale steakhouse in Piccadilly Circus, honors its namesakes with row after row of cowhide-upholstered chairs. In the midst of the restaurant’s sleek, dark interior, those spotted furnishings instantly draw your attention — and maybe a laugh from you and your date. Gaucho is that kind of place, at once whimsical and relaxed, but very serious when it comes to food and service.

You picked this spot for dinner because you heard Gaucho serves up serious steak, and judging by the sizzling, juicy cuts the waiters are carrying to nearby tables, you heard correctly. You and your date read through the menu with the same level of interest you dedicate to your favorite novels, taking your time with such important decisions as these.

Gaucho exclusively serves grass-fed Argentinian beef, so you know you can hardly go wrong. Similarly, its selection of wines from Argentina is epic, and you opt for a classic malbec — in this case, the Luigi Bosca — because its bold, deep flavor is the best possible thing to pair with a steak like the one you have in mind. The first sip only whets your appetite, so you order authentic empanadas, the 48-hour dry aged provoleta cheese, and a juicy bife de chorizo accompanied by a custom chimichurri sauce. Leftovers are all but guaranteed, but the menu’s selection is too tempting not to try it all. You inch your seat closer to your date when two spoons are produced for your decadent dulce de leche dessert, and pretend for a second that you’re dining together in a sophisticated spot in Buenos Aires.

You don’t know whether it’s the fantastic room, the delicious food, or the sultry tango music that’s been slowly emerging from the background all night, but here, sitting across from your sweetheart, you’re feeling adventurous. Maybe you should go abroad for your next holiday together — somewhere far afield. Maybe even Argentina?

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