Porteño – UPDATE

We arrived at Porteño on the later side one rainy Saturday evening. At first the hostess said that she was closing the wait-list for tables, but then she decided that she might be able to accommodate us if we wanted to wait 10-15 minutes at the upstairs bar. Glad she sat us – because the food at this place is wonderful. Much like it’s sister restaurant that we’d visited a few weeks earlier, Bodega, the flavors of everything we ordered were totally on point. In fact, I actually like this place a little better as the dishes were much more simple, focusing on the food and without too may ingredients like the dishes at Bodega. 

Our waiter was fantastic – a Texan Australian with great recommendations for both food and wine. He advised us that two smaller dishes from the first page of the menu, with one main entree and one vegetable/salad would be plenty for the two of us.

We had:

  • A Bottle of the 2005 Beronia Reserva
  • Calamares Asado ($18) – BBQ Calamari which was delicious with just the right amount of spiciness 
  • Ceviche Peruano ($18) – Kingfish Ceviche which reminded me of Bodega’s signature Fish Fingers dish, but was better in my opinion – the corn is a lovely edition
  • Bife de Ancho ($38) – perfectly cooked Angus Sirloin
  • Repollitos de Brusela Frito ($14) – fried Brussel Sprouts which were actually one of my favorite things that we had
UPDATE: We went to Porteno the other night with two friends and it was good, but not as good as we’d remembered it. 

As with our first visit – the Bife de Ancho (Sirloin) was perfectly cooked, the King Fish Ceviche was flavorful, and the wine was lovely. We also enjoyed a few new items during this visit – the Empanadas de Carne ($4 each) were crisp and flakey on the outside and delicious an saucy on the inside, the Grilled Tuna ($22) was perectly cooked, and the 8 Hour Woodfired Free Range Suckling Pig ($44) was moist and yummy with a crisp, salty skin.

Things that weren’t so great this time ’round:

  • Our waiter kind of sucked (especially in comparison to the extremely helpful and friendly guy we had last time). He told us that we’d ordered “just enough” when we had clearly ordered way too much and he also completely forgot to bring over the one item I was most excited about – THE BRUSSELS SPROUTS! By the time we realized they weren’t coming, we were too stuffed to order them…
  • Some of the food was just okay, not great – the Green Beans ($14) were more Ricotta and sauce than Green Beans, the desserts we had – the Leche Quemada (a milk custard with orange jam and chocolate ice cream for $14) and the Chocolate Filled Donut ($14) were pretty mediocre.

I definitely think this could have been an off-night and it won’t deter us from giving it another shot, but it was a slightly disappointing performance from what we had considered to be our #1 restaurant…

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House Baked Bread and Olive Oil, Pate and Dips ($2 per person)
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Empenadas de Carne ($4 each)
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King Fish Ceviche ($18)
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Grilled Tuna ($22)
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Green Beans ($14)
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8 Hour Free Range Suckling Pig ($44)
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Bife de Ancho Sirloin ($38)
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Desserts ($14 each)
Porteno on Urbanspoon