Casa Malevo, Marble Arch, nice spot

I had been meaning to try this place for a while as it on Connaught St round where I grew up. It’s a funny street, lots of moneyed places come and go without really taking off. In fact the only shops to remain from my childhood are the coffee merchant and florist. However the local pub the Duke of Kendal does singalong round the piano nights! Anyway into the midst of this is Casa Malevo an Argentinian restaurant. I’d passed by a few times but it always looked very quiet much like the short lived Italian that used to be on this site. As it turns out outside appearances can be deceptive! I went there in November with Ketan whom I met on the NCT parenting course. He has 2 kids now so gets out a bit less than me and we look forward to our occasional nights out. We booked for 8PM and initially the restaurant was quiet. It’s quite café like inside with a front dining room leading round to more seating at the back and a semi open kitchen. As it turns out there is also a private dining room downstairs. We were shown to a table for 2 at the side which wasn’t that spacious and got cracking with some wine and looked at the menu.

Now automatically with Argentinian food the emphasis is on beef which Ketan doesn’t eat so we had to be a bit more creative. To start with I had some chorizo which was very tasty not as greasy as some of the Spanish stuff and came with a nice side salad. Ketan has some very tasty marinated prawns, so far so good and by now onto a proper bottle of Malbec. For main I went for the Corazon de Cuadril which is a marinated rump steak. It’s served rare and is really very garlicky. It was nice enough but due to the cut and cooking parts of it were quite a challenge to chew. With it I had some Papas Fritas Provenzal which were herb seasoned chips, really very tasty. Ketan had a pork chop they had on the specials board which he greatly enjoyed. By this time the initially quiet restaurant was packed full and very lively indeed. Even downstairs was full with a party. It would appear that it’s habitués like to eat later.

As it was a cold winter’s day we felt it was best to go for some dessert. I ordered the Dulce de Leche which is a sort of mash up of crème caramel and crème brulee. It was seriously nice. A big plate of lovely creaminess. Ketan had some very good chocolate cake and we washed these delights down with some nice Argentinian desert wine. The bill came to £70 a head which was pricey but we had gone through 3 courses and a fair amount of wine. Service was nice and they were very helpful with choosing wines. As mentioned the atmosphere got more buzzy as the evening wore on. So all in all a nice evening even if I wasn’t massively keen on my main. We rounded off the evening with a couple of whiskey’s at the Duke Of Kendal which mercifully didn’t have a singalong that night!

Wednesday, January 30, 2013
Overall rating
Food 8 | Service 8 | Atmosphere 8 | Value for money 7

Zoilo, West End, shonky service

BRGR Co, Soho