As with most restaurants in Sofia, they rely heavily on word of mouth advertising. So, when I heard that there was an Argentinean steak house in Lozenetz a tingle ran up and down my spine, while images of steak danced in my head, but then reality began to seep in… is there really an Argentinean chef in Sofia… the answer is no.
Before the dinner, I was looking on Asado’s website and I found something very interesting. Under the restaurant tab they give a nod to the designer, but they make no mention about the chef or his background. If you own a restaurant, I think it is more important to promote the food rather than the decor. When I called to make a reservation I inquired about the chef’s credentials. He is Bulgarian and has not worked outside of Bulgaria, but I didn’t want to go into the dinner with prejudice or snobbery about his resume.
I did a little research about the meaning of asado
and it is a meal that serves a series of meats in a particular sequence and is native to certain South American countries, one of them being Argentina. The asado meats are grilled, usually over hot coals with no flame, so the meat doesn’t develop a smoky flavor and seasoned only with salt before and after cooking. This is not what I was expecting from Asado Grill.
The place is a little tricky to find. The entrance of the restaurant is set back and my taxi driver went past it on the first pass. I was a little late because the hail storm that occurred 30 minutes prior made finding a taxi difficult. By the time I arrived almost everyone was there. Bill and Kalina had already ordered chorizo and salads, which I got to sample. Not an expert on chorizo by any means, it was tasty. Bill felt that it was a tad heavy on the black pepper.
Back in NY, I worked around the corner from a little place called Ruben’s Empanadas. I would go there for lunch and boy were they good. So, I was a little disappointed with the ones that I ordered when they arrived. They were rather dry and the filling wasn’t as savory as I would have liked.
Finally, my filet mignon, I think I got the end bit of the tenderloin because it was shaped oddly. Most everyone ordered their steaks medium rare, but not all of them arrived that way. Mine was rare, while Bill on my left had better luck and Teodora on my right her steak completely over cooked, so she sent it back. I still enjoyed my steak. It was tender and flavorful, but I would have preferred if it a bit pinker.
Overall the place was pretty good and reasonably price in my opinion. I know of many other restaurants in Sofia that will charge you closer to 50 leva for such a steak, but the Asado price of 24.90 leva was not bad. The wine list had a comprehensive selection of Argentinean wines and some Bulgarian ones as well. We all shared Trapiche Oak Cask Malbec for 26.00 leva a bottle that I think everyone enjoyed. I would return to the Asado Grill the next time I am in the mood for steak. Be sure to make a reservation because even on a Wednesday night the place was near if not completely full!
Thanks to everyone who came out last night. It was a great night of meat, food talk and more meat.
For our June dinner, I am offering four healthy restaurant option: Kibea
, Sun & Moon
, Dream House
. If you are interested in coming please choose one of the four restaurants and let me know on Eating, Gardening & Living’s Facebook page
or email me
. The restaurant with the most votes or comments be selected. If you aren’t already a fan become one and keep up to date with future events.