San Cristobal . Buenos Aires
- Ambience 80%
- Service 80%
- Food (Execution) 90%
- Creativity 90%
- Value 100%
Restaurant Type: Casual Dining
Cuisine: Eclectic Gourmet Price: $$$ Hours: Mon-Sat 12:30 am to 11:30 pm[/types] Closed Sundays[/types] [/types]
Summary of Review
Restaurant Review for Aramburu BIS
Rating: 4.4 stars
Gonzalo Aramburu has received more than a fair amount of praise, both locally and internationally, for his accomplishments at Aramburu Restó, which offers a twelve course tasting menu that highlights his talented staff’s use of molecular gastronomy and sous vide cooking techniques.
But not everyone wants dinner out to be a theatrical production and spending close to 1,000 pesos per person for dinner is a bit over the budget for most Porteños except on special occasions.
The solution is Aramburu BIS. This scaled down, more casual and less expensive version of its predecessor gives a diner a glimpse of what can be expected at the flagship restaurant. And based on my dinner at BIS, what can be expected is one outstanding meal.
BIS allows patrons to either choose individual items from the menu, a la carte, or to sample the wares, so to speak, with a six course tasting menu that includes a choice of two appetizers, two main course dishes and two desserts in slightly smaller portions, for the sum total of about US$30 (ARS$420).
Naturally, on my first visit to BIS, I was the adventurer. Bring on all six courses if you would please!
As I often do, I gave the waiter the latitude of deciding for me. Something more diners should try in a restaurant of this type. The waiter knows which items get the most OOHHs and AAHHs and unless you’re finicky or have some type of aversion to particular foods, this approach will normally serve you well.
I certainly have no complaints about the waiter’s choices. They were fantastic.
First up. The sweetbreads. Gently seared on the surface but soft and almost creamy on the inside. Surrounded by a few wild mushrooms, a rich and complex mushroom purée and tiny threads of crisp, fried leek. Round one? Perfect.
Next. The grilled octopus appetizer. Perfectly seasoned with some unknown smoky condiment, and surrounded by an array of supporting little tidbits, the most significant of which was a creamy potato foam. This foam was like mashed potatoes converted to clouds from heaven hovering over a delightful little assortment of new potatoes and confit cherry tomatoes. Round 2, perfectly executed.
The first of the two main courses was the trout. It was very lightly seared. Cooked perfectly. Still moist and tender but fully cooked. Accompanied by a cauliflower puree (again, more like cauliflower clouds) and braised fennel root. I’m trying hard to find some way that this dish could be improved. Perhaps a slightly crispier seer on the skin for contrast of texture … but in all honesty it was very, very good just the way it was.
The fish course was accompanied by a duo of beef. A small portion of grilled rib-eye and a tri-tip steak cooked sous vide for two hours. If I could find one fault in this entire meal it would be that the rib-eye was just a little too tough, something more the fault of the rancher than the cook. The slowly cooked tri-tip was spot on. This duo of beef was sitting on this luscious garlic purée, adorned with small, crispy, fried rolls of paper thin slices of potato, a little bit of Swiss chard and some onions braised in a beet juice. The onion slices formed little cups that contained this delicious broth that flowed out onto the plate when you cut into the onion. It was quite brilliant. The appearance of the dish was as impressive as the taste. The same can be said for every course as you can readily see in the images.
The first dessert course was a pumpkin crème brûlée. The best version of crème brûlée I’ve ever tasted. It was accompanied by some small creamy pillows of pastry cream sprinkled with a crumble for a contrast in texture. Gonzalo … send me the recipe for that dessert!
By now I’m reaching the saturation point. Could I handle one more course? Out comes this slightly tart array of fresh slices of fruit and two small quenelles of ice cream. The dish was light. Not too sweet. There was a dab of fruit compote with this somewhat pungent undertone of cinnamon. It was truly unique.
How can I say this? There are many chefs that put modern culinary techniques at the center of the menu and forget that the experience is about the taste. This brilliant staff in the kitchen only used these techniques to augment and enhance the otherwise wonderfully orchestrated flavors in each course.
This meal would easily cost US$300 or more in Manhattan, London, or Sydney. You can experience it for a fraction of that amount at BIS. And you don’t even have to wear a tie!
Location Name: Aramburu BIS