El Mirasol Campo y Mar

Buenos Aires, Puerto Madero

  • Ambience 90%
  • Service 85%
  • Food 85%
  • Creativity 80%
  • Value 85%

Restaurant Details
Restaurant Details
El Mirasol Campo y Mar
Locale: Buenos Aires, Puerto Madero
Address: Av. Alicia Moreau de Justo 138
Telephone: +54 11 4515-0558
Restaurant Type: Steakhouse, Upscale Casual
Cuisine: Grilled Steaks, Seafood
Service Type: Table Service
Price: $$$$
Menu items offered:
Sun-Sat: 12pm to 1am, ,

Review Summary
Campo & Mar puts a unique twist on the Argentine steakhouse by adding grilled seafood to the menu. Execution and service are top-notch. The decor is more contemporary and stylish than the sister steakhouses. Both the menu and decor are an improvement in our opinion.

The full review for El Mirasol Campo y Mar

Review by: Ollie O Rating: 4.1 stars Review Date: 03/12/2016

El Mirasol is one the city’s most reputable steakhouses, catering to the city’s wealthy Porteños and travelers staying in the most prestigious hotels in and near the city’s most affluent neighborhoods.

Famed restaurant, Cabañas Las Lilas, may get the press, but El Mirasol has the loyal clientele.

Campo & Mar is this restauranteur’s foray into a new format. It’s a slightly more contemporary décor and it ventures from its strict steakhouse format to one that emphasizes a more diverse menu featuring seafood appetizers, grilled seafood main course dishes, and some traditional appetizers based on recipes “del campo” that are not offered on the flagship restaurant’s menu.

I personally find El Mirasol, the steakhouse, to be a bit a stuffy. The average age of the patron in both the Retiro and Puerto Madero locations is probably 50 years old. It looks like the crowd at a cocktail lounge at the Sands in Las Vegas circa 1990.

But Campo & Mar is a bit less stiff and starched. And the variety in the menu brings the restaurant a little closer to the 21st century than the sibling, who is stubbornly stuck in the past. I know of no other restaurant in the city that is serving grilled seafood. This to me is astonishing in a city with thousands of steakhouses that not one of them has had the courage to throw a piece of tuna or swordfish on the grill.

The waiters (all male on the day I visited at lunch) are of the customary Argentine steakhouse variety. Vested with bowties. Formal but polite. Apparently, the mold that these waiters are forged from is being carefully protected in a vault somewhere so that it can endure the ages.

Notwithstanding the formality, our waiter was efficient and polite throughout the entire service, although there were only two or three tables of diners on the day I visited, so that may not be indicative of service on a busy night.

We ordered an empanada. It was good. Typical El Mirasol. My companion ordered the ribeye. A tender steak. Cooked perfectly in typical El Mirasol form. But I ventured into the seafood realm and ordered the grilled tuna. The menu said, “red tuna”. I was expecting a sushi-grade cut of tuna charred on the outside, rosy red on the inside. What I received was a slightly overcooked, white throughout, piece of tuna. Or, at least, I was told it was tuna.

For now, I’m going to chalk this error up to my lack of communication. Most porteños prefer their proteins overcooked. The typical porteño orders a steak cooked until it has the texture of leather. So why would I have thought that the tuna would be any different? But the error goes beyond overcooking the fish and the failure to clarify how it should be cooked. If you have “red tuna” on the menu you should be serving something like yellowfin, bluefin or skipjack. And to grill anything else on open-flame is suspect. If you are serving albacore or some light-pink variety of tuna it should be baked, not grilled, which rendered it dry and tasteless.

I’m going to attempt to return soon with express instructions to the waiter on how to cook the tuna. And I might request to see the tuna before they slap it on the grill to make sure it’s not something other than tuna. I’ll update this review once I see the results.

We had an excellent array of grilled vegetables to accompany our steak and tuna. I love the grill marks on the veggies. A nice touch.

Wrapping it up, the restaurant is elegant, yet not as sterile and boring as the nearby flagship parilla. Service was efficient and attentive. The steak was true to El Mirasol form. So were the grilled veggies. They ruined the tuna by overcooking it. Perhaps that was a lack of communication on my part. Notwithstanding, the cooks should know not to serve tuna cooked like that or should confirm how the patron wants it cooked. A high creativity rating reflects the fact that this is about the only place in town that has the courage to put a piece of fish over the flame. I’ll be back to investigate further the grilled seafood.

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