When it comes to date night destinations, sometimes you'll want to go a bit fancy, dining at a restaurant that boasts a menu as premium as its interiors. One place that seemed to fit the bill? Sophisticated steakhouse Gaucho in Glasgow. Inspired by the passion, culture and, of course, the food of Argentina, this atmospheric eatery promised to be the perfect spot for a couple's meal out.
Dark and lavishly decorated, the scene was set for an elegant evening, and our visit got off to a stellar start with the warm hospitality of our server Gustas. He enthusiastically explained the menu and the provenance of its cuisine, especially the sustainably sourced, carefully reared and wet-aged beef. To illustrate the point, our waiter presented us with a platter of raw meat, guiding us through each cut and their recommended cooking level. If there’s one thing that Gaucho takes incredibly seriously, it’s steak.
Suitably informed, we enjoyed an aperitif as we perused the foodie offering. I opted for the smoky and sharp Lemon Curd Your Enthusiasm (£11.50), while my other half ordered an old fashioned off-menu, as the ingredients for his original choice weren’t available. We also ordered a bottle of Vina Patricia (£79), a deliciously light and juicy malbec from the restaurant's own vineyards. Speaking even as someone who doesn’t love red wine, this was excellent - memorably lush, bursting with fruity freshness and, as it turned out, an ideal pairing for the main courses.
To offset all the beef we were about to consume, we both decided on seafood starters. Beautifully balanced, the diver scallops (£20.50) were plump and golden, bathed in a fiery 'nduja butter and creamy, cooling aguachile verde, topped with a lemon crumb. My partner went for the incredibly fresh sea bass ceviche (£12). Complemented with a sweet and spicy salsa, the zingy, citrus-soaked dish screamed upscale South America.
And now to the main event: I requested a 300g ancho ribeye (£36.50) and my partner the 300g chorizo sirloin (£32), both medium-rare. Let’s cut to the chase - the steaks were fantastic. The ribeye was sumptuous in both texture and flavour, served perfectly pink with a satisfying blackened crust. Flawless, no notes. The sirloin was also delicious, but my other half, in retrospect, felt he should have followed Gustas’ advice to have it cooked medium to render the fat further - a nod to the servers’ expertise over personal preference. Our sauces - a vibrant chimichurri (£3) and a classic velvety bearnaise (£3.50) - were idyllic accompaniments.
Steak isn’t steak without potatoes, and the crispy, crunchy, golden glory of the hand-cut chips with chimichurri salt (£6) made them a must-order (actually, nab a portion each - much too good to share), while the confit mushrooms (£6.50) were incredibly indulgent, meltingly soft and drenched in butter. The sauteed broccoli (£6) accompanied by roasted almonds and confit garlic, dusted with a tangy lemon crumb, was delightfully dense in garlicky goodness... maybe not one for a first date.
The small-but-mighty dessert menu made it tricky for my sweet tooth to make a decision, with several strong contenders (the description of the sharing cookie is living rent-free in my mind). I was eventually swayed by the decadence of the salted dulce de leche cheesecake (£10) and my dinner date devoured the classic lemon tart (£7.50). The cheesecake tasted silky, sweet and just the right side of salty, plus the lemon tart was lip-smackingly, well, tart. What more could you want?
The DesignMyNight Digest
Gaucho’s moody, sensual ambience makes it a winning choice for date night, offering a glamorous vibe and a sophisticated menu packed with crowd-pleasers. If the idea of plentiful steak makes you worry about your carbon footprint, you can relax here and learn about their bid for carbon-conscious beef and wine - certainly something different to think about while you dine. Aside from all of that; if you’re in the mood for excellent food and wine in a lavish setting, you can’t go wrong here.
💰 The damage: £247 for two plus service charge.
📍 The location: 7 West Nile Street, G1 2PR.
👌 Perfect for: A decadent date night.
⭐ Need to know: Gaucho Glasgow's Sunday roast also looks incred.
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