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Tira de Ancho

The American The American

St Katharine Docks, 1 Commodity Quay, London E1W 1AZ

CAU

www.caurestaurants.com

CARNE ARGENTINA UNICA

S

t Katharine Docks on the hottest day of the year was a great surprise. Two minutes from the Tower of London, and I felt like I was on holiday in Puerto Banus. Sun, water, yachts and wall to wall restaurants. Ay, caramba! Something for every appetite, from £ to £££ and every cuisine imaginable. Happily, my destination was CAU, the popular Argentine chain. I say chain beCAUse there are now twelve in England, one in Amsterdam. There is nothing remotely chain-like about the food, however. It is excellent. The interior is a strange mix of corrugated plastic, blue skies, clouds and grass. Inspired either by the world according to cow (CAU) or perhaps the paintings of Magritte. Either way, it was very cool and completely open to the harbor, enhancing our holiday humor. I hope they have simulated sunshine in winter! Our smiling host and vivacious waiter brought us even further from the London grind. Friendly and full of energy. More sunshine. Viva las vaca-

32 September - October 2015

Reviewed by Michael M Sandwick ciones! The menu is filled with delights. We decided to share three starters and one big steak. Swordfish Carpaccio with capers, chilli, parsley and lemon oil (£6.25) was spot on; light and tasting of summer. Belly of Pork Tempura (£7.95) with CAUchup (sic), a CAUndiment I don’t usually CAUntenance, was wonderful. I couldn’t find any resemblance to tempura, but the batter was crisp and the pork tender. A cold beer would be the perfect pairing. Antichos (skewers) of grilled gambas with chipotle mayo (£6.50) were another taste of July. Cooked in the shells as they should be but not, however, de-veined as they should. The mayo was exceptional. I would have bought a jar of it. The main event: Tira de Ancho, a 500g spiral cut of rib-eye, marinated in chimichurri (£33.50) and chunky chips (£2.95). CAU promises top quality Argentine beef, and they deliver. Ours was tender, juicy, wellseasoned and absolutely enough for

two. Of course this called for a glass of Malbec, and here we were a bit disappointed. We tried two by the glass, a Zuccardi Animado 2013 (£6.55) and a Lorca ‘Grafitti’ 2013 (£7.75). The first was fruity and straightforward, but without the richness we had anticipated. The second was much spicier which I enjoyed, but had a flat finish. I expect one could do better ordering by the bottle and upping the ante. Dulce de leche pancakes with ice cream (£5.50) were a treat. Great caramel, but I would prefer a lighter pancake. Pina-CAU-la da pudding (£5.25), grilled pineapple with rum, caramel, coconut sorbet and lime had me screaming for sun cream and a hammock! If you are coming from Tower Hill tube station, don’t take the street. The traffic is awful and crossing the interchange is a horror. Instead use the pedestrian passage, past the historic Tower of London and directly on to St Katherine Docks, where you will find CAUse for celebration.

The American September-October 2015 Issue 746  

Bumper issue: the leading cross-media publication for Americans in the UK - and anyone interested in American culture

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