El Porteno - Picture with Marcelo and Marcela

A Little Argentinian Place with Great Food and Wine

Last week, my sister-in-law, the wine store owner, invited my wife Any and I to a wine tasting.  It was at a little Argentinian place right on Miracle Mile in the Gables.  I’ve driven by it a million times and never noticed it.  I’m writing an article on the Argentinian wines we tasted that night, but first I wanted to share my experience with Any last night for dinner.

We were in the Gables having that infamous, “What are you in the mood for?” back and forth.  We didn’t have plans and were really indecisive.  So I suggest, “Why don’t we go back to El Porteño?”   That first time it was a wine tasting with small tapas paired with the wines.  It wasn’t dinner.  So this time we’d be there experiencing their restaurant for real.

We walked there from where we were and we were so pleasantly surprised.

Pictured with us above are the owners – Marcelo and Marcela.  The husband and wife really do have the same name.  Very cute.  Marcela’s the one I got to know the first night since she’s the one that handles the wine list.  Check out the wine list I’ve posted below.  It’s got an interesting layout.  Marcela’s organized the list and what you can expect so it’s easy to understand.

I’ll be meeting with her in a few weeks to go over what she carries.  We’ll get into this in detail.


Given she’s the wine person, I tell her I’m having steak and am looking for a good Cab to go with it.  She’s recommending we get a bottle, but we had already been drinking, Any wanted a rose and we weren’t Ubering so we decided to order by the glass.

I let Marcela take it from there and her $10 a glass pick was a good one.  Pictured here is the Porteño Skirt with my empty glass of the Cab.   You can see the little refill glass next to it. The steak, mashed potatoes and even the zucchini were perfect.  They served it with just enough chimichurri which had a nice kick to it.  The steak, I have mine medium rare, was tender.  I didn’t really need the very cool steak knife you see there.  A butter knife would have worked.

The food was right on, but let me tell you about this Cab.

At the wine tasting, the winery featured was Domaine Bousquet.  It’s near Mendoza up in the hills.  I’ll share the family story when I publish my article on the tasting.  At the tasting, we had their Reserve Cabernet Savignion Reserve.  The one she served me was their Premium Cabernet Savignon.  This was a dark, rich purple.  You can tell it had been aired out since it was served by the glass.  (It wasn’t opened right there at the table.)  I immediately noticed a plum / black fruit flavor.  It had hint of spiciness and almost a tangy-ness.  The hint of minerals was there too.  Not really oaky.

It went really well with the kick that came with the chimichurri.

I’ll cover the Domaine Bousquet wines, which are really well priced, in my next article.

I did want to give kudos to Marcello and Marcella for a super evening.  They were so friendly and the restaurant had such a warmth to it.  I will definitely be back and I think you should give it a try.  Stay tuned for my talk with Marcela’s and her wine list.

She knows how to pick ’em.