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  • Writer's pictureKaren O.

Friends and Food – Backyard Thai Fest and Gaucho

Updated: Jan 22, 2022

Once or twice a month or maybe as often as our pockets and schedules allow, we get together for some girl time and good food. My usual culprits are Luvarie and Fel but on some occasions, we get company, and today Mrs Shells is on the grub and grind crew.

Mrs Shells is visiting from out of town and it’s my thing to give my guests a food treat. If you are in town, we have to pick a day specifically to enjoy some of the cuisines only residents can recommend. Luvarie and Fel are warm companions, and soon Mrs Shells fits right in like we’ve all known each other for ages.

We kick off the evening trying out the Thai fest at the Backyard Steigenberger Hotel, Business bay. We are here to see what it’s like and taste what is displayed. I mean, it is common knowledge you can’t go wrong with Thai cuisine. Mrs Shells is skeptical about Thai food, probably from a bad experience 😂, but we manage to talk her into trying some of the dishes.

The view at the Backyard is beautiful and also catches the Burj Al Arab in the distance. There’s a good number of people, adults and kids alike but we find a table and soon we start ordering our munchies. We keep it simple with grills, Tom yum soup, dumplings and a portion of Pad Thai Noodles.

Thai Fest BBQ station – The Backyard

We order everything at the BBQ station and top it with drinks. It’s light eating, taking in the views, and girly giggles before we get set for a proper dinner….

The Backyard

We aren’t decided on where we will have dinner yet but we deliberate and agree on trying out Gaucho.

Gaucho is located at the Gate Village 05 in DIFC and is an Argentine restaurant… Oh hello carnivores, Steak!!!

Ambience is warm and welcoming, decor is modern and nicely put together too.

We sit at the table and get handed the menu. Now the real work begins lol, agreeing on what works for everyone’s palate. We get served some warm, aromatic bread and our drinks.

With my culprits, it’s never a difficult task picking foods off the menu, and today isn’t an exception even with Mrs Shells at the table. In no time, we incorporate everyone’s desires and are ready to order;

Roasted Potatoes, carrots, parsnips, sautéed broccoli – yes kids, you must eat your vegetables – Homemade Yorkshire pudding.

400g Ancho Ribeye, 300g churrasco de lomo marinated for 48 hours in garlic, parsley and olive oil, a whole spatchcock chicken and sea bream fillet.

See, I told you, agreeing on foods off the menu is never a hassle with these ladies and we always get a variety of proteins, both from land and sea.

The platter arrives with everything on it and we start to dig in. Every dish, I mean every single item on this platter is beautifully cooked, well seasoned and bursting with flavors. We are all pleased and are giving each other an acceptance nod with the “yums and mmmm’s” as we keep eating. The steaks are cooked to medium, soft, well seasoned, and the peppercorn sauce gives it even more flavor and some elevated heat.

We finish our main course and are stuffed almost to our limits but hey you just cannot pass a chance for dessert (uh uh, no fitfam today), especially when trying a new place. We decide on a sharing platter, The Gaucho dessert Sampler; Dulce de leche cheesecake with toasted marshmallow, Malbec poached plums, banana and coconut mess with broken meringue and whipped cream.

Dessert is fantastic and a MUST try!! My favorite is the Malbec poached plum, I would never have imagined plum can be magically elevated from an ordinary fruit to a luxury sumptuous dessert item.

The Entertainer has Gaucho vouchers in it, which pretty much reduces our final bill but it is value for money and you won’t regret spending a healthy amount on good food.

The Entertainer is a publisher of buy one get one free (2 for 1) offers for restaurants, leisure attractions, spas, hotel accommodation and more across the Middle East, Asia, Africa and Europe. Pretty much helps you save especially when you go out with someone or in a group.

After a really good meal, we start analyzing the dinner experience and we kinda agree that the desserts beat our mains but that’s just our opinion as everyone on the table preferred the desserts and are glad we didn’t skip it. I and the girls sit and have more girl talk and giggles before calling it a night.

Gaucho is excellent for one on one dates as well as group hangouts. It’s also nice for an intimate birthday celebration with few friends as well as after work drinks with colleagues.

I recommend checking it out if you are in the area.

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