Photographic Adventures in Paradise
This time our pals Al & Louise took us over to one of their favorite restaurants and it did not disappoint. The Bandoneon Sabor Tango Restaurant is an Argentinean style restaurant. I understand the ownership is the same as the Puerto Madero Restaurant previously reviewed on these pages. Bandoneon is located at the corner of Nichupte Ave. & Bonampak Ave. and their telephone is (998) 889-9500. This location is just out of the hotel zone and on the fringe of the El Centro part of the city of Cancun.
The restaurant is a high tech type of modern architecture and it sits on a great location which curves around the intersection of Nichupte and Bonampak. The interior soars two levels high with extraordinary wine cooler/cellar columns that are illuminated from within. They have one special covered air conditioned outdoor terrace dining room for those diners that smoke. The menu’s are elegant and well done. They have a large selection of seafood, meat, pastas and other delectable dishes. Something for everyone.
The menu cover
The two story high wine cooler/cellars
The curving second floor balcony that leads to the rest rooms
Closer look of the wine cooler
Close up of some of the more than 600 selections
Our before dinner drinks included:
Louise and Tom both had a Grey Goose Vodka Martini straight up, Tom’s with blue cheese stuffed olives. The martinis were smooth and chilled to perfection.
Suz had a glass of Cabernet Sauvignon and Al a bottle of Perrier sparkling water.
The wait staff presented and explained the fresh catch of the day (snapper) and various cuts of meat using these sample platters of uncooked examples
The menu selections
For starters we each tried an Empanada accompanied by several tasty sauces, they were supremely fresh and wonderfully tasty.
The bread basket, accompanied by garlic butter
Al’s garden greens salad with a vinaigrette dressing
Caesar salad made table side with fresh anchovies and egg yolks………………..let me assure you if you like Caesar salad this is to die for!
Al picked the best wine to compliment our dinners………….an absolutely wonderful 2006 Malbec
Grilled mixed vegetables…………shared from center table very fresh and delicious
Suzi’s choice: the Tenderloin and shrimp Brochettes with a side of grilled onions and hot peppers. Louise ordered the Top Sirloin, which I didn’t photograph……………sorry!
For the table a side of baked wild mushrooms
Tom & Al went for the 14oz Beef Tenderloin, medium rare. It was one of the best I’ve ever had the pleasure to eat.
Another side for the table………..Double-Baked Potatoes with cheese and broccoli on a grilled tortilla
We had coffee afterwards and skipped desert which I understand is spectacular, we were just too full.
The sevice was impeccable, every drink was poured for us, every ash tray emptied, every charger plate changed as soon as it became soiled, and on and on, quite impressive. The ambiance, the food, ……………..everything was just as you would hope for in a restaurant of this caliber.
Every thing about this establishment is classy, from the valet that parks your car and asks if anything of value is in it so they can account for it, to the welcoming, very polite wait staff, the building, location, quality food, the spectacular open kitchen, a 600 bottle selection of wines. It just dosen’t get any better than this.
Our bill came to 3,414 peso’s ($255 USD) not including the tip for the 4 of us. This included, all the above plus two bottles of Perrier, an additional glass of wine before dinner, and two bottles of wine during our dinner. We were all completely satisfied. We took home a large “doggie” bag which our K9′s allowed us to share the next night for dinner.
We have to give Bandoneon Restaurant our highest 5 star rating and highly recommend it to our viewers.
Well……………the ribs were so good that we went back over to Smokie’s and tried the beef brisket this time. I thought it would be fun to see how they are smoked. This is an all day process. Ray let me take a few pictures of his smoker rig.
Here are 2 beef briskets being smoked to tantalizing perfection, and a bowl of BBQ sauce getting the smoke stirred right into it……..yummy!
Ray’s smoker box
1 Kilo (2.2lbs) Beef Brisket and a side of BBQ sauce
Slice of Smokie’s brisket, we asked for it to be cold since we wouldn’t be eating it till the next day.
We’ve been having thin slices of this brisket topped with Ray’s BBQ sauce all week for lunch on sandwiches. If down home Texas style BBQ is your thing give Smokies a try.
Here is how to contact:
Smokie’s Texas B.B.Q.
Ray and Lili McCollum
located on Ave. Del Bosque alongside the park in the Tucan Caribe building across from the rebuilt Mega store on Coba.
Dinner for 6 at Casa del Sol, located somewhere in El Centro, Cancun, Mexico. The exact location is a closely guarded secret shared only with local culinary aficionados. The guests of the evening were Howard, Cynthia, Renato, & Carolyn.
Chef Suz and Bartender Tom personally prepared everything and joined the guests for the epicurean feast. It was a good evening of stimulating conversation, laughter, food, and drink. Chef Suz started things off with her special hot artichoke/cheese spread on Carr’s water crackers served on the outdoor patio along with Tom’s world renowned Beefeater Martini’s. Chef Suz also served a selection of cheeses: bleu and brie. The well chilled Beefeater martini’s were made with a Beefeaters Gin, Cinzano dry vermouth, orange bitters, and garnished with queen size “Green Pearl” pimento stuffed olives, imported from the USA just for this occasion.
When the guests had all been seated in the well appointed dining room of Casa del Sol, Chef Suz served her special salad made with baby romaine lettuce, fresh strawberries, walnuts and a strawberry chardonnay dressing………yummy good.
The main course consisted of Crispy Roasted Duck with orange sauce, sauteed tiny new potatoes, Brussels Sprouts Cockaigne fried in butter, olive oil, and garlic. Tall glasses of ice cold Perrier sparking mineral water with fresh lemon slices floating on top were elegantly provided, along with 2 wines. A “Finca el Origen 2007 Cabernet Sauvignon”, and a ” Trivento Cabernet-Merlot 2007″.both from Argentina.
The duck was cooked to perfection, moist with crispy skin accompanied by a tasty orange sauce. The potatoes and brussel sprouts were very fresh and complimented the roast duck perfectly.
Dessert was “Haagen-Dazs” vanilla ice cream with fresh blackberries and topped with Chambord Liqueur Royale served in colorful desert bowls.
The wait staff, Tom & doing double duty, Chef Suz, missed serving the “Trazzos Chocolate” cookies with the ice cream dessert due to over serving themselves throughout the evening. This faux pax did not seem to be noticed by any of the guests.
Casa del Sol gets the writers highest possible rating for it’s ambiance, great food, service, decor, and the tasteful jazz music playing quietly in the background. I eat there everyday so I’m not gonna spoil a good thing by whining…………….unless a good blue cheese is served with it.
P.S. Thanks to our good friends for joining us for a memorable evening together. Also for all of you for reading our “Tongue in Cheek” review.