Jun 28 2013

Casa Malevo

I had been to Zoilo (MMm), the sister restaurant of Casa Malevo, the week before and was really looking forward to going to Casa Malevo as my friends Katrina and Love, who live quite close to Casa Malevo, have been telling me how amazing it is and that Tony Blair lives close to the restaurant and sometimes goes there. Both restaurants serve Argentinian food, but Zoilo seems more casual and people mainly sit by the bar, whilst most people in Casa Malevo sit by wooden tables and chairs, and the inside reminded me a lot of the Argentinian steak restaurants I visited when I was in Buenos Aires, so it did feel authentic, which I really liked.

Casa Malevo opened in October 2010, and it is owned by two Argentinians, chef Diego Jacquet and restauranteur Alberto Abbate. All the staff spoke Spanish, and Katrina and Love said Casa Malevo has a great waiter that usually serves them who does not like anything healthy, is super nice when he speaks to you, and he creates a great atmosphere for your meal. Unfortunately when we went there the service was not great, and both my boyfriend and my Latvian friend Martins commented on how bad the service was during our visit, as for example they kept pressurizing my friend Love to order and did not give him enough time, they kept banging the plates and the dishes on the table, placing them in a careless manner and they kept spilling the wine whilst they were pouring it. Also in the end we had to wait a very long time to pay, as they either would not bring the bill or later would not take our payment. I don’t really mind this too much as for me this is part of the authentic Latin experience, but some people, like my dinner buddies did.

The menu is very similar to the menu of Zoilo and I saw a lot of the same dishes on the menu. We ordered the beef and chicken empanadas, the same I recently had in Zoilo, and they were equally good, maybe slightly better at Casa Malevo. We also ordered “Cornish crab on toast with alioli and grilled fennel” very similar to the crab dish in Zoilo but here they gave you more crab and once again I thought it was slightly better than the version in Zoilo. The other dishes that I tried were the “chorizo, house made sausage, peppers and chimichurry mayo”, which was good and tasty, the chorizo was lovely, “burrata salad with tomatoes, basil, green olives” which I also enjoyed. My friend Martins had the “grilled prawns with parsley, garlic and lemon” and I did not try them but Martins said they were not good at all and some of the worst prawns he has had and too overcooked.

The main courses and the steak though were what really let us down, and if I was reviewing just starters this place would have scored higher than Zoilo. I ordered the “Entraña” which was a 250g marinated skirt steak, as I wanted the meat to be marinated and the rest of the meet on the menu was just plain meat, either rib eye, sirloin or fillet. Love and Katrina ordered the same thing and this turned out to be a big disappointment. It was not cheap, we paid £19 for this and the beef was cut thinly but was chewy and just not great to eat. It was not tasty, it was not soft and I left a lot of it uneaten. My boyfriend ordered the rib eye and even though I asked for it to be cooked medium, they served it rare/ blue, and for a rib eye this does not work at all. I also did not think the meat was that high quality, so overall I did not like it. So I had 2 types of bad steaks in an Argentinian restaurant, a place that is supposed to get steak right. Note though my friend Una had the sirloin steak and she liked it and said it was good.

You can also see pictures of the side dishes we had, the “papas fritas” or chips which were good, the “papas fritas Provenzal” which were chips with garlic, which I personally loved and thought were great and “tomato, basil and onion salad” which was decent, nothing good or bad to say about it, and also the “spinach and goats cheese and beetroot salad” which I did not try, but which you can see in the pictures.

Because of the bad steak and the bad service, this place gets a slightly lower rating than Zoilo, however if they had got these 2 things right I would have preferred this to Zoilo due to the authentic atmosphere and the better starters. Also my friends Love and Katrina said that this was an exceptionally bad meal for Casa Malevo and usually they really enjoy the food and have a good time there, so I do think we were probably a bit unlucky and if you go there you could easily have a better experience, but as I did not see it myself it is hard for me to judge.

Date: 28/06/13
Price for 6 people with alcohol and service charge: £302
Location: Edgware Road

Maija rated: 



Casa Malevo
23 Connaught St, W2 2AY
United Kingdom
Casa Malevo Reviewed by Hungry Bee Maija on . Rating: 2