by Steve Lepper
You’re seated in a room with dark wooden beams, earthy tones, and beautiful Botero artwork donning the walls. Patrons sitting at a nearby table are eating plantain chips and sipping Chilean merlot while people at the bar drink mimosas and mojitos. An attentive South American waiter approaches your table. Your Latin experience at Churrascos has begun.
Churrascos, opened in 1998 by entrepreneur Michael Cordua, continues to delight guests with its distinct Latin flair. The menu includes a creative combination of meat and seafood entrees for about $30. The wine list offers a wide variety of Argentinean and Chilean wines. You’ll find fried plantains with a spicy mango dip at every table as well as "family style" grilled vegetables with every entree.
The signature dish is The Churrasco, a beef tenderloin grilled to perfection and so tender you can cut it with a fork. The Churrasco is basted with chimichurra sauce, a tasty concoction made of olive oil, fresh garlic, parsley, and spices. If you’re a seafood lover, the Peruvian-style ceviche and Chilean sea bass with roasted white clam sauce are hard to beat. Save room for dessert, though. You have to try the tres leches, a vanilla cake laced with three sweet creams. You won’t forget how the cream oozes out when you cut into it and melts in your mouth.
Churrascos is open seven days a week serving lunch and dinner. There are two locations in Houston, one in the Westchase area, 9705 Westheimer at Gessner (tel. 713-952-1988), and the other in River Oaks, 2055 Westheimer at Shepherd (tel. 713-527-8300).
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