Gaucho Leeds – Grill Masterclass

(If you don’t like the sight of meat I’d probably not bother with this post as it gets VERY meaty…)

I’ve never particularly been ‘into’ steak if I’m honest, I’d rarely order it when dining out and although sometimes we cook it at home it’s more for P’s benefit than mine. So when an invitation arrived from Gaucho Leeds to have a grill lesson I thought that if there’s anyone that can change my mind on steak then it’s them.

I’m sure you must have heard of Gaucho; it’s a group of 18 Argentinian beef restaurants, mostly located in London but they’re as far afield as Hong Kong & Buenos Aires. They’re experts in their field (intentional cow reference) and devoutly dedicated to quality beef, even importing the meat straight from Argentina. The Leeds branch is on Park Row and underground so has a distinctly members club vibe about it, there’s a DJ in the corner which adds to the feel.

Along with a group of other Leeds food bloggers we started off in the private dining room where an ominous covered shape sat in the middle of the table. The unveiling revealed more steak than I’ve ever laid eyes on.
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We then had a lesson from Gaucho Group Master Griller, Fernando Laroude, on the different types of steak cuts. He explained in detail where all the cuts are from on the animal along with the differences between them. He then went on to prepare each cut ready for cooking, and we even tried a few of the leaner cuts raw. The rump was a revelation for me, usually something I consider to be not far off stewing steak, was the most delicate and tender textured.
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We were then each tasked with making some chimichurri to accompany our steaks; a mixture of finely diced parsley, garlic, onion, red bell pepper with a big slug of olive oil & vinegar and seasoned with salt, pepper & dried chili.
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Once Fernando had inspected our chimichurri efforts we were taken over to the grill (which is what I imagine the face of the sun is like). We got the steaks that had been prepared earlier on and sizzling, you could feel the excitement from everyone – nearly tasting time!
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Once the steaks were medium rare we went back over to the private dining room to tuck in alongside some salads, fries and red wine. An absolutely glorious way to spend an afternoon with some lovely folks.
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(^ the best bit was mopping up the juices with fries)

So have I been converted? Absolutely. What surprised me about the masterclass was that actually I preferred the traditionally ‘cheaper’ cuts of meat like the skirt and the rump – they were more flavourful. It’s really the quality of the meat that matters in the end and Gaucho most definitely know good quality meat.

The Grill Masterclass was complimentary however views are my own.

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