Monday, 22 June 2009

Andres, Carne de Res

I had heard of this restaurant from my wife’s cousin amongst others. It’s a real Bogotá institution. Every person who has spent anytime there has eaten there at least once. Some it is a weekly experience.

We were taken there as a treat after a day of hard day of sight seeing at The Salt Cathedral. Inside these salt mines they have carved out many large outstanding halls. It kinda reminded me of the …………. In Lord of the Rings. It’s pretty impressive, but still kinda weird. They can hold mass for over 3000 people, and a lot of people get married there.

So after this bizarre place we were taken to Andres, Carnes de Res. This restaurant can hold well over 300 people in one sitting. I so pity the chefs there. When we arrived, it was pretty empty. But still had more people then most restaurants I know in London have when they are busy.

It’s decorated to such an extent with small kitsch objects that strangely it actually works. Certain sections even have street names. The menu is vast and takes a while to go through. It’s contained in a machine that you have to roll it up and down.

I took a stroll around and had ganders at the kitchen. All wood burning stoves. Boy it was hot just standing on the other side. Never mind being behind those stoves for a busy shift on a Friday or Saturday night. All the little knick-knacks that make up the decoration you can buy in the small shop at the other end of the restaurant. Most of it would look out of place anywhere but here.

As I had been eating too much food recently I decided on Sanchoco. Basically chicken soup. Chicken portions (mainly leg) cooked and served in its own broth with a few vegetables and potatoes thrown in for luck. This one was a house speciality and it contained some pork leg and pork ribs. It was delish, and the best one I had ever had. Most of the time the broth is made up with a stock cube, and the chicken is either over cooked or dreadfully undercooked.

Everyone else had large cuts of beef. In fact they were so big that one plate would have fed two or three people in London.

Even though I only had chicken soup, I was stuffed. But thankfully I had not had the meat option. Just to prove how bizarre the place is the bill came in a shoe cleaners box with a magnifying glass for the people who cannot believe how expensive the bill is. Thankfully we were not paying. Gracias Ricardo for a fantastic day.

When we left which was about 6pm, it was really starting to fill up, and it stays open till 3am. I said goodbye to the chefs, and hoped they had an easy shift.

Till the next time Andres, Carne de Res ………….

1 comment:

Beer Drinker said...

I was there last Sunday, and twice before back in 2002. This place is a must-go place in Bogota. I wrote about my experience last night, along with my daily beer review, of course. Some good pictures, too.