The new beautifully appointed Ocho Cepas restaurant is located right down the street from The Vines of Mendoza Tasting Room in downtown Mendoza, Argentina. The building has been lovingly refurbished and exemplifies the historic colonial architecture that can be found throughout Mendoza. The stained glass windows and cozy atmosphere creates the feeling you are in the chef's home. Opened by Argentine chef Max Casa, who has a long history of gastronomy in Mendoza, he currently runs the Instituto de Gastronomia
, and previously had his own local television show. His menu highlights local fresh ingredients and has the classic "carne"
focus, as most restaurants in Argentina. However I was very pleasantly surprised by the presence of fish, which because of the low cultural demand tends to be in short supply, or non-existent, on any regional menu.
I daringly ordered the ceviche, which was fresh and creamy with the right amount of acidity and paired delicately with fresh herbs. Often in Mendoza, ceviche consists of only one type of non-descript white fish, however, this lovely dish had mussels, and three other types of fresh fish with lime, another highly coveted and difficult ingredient to find in Mendoza. We also ordered a typical tabla
, or antipasta dish which was paired with delicious pan casero
, or homemade bread.
The main dishes did not disappoint either with succulent matabre de cerdo, bisteca de ternera, and sorrentinos de ricota and calabaza. If you have not had the pork in Argentina, make sure you do on your next trip, it is like no other pork you have ever had- soft in texture, full of flavor and fairly lean.
Ocho Cepas is definitely a worthwhile stop on your next trip to Mendoza. They currently do not have a website, so contact us here at The Vines if you would like more information. They are located on the corner of Espejo and Peru.