Coming Soon: Calida Is the New 180-Seat Argentinian Steakhouse That's Getting Sizzling at South Bank

The hospitality company behind Olé Restaurant, Mucho Mexicano and Vici Italian is adding another eatery to South Brisbane.
Sarah Ward
Published on June 12, 2024

Eating your way along South Bank's Little Stanley Street precinct, whether on the roadway itself or on the parallel Grey Street, has long been an around-the-world affair, as Alemré Hospitality Group is more than aware. The Brisbane company is behind Olé Restaurant, Mucho Mexicano and Vici Italian, and will soon add Calida, a new Argentinian steakhouse, to its portfolio.

From Wednesday, June 19, 2024, the outfit's sixth restaurant — alongside a second Mucho Mexicano in Hawthorne, plus Downtown Istanbul in the same suburb — will open its doors. Seating 180, Calida naturally has plenty of meat on its menu. Think: empanadas to start with; dishes such bistec tartar, marinated lamb rump skewers, pressed beef short ribs, chorizo pork sausages and slow-cooked whole lamb shoulder; and an array of different cuts of steak from the grill, all served with chimichurri sauce and Australian red gum smoked salt. Even the bread comes with a beef jus.

If it's sizzling steak that tempts your tastebuds, the options under Alemré Executive Group Chef Adam Starr's guidance all use S.Kidman beef — whether you're eager for a 220-gram eye fillet, 300-gram sirloin or 400-gram wagyu rump. And if you're keen to sample several choices without having to make too many decisions, you have two ways to go about it: a $120 mixed-grill platter for two or a $63 banquet with a minimum of two diners, with the latter also covering a dulce de leche sandwich cookie for dessert.

Those keen for seafood instead can pick between span oysters with vinegar and chives, grilled octopus with potato salad, salmon ceviche and grilled barramundi. There's also a number of cheese-heavy dishes for vegetarians, including ricotta and mozzarella empanadas, smoked baked cheese and roasted portobello mushrooms with manchego cheese.

And for sweets beyond the dulce de leche sandwich cookie, Calida offers dulce de leche lava cake with vanilla ice cream; guava and passionfruit mousse with flourless white-chocolate sponge; and the traditional Argentinian torta rogel made from layers of crisp pastry and vanilla meringue, plus, yes, dulce de leche.

Whatever satisfies your stomach, you can wash it down with wine from both Argentina and Europe, Quilmes beer and Latin-inspired cocktails such as the Fernet con coca — aka Fernet-Branca and Coke. If you order a Margarita de Roca, one of the restaurant's signature sips, you'll be enjoying tequila, dragonfruit, and jalapeño. With the Mermalada, bourbon and marmalade combine. And for something that catches the eye as well, the ¡Viva la Argentina! layers gin, blue curaçao and citrus flavours.

Going for a warm vibe to match its food, Calida's design aesthetic favours raw brick and stonework, moody lighting and Argentinian textiles — and, if you're sitting in the booths, look out for the ficus. The fitout will backdrop not just everyday meals, but also events focused on the country in the eatery's spotlight, Latin celebrations more generally, and beef and wine dinners. In other words, you'll have a heap of reasons to head by more than once.

Find Calida at 1/164 Grey Street, South Brisbane from Wednesday, June 19 — open 11.30am–9pm Sunday–Thursday and 11.30am–10pm Friday–Saturday. Head to the venue's website for further details.

Published on June 12, 2024 by Sarah Ward
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