Famed for its meats cooked over an old school Argentine grill.
James Whitton and Gary Brun
Published on July 01, 2023
Updated on October 11, 2023


For six years, Porteño owners Ben Milgate and Elvis Abrahanowicz had been grilling up a storm in their legendary home on Cleveland Street, Surry Hills. It had been over half a decade of succulent Argentine-style grilled meats, great tunes and Brussels sprouts, all wrapped up in the stunning décor that feels like the dining room of a mildly hedonistic aristocrat. However, the doors closed long ago to a la carte diners at the Cleveland Street restaurant and Porteño started it new chapter in a new home: 50 Holt Street, Surry Hills.

The team that brought us Bodega, Gardel's Bar and a million and one incredible pop-ups has shifted its lauded dining skills to the space that used to house the Sydney branch of Melbourne's tapas king, MoVida. After acquiring the space, Milgate and Abrahanowicz, along with co-owner and sommelier Joe Valore, finally opened their doors to diners back in 2011.

bartender working at Porteno - sydney

The joint continued along the same theme of good food and great vibes that punters came to love from Porteño. The overall theme of white walls, checkered tiling and exposed timber made the jump over to the newer shop, and the faultless playlists showing off the greatest rock and roll acts you've never heard of stayed as well. "On the whole, at Holt Street, it is the same Porteño, in a new space and a few exciting additions," the crew told Concrete Playground.

Porteño's menu saw a slight change, opting towards full dishes and a tweaked flavour. It is still largely fuelled by Argentinian cooking, but with a slightly more of a Mediterranean flavour than the last menu. The restaurant is a touch smaller, seating about 30 fewer people than the Cleveland Street location.

The menu includes appetisers such as wagyu bresaola, Sydney rock oysters and Spanish style olives, while the entree delves into dishes including locally made burrata, yellowtail kingfish and chargrilled blood sausage. For a main, there's a smoked chicken with lemon and black pepper gravy, a seven-day dry-aged pork chop as well as a steak menu to whet your tastebuds. All up, Porteño's maintains the charm it's always had, no matter where it's located.

the main dining room at Porteno

Images: Steven Woodburn.


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