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San Telmo Brings Argentine Fast-Casual to Downtown

Meat lovers need to try the marinated-meat sandwiches at this unassuming new spot


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The Bondiola sandwich.

Doesn’t look like much. San Telmo Argentine Cafe’s window has one of those giant stickers announcing their specials, like a vendor at a state fair might have. Their logo is in cursive. After so much bad wine in bottles with cursive, I’m distrustful of cursive. The ambiance in the room is clean and yellow, with those cushioned metal chairs used at church events or AA meetings. It’s not clamoring for design awards. But oh man that bread, and oh-er man, that meat.

On the Choripan, a quality, quality baguette is toasted and laid over with housemade Argentine chorizo, chimichurri, lettuce, tomato, and onion. The chorizo is excellent. I ask the chef-owner where he cooked last. He says he was a district manager at Panda Express, the zero-star Michelin restaurant known as what your mom thinks Chinese food is. The owner’s skill with marinating and seasoning meats far outshines his resume. Says he also went to cooking school, though, in 2002. That explains it.

Also try the Bondiola, with grilled pork that’s been brined in lemon, chimichurri, fresh criolla sauce (peppers, tomatoes, garlic, etc.), and bright red pickled cabbage.

Located right next to Ramen Yamadaya on Broadway, it’s worth a lunch stop. Bonus, I was able to hear a man with face tattoos yell at the sky, “But first, the aliens!”

531 Broadway, Suite B, Downtown, 619-255-9598

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