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At Del Campo’s Asado Bar, 14 tastes of South America

Del Campo's Asado Bar opened last week, too late to make it into Tom Sietsema's review of the South American grill from former BLT Steak chef Victor Albisu. But now that the multiple-course tasting menus of charred meats and veggies have debuted at the nine-seat counter within the dining room, what will one of the premium spots get you?

delcampoveg Top to bottom: Grilled eggplant, grilled peppers and yuca, and smoked ñoquis and grilled rapini on the Asado Veg menu.

Percentage of meal charred, smoked or grilled: Pretty much 100 percent.

Number of dishes you'll try: Fourteen, and that's whether you order the meaty Asado Del Campo menu ($77), or the vegetarian menu. Wine pairings range from $22 to $34.

Seriously good deal: The vegetarian tasting menu, at $42, proves you don't need meat to have a decadent dining experience, even in a restaurant devoted to protein. The grilled and roasted eggplant with charred lemon oil and black garlic underscores this point.

Most covetable houseware item: The penguin-shaped pitchers wine director Morgan Fausett used to serve our pairings for each course. They were brought back from Argentina, where they're a traditional fixture. Get on this, Crate and Barrel.

South American surf and turf: On the meat menu, you'll get lobster, salmon, prawn, anchovy, sea urchin, foie gras, Iberico ham and at least six different preparations of beef.

Behind the scenes: A seat at the Asado Bar gives you a direct window into the kitchen. Every once in a while, that view will be obscured by billowing clouds of smoke.

Steak two ways on the Asado Del Campo menu. Steak two ways on the Asado Del Campo menu.

Spanish for gnocchi: Ñoquis, served smoked and accompanied by grilled rapini and smoked tomato.

Plate substitute: Some of the asado courses are served on huge wooden boards. They look pretty heavy. Good thing our server was strong.

What a Frosty should be: A salty-sweet dulce de leche milkshake is one of three dessert items, alongside caramel panna cotta and a crepe.

Thing you never thought could be grilled: Ice cream. (Though it's the ingredients that are grilled, not the actual frozen dessert.) The final course of the night is a trio of grilled pineapple, strawberry and banana ice creams.

Maura Judkis covers culture, food, and the arts.



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