As soon as you walk into Artango Bar & Steakhouse, you know you're in for a treat. The decor is alluring and elegant, the rich tones exuding warmth. It almost feels like an embrace, like you've stepped into another world and another time.

The room sets the stage for both a delightful culinary experience and an entertaining evening. The menu is Argentinian, with specialties like ceviche, empanadas and tender steak. Their cocktail list is a showstopping selection of Probition-era standards, Latin American classics, and Signature creations, and the wines originate from Argentina, Italy, and France

While the food alone should put Artango on your dining map, what sets this place apart from other restaurants is the entertainment. Thursday through Sunday guests are treated to live music, either Latin jazz or Tango. If you dine on Tuesday, you can take advantage of their free Tango lesson. Our Chef's Table event was on a Tuesday, and I was amazed at the quality of the instruction. Many (many) years ago, I taught dance, including Tango, and seeing this hour and a half-long lesson was a delight.

Artango treated our guests to a broad tasting of their menu, and one thing I heard over and over again was how good the food was. Tour the photos below, and I guarantee you'll want to make reservations for your trip to Argentina, Artango-style. 

Welcoming Cocktail

 

Guests were invited to select a cocktail from the menu, and I chose the Gaucho, a tasty drink made of yerba mate gin, cruz de fuego mezcal, stolen smoked rum, organic matcha tea, demerara syrup, egg white, and fresh squeezed lemon juice. Despite the combination of three types of liquor, it was well-balanced and refreshing. One sip and I could tell their bartender was a talented mixologist. 
 
 
Appetizers

With flaky crusts and flavorful fillings, these Empanadas were a delicious start to the dinner.

 


Fresh and beautiful, the Trio de ceviche (shrimp, tuna, red snapper) was served with plantain chips.

 


The Eggplant Caviar with fried polenta was surprising. I'm not a huge fan of eggplant, so I would not have ordered this before trying it. Now I would.

 


With brie cheese, butternut squash, cherries, candied hazelnuts, honey vinaigrette, this Endive Salad was not nearly big enough. (Just kidding - I just wanted more!)

 


Entrees
 
As a carnivore, I probably would not have tried the Quinoa Risotto as an entree, and that would have been my loss. This was considered by many to be the best dish of the night, and that's saying something.

 


With many paellas, the individual ingredients get lost becaue there are so many. Not so with Argango's Seafood Paella. You can taste each flavor, including the saffron.

 


Grilled Duck with Malbec - cherry sauce and seasonal veggies - need I say more?

 


You know how I mentioned I'm a carnivore? THIS: Argentine Asado (taste of grilled meats, sausages, grilled chicken)

 


Desserts
 
I often say I'm not a fan of Flan, but then I try this beautiful dish and I think that, just maybe, I am.

 

 

Spice cake. With ice cream.

 


Just when I though I couldn't eat anymore, they present this Argentine Gelato. I made room.

 

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Artango Bar & Steakhouse is located at 4767 N Lincoln Ave, Chicago, IL. They're open for dinner seven nights a week and for brunch on Saturday and Sunday.