Ode to Desnivel

[Inspired primarily by the restaurant Desnivel in San Telmo, Buenos Aires, and Pablo Neruda’s Odes to the onion, tomatoes, and the lemon… ]


Your name emerged

From Google Maps and the Guide du Routard

With such promise

We timidly peeked

Into what was a nondescript entrance

Only to be welcomed

By a glorious smell

Of roasting meet

And the visual delight

Of an overloaded grill

Right there in the entrance

Waiting, beckoning us


So we dove in

And ordered a few cuts

Of red meat

Red, like a heart full of love

Red, like a rose in bloom

Red, like full lips waiting for a kiss

So tender

That like butter

It could be cut with a spoon

And like butter

It melted in our mouths


The perfect sacrifice

Of the happy cows

That grew fat on lush grass

On the pampas

Of Argentina

And ended up on that grill

In Desnivel

Accompanied by red grapes

Turned into the nectar of the gods

Also known as Malbec


On that first night

Such was our perfect meal

Every delicious morsel

Eaten in the best of company

That we came back

Again and again

Bife de lomo, mariposa, chorizo

They all became a part of us

And when we left

A fortnight later

We were heavier

Yet our souls lighter

And it is Desnivel we have to thank

For starting 2017 so so right