On a Friday storm night, we passed trough the noisy street of Bellavista and discovered the very secret 040 restaurant hidden in a private hotel.
The waiter introduced us to the underground restaurant salon with a particular design, dove and wine glasses on the ceiling, wooden chairs and table, and the the whole wall of bottles of wines.
Here, you don’t need to worry about what to choose on the menu, because they have one single tasting menu with 12 different small portions of dishes, I don’t like to call them “tapas” because it’s more sophisticated and gourmet than a simple tapas.
So here is our dinner in 12 steps with wine paring:
First and second one: dumplings with pork ribs and mushroom for the filling, and the dried egg yolk on the top. Next to the dumplings, a smoked broth of curanto (a typical southern Chilean dish of Chiloé), very tasty, the skin of dumpling has a good texture, the broth, not too smoked, just right.
Third one: temaki of fried banana, inside, a ceviche of reineta fish with cacho cabra oil (a Chilean chili oil), and for the topping, purée with grilled sweet potato, hot chili and avocado. The tangy and spicy ceviche goes so well with the sweet and crispy banana and the softness of the sweet potato, it’s full of flavor and perfect, nothing more to say.
And for the wine, we have Vivendo Sauvignon blanc réserva 2014, from Alto Cachapoal, very fruity, perfect with the banana temaki.
Forth: two kinds of risotto (yes I’m sure, it’s not a sushi, but a risotto!), one with roast beef loin and the other with fish. And the wine is a Bodegas RE, Pinotel, it’s a kind of mixe of pinot noir and muscatel, goes well with the beef loin but not with the fish.
Fifth: Rice soufflé, croaker fish and hot miso, very surprising mixed, but so great. The red color is from beetroot juice.
Sixth: a thaï style crabe pastel with tapioca and grated coco, it’s spicy, sweet, salty, sour and creamy, just amazing! And when the sommelier showed us the wine to pair with, I’m so happy to know that is my favorite Chilean Riesling Conosur Block 23, it goes perfectly with this crabe pastel.
Seventh: An egg filled with octopus and dried black olive, like the others dishes, it’s full of flavors!
Eighth: ravioli with cuttlefish and black bean, underneath is a steamed Chinese style bread, the combination of texture is marvalous, and the taste is always there!
Ninth: potato filled with beef and crisps on the top made of potato also. From outside, maybe there is nothing exceptional except the beautiful crisps, but the inside, the taste is tense and deep, we can feel that the chef Sergo Barroso does not hesitate in term of savors and he likes things which could surprise people.
And the last one before the dessert: tomato filled with the fish sierra (a family member of tuna) then grilled and caramelized, the creamy green sauce is made of lettuce, and three capers to give a hint.
And the last wine with the last three dishes is a Flaherty, a assembly from Aconcagua. The wine itself is very good, and goes well with …
Time for the dessert, the first is a very citric one, with khaki in a cannelloni shape, and lemon and margarita inside. It’s stimulating, sour with strong sensation, to keep you amazed from the beginning to the end.
Another little dessert quite girly, cinnamon cookie with cheesecake donnut and raspberry vinegar sauce, I loved the texture of this cheesecake, well done!
To accompany these two desserts, we have a traditional Chilean soft drink, the Chicha, a fermented grape juice, home made and it makes you feel good at the end of the dinner.
What? 040 is not in the list of Latin America’s 50 Best restaurants? That sounds outrageous! It may well be the best restaurant in town. The Chef goes sharp to flavors, textures, strong tastes and balance, surprising and good. And amazing techniques (including a lot of Asian touches very well executed). Wines are rather good and always fitting well with at least one dish (with 4 wines for 12 dishes it sometimes not though). A bit expensive but definitely worth it.
Antonia Lopez de Bello 40, Providencia, Santiago, Chile
Tel: +56 2 2732 9214, +56 2 2732 9920
Opening: Tuesday to Saturday 9:30 pm – 00:00 am