Skip to Content

Rural Society | Argentinian Steakhouse in Washington DC

Rural Society Washington DC was Jose Garces’ modern take on a classic Argentinian steakhouse. It was the perfect start on our journey to taste the world.

Estancia Grass Fed "Bife de Chorizo" from Uruguay is grilled over a wood fire at Jose Garces' Rural Society in Washington DC. The Argentinian steakhouse was the first stop of our #tastetheworld2016 adventure. Rural Society Washington DC - The Journey Begins!

** Important Update – Rural Society is now permanently closed. **

Our exit plan was ambitious to say the least.

The plan: to leave our house of 10+ years and then, without delay, arrive for a 6:45 reservation at Jose Garces’ Rural Society in Washington DC. We had moved the big stuff into storage two days before, so all we had to do was tidy up before hitting the expressway to the nation’s capital city.

Well, the tidying up wasn’t that quick. When you have lived in a home together for almost ten years, you tend to collect a lot of stuff. Some of that stuff made it to storage and some found its way to the nearby charity thrift store.

The rest (still way too much) ended up traveling in the car with us. Let’s just say that after seemingly endless days of emptying our belongings from our small city row home, it was still easier said than done.

Finally, after a three-hour drive followed by a quick check in at our hotel and much-needed showers, we zoomed over to Garces’ first foray into DC. We knew that we would be enjoying steak prepared on an enormous wood-fired grill in the open Argentinian steakhouse kitchen.

We also knew that we would be treated like royalty due to Daryl’s status as a Garces employee (currently on sabbatical). However, we were surprised to experience what could be one of the best meals of the year.

Our Dinner at Rural Society Washington DC

Carpaccio de Pulpo - Braised Octopus, Tomato Escabeche with Malbec Chips. Rural Society Washington DC - The Journey Begins!
Carpaccio de Pulpo – Braised Octopus, Tomato Escabeche with Malbec Chips

Soon after we sat, tapas style starters arrived to our table. We couldn’t resist the morrones, roasted red peppers accented with creamy dollops of earthy eggplant cream with salty anchovy or the carpaccio de pulpo, razor-thin, tender slices of octopus carpaccio accented with a zesty tomato escabeche and crispy malbec chips.

Provoleta - Roasted Argentine Provolone, Arugula, Oregano, Aji Picante. Rural Society Washington DC - The Journey Begins!
Provoleta – Roasted Argentine Provolone, Arugula, Oregano, Aji Picante

We were then floored by the provoleta – a deep, melty, oozy symphony of cheese funkiness. We adored this dish from the gooey top to the crunchy, caramelized bits which we scraped from the bottom of the pan.

Asado Mixto - (From Left to Right) Chorizo con Queso (Pork Sausage stuffed with cheese), Morcilla (Blood Sausage), Chorizo Gaucho (Beef & Pork Sausage) and Mollejas (Grilled Lamb Sweetbreads). Rural Society Washington DC - The Journey Begins!
Asado Mixto – (From Left to Right) Chorizo con Queso (Pork Sausage stuffed with cheese), Morcilla (Blood Sausage), Chorizo Gaucho (Beef & Pork Sausage) and Mollejas (Grilled Lamb Sweetbreads)

On a normal night, this may have been enough, but the food didn’t stop there.

Grilled Lamb Chops. Rural Society Washington DC - The Journey Begins!
Grilled Lamb Chops

Chef de Cuisine Louis Goral sent us a selection of grilled sausages including provoleta stuffed chorizo con queso, morcilla with pine nuts and raisins (Spanish blood sausage) curiously flavored with cloves, crunchy grilled lamb sweetbreads and savory beef and pork chorizo gaucho. This was Argentinian sausage heaven.

Chef de Cuisine Louis Goral gave us the red-carpet treatment to kick off our taste the world 2016 adventure. Rural Society Washington DC - The Journey Begins!
Chef de Cuisine Louis Goral gave us the red-carpet treatment to kick off our taste the world 2016 adventure.

Oh, did we mention that Rural Society grills their steaks over a massive wood-fired grill? Hungry from the move, we happily shared a tender, charred Bife de Chorizo, the steakhouse’s signature cut that’s more than enough for a group of friends to share, plus two melt-in-your-mouth lamb chops.

Along with steaks, the menu features a variety of imaginative side dishes including Papas Rescaldo - Ember Roasted Potatoes, Bacon-Chimichurri and Goat Cheese Mousse topped with Micro Chives. Rural Society Washington DC - The Journey Begins!
Along with steaks, the menu features a variety of imaginative side dishes including Papas Rescaldo – Ember Roasted Potatoes, Bacon-Chimichurri and Goat Cheese Mousse topped with Micro Chives.

The meats were served with sides that pushed beyond the traditional steakhouse milleue. Not your typical spuds, Rural Society’s grilled potatoes were adorned with dollops of tangy goat cheese mousse, coated with bits of bacon chimichurri and then topped with gorgeous strings of micro chives.

Aguacate provides a fun, creamy, wood grilled take on avocados. Rural Society Washington DC - The Journey Begins!
Aguacate provides a fun, creamy, wood grilled take on avocados.

And then there was the aguacate, a creamy new spin on avocados. These grilled avocado halves, artfully striped with a distinctive black char, could become a new trend at summer cookouts later this year.

Dessert at Rural Society Washington DC

Dulce de Leche Flan with Mango Sorbet. Rural Society in Washington DC - The Journey Begins!
Dulce de Leche Flan with Mango Sorbet

Did we have room for dessert? The creamy, caramel dulce de leche flan more than provided an answer to this silly question, and that answer was yes.

Final Thoughts

Cheers! It's time to taste the world. Rural Society in Washington DC - The Journey Begins!
Cheers! It’s time to taste the world.

This meal was the perfect start to the epic trip of our lives. It was a full culinary assault that launched us on to a road of epicurean wonderment, and we can’t think of a more wonderful way to begin our journey to taste the world!

Rural Society was located at 1177 15th St NW, Washington, DC 20005, United States. It is now permanently closed.

Hungry for More?

Check out our dinner at Volver in Philadelphia.

Red Beach Selfie in Santorini

About the Authors

Daryl & Mindi Hirsch

Saveur Magazine’s BEST TRAVEL BLOG award winners Daryl and Mindi Hirsch share their culinary travel experiences and recipes on the 2foodtrippers website and YouTube. The married Food and Travel content creators live in Lisbon, Portugal.

Subscribe

You’ll get periodic email updates as well as our FREE guide to eating like a local when you travel. We won’t send you spam and you can unsubscribe at any time.

Disclosure

We update our articles regularly. Some updates are major while others are minor link changes and spelling corrections. Let us know if you see anything that needs to be updated in this article.

The Official 2foodtrippers Top 10 List for 2015
← Previous
Our Romantic Stay at the Buhl Mansion Near Pittsburgh
Next →

Anna

Thursday 18th of February 2016

That stake looks like perfection

christine

Tuesday 16th of February 2016

this looks delicious!

Francesca

Saturday 13th of February 2016

What a delicious start to your amazing journey!!

Linda

Tuesday 9th of February 2016

I will be following on your trip around the World. Bon Voyage