Note: this milonga has closed since I wrote this post, but the restaurant is still open offering its delicious food.
Sunday Jerry Perez Gallego and Christine Lopez Urgell celebrated the 3-year anniversary of Milonga Grand Casino at the bakery and cafe of the same name in Culver City. Many local dancers turned out for the fete, as well as some out-of-towners, including Andrea Monti and Diego Lanau who performed that evening.
The ambiance of the cafe is cozy and comfortable, reminding me of small places in Buenos Aires. Naomi Hotta, who now lives in Buenos Aires, started this milonga and handed the reins over to Jerry and Christine about a year ago. The milonga space is on the smaller side, and the floor is shaped in almost a triangle format, but it’s still fairly easy to navigate, and have a pleasant dance.
It was a great night, not just because of the dancing and performance, but also because of the food. I’ve never had anything but wine at the Gran Casino Bakery & Cafe, but this time I ordered a skirt steak with skewered roasted vegetables. Our waiter highly recommended the steak, and he was absolutely right. It was a thick piece, cooked perfectly rare, and the vegetables were fresh and simply roasted with not too much seasoning. My companion ordered garlic fries (a mistake to eat if you’re dancing!), and the roasted veggies as well.
And I mustn’t forget to mention DJ Perez’s wonderful music.
It was definitely a wonderful mix of music, dance and food.