It was one of those rare days when I picked Wendy up from work, thanks to her car having to visit the workshop. When that happens we usually try to eat around the area for a change of scenery. That night I thought of Skewers at Subang Avenue, but after fighting through the jam we realized Skewers had closed down! (I hadn't even been to Skewers yet...) We didn't have a plan B, but when we saw El Toro just a few doors away, we instantly agreed to go there instead. =D
(Note: Pics are a mix of Wendy's old digicam and my iPhone4, so you may spot some weird variations :p)
Thanks to a recommendation by Ulric (we hope you're reading this!) some blog posts back, El Toro wasn't a totally unfamiliar name to us. The concept of El Toro is just like other more famous places like Las Vacas, where diners can have the option of choosing their own cuts of meat from the chiller to be cooked or to take home.
No swanky decorations here, but the place looks cheerful enough. I do feel sprucing up the place a bit more would attract a bigger crowd. =)
Truth be told, the overall look of the place and the menu reminded us a lot of Ayer's Rock, which wasn't an experience that we wanted to be reminded about! But we forged ahead and ordered these Beef Meatballs (RM 9.90) just to satisfy our curiosity.
These had a delightful bite to them, as was expected since we were at a butchery anyway. The sauce too went well with the meatballs, though Ikea's meatballs will forever hold a number one spot in our hearts. (Although perhaps not so number one now after I came down with food poisoning after a recent round of Ikea meatballs near to closing time.. =S)
Prices at El Toro weren't really that impressive, since the prices were quite similar to those at Las Vacas and other similar places, when I was expecting a more obviously cheaper menu because of the location and setting. Luckily El Toro also had a set dinner menu that includes a soup, a steak and a drink which I found to be quite worthwhile. The soup was an acceptable brew of wild mushroom, complete with a slice of garlic bread. =)
For my set, I chose the Black Angus Ribeye, 250grams, since I always feel ribeyes are the safest choice of meat. It comes served with salad and fries on the side. =)
Sadly we forgot to take a picture of the pinky strip inside the steak! But I can say that we found nothing wrong with the steak here; maybe just a tad on the dry side, but probably easily remedied with some sauce from the kitchen.
On a side note: we loved how El Toro has taken the time to write short descriptions on what the different cuts of meat and the level of 'doneness' really means! I'm sure a lot of us just know how to order our ribeyes' and sirloins' without really knowing the difference between them. But El Toro has gracefully described a ribeye as a cut that is "succulent, juicy and has excellent texture", while a sirloin is "probably the most flavorsome cut, firm in texture with a strip of fat". Do visit El Toro to find out about other cuts.
And if pure meat is too much for you, how about a burger instead? El Toro serves everything from beef burgers to lamb burgers, and if one patty isn't enough, they can double it up for you! Normally I would head straight for a double, but since we had meatballs too, I relented and agreed to a single patty. Above is a Classic Cheese Burger (RM14.90); one pure beef patty with lettuce, tomatoes, onions, and cheddar cheese in a sesame seed bun.
I particularly enjoy having burgers at steak joints, because this usually means the patty is going to be really meaty! As the name says, this certainly is a classic cheeseburger, with no surprises or outstanding parts. Like the steak, we have no bad comments, but again this won't be winning any awards. Then again for 15 bucks, we consider this an extremely value for money burger that is worth having again! =D
So in the end, we'd like to think of El Toro as a place to go for no-frills dining, especially for steak. The steak prices may not be much cheaper from comparable outlets, but the burgers are certainly good value for money.
Some of the other items we spotted coming out of the kitchen, like the Mixed Grill, also looked really good and in big portions. Lucky Subang folk are even more spoilt for choice now! We just hope enough people patronize El Toro to avoid suffering the same fate as the nearby Skewers. =(
SG 07, Subang Avenue, Subang Jaya,
47500 Petaling Jaya,
Tel: +6 03 5611 7713
Tel: +6 03 5611 7713
Opening Hours: Sun-Thu, 11am-10:30pm; Fri & Sat 11am-11pm; closed on Mondays.