Detroit’s diverse food scene can now boast authentic Argentinian-inspired eats thanks to Barda, which opens today in Core City. Helmed by Buenos Aires-born chef Javier Bardauil and co-owner Ignacio Gerson, the new modern South American eatery will prepare both local and imported Argentinian ingredients over a traditional open fire grill.
The restaurant’s eclectic menu features an array of bold Patagonian dishes including Glazed Beets with ajoblanco and raspberries; Chorizo Argentino with fennel and lemon; Carne Y Hueso with bone marrow, beef tartare, horseradish, and toast; and Tira de Asado, a tender short rib with a pepper-coriander crust. Bardauil combines his classical European training with inspiration from Argentina’s expansive culinary heritage.
“Our dishes are nostalgic, modern, and seasonal. Our plan is to work directly with farmers and local and regional suppliers to find what is fresh, rare, and special,” says Bardauil, an alumnus of celebrity chef and restaurateur Francis Mallman’s Buenos Aires restaurant Patagnia Sur. “Everything that’s cooked in Barda is done over open fire. The fire is alive, ancestral, and the very soul of Barda.”
To complement its unique dinner menu, Barda offers an exclusive selection of Argentinian wines and local craft beers. Led by bartenders Roger James Fruin and Robert Wilson, the bar crafts a menu of South American-inspired house cocktails — many of which feature Fernet, a favorite spirit in Argentina. The restaurant’s signature drink, Smoke and Fire, combines Branca Menta fernet with mezcal, Averna, China China, and Fuego tincture to create a spice-forward refreshment.
Located in the former home of Magnet — Chef Brad Greenhill’s plant-centric restaurant which closed last summer — at 4842 Grand River Ave., Barda’s 113-seat interior is anchored by the long, blue tiled bar at its center. The embers of the open grill create a warm, intimate ambiance that is enhanced by a carefully curated playlist. The eatery also plans to offer bonfire-lit outdoor seating for 40 in its adjoining park space.
“The moment we experienced Detroit’s energy and appreciation for innovative ventures, we knew it was the ideal location for our restaurant concept,” say Barda’s owners in a press release. “We are excited to bring a dining experience that’s a first of its kind.”
Barda is open from 5 p.m. to 11 p.m., Thursday-Sunday. Reservations can be made online.
For more information, visit bardadetroit.com.