Buenos Aires Travel Guide

Food

While the primary consumption of Argentinians is beef, there are other options in this cosmopolitan city. Italian food is pervasive but in neighborhoods like Palermo, pizza joints are seeing heavy competition from sushi, fusion, and even vegetarian bistros. Just about everything can be delivered - including fantastic, gourmet helado (ice cream).

Meat

You will want to try asado (beef/steak barbecue) at a parrilla, restaurants specializing in roasted meats. There are expensive parrillas, and more simple and cost effective ones, In either case you will likely have some of the best "meat" you have ever tasted. The bife de lomo (tenderloin) is unbelievably tender.

As matter in fact. the first regular refrigator ship is the Steamers Le Frigorifique and Paraguay, that carried frozen mutton from Argentina to France.

Jugoso means rare (literally "juicy"), however the Argentine concept of rare is very different from that of someone from the States (perhaps its a tourist thing, but an American ordering rare is likely to get something between medium well and hockey puck). Argentines cook their meat all the way through, and they can only get away with this method because the meat is so tender that cooking it well does not necessarily mean it's shoe leather.

For Westerners, don't be afraid to order "azul" ("blue"), you will not get a blue steak, more like an American Medium Rare. If you like your meat "bloody", or practically "still walking" it might pay to learn words like "sangre" ("blood"), or to make statements like "me gusta la sangre" ("I like the blood"). Don't be afraid to spend two minutes stressing how rare you want your steak to your waiter- this is something no one talks about in guidebooks but every other American and Brit once you arrive will tell you the same thing, if you want it rare, you have to explain exactly how rare.

Only the most old school parrillas (grills) don't offer at least one or two pasta dishes and pizza is everywhere.

Parrilla Tour Buenos Aires leads walking tours around different neighborhoods of classic parrillas. During the tour, participants stop and sample traditional foods at 4 restaurants, 3 parrillas (steakhouses) and an artisanal ice cream shop, as well as learn about the history and culture around Argentine cuisine. The stops chosen tend to be hole-in-the-wall, locals only, establishments not in guidebooks.

Pizza

Italian and Spanish food are almost native here, as the cultural heritage heralds in great part from these two countries. Other popular meals are pizzas and empanadas (small pastries stuffed with a combination of cheese and meats). They are a popular home delivery or takeaway/takeout option.

Pizza is a strong tradition in Buenos Aires. It comes al molde (cooked in a pan, usually medium to thick crust), a la piedra (baked in a stone oven, usually thin to medium crust), and a la parilla (cooked on a parilla grill, very thin, crispy crust). Best places: "Los Inmortales", "Las Cuartetas", "Guerrín", ·El Cuartito", "Banchero's", "Kentucky".

"El Cuartito" in Recoleta has a delicious "Fugazzeta rellena" pizza. This restaurant can be packed with families and friends even at midnight.

In "Guerrin", ask for a slice of pizza muzarella with a glass of Moscato.

Vegetarian

Vegan food is available at these restaurants:

Artemisia - 3877 Cabrera
Bio Restaurant - Humboldt 2199
Bodhi - Chile 1763
Granix - Florida 165 2nd floor
Green Life - Paraguay 2743
Los Sabios - Corrientes 3733
Lotus - Cordoba 1577
Prana Cocina Vegetariana - El Salvador 5101
Sattva - Montevideo 446
Siempre Verde - Arribeños 2127
Sweets

One incredible and typical Argentinian kind of "cookie", is the alfajor, which consists of two round sweet biscuits joined together with a sweet jam, generally dulce de leche (milk jam, akin to caramel), covered with chocolate, meringue or something similarly sweet.

Service

Do not expect service to be comparable to large cities in Europe or in the USA. Don't expect your waiter to take your drinks order when the menu is delivered and don't expect the menu to arrive very quickly. If you want service, attract the waiters' attention, s/he will never come over to take your empty plate etc., unless they want to close.

Patience is the key. Argentinians as so accustomed to the relaxed service that they don't bother to complain directly to the waiter, but only commented toward fellow Argentinans. Speak out to the waiters if you feel it is appropriate.

Budget

There are a lot of al paso (walk through) places to eat; you eat standing up or in high chairs at the bar. Meals vary from hot-dogs (panchos), beef sausages (chorizos, or its sandwich version choripán), pizzas, milanesas (breaded fried cutlets), etc. Don't forget to indulge in the perennially popular mashed squash - it is delicious and often comes with rice and makes a full meal in itself. It is perfect for vegetarians and vegans to fill up on.

Mid-range

You can go to a huge variety of small restaurants, with cheap and generous servings, most notably the ones owned by Spanish and Italian immigrants. There are also many places which offer foreign meals, mostly Japanese, Chinese, Thai, Arabic, Spanish, and Italian.

Siga la Vaca, several locations throughout the city, notably in Puerto Madero and Costanera, offers buffet-style asado fresh off the grill and includes a well-stocked salad bar. Including wine, approximately $80 per person.
Las CholasArce 306Phone: +54 4899-0094Great parrilla specializing in Northern Argentine found in Las Caitas. The rooftop seating upstairs is a great environment. Don't expect to see many tourists here, just a lot of Porteos out for a three hour weekend meal. Try the Humita (made with mashed corn, cheese and spices) and Tamales (a sort of flour with minced beef) or anything off of the parrilla is great. Do not skip dessert.
Guerrin (pizza)Corrientes 1368Phone: +54 4371-8141Go for a great pizza in a really noisy environment
El FarolEstado de Israel 4488 (y Rocamora)Phone: +54 4866-3233"Typical argentinian food": Spanish + Italian + meat. Very high quality.
La BielaVery nice cafe just outside of the cemetery, shaded by an enormous rubber tree. In very ancient times, it was a saying: If you are not greeted at La Biela, you do not exist. When the bill comes, remember that the largest part of the cost was not the meal, but the right to show yourself there.
Splurge

The most expensive and luxurious restaurants are found in the Puerto Madero zone, near downtown, heading to the River Plate.

But the nicer places in terms of decoration, food and personality are in Buenos Aires/Palermo.

The Grill at the Marriott Plaza Hotel. Acknowledged as a five star restaurant it offers the finest international cuisine and is considered among the best restaurants in Buenos Aires.
PrimafilaPhone: +54 4804-0055Av. Puyerredon 2501. Classy Italian restaurant where you will find thin crust pizzas due to their brick-oven (dinner only, not available during lunch hours). Extensive menu including salads, pasta, pizza, meats and seafood. Expect to pay around 20 dollars for a pizza.
Cabaa Las LilasPhone: +54 4313-1336Alicia Moreau de Justo 516. This place had the reputation of being the best place to eat steak in Buenos Aires. The steaks are enormous and succulent. Be warned if you eat here, count on them having to roll you out as you will be near explosion (prob best to wear trousers with elasticated waists!). Its a constant struggle not to stuff yourself with the mouth watering appetizers before your steak even arrives. When it does, you may chuckle at the little plastic cow figurine jabbed into the meat, smiling at you and bearing the words Estoy jugoso," - "I am juicy" (meaning rare). Count on spending around 85 pesos for a steak, 12 for a beer, and 80 for a bottle of wine from their extensive list of Argentine and international vintages. You can also share an order of steak, which the restaurant will serve on separate plate. The doneness is different in Argentina than in the U.S., for medium rare, order rare.
Restaurantino & CafetinoPhone: +54 515-0707Olga Cossetini 791, Puerto Madero East;. In this up scale Italian restaurant expect to find cloth napkins, fine silverware and snooty waiters in starched uniforms and long aprons. As alluring as these characteristics sound the real highlight is the food which is rich and decadent. Wide selection of main courses including fresh pasta in homemade sauces ($1530AR), traditional chicken dishes including Chicken Marsala $20AR-$30AR), and a variety of meats including Argentine parilla style steaks ($35AR). The menu of seafood is worth considering with rareties such as fresh Yellow-fin Tuna steak in a pesto sauce ($30AR).
RodizioAnd a recently opened one in the tourist city of Mar del Plata.

source: Wikivoyage

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