Restaurants in Buenos Aires
Beef is king in the Buenos Aires food world; Argentina is famous for the best, juiciest, tastiest and most tender steaks served in its parrillas (steak houses). These are followed closely by various Spanish and Italian pleasures, as well as sushi, fusion, and vegetarian cuisine.
There are numerous al paso (walk through) places in the city, selling hot-dogs (panchos), beef sausages (chorizos), and milanesas (breaded, fried cutlets). You can buy a mate, the most traditional social non-alcoholic beverage, in any Coto or Carrefour supermarket. Be sure to try a gourmet helado (ice cream) and empanadas (small pastries stuffed with combinations of cheese and meats), or the alfajor, an Argentinean cookie.
Various small restaurants offer foreign meals, mostly Japanese, Chinese, Thai, Arabic, Spanish and Italian. Expensive and luxurious restaurants can be enjoyed at Puerto Madero and Palermo. The main areas to go out are Puerto Madero, Recoleta, Palermo SoHo and Palermo Hollywood, home to trendy stores, restaurants and bars. Most locals head out to dinner around 9pm.
Gran Cafe Tortoni
A grand coffee house with a longstanding history, Café Tortoni is a must see on your Buenos Aires exploration. Unpretentious and with an old world charm, patrons can rest a while in the high ceiling dining hall while sipping on a freshly brewed Argentinean coffee. Snacks are on offer throughout the day with a hint of a Spanish flair. Visit any day of the week and perhaps catch a glimpse of one of the many tango shows or jazz concerts that take place on the small stage.
Address: Avenida de Mayo 825
Telephone: (0)11 4342 4328
Cabana las Lilas
Presidents, movie stars, and Porteños come here for the best meat in Buenos Aires. In fact, the restaurant has its own estancia (ranch), which raises its cattle that is used for its famous grilled lomito and cuadrillo (beef cheeks). The wine cellar is well stocked with superb Argentine wines and the service is impeccable. If you have to wait long for a table, as you undoubtedly will, enjoy a glass of champagne in the cigar bar. Reservations recommended. Open daily from 12pm to midnight.
Address: Av. Alicia Moreau de Justo 550
Telephone: (54-11) 4315-1010
After a day exploring the sites in Recoleta, Café Victoria is the perfect place to sit and have a coffee or enjoy a complete meal. Its outdoor patio is surrounded by flowers and shaded by an enormous tree providing excellent people-watching opportunities. The three-course express lunch menu offers a salad, main dish, and dessert, with a drink included and afternoon tea with pastries and scones is served daily from 4pm to 7pm. In the evenings the café comes alive with live music serenading guests on the patio and makes a wonderful spot to soak up the buzz and ambience of Recoleta by night. Open daily for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
Address: Roberto M. Ortiz 1865
Telephone: (0)11 4804 0016
For modern Argentinean cuisine, silky red wines and a comfortable contemporary atmosphere, try out the renowned Sucre restaurant. With both a lunch and supper menu, this Argentinean favourite serves up mouth-watering meat dishes and light fusion tapas. Enjoy a predrink at the attractive bar and soak up the lively ambiance of this well-established Buenos Aires eatery.
Address: Mariscal Jose de Sucre
Telephone: (0)11 4782 9082
Cabana Las Lilas
This popular Buenos Aires restaurant is a great place to get a taste of local cuisine. The table 'cover' includes a spread of tapas like olives, sun-dried tomatoes, cheese, peppers and garlic bread, and complements the main focus of the meals: Argentine beef, sourced directly from the restaurant's private ranch. Don't let the high price tag fool you; Cabana Las Lilas is large and relaxed, with both indoor and outdoor seating. Reservations are recommended.
Address: Alicia Moreau de Justo 516, Puerto Madero
Telephone: 54-11 4315-1010
Restaurant owner Adrián Fuentes opened B'art after returning to Argentina from the United States after the September 11 attacks. at B'art he serves the best Argentine meats, many of which are used for dishes prepared with both Argentine methods and old-world Spanish traditions. The building has been beautifully restored and uses such antiques as turn-of-the-20th-century brick pulleys for decorative yet functional tasks, like carrying wine. B'art's menu features Spanish delights like tapas, casseroles and pinchos, a kind of kebab. The diverse menu features vegetarian dishes and pastas and delicacies, such as rabbit, are also served in various forms. Adrián invites artists to perform but at the same time is relaxed enough to allow guests to tinkle away at the keys of the piano while waiting to be seated in his stunning restaurant.
Address: Borges 2180, Palermo
Telephone: (0)11 4777 1112
The ambience at this well-known international restaurant is relaxed with fresh flowers and plants creating a springlike mood; having recently undergone a complete makeover, the dining room has become one of Buenos Aires's brightest and most contemporary. Caricatures of major personalities adorn the walls, and the French-trained chef, who also prepares dishes for those with special dietary requirements, creates dishes such as chicken fricassee with leek sauce, beef tenderloin stuffed with Gruyère cheese and mushrooms, and grilled trout with lemon-grass butter and zucchini. A fine dining experience is guaranteed for all who visit Lola. Open daily for lunch and dinner. Reservations recommended.
Address: Roberto M. Ortiz 1805, Recoleta
Telephone: (0)11 4804 5959
De Olivas i Lustres
De Olivas i Lustres was opened several years ago and seemed to set the trend for what this neighbourhood was soon to become; gastronomic heaven. The small, rustic dining room displays antiques, olive jars, and wine bottles, and each candlelit table is individually decorated; one resembles a writer's desk, while another is sprinkled with seashells. The menu is reasonably priced and features Mediterranean dishes such as light soups, fresh fish, and sautéed vegetables. The breast of duck with lemon and honey is a must. The use of native and Incan ingredients in various dishes makes this restaurant unique. If there was ever a place to eat alligator like the Guarani natives, this is the place to do it. Open Monday to Saturday for dinner only. Reservations recommended.
Address: Gorriti 3972, Palermo
Telephone: (0)11 4867 3388
A well-known restaurant among tourists, La Cabrera is situated on a corner and makes a wonderful setting for outdoor dining. The charming inside dining room with exposed brick walls and antique posters is just as beautiful. La Cabrera serves some of the best steak in Buenos Aires, with portions guaranteed to suit their prices. One of the restaurant's specialties is Pamplona, a roll made of various meats and sauces. The pork ribs with a sauce of dried tomatoes and pesto is a definite must and all meals are served with a setting of olives, spreads, sauces, breads, and other appetizers. Open Wednesday to Sunday for lunch and dinner, Mondays and Tuesdays dinner only. Reservations recommended.
Address: Cabrera 5099, Palermo
Telephone: (0)11 4831 7002
The Sushi Club
The Sushi Club is part of a very popular chain, but of all the locations throughout Buenos Aires, this is by far the nicest outlet. The Sushi Club lives up to its name, serving sushi and other Japanese cuisine in a club-like interior with orange, black, and metallic elements as part of the décor, creating a trendy dining environment. The selection of sushi rolls is extensive with many taking themes from various countries and creatively using ingredients to match. Other highlights on the menu include plenty of fish and beef seasoned the Japanese way. Open daily for lunch and dinner.
Address: Ortega Y Gasset 1812, Palermo
Telephone: 0810 222 SUSHI (toll-free)
Since 1933, Ligure has attracted the likes of ambassadors, artists and business leaders. The restaurant's nautical theme is evident with fishnets, dock ropes and masts adorning different corners of the room, while captain's wheels have been transformed into to chandeliers. Unlike most French-inspired cuisine, the portions are enormous, but true to form, are meticulously prepared and presented. Seafood options include the Patagonian tooth fish sautéed with butter, prawns, and mushrooms, or the trout glazed with an almond sauce. The beef chateaubriand is excellent, and the bife de lomo (filet mignon) can be prepared seven different ways, some even prepared at the table! Open daily for lunch and dinner. Reservations recommended.
Address: Juncal 855, Microcentre
Telephone: (0)11 4393 0644
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