Thursday, September 11, 2008

Favorite Dining Cities Part 2 - Best of Buenos Aires

For as long as I've been able to afford it, I've indulged my wanderlust with trips around the world, and my trips are not-surprisingly centered around eating. In a previous post, I mentioned that Buenos Aires is one my favorite dining destinations. So today, I'm providing a round-up of my favorite restaurants in BA.

BA is an amazing, vibrant city with a Parisian look-and-feel, and Latin energy. And in a time when the dollar is worth so little in most of the world, BA is still an amazing deal. Imagine lavish steak dinners with top quality bottles of Malbec all for around $15. Not surprisingly, we indulged in the city's best food and wine every night, and I loved every second of it.

There is so much to see in the world that I rarely have interest in returning to a city soon after my first trip, but BA stands out as a city that I couldn't possibly spend enough time in. If you've got the time and inclination, go go go!

Overall, it's all about beef, Malbec and empanadas for me. I enjoyed virtually everything I ate in Buenos Aires, whether traditionally Argentine or not. It's hard to go wrong dining at any of the restaurants I list below.
  • Casa Cruz 4833-1112 - With an amazing setting and food, this is definitely one of the best high-end restaurants in town. It's very romantic, a bit of a scene, and everything is incredibly delicious. Casa Cruz was arguably my favorite restaurant in Argentina.
  • Sucre - Sucre is a bit out of the way of the main tourist neighborhoods of Recoleta and Soho, but delicious food and a see-and-be-seen kind of atmosphere make it worth the trip. We sat next to Tara Reid and her entourage of sycophants. How Hollywood! It's known in particular for its wood-fire grill.
  • Bar Uriarte -This is the sister restaurant to Sucre. It's just as filled with beautiful people and serves spectacular cocktails. It has a Med-inspired menu, offering pastas and pizza in addition to more meat driven dishes.
  • Gran Bar Danzon -Another sister restaurant to Sucre and Uriarte. It's an elegant, wine and coffee bar, and a great place to take in a tango show.
  • Resto -4372-5439 -We had lunch here and were impressed with the finesse of the rustic but still light dishes. This was our first fancy meal in BA, and we were thrilled to be able to indulge in a 3-course meal with wine for a pittance for lunch without any guilt! It's very sophisticated and well worth a visit.
  • Olsen 4776-7677 - Brunch is somewhat of a rarity in BA, but this is one of the most popular places in town for brunch. It's Scandinavian with light woods and lots of sun, which is a pleasant change if you've been gorging yourself on non=stop beef and overdosing on dark and sexy nightlife spots. I enjoyed my Scandi-style brunch, but it definitely wasn't my favorite meal of the trip.
  • La Cabrera 4831-7002 - This was our favorite parilla (steakhouse). They give you tons of sides in addition to whatever steak you have to order, and it's very old school authentic there. If you only have one night in BA, eat here because it's one the city is best known for - Argentine Beef!
  • Te Matare Ramirez - This restaurant is strange, but if you're looking for something unique this is it. The menu is organized around aphrodisiac ingredients, and each night there is a different form of entertainment. On our visit they had a pornographic puppet show. I've included one of the more chaste photos. It was hilarious, even if we couldn't understand the dialogue, and it was a really entertaining evening.
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