Restaurants in Buenos Aires
Beef is usually the first thing that comes to mind when thinking of Buenos Aires restaurants, and with good reason: Argentina’s prairies produce some of the best cuts in the world. But local cuisine also boasts European influences, and modern, inventive twists. Some of the best restaurants in Buenos Aires offer “tenedor libre” service, an all-you-can-eat buffet of appetizers, meats, salads and desserts. Modern Argentinian cuisine is served in a refined atmosphere at Casa Cruz, one of the most popular Buenos Aires restaurants. The unmarked entrance leads to a low-lit space where chef German Martegui serves specialties like foie gras crème brulee, grilled octopus and Argentinian veal tenderloin. At Sucre, chef Gonzalo Sacot interprets Argentinian classics with Italian, Spanish and even Japanese touches. Expect octopus tiradito, organic fried chicken and hearty cuts like Black Angus tenderloin, cooked in a wood-fired grill, plus a comprehensive list of national wines. For a French-inspired menu, head to Chila, a trendy eatery featuring tasting menus built around seasonal ingredients like quail, shrimp and fresh goat cheese. Chila has been honored with multiple awards, including Best Restaurant from Cuisine & Vins magazine in 2011.
The sommelier-owners pair mineral-rich Chardonnays and dense Argentinean Malbecs with local dishes such as skirt steak with quinoa and portobello mushrooms.
A refreshing alternative to the city’s ubiquitous steakhouses, Oviedo is a Spanish-inspired seafood restaurant in the Recoleta neighborhood. Inside, glass orb chandeliers illuminate the dining room, which is decorated with dark mahogany trim, classic white tablecloths, and ocean-themed artwork.
Palermo’s new hidden gem, helmed by a pair of young chefs whose résumés include stints at such avant-garde temples as Fat Duck and Mugaritz. The daily-changing blackboard lunch menus are breezy affairs, featuring decadent risottos of the day and locavore salads.
An esplanade over the Río de la Plata makes this Italian restaurant one of the city's top dining experiences. Mushroom risotto and creamy gnocchi with ham are perfectly al dente.
Don’t judge yet. This American chain is a different creature in Argentina, having added waiter service and a rather refined atmosphere to its offering of hamburgers and fries. Ezeiza’s new 4,300-square-foot outpost—open 24/7—also serves the only truly affordable fare in the airport.
Although opened in 2001, Social La Lechuza oozes the atmosphere of the best old-school neighborhood parrillas (steak joints).
Dine on entrecôte and sip Malbec while dancers perform moves such as boleos and gaunchos at Esquina Carlos Gardel, the city's top dinner club—and one of Gardel's old haunts.
Located in the affluent Puerto Madero neighborhood and within walking distance of a handful of high-end hotel chains, this steakhouse serves the usual lineup of Argentinean parilla beef, principally to tourists.
Located in the center of the Palermo Soho shopping district, this casually chic restaurant serves French-Mediterranean fusion fare along with handcrafted cocktails and local wines from the Mendoza Province.
Cocina criolla—northern Argentinean flavor—rules at this no-frills, dirt-cheap cult favorite across from the Parque Las Heras. The carne picante (spicy beef) empanada is the juiciest in town, and the carbonada stew teeming with pumpkin and corn spells comfort food.
Tucked away in Recoleta, this rustic nook with red leatherette booths is home to the town’s best empanadas. Flash-baked to order, the pastries arrive blistered and plump with creamed corn, mozzarella and basil, or hand-chopped beef sweetened with onions.
Stuck in a late-Modernist time warp amid the Microcentro bustle, this 60’s café is for certain media and politico types an office, living room, and caffeine-emergency ward.
Located in the Palermo Viejo district, Azema Exotic Bistro serves an innovative fusion of Creole, Caribbean, Vietnamese, and French cuisines.