Last week Latin America’s 50 Best Restaurant list was published and while restaurants from Lima, the capital of Latin American food took 3 of the top 10 places, restaurants in Buenos Aires have become a regular feature on this list.
To be exact, no other city or country in the 2014 Top 50 Best Restaurants in Latin America list had more award winning restaurants than Buenos Aires and Argentina.
In total, 11 restaurants out of the 50 are located in Buenos Aires, beating Lima which only had 8 restaurants featured on the list. Why not spend celebrating Christmas this year in Buenos Aires for a culinary and festive dream like no other? To get your travel taste buds tickling, here’s a closer look at the top 5 of the 11 award winning restaurants in Buenos Aires that made it into the 2014 list of Latin America’s 50 Best Restaurants.
♦ Tegui (No. 9), Costa Rica 5852, Palermo – Best restaurant in Argentina award
With a secret graffiti-surrounded door, when arriving at Tegui you might begin to wonder if you’re at the right place. Often the case in Buenos Aires, you’ll pass by a nondescript door which hides the magic that can only be found in this special city. Tegui has a small but luxurious dining room complete with a gleaming open kitchen allowing you to see the chefs hard at work. The food and carefully matched wines will define your experience because the menu changes with an unusual frequency from continent to continent, style to style and complexity to simplicity. Chef-restaurateur, Germán Martitegui has developed an adoring group of followers with this unusual gastronomic experience that has made him into Argentina’s number 1 chef and Tegui into the best restaurant in Buenos Aires and Argentina.
♦ Aramburu (No. 14), Salta 1050, San Telmo
Behind an unmarked door in Buenos Aires’ artistic neighborhood of San Telmo, is Aramburu which offers a unique tasting menu with optional wine pairings. Chef, Gonzalo Aramburu puts a creative twist on Argentinean cuisine with a 12-course tasting menu that includes standout dishes such as suckling pig with squash puree and mandarin sorbet. With Argentina being recognized worldwide for its quality of meat, Aramburu shows off his skills cooking with meat. However, Aramburu is also an interactive experience with guests encouraged to sear their own shrimp on a hot stone or garnish their plates. Electing the optional wine tasting is also highly recommended with the award-winning sommelier Agustina de Alba selecting the wines.
♦ Tarquino (No. 16), Rodríguez Peña 1967, Recoleta – Highest new entry award
Winning the highest new entry award, Tarquino typifies the forward-thinking gastronomic ambitions of Argentineans today. The 40-seat restaurant located in the Hub Porteno Hotel in the French-style Buenos Aires neighborhood of Recoleta has set about deconstructing and then reimagining Argentina’s classic dishes. Head chef Dante Liporace takes you on a journey where like in Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory your imagination and taste buds run wild. Pizza at Tarquino comes in foam form served in a Martini glass and beef cheek is served with dehydrated potatoes and curried onion rings. As well as these imaginative dishes, Liporace also pays homage to Argentina’s culinary roots. With a strong accompanying list of wines and beautifully designed tasting menu, this will not be the last time that you hear about Tarquino.
♦ El Baqueano (No. 18), Chile 495, Esquina Bolivar, San Telmo – Highest climber award
Opening a meat restaurant in beef-obsessed Argentina is only for the brave. Fernando Rivarola’s El Baqueano restaurant located in San Telmo took the risk and it has more than paid off having been awarded the highest climber award. It is the restaurant’s sustainable and indigenous meats that take center stage with the restaurant offering llama, alligator, rhea (ostrich-like bird) and wild boar. Its weekly changing tasting menu has adventurous flavors and textures in dishes such as wild boar with cabbage and apple. Argentina as well as being one of the meat capitals of the world is also known for its delicate New World wines and the wine list at El Baqueano explores the country’s diverse wine regions. The chef, Fernando Rivarola continues to build alliances with his ‘cooking without borders’ project which brings the world’s best chefs to this restaurant to collaborate and create something even more spectacular.
♦ Chila (No. 21), Alicia Moreau de Justo 1160, Puerto Madero
Located in the modern, upmarket neighborhood of Puerto Madero’s docklands in Buenos Aires, Maria Soledad Nardelli’s restaurant, Chila, stands out for its modern approach when compared to the surrounding traditional steak restaurants. There is a 3-course à la carte menu as well as a 7-course tasting menu that focus on the best of regional ingredients. From the Parana River’s boga fish and prawns from the Patagonian city of Puerto Madryn, Nardelli has become an ambassador for her Argentina’s cuisine. Celebrating the regional ingredients can also be seen in Nardelli’s deserts which include the standout dish of Dulce de Leche soufflé.
♦ Other restaurants in Buenos Aires on the 2014 Latin America’s Best 50 list:
– La Cabrera (No. 22), José Antonio Cabrera 5127, Palermo
– Tomo 1 (No. 23), Panamericano Buenos Aires Hotel & Resort, Carlos Pellegrini 521, Downtown
– Oviedo (No. 29), Antonio Beruti 2602, Recoleta
– Sucre (No. 47), Sucre 676, Belgrano
– Elena (No. 48), Four Seasons Hotel Buenos Aires, Posadas 1086/88, Recoleta
– Pura Tierra (No. 50), 3 de Febrero 1167, Belgrano
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