Travel

Buenos Aires Restaurants

Establishment neighborhood
Basa
Basavilbaso 1328, Retiro
Set in a subterranean space, the décor at Basa is contemporary and minimal. Everything is dark—the furniture, the lighting, even the walls, which contributes to the moody, sexy atmosphere. The menu is Mediterranean-inflected, but in classic Buenos Aires fashion, also meat-heavy, spanning everything from rich pastas and grilled lobster to tapas-style dishes like croquetas and calamari. We suggest stopping in for a cocktail or two and some small bites to start off an evening, which, in this city, is likely to last into the early hours.
Casa Babel Bistró
Mendoza 1267, Belgrano
p{font-size: 16px !important;line-height:26px !important;} A lively, atmospheric option to hunker down in all night, Casa Babel Bistró occupies a refurbished home dating back to 1927 and is one of the city's most loved hidden gems. The multi-disciplinary space houses a production company, recording studio, and of course the bistro. In keeping with the culturally rich vibe that pervades the space, the menu reads much like a book, chapter by chapter with each dish inspired by a piece of writing, and accompanied by a stellar playlist. Following dinner, get comfortable on the couches for live music that continues into the early hours.
La Cocina
Cavia 2985, Palermo
Casa Cavia—this restaurant-slash-retail concept in a stunningly renovated Belle Époque mansion is home to La Cocina, the toughest reservation to snag in the city. In keeping with the house's creative vibe (it’s also home to a publisher and bookstore), the menu is incredibly inventive and unusual (roasted bone marrow with cassava, rice with stewed flowers, or for desert, a marshmallow, barley, and peanut fudge), and is accompanied by an equally impressive cocktail menu (try the Fitzgerald which marries juniper essence with Patagonian pear cider). Food aside, the interior is reason alone to make a reservation—inspired by the cafés of the 1920s, the space is all marble, brass, chevron floors, and antique mirrors—it feels airy and fresh, yet incredibly refined. If you can’t commit to dinner, stop by for a sweet Argentinian breakfast of dulce de leche stuffed baked goods and coffee to soak up all the design details in the daylight hours.
Casa Cruz
Uriarte 1658, Palermo
A local dining concept from Argentinian restaurateur Juan Santa Cruz, Casa Cruz, as with the London location, is not short on sex-appeal and glamour. A riff on the brasserie, the menu is international with heavy Argentine influences like plenty of meat-centric dishes alongside more Italian-style plates like eggplant parmigiana and pasta. Round the meal off with the dulce de leche flan (nowhere else in the world can you rationally eat this glorious, caramel-y condiment at all three meals, so take full advantage). Casa Cruz is decidedly upscale, definitely not the restaurant for a casual steak dinner; reservations are essential.
Don Carlos
Brandsen 699, La Boca
Across the street from the Buenos Aires sports temple that is Boca stadium, Don Carlos is a classic mom-and-pop operation, helmed by Don Carlos himself. With no real menu available, prepare to be served whatever Carlos feels like sending out—if you like the look of something another diner is eating, ask for it—you’ll notice plenty of rustically prepared, traditional meat and pasta dishes coming out of the small kitchen in rapid succession. This space is no-frills, yet oozes charm—simple dishes, done well. While the area can be a little dicey at night, the homey space, flavorful comfort food, and superb people watching make this place well worth the trip. Cash only.
El Burladero
Pres. Jose E. Uriburu 1488, Recoleta
In a city heaving with steakhouses and (surprisingly) traditional Italian restaurants, El Burladero is a gem for those craving decidedly Spanish flavors. A fun spot where the white brick walls are adorned with paintings (and plenty of red and yellow accents in case you forget where you are), the seating is a mix of booths and intimate tables, high ceilings, and excellent service. Upon arrival, you’ll be served a little amuse bouche, juicy olives, and salty warm bread to get the appetite going. In terms of the menu, while all the plates pack a punch, the tortilla Espanola (paper-thin slices of potato and onion cooked into a type of cake with plenty of olive oil) is melt-in-your-mouth good and a must order—especially when washed down with a few jugs of refreshingly tart sangria.
Elena
Posadas 1086, Retiro
Housed within The Four Seasons Hotel, Elena is inspired by the storied life led by Elena Peña Unzué, the lady of the mansion on the hotel grounds (where many of the suites are located). It’s a chic, split-level space with monochromatic, marble chevron floors, leather walls, and sculptural light fixtures that cast a soft glow. In direct contrast with many of the city’s mom-and-pop old-school operations, Elena feels truly modern. Expect dry-aged steaks, Argentinian Kobe beef, rotisserie chicken, and perfectly cooked vegetable sides—paired with a stellar wine list, of course.
You may also like