Bar Los Galgos
Callao 501, Microcentro
The original owner of this jazz bar was an enthusiastic dog-racer, hence the name Los Galgos, which translates to "the greyhounds." It's a determinedly old-school joint, where in lieu of beer taps, the booze flows from vintage goosenecks, the tables are Formica-topped, and the mirrored bar is a relic of times gone by.
Uriarte 1664, Palermo
Conveniently next door to BA hot spot Casa Cruz, Isabel is equally as glamorous as her neighbor. An upscale bar, the decor has that seductive, seventies vibe going on—gilded doors, a roaring fireplace, plush velvet booths, and mood-setting dim lighting. If you can get past the tight door, the martinis are the thing to order.
Arroyo 872, Retiro
This bar—submerged beneath a pretty flower shop—is helmed by the city’s most revered bartender, Tato Giovannoni. The cocktail list is a celebration of the immigrant-led cultural fusion that is the backbone of this Latin city. Tato makes his own homemade gin (a pretty novel endeavor in Argentina), unusually—and patriotically—flavored with eucalyptus, yerba mate, and grapefruit. The basement bar itself is minimalist and urban with whitewashed walls, a chalkboard menu, and a long bar brightened up with yellow stools. Small plates are available, but be sure to book well in advance for table service.
Estados Unidos 302, San Telmo
Café Rivas serves food and drinks all day in a space about as charming as they come (that happens to be located on one of the more picturesque, cobbled corners of the city). Dining options are of the classically Argentinian variety (steaks, breaded pork cutlets), and the weekend brunch is excellent but, really this is a spot to sit at the bar with a glass of full-bodied wine or creamy coffee and unwind—ideally after a few hours spent browsing the San Telmo flea market.
Bar Plaza Dorrego
Defensa 1098, San Telmo
Bar Plaza Dorrego is one of those super-evocative, classic, old-school spots with the requisite checkered floor, suited-up waiters, and dusty wine bottles. The old wood bar is covered in the scrawled etchings of customers past and present, and some of the waiters have been working the floor for over two decades. Take a seat at the bar and order a few drinks (teetotalers try their famous submarino—hot milk with a little added chocolate), and traditional Argentine snacks to the sound of tango music for the quintessential BA evening.
Thames 878, Villa Crespo
Ocho7ocho (as the locals call it) is packed to the rafters, night after night and deservedly so. Located—like many of the city's bars and restaurants—in a converted townhouse, the vibe is laid-back and relatively unfussy with low sofas, smooth stone walls, and dark lighting—it kind of feels akin to being in a cave. The cocktails are excellent, but this is also the kind of bar to kick back with a simple, but well-made gin and tonic and catch up with a friend.
The Brick Hotel Buenos Aires – MGallery by Sofitel
Posadas 1232, Recoleta
This MGallery-owned hotel in the Recoleta neighborhood oozes with Art Deco touches. While the rooms aren’t the the biggest draw (they've utilized a beige-y, champagne palette with purple accents), they're comfortable and spacious with all the requisite amenities. The lobby and communal area however, are beautifully ornate and have French feel. The library in particular is cozy, the kind of inviting space that encourages you to curl up with a book and a coffee (or cocktail) for a slow afternoon. Other amenities include a pool and spa, as well as a pretty outdoor garden. The real draw is walkability to many of BA's best restaurants and cultural spots.
Posadas 1042, Retiro
This award-winning Italian mainstay is housed in the elegant Recoleta neighborhood. Piegari has all the bells and whistles associated with a fine dining establishment–white tablecloths, a stellar wine list, and superior service. The sizable dining room packs out, locals and visitors alike show up night-after-night to this classic but modern spot for reliably good Italian fare (read: lots of pasta).
Sunae Asian Cantina
Humboldt 1626, Palermo
Argentinian food—though flavor-packed—lacks spice, and chef Christina Sunae’s Southeast Asian Cantina is a breath of culinary fresh air. The food aside, the space is refreshingly vibrant with banana-leaf wallpaper, splashes of color, and plenty of plants. The menu has mined the Philippines, Thailand, Vietnam, and Indonesia for inspiration—try the fresh yum talay salad (seafood, mint, cilantro, and a spicy, citrus-y dressing), the empanada-style wontons or the roasted eggplant puree (with coconut milk, sweet potatoes, and crisp banana chips). For diners craving something more familiar go for reliable standby’s like Pad Thai or a nourishing bowl of pho. Post-dinner sweet treats have been re-interpreted to reflect the aforementioned regions—we loved the key lime pie with it’s ginger-infused dough, pandan meringue, and green tea ice cream.
Soler 5862, Palermo
Located in the boutique Fierro Hotel, Uco is a wine-centric restaurant (named for Mendoza’s Uco region) with over 300 labels available and helmed by Irish chef Ed Holloway. The interior is rustic, and almost Scandinavian-looking with textural walls of contrasting planks of wood and big windows looking out onto the greenery outside. Chef Holloway presents a true farm-to-fork menu with everything down to the charcuterie prepped in-house daily. Open for all three meals, Uco is probably one of the only restaurants in South America to offer a full Irish breakfast alongside the typically sweeter Argentinian options. If you need a break from all the steak, try one of their vegetarian or fish paellas, while the eighteen-hour shoulder of Patagonian lamb is utterly unforgettable. Early bird eaters should try lunch over dinner as ideally, dinner should be eaten at around 9pm to make the most of the convivial atmosphere that's as paramount to the restaurant’s atmosphere as the food.
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