*Updated: February 2017*
Recoleta, Buenos Aires’ old money neighborhood is peppered with early 1900’s French and Italian architecture, refurbished mansions and the food to match. From high end Mediterranean bistros to low key hole in the wall empanada spots, here is a great list to get you going to the right places…
Recoleta’s best restaurants
Elena Restaurante & Nuestro Secreto
Tucked inside the Four Seasons hotel, both Elena and Nuestro Secreto change up the hotel restaurant game with two high-class spots serving excellent food. Elena recently placed at #50 in the Latin America Best Restaurant list and serves modern Argentine fare with a fabulous wine collection while Nuestro Secreto is all about fire and barbecue, using different types of wood to cook locally sourced meats on the grill.
Mon-Sun 7:00am-3:30 pm, 7:30pm-12:30am
Rodriguez Peña 1149
This busy spot serving regional Argentine favorites consistently serves great food at very affordable prices. You can’t go wrong ordering a menagerie of empanadas with some Northern Argentine favorites like locro (beef stew), lentils, humita), and cazuelas.
Mon-Sun 12:00pm-1:00 am
Rodriguez Peña 682
If you are all about substance over style, Parrilla Peña is your spot. An authentic steakhouse where waiters deck themselves out in their classic crisp white shirts and dapper bow ties, this old school bodegón serves a mean tenderloin beef and fried empanada. Staff often rotate positions so your waiter may have been the grillmaster the day before.
Mon-Sat 12:00pm-4:00pm, 8:00pm-12:00am
Buenos Aires can now boast good seafood with this cozy, bistro. Seasonal produce, quality risottos, Roux blends a bit of French influence on their primarily Mediterranean menu. Don’t shy away from the goat sweetbreads or oysters (pending the season). For special occasions request the hidden private room downstairs in the wine cellar.
Mon-Sat, 12:00-3:30pm, 8:00pm-12:00am
A tiny hole in the wall, this hidden gem serves some of the best empanadas in Buenos Aires. All the empanadas served are Catamarca style (from the Catamarca region of Argentina) and must try flavors include Pikachu (spicy cheese) or beef.
Mon-Sat 12:00pm-4:00pm, 6:00pm-1:00am
One of the most traidional old school pizzerias in the city dating back to 1934, El Cuartito serves up some of the best Argentinian slices of pizza and empanadas in Buenos Aires. Grab a seat in either dining room adorned with sport memorabilia or eat a slice on the go at the standing bar. The fried beef and raisin empanadas (Tucman) go fast and are usually sold out a couple of hours into lunch and dinner service.
This old school Spanish influenced restaurant is an Argentine classic specializing in super fresh seafood and fish dishes. The average age of restaurant patrons clearly hits above the 50 year old mark, but with excellent service and wonderfully executed dishes, Oviedo gets a winning score.
Tucked away inside Buenos Aires’ Architecture Society building, Restó is quite the unassuming hidden gem. It’s the ideal weekday lunchtime spot where the food and wine list are the clear stars – think dishes like roasted quail, rib eye or grilled fish, each served with a wonderful Argentine wine.
Mon-Fri 12pm-3pm, Thurs-Fri 8-11pm
It’s not easy to find a spot that excels at both steak and seafood, but Fervor manages to break out the Buenos Aires surf and turf curse. When to go? Special occasions for groups (meat, seafood, vegetarian options) or when the parents are in town.
Mon-Sun 12pm-4pm, 8pm-12am
José León Pagano 2697
Argentina may be filled with Italians, but none quite get the cuisine right like fresh off the boat Sardinian chef Daniele Pinna. A little piece of Italy in Recoleta, the fresh pastas, seafood, and risotto are all forces to be reckoned with. Extra cool factor: the underground basement layer for intimate private events and gatherings.
Sanjuanino serves traditional Argentine food from the north, but all you really need to know about it is the following: empanadas, tamales, locro, humita, and pinguino (penguin) pitcher of wine. Once you order that, just await the food porn that will be dropped off at the table.
Mon-Sun 12pm-4pm, 7pm-12 am
Ultra chic housed in an impressive mansion, this might be the most beautiful bar setting in the city. Multiple rooms, bars, outdoor seating and a marble staircase to boot.
Pony Line Bar
We are all about these prime grade drinks at Four Season’s bar so much that we don’t even realize we are getting our drink on in a hotel bar.
Rodríguez Pena 1220
Part Irish pub, part late night Basement dance club, if you are looking for some entertainment with a bustling crowd, Shamrock will not disappoint.
Gran Bar Danzon
A cocktail and wine paradise, grab a seat at the bar and start sipping on the alcoholic wonder of your fancy.