Buenos Aires – Eating our way through Palermo, and a day at the Tigre Delta

Posted on November 17, 2012

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When we went back to Buenos Aires we decided to stay in a different area and explore a different side of the city, Palermo is more suburban and has many of the great restaurants and bars. The weather was beautiful so we opted to stay at the Aspen Square Hotel which had a roof terrace with a pool: a highlight of our stay! It wasn’t too expensive at 100euros for the room incl a large buffet breakfast.

We really wanted to see tango in Buenos Aires but weren’t keen to go to a big touristy show. Our Argentinian friends recommended drinks at La Catedral to watch people dance in a hidden warehouse. Well worth a visit to get your tango fix in an authentic place.

Another thing I loved doing in BA was Spending An evening in a Pena. This is a bar where from around 1am, sometimes after a show locals bring guitars and sing. A little like an open mike but everyone sits at their own table and if interest play at the same time, they just play and sing louder. The music is Argentnian, the guitar players are talented and sometimes you may see some dancing too. Penas are also a great place for a late night empanadas after a few drinks.

Food is plentiful and I certainly got my fix of steak and Malbec whilst I was in town. My only complaint, or maybe lesson learnt, is that steak comes more cooked than I would generally prefer. You have to emphasis ‘rare’ and then it’s still not quite the saignon that I have grown used to in France.

– Miranda is a parrilla but go here for lunch or dinner and try the Ensalada Jacinta – an enormous salad of grilled chicken, pumpkin, and all sorts of other things.  Usually no need to book in advance. Steaks are also good.

– Osaka  is the best sushi I have ever eaten. I am no expert but I don’t say this lightly. The food is stunning, asian fusion which includes variations of one my favourite dishes, ceviche. Book in advance and don’t miss it.

– La Cabrera is another great parrilla which comes with a multitude of extra sides and lollipop with the bill. Book in advance.

A few others which were recommended but we didn’t get to try are:

– Oui Oui, a great little brunch place

– Tô which is ‘Frapanese’ food (French-Japanese). Really cool atmosphere, great cocktails, good sushi.

Within Palermo there were a couple of bars that we loved:

– Frank’s bar is a speakeasy where you have to tell them the ‘password’ to get in, then you walk in to a room with a phone box where you have to type in the four digit code the bouncers give you. very funny and the interior doesn’t disappointing.

– Isabels cocktail bar is fun and has a good range of cocktails, each with their own story. My favourite was the ‘elegant and refreshing’ Oriental.

– Casa Cruz is a popular upmarket spot with velvet sofas and moody lighting, Try the Casa Cruz cocktail, created with vodka, apple Bardinet, ginger ale, ginger syrup and passion fruit pulp.

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The Tigre

The second part of our Buenos Aires city stay was broken up by a visit to one of the world’s major deltas, the Tigre. The town itself isn’t that impressive but the waterways are simply amazing with small houses on stilts. If we did the trip again, we would stay for a night or two on the delta. No matter how long you stay for take the Tren de la Costa from BA which stops at numerous pretty villages.

You can get around by water taxi but we had been advised to do a boat trip to get a real feel of the place. It’s important to get a small boat that is able to navigate the smaller waterways, such as NatVentures. There is a helpful tourist office in the town and there’s no need to book ahead. We had lunch on a charming street, off the beaten track on a more local street, trying for Boulevard Saenz Peña but there are a couple of other good options on the same street.

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