A question frequently asked by our travelers is about gastronomy: what to eat and where in each city they visit. In this article I will tell you about where to eat if you visit Iguazú, Ushuaia, Calafate, or Buenos Aires. Challenge yourself to try the region’s typical dish in each of these unmissable restaurants ¡Buen provecho!

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Argentina on the go

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Gastronomy

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Mar 9, 2021

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argentinaonthego

Iguazu: eat “piranha” in the restaurant Aqva

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guazu is located in northeastern Argentina, on the border of Brazil and Paraguay, and it is a region where jungle vegetation and fauna prevail. That is why the gastronomic specialties of the region usually include a bit of the style of each neighboring country: unusual fruits such as passion fruit or Mango more typical of Brazil, chipa, a kind of bread made from cassava and cheese from Paraguay, and different types of fish, being that it is a zone full of rivers. In Iguazú, the most typical and sought after fish are Surubí, El Dorado and Pacu, all from the Paraná and Iguazú rivers. The Pacu is one of the tastiest river fish and belongs to the same family as the piranha, although it has a less sharp teeth. In Aqva, a restaurant located in Puerto Iguazú, you can eat Pacu stuffed with salmon and prawns, or served with rice noodles. El Surubí, another type of white river fish, can also be tried with a tropical fruit sauce or with a white wine and prawn sauce. You can even order Surubí ravioli! In Aqva, the highlights are really the elaboration of more traditional but innovative dishes that are based on regional products. If you visit this restaurant, another curiosity, apart from the Pacu, that you can try is the Yerba Mate dessert. Mate is a typical Argentine drink and its main ingredient, yerba, is only grown in Misiones and Corrientes. Although it is consumed all over the whole country in the typical fashion (with hot water), on the border of Paraguay people usually drink it with cold water or even juice and call it “tereré”. Try this too! And if you want to know more, you can do the Ruta del Mate, to visit different establishments that will teach you about the production, the “mate ceremony” and offer tastings of different types of yerba.

Surubí with fried Yuca, Photo: Aqva

Ushuaia: La Centolla in La Cantina Fueguina de Freddy

Let’s travel now from Puerto Iguazú to the southern tip of the country. Ushuaia is another port city so here several varieties of fish and other marine animals are among the must-try dishes we will find. A traditional fish that is eaten in Ushuaia is the black hake, since the Atlantic Patagonian coast is one of the few places in the world where it is caught. Many travelers recommend eating it at Kaupe, a restaurant specialising in French cuisine and seafood. Bear in mind that it is an elegant restaurant and so not one of the cheapest options. The most regional option, which is also a little cheaper, is the Cantina de Freddy , a more local restaurant with less exclusive dishes. Here, you must try the king crab, a type of giant crab that lives in the Beagle Channel, and is considered among the best in the world. Get the Parmesan, one of the most popular dishes, paired with one of the local beers, Cape Horn.

King Crab

Calafate: Patagonian Lamb and Craft Beer

Argentina is known for the quality of its meat and if you visit Patagonia, the lamb is what you have to try. There are several ways of cooking the lamb but it is almost always eaten “asado” style, and a typical regional way of making it is the “lamb to the cross”. The meat is arranged on a metallic structure in the shape of a cross and inclined 70 ° over the fire. Thus the meat cooks slowly with the heat. Lamb has a particular taste, stronger than beef, and it is very tender! Some of the restaurants most recommended by travelers are the Kau Kaleshen, which is both a restaurant and tea house, and Mi Rancho, which is both small and warm. At Kau Kaleshen you can try the lamb risotto, the Patagonian lamb with yogurt and the lavender ice cream. In Mi Rancho get the lamb on the cross, the pickled guanaco and the trout. Another curiosity to try is calafate ice cream. The calafate is a black and blue berry that is used in the area to make marmalade. They say that whoever eats the fruit of calafate will always return to Patagonia.

Another place you can visit in El Calafate if you want to drink craft beer is La Zorra which, like the other two restaurants, is in the center of the city. You can eat a lighter meal, more like Spanish tapas (which we call “picada”), and at night it draws a younger crowd. They offer beer brewed locally and, among the typical French fries with different dressings, there is also lamb stew.

Patagonian lamb

Buenos Aires: the Milanesa Napolitana

In Buenos Aires you clearly can’t avoid the experience of eating a good steak in one of the many steakhouses in the city. The reality is that all travelers in general come to Buenos Aires with this idea. One of the most famous steakhouses, located in the area of Palermo, is Don Julio, a very busy restaurant where the quality of the meat is incredible. Other options within the area are La Carnicería (it is best to make a reservation since it is small) and Las Cabras, another very good grill to visit, although they only accept cash.

Beyond the barbecue that everyone comes to look for, a very typical and everyday dish that you should try is the Milanese – breadcrumbed beef or chicken – alone or better yet, the Napolitana version: with ham, cheese, tomato and oregano. It is a 100% Argentine invention, so do not let the name fool you: you can ask any Italian and no one will know. They say that the Napolitana Milanesa stems from the mixture between the Milan cotolleta (breaded beef) and the typical Naples pizza, the margherita (tomato sauce and mozzarella). It is not only an exquisite dish, but that keeps alive the memory of our first immigrants. In any restaurant in Buenos Aires you can order the Milanesa, that we usually eat with French fries (and the most adventurous with fried egg-covered fries, better known as “fries on horseback”). And if you’ve become a fan and want to explore even more, I recommend going to the Club de la Milanesa-a chain of restaurants located in different parts of the city-where they only serve this product, marinated with any ingredients you can think of.