If it's traditional fare you're looking for in Buenos Aires, you should be heading to one of the cities traditional pulperías. These lesser-known neighborhood eateries are the place to eat like a genuine Porteño (person hailing from Buenos Aires) and offer a welcome and interesting alternative to the steakhouses the city is famous for. With cured meats hanging from the ceiling and pickles lining the walls, arrive with an appetite and prepare yourself for some of the most interesting dining rooms Buenos Aires has to offer.
Pulpería Quilapan is the culmination of 3 years of restoration work and opened in 2015. The close attention to detail, including working antique appliances, is second only to the food. Classical dishes such as escabeche de vizcacha (chinchilla escabeche) and bondiola de jabali a la sidra (wild boar shoulder braised in cider) must be accompanied by the house wine, served in porcelain pingüino (penguin).
Pulpería Quilapan (Defensa 1344, San Telmo) +54 11 4307-6288
Don't be put off by the mis-matched furniture and general disarray of the dining room. This pulpería serves some of the city’s best empanadas, to be washed down with a Quilmes beer in true Porteño fashion. On a cold day, the hearty locro stew (Argentina’s national dish containing beans, sweet corn, pumpkin and various cuts of beef) is the perfect fuel for a full schedule of shopping and sightseeing in the nearby Palermo and Recoleta neighborhoods.
Ña Serapia (Av. Gral. Las Heras 3357, Buenos Aires) +54 11 4801-5307
Pulpería del Cotorro
The astounding selection of milanesas (breaded chicken or veal) are reason alone to visit this traditional neighborhood pulpería. With over 20 different garnishes to choose from, the generous portions are easy on the wallet and require a gargantuan appetite to finish. Thankfully, there’s an assortment of interesting trinkets in the dining room and bar to discover as you take a much needed break from your food.
Pulpería del Cotorro (Pepirí 400, Parque Patricios) +54 11 2059-7518
Rotisería Miramar and its impressive seafood selection are a welcome alternative to all the meat on offer in Buenos Aires. It's one of only a handful restaurants in the city that serves oysters, but if you’re looking for something a little more substantial, the house speciality salmon raviolis in squid ink pasta are simply delightful.
Rotisería Miramar (Av. San Juan 1999, Boedo) +54 11 4304-4261
Cafe La Poesía
Antique water syphons and pickle jars adorn cluttered shelves that line the walls in pulpería-esque fashion. Visit for breakfast and start your day like a local, over medialunas (mini croissants - savoury or sweet) freshly squeezed orange juice and coffee.
Cafe La Poesía (Chile 502, San Telmo) +54 11 4300-7340
Bar El Federal
After your breakfast at La Poesía, you can walk the cobbled streets of San Telmo - Buenos Aires’ oldest neighborhood - safe in the knowledge that lunch is just around the corner. Bar El Federal serves abundant picada selection boards of cured meats and local cheeses to be enjoyed with (at least) one of the house craft beers.
Bar El Federal (Carlos Calvo 599, San Telmo) +54 11 4300-4313
San Antonio de Areco
Though not technically in the city of Buenos Aires (but still in the same province), this small town is like a fully-functioning, interactive gaucho museum. The vast selection of pulperías and slower pace of life are the perfect excuse for a weekend break from the city. If possible, try and coincide your visit with the yearly San Antonio de Areco Gaucho Festival.
San Antonio de Areco, Buenos Aires Province