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Eating My Way Through Argentina – A Day With Buenos Aires Food Tours

by Meg · 27 comments

If you have been actively reading our blog, you are probably well aware by now that the way to my heart is through my stomach…

… And Buenos Aires has me head over heels in love.

Being the lucky girl that I am, this love affair started within the first 24 hours of arriving in this magical city. Now, I may not be a believer in love at first sight, but love at first bite is a whole different story!

On the second day of our trip, Tony and I were graciously invited to attend a day of eating and drinking our way through the city via Buenos Aires Food Tours. This seemed too good to pass up!

Before I start divulging into the gluttonous day we spent with Buenos Aires Food Tours, I will give you a little background on the company:

Buenos Aires Food Tours was started up by ethnic dining expert Graciela (whom also founded Miami Culinary Tours) roughly a year ago and provides culinary walking tours around the San Telmo, La Boca, and Recoleta neighborhoods (a.k.a. Barrios).

This unique tour group, however, is not just about food.  Aside from pigging out on all the regional delicacies, they also want their customers to gain knowledge about the local community, the history of the city, and the beautiful architecture that defines Buenos Aires.

In addition to the distinctive approach on their tours, Buenos Aires Food Tours got exceptionally good TripAdvisor reviews.  After everything that I learned and read about this company, I was dying to see them in action.

We signed up for the San Telmo Food Tour, which was right in the neighborhood we were hostelling in.  To be honest, I wasn’t sure what to expect going into the day.  I had never done a food tour before but, from what I gathered in my research, I imagined a BUNCH of walking around the city, followed by sampling small bites to eat at street vendors and markets.

As it turned out, it was so much different than what I expected… And so much better!

As I previously mentioned, I expected the day to involve a lot of walking, followed by mini samples of various street food.  Awesome? Yes.  Right up my ally? You betcha! But what about this scenario:

Our tour guide, Jorge

A full day of eating wonderful food and drinking luscious Argentinean wines at romantic local restaurants.  The day is peaceful, the ambiance is casual, and the company is superb.

In addition, there is an incredibly warm and knowledgeable local tour guide (and avid foodie) educating you on the local history and traditions as he orders more and more “must-tries” for the table.

Now, I am not sure about you but this second scenario is my idea of a dream day.  And that is exactly what we got on our Buenos Aires Food Tour.

Our tour guide, Jorge, started the day off by walking our group through Mercado San Telmo to teach us about the notorious cuts of meat in Argentina. During our time in the Mercado, he had us interacting with quirky butchers who were enthusiastic to show us the ropes to the world of meat, where no part of the pig or cow goes uneaten!

Yup. That's brains all right.


The butcher playing with beef tongue!

We then moved onto our first restaurant of the day, Pasaje Solar, which is situated in a charming house from the late nineteenth century.  Our group got seated in the romantic outdoor patio area that was surrounded by flowers and exposed brick from the house.  I immediately began to feel tranquil and in my element.

Jorge ordered a bottle of Argentinean Elementos Torrontes white wine for the table and that provided just enough lubrication for us to become BFF’s with the rest of our wonderful tour group.

The tour group foodies!

There was Marv and Margie, the power couple from New York taking advantage of a 2 week vacation. Despite them being Yankees fans, we somehow managed to really enjoy their company…

Then there was Stephen and Anna, a lovely European couple passionate about travel. He was from England and she was from Italy… so of course Tony had to bombard her with his questions and love for all things Italian.

The table conversation was flowing freely (along with the wine) and just as I started thinking the day couldn’t get any better, the food started to arrive at the table. Since there were a TON of traditional dishes consumed over the course of the meal, I figure it will be easiest to break the menu down a little bit below:

Pickled eggplant: This was our first dish.  A little appetizie if you will (I love my food abbreviations). This dish was a perfect balance of sweet and vinegary and tasted refreshing (yet hearty) smothered on top of the delicious table bread.

Pickled eggplant

Pizza with black olive dough: Yes, this was a pizza by any standards – melted cheese, tomato, etc.  But black olive dough?! This took this dish up so many notches it wasn’t even fair. Why haven’t we thought of this back in the states? Dear Dominos, this is your calling!

Pizza with black olive dough

Fried eggplant with tomatoes and cheese: Like the black olive pizza dough, having eggplant substitute regular pizza dough simply rocked. And it was fried.  Enough said. I think this is how I am going to make pizzas from now on.

Fried eggplant with tomatoes and cheese

Fried flank steak caprese: Okay noooow we have steak in replace of the dough.  Argentina is getting a little crazy on me!  This was soooo darn good.

Fried flank steak caprese

Spanish Tortilla with red sausage:  From studying abroad in Spain, I have had many a Spanish Tortilla, but for those of you who are unfamiliar with it, think of it as a thick potato and egg omelet.  Delicious.  Now take that and add succulent Argentinean red sausage.  Let’s just say that Tony was in heaven.

Spanish Tortilla with red sausage

Some additional treats ordered for the table included fried chard as well as stuffed mushrooms with parsley.  Both of these dishes were great, but the five dishes above were by far my favorites of the meal.

Fried chard

Stuffed mushrooms with parsley

When we were finished with our meal at Pasaje Solar, I thought the tour was finished for the day… And if it was, I would have left completely satisfied.

But then Jorge announced that we needed to move on to the restaurant where we would be eating LUNCH.


I just had myself an Italian/Argentinean feast… Now you want me to eat more?!

But who was I to say no?

Resto del Viejo Hotel

So on we ventured to Resto del Viejo Hotel for lunch.

This restaurant was a fancy-pants restaurant that was decorated with stunning chandeliers, beautiful paintings, and an old fashioned bar.

Once again, Jorge ordered us up some fabulous wine for the table to start the meal off right.

I had a glass (okay, maybe two) of the Wayna 2007 Malbec, which I was obsessed with and Tony enjoyed a glass of the Alta Vista 2010 Torrontes.

Now we aren’t big white wine drinkers back home, but Argentina knows how to whip up some delicious white concoctions.

This wine was exquisite!

For lunch we gorged on veal milanese with homemade potato chips and grilled pork loin.  It is pretty clear at this point how Argentina got such a great reputation for its meat.

Veal milanese with homemade potato chips

Grilled pork loin

For dessert, Jorge had the waitor bring us sweet potato jelly with cheese cubes.  The dish came out, and I gotta say, it did NOT look appetizing.  However, I am a big believer that you should always try a dish once before turning your nose up to it.

Sweet potato jelly with cheese cubes

Luckily, it turned out to be pretty good.

Now, if I was given the option between ordering this again or ordering a big chocolate brownie sundae, I would without a doubt order the sundae!  But I was pleasantly surprised by how much I like the jellied sweet potato.

The meal finished up and the day was winding down.  At this point, I am mildly buzzed, ridiculously full, and loving life… And Jorge. I was also about 10 minutes away from curling up in a dark alley to take a nap.

Jorge must have seen the dopiness in the groups’ eyes… and he combated it in the most perfect way…

Coffee time!

For the last part of the tour, Jorge marched us into Bar Plaza Dorrego, which is the oldest bar in Buenos Aires (established in 1881) for some espresso. This wooden paneled bar has maintained its old school charm with pictures of celebrities (who used to stop by) hanging on its walls and names carved into the wooden chairs and benches.

Bar Plaza Dorrego

The draft beer and coffee also comes with a side of roasted peanuts and its completely kosher to throw your leftover shells on the floor, adding to its rustic flare.  It was the perfect way to end a perfect day.

Tony and I had an outstanding time on our Buenos Aires Food Tour.  It was a relaxing (and gluttonous!) day filled with great food, great wine, and great people.  Jorge was an amazing tour guide and his enthusiasm about Argentinean cuisine was contagious.  The day turned out to be completely different than what I had imagined, and I was grateful for that.

If you have a chance to travel to Buenos Aires, book a food tour immediately!  You will not be disappointed.  It’s such a great way to see the city and learn more about the culture of Buenos Aires – Plus who can pass up the opportunity to eat and drink ALL DAY LONG?

I sure can’t!

Disclosure: Tony and I were sponsored guests of Buenos Aires Food Tours and thus did not pay for our tour. As always, our opinions are our own and unbiased. If we hate it… you will know.

About Meg
Exhausted from traveling every week as a Business Management Consultant early in my career, I took a year off in 2012 to travel at my own pace. I am a high-energy girl that loves being active, eating food, drinking wine, and exploring the world with my partner-in-crime (and husband), Tony! I now reside in Portland, Oregon and continue to write about travel, food, wine, and the awesome adventures we have in the Pacific NW!

Waegook Tom February 15, 2012 at 6:00 pm

Dear lord, this looks AMAZING. I can’t even pick a favourite. I expected lots of pictures of steak when I clicked on, but the photos and descriptions are drool inducing. I’m holding you responsible for any bite marks in my computer screen…

Meg February 15, 2012 at 8:25 pm

I gotta say the fried eggplant was pretty bomb… might have been the favorite of the day. There actually is a lot of Italian heritage here in Buenos Aires, so they have phenomenal Italian food. But the steak is legendary – and front & center in the culinary world down here! Glad you enjoyed the article and the pictures… Try not to bite the computer screen too much!

Emily in Chile February 15, 2012 at 8:08 pm

It all looks and sounds so good! I’m impressed you managed to eat all that – you guys are troopers :)

Meg February 15, 2012 at 8:29 pm

Glad you enjoyed Emily – I just wish I could have done a food tour in Santiago as well! Maybe next time. The plates were shared amongst the six of us in the group, but it was still a TON of food regardless! So worth it though.

Barb February 15, 2012 at 8:37 pm

Your descriptions and photos of the food made me salivate. Should our travels ever take us to this lovely city, we will be sure to book a tour with Buenos Aires Food Tour; thanks for the recommendation.

Meg February 15, 2012 at 8:56 pm

You’re welcome Barb! They have food tours in a lot of major cities in the U.S. and it’s such a great way to see a city and taste all the great food the city has to offer. If you don’t get a chance to make it down here, you should definitely try and participate in one stateside!

Magz February 16, 2012 at 1:36 pm

I always knew I envied Mony’s stomach capacity… but now I can say I am truly in awe. Very impressive. And what an amazing day for you two!! I think we should add those home made chips to the chip bar…

Meg February 16, 2012 at 2:05 pm

Ahh those chips would have been awesome at the chip bar! It was an amazing day – such good food!

JR February 16, 2012 at 2:36 pm

WOW, what a day and I loved your descriptions. This is something I have to do. What a way to get acquainted with a new city and new culture. Great idea and great business. My assumption is you both probably curled up somewhere for a nap after this day and I hope it was not in an alley. :)

Meg February 16, 2012 at 2:39 pm

Yeah this would be my dream business to give food tours all day! haha and yes, we did take quite the epic nap afterwards… And I can neither confirm nor deny that we stopped for some gelato on the way home from the tour!

Ruben February 17, 2012 at 11:45 am

”We really enjoyed reading your blog and we are glad you enjoyed the food and the beautiful city of Buenos Aires as much as we do. If you are looking for complementary tours and activities to this fantastic food tour then visit http://www.bsas4u.com . We hope to see you in Buenos Aires again soon!” Greetings

Meg February 17, 2012 at 7:04 pm

Thanks Ruben! I am glad to hear you enjoyed our blog and post on Buenos Aires Food Tours. We absolutely love Buenos Aires and cannot wait to explore more of this great city. I visited BSAS4U and would love to take a tour with your company – I sent you an email so please keep in touch and hopefully we can partner up during my time here in BA.

Papa Dave February 20, 2012 at 2:30 pm

What you two are doing is mind boggling. It is wonderful that you are sharing your experience with us. I can’t wait to read your book (you must be contemplating one) when you publish.

Love to both of you. I hope you stop by when you get back.

Papa Dave

Meg February 20, 2012 at 6:16 pm

Thanks so much Papa Dave. We love to see that you are following along. A book would be really fun to write after our journeys… Hopefully people would find us interesting enough to read it! We love you too and keep in touch!

Kathleen (step grandmother) February 21, 2012 at 12:02 am

Wow! I am so jealous! Stay safe and continue to have fun.

Kathleen (step grandmother) February 21, 2012 at 12:36 am

Oh My Gosh!
I am so proud of you and so JEALOUS that I did not have the guts to do anything adventurous when I was young. You two rock!!!
Stay safe and know that we are living vicariously through your journey.

Meg February 21, 2012 at 10:27 am

Thanks Kacki for continuing to follow our journey… There is plenty of adventure to be had both abroad and state-side and it’s never too late to explore!

steve February 12, 2013 at 2:16 pm

To bad you never write the prices of the food ,drink, loading etc

Meg February 14, 2013 at 10:18 am

Hi Steve, the food tour was US $75 per person (all food and drinks included in price)…. Hope this helps!

steve February 14, 2013 at 10:28 am

Thank you , I think this is really pricy , we spend $30-$50 for both of us on average(no drinks) . But when you travel and write will be really nice if you mention prices occasionally in your blogs

Meg February 14, 2013 at 11:10 am

Thanks for the feedback Steve. We will be sure to post more pricing information in our posts in the future!

charles May 12, 2014 at 6:11 am

can you handle 2 vegetarians on Dec 24 or Dec 25?

what do you recommend?

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