With the MICHELIN Guide set to launch in Argentina later this year, starting in the cities of Buenos Aires and Mendoza, there has never been a better time to sample Argentina’s world-class food, wine, beer and traditional delights.
From the bounty of Mendoza’s renowned vineyards to the family-style Bodegóns located across Argentina’s vibrant capital, there are plenty of ways for travellers to immerse themselves in the local culture and experience the unique tastes and flavours of this South American country in 2024.
- Try MICHELIN dining in the City of Buenos Aires and Mendoza
The MICHELIN Guide is set to make its debut in Argentina this year, with the first selection of restaurants in the two participating cities – the City of Buenos Aires and Mendoza – to be presented on 24th November. In 2024, visitors can experience the rich food and cultures of these two dynamic cities and be one of the first to sample cuisine from the newly awarded restaurants. Buenos Aires has long been known as a world-class destination for international and local foodies, home to exquisite fine dining restaurants and casual bistros, whilst the incredible wine culture of Mendoza has shaped the hospitality industry to offer exceptional restaurants and unmissable wineries.
- Experience asado – the Argentinian barbeque
Asado is essential to the national identities of Argentinians. The simple definition refers to meat cuts (especially beef) laid on a parrilla or grill served with tomato and lettuce salad. But in Argentina, asado is much more than just a meal. It also refers to the gathering of people and the social event associated with eating it. The meal includes various cuts of meat; vegetables such as potatoes, red pepper with egg, onion and sweet potato; provoleta, a melted and seasoned provolone cheese; and offal, among them the choripán, synonymous with happiness. This iconic experience is often enjoyed at home, but also in many restaurants across the country.
- Explore the breathtaking vineyards of Mendoza on the ‘wine route’
Home to more than 800 of Mendoza’s 1,200+ wineries, the ‘wine route’ covers the three main regions of Maipú, Luján de Cuyo and the Uco Valley. Wine enthusiasts are encouraged to take at least four or five days to explore this route, allowing stops at some of the destination’s most iconic wineries all framed by the spectacular Andes Mountains and lush green vineyards. Visit between January and March for Fiesta de la Vendimia, Mendoza’s National Grape Harvest Festival, which is the ultimate celebration for wine enthusiasts. Travellers can experience dancing, singing, parades and floats hosted in celebration of the harvest and its people, taking place in various parts of the province and culminating at the Frank Romero Day Greek Theater.
- Dine at a Bodegón in the vibrant capital
One of the most popular ways of trying traditional Argentine food is in one of the thousands of bodegónes – otherwise known as canteens – located in the many neighbourhoods of Buenos Aires. The heart of a true bodegón is the traditional dishes in their simplest form without garnishes: the menu includes plentiful homemade classic dishes at affordable prices. Visitors can enjoy family-style dining accompanied by local music and a lively atmosphere.
- Sample mate: a tradition that is part of Argentina’s national identity
A trip to Argentina is not complete without trying the traditional beverage, mate, typically consumed with water at 80 degrees and without sweeteners. Originating from the guarani people who recognised the yerba mate tree as a gift from the gods, mate has become an integral part of Argentinian life, symbolising friendship and sharing. Travellers can tour the Yerba Mate trail in the provinces of Corrientes and Misiones to learn about the production of mate and visit the historical establishments. In the city of Buenos Aires, the José Hernández Popular Art Museum [Museo de Arte Popular José Hernández] hosts one of the most important mate and criollo silver utensils in the country, and to sample the drink, visit one of Buenos Aires’ “mate bars” found all around the city.
- Visit Ushuaia, Argentina’s southernmost city, for the freshest King Crab
At the southernmost tip of Argentina, the cold deep sea water of Ushuaia makes it the ideal spot for the King Crab to thrive. A trip to Ushuaia usually involves sailing down the Beagle Channel, the most popular area for fishing this particular crustacean – one that has become the most typical and unmissable food for visitors to the area. The best time to sample the freshest King Crab is from November to January, as fishing is prohibited in the area from 1st March to 30th June in order to avoid overfishing. Many restaurants in the area display the King Crab in fishbowls so visitors can select the one they would like to try. Top tip: choose the most active crab, as this will be the freshest.
For more information on what to discover in Argentina, visit: www.argentina.travel/en