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Las Cuartetas – Pizza in the Theater District

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We’ve already written about El Cuartito, one of the very first pizza joints we discovered in Buenos Aires. Las Cuartetas is similar in food, name and decor. But it’s larger and, especially on a weekend night as the theaters of Calle Corrientes are emptying, much more boisterous.

Animated Pizza

We took friends from Germany on the same Thursday night that Plácido Domingo put on a free concert at the nearby obelisk. The restaurant was full when we arrived and, after the concert ended, the insanity in Las Cuartetas ascended to a level I could scarcely believe. Unceasing rivers of people flowed through the doors, passing by our table, headed towards the back in search of seating. I don’t know where any of them ended up; the restaurant was already packed to capacity when the flood started. The only explanation we could imagine was that they were exiting again through a door in the back, in an elaborate game to punk us. The line of people just kept filing past, like midget clowns piling into a car, and I swear I saw a few faces twice.

The pizza was incredible. Deep-dish, cheesy, greasy; everything we’ve come to expect of Buenos Aires’ best pizzerias. But really, the food took a back-seat to the atmosphere inside Las Cuartetas. Every seat was taken, and people shared tables with total strangers. Old deaf couples munching down fugazzas next to lip-pierced alterno-kids drinking Fanta, everyone screaming to be heard. Most of the screaming was directed at the waiter. The dapper old gentleman had to deal with about 40 tables in our section, and did so with the utmost professionalism.

We had a blast at Las Cuartetas, and can definitely recommend a visit, especially when it gets crowded. If the idea of cheesy, unhealthy pizza in a raucous madhouse full of shouting Argentines sounds like a good time, you won’t be disappointed.

Las Cuartetas
Corrientes, Av. 838
Location on our Buenos Aires Map
Books on Bar Notables

Pizza Zombies
Pizza Waiter
Buenos Aires Beer
Pizza in the Theaters
Hot Dad
Pizza Morron
Best Dulce de Leche
Serving Pizza
Pizza Stud
Pizza Pies
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April 24, 2011 at 4:14 pm Comments (5)

Buenos Aires’ Notable Bars – El Federal

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Coffee Culture

One of the best parts of moving to a new city is deciding upon your favorite new bar, the place you plan on haunting with a disturbingly constant presence. Buenos Aires has assisted newcomers on this all-important quest by honoring 60 bars and cafés with the distinction of Bar Notable.

Bar Federal

These places have been chosen for their long years of service, architectural flair, or famous patrons, and can officially advertise themselves as “Notable”. Most of them are found near the center of the sprawling city, and we’ve yet to visit one we haven’t been impressed by. That goes particularly for El Federal, on the corner of Peru and Carlos Calvo in San Telmo, which immediately established itself as a front-runner for the glorious title of my favorite bar.

Stepping inside El Federal is like stepping into back into the early 20th century, when Buenos Aires was in its golden age. The decoration is ornate, and well-stocked shelves hold antique soda bottles. The gorgeous wooden bar is over a hundred years old, and supports a large, fluidly carved arch, in which a defunct clock and stained glass are encased.

For being such a famous establishment in prime touristic real estate like San Telmo, the prices are amazingly reasonable. El Federal has a full menu, and we enjoyed everything we’ve tried; the plate of picadas (slices of meats and cheese) is an especially good choice. There’s both a smoking room and outdoor seating, but I always choose a table close to the bar, so that I can spend my time thirstily admiring the bottles of whiskey.

El Federal is the kind of place in which you’ll want to spend hours, and they don’t mind if you do. In fact, a small shelf of reading material is available in the corner. Digging into a well-worn copy of Borges’ Ficciones, with a strong cup of coffee on the wooden table in front of you, while the bustle of city life passes by in the window… that’s about as “bonarense” as you can get.

Location on our BA Map
List of Hostels in San Telmo

Entrada Bar Notable
Bar Buenos Aires
Buenos Aires Cafe
Bar Notable San Telmo
Jugendstil Bar Notable
Alcohol
Soda Buenos Aires
Soda Bar
Peanut Basket
Medialunas
Breakfast Buenos Aires
Bar Notable Mirror
Bar Notable Lamp
Bares Notables
Bar Notable
San Telmo Bar Notable
Bar Notable Moderno
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February 22, 2011 at 6:35 pm Comments (7)
Las Cuartetas - Pizza in the Theater District
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