The British influence in Buenos Aires is apparent in a lot of ways, from the English architecture of picturesque neighborhoods like Belgrano “R”, to the still-festering political resentment over the Falkands, and in the world of sports. The Brits are the reason that some soccer teams in Buenos Aires have names like “River Plate”, “All Boys” and “Newell’s”, and they’re also to thank for another staple of the Argentine sporting scene: polo.
It was a Sunday afternoon, and we were stomping angrily around Palermo Hollywood looking for a place to eat. The restaurant we had wanted to go to was closed, and we had no backup plan. One of the bad things about eating in Buenos Aires is that restaurants have irregular schedules… Mondays, Sunday afternoons, Tuesday nights, closed. Advance research is always a smart idea. But one of the good things is that there’s usually another great option around the corner, regardless of where you are.
The largest barrio of Buenos Aires is also its greenest. A number of parks stretch between the residential streets of Palermo and the Rio de Plata, greatly improving the quality of life for those lucky enough to live close by.
We were sitting outside at La Fabrica Del Taco, a popular Palermo joint serving up cheap Tex-Mex style fare, when we noticed something strange about the restaurant next door. It had the appearance of a fancy, exclusive club, with red curtains obscuring the interior, but every couple who approached the door looked anxious and slightly furtive, like kids about to put their hands into a cookie jar. I went to investigate and, after reading the menu, understood the nervously excited behavior of the people going inside. Te Mataré Ramirez is an aphrodisiac restaurant. And its menu is among the best things I’ve ever read.
“Well, this sucks”. We had just arrived in Mataderos, hoping to partake in the fun of its Sunday fair, but rain had forced its cancellation. Moping over a pitcher of Quilmes, we mulled over our options. “We’re on the other side of the city, but how about we catch a bus and go to the MALBA?”
I’m not sure why a restaurant would want to call itself The Office: a word with horrendous connotations for most of humanity. When we lived in Valencia, Spain, there were two: The Office and La Oficina. And both were great! Almost as though they were trying extra-hard to prove that offices don’t have to suck. Buenos Aires’ The Office, in Palermo, adheres to that trend.
When I consider the word chalkboard, my head instantly seizes up with all sorts of negative connotations. My brain thinks “school”, my nose remembers the stale stench of erasers being pounded together, and my ears… the unbearable screech of a bad piece of chalk scraping uselessly against the slate. Awful.
Walking through Palermo’s charming Plaza Güemes, on the way to a lunch meeting, we couldn’t help but take a peek inside the imposing Basilica Espíritu Santo.
The mare’s name was “Kill Me Now”. Without a doubt, this was the horse I would be betting on.
Like all great metropolises, Buenos Aires has a thriving street art scene. We took a tour of some of the best graffiti the city has to offer.