Meat and Cafe culture
Argentina has the highest per capita meat consumption in the world. Many gauchos have eaten beef for breakfast, lunch and dinner since they were children. You can envy them, Walter Glaser reports, because when you get a good steak in Argentina, it is the best on earth.
The first time visitor will find Buenos Aires to be a surprising city indeed. Don't expect anything like Rio, Mexico City, Santiago, or any other city with a distinct South American flavor. If Buenos Aires was a lady, she would be a French aristocrat, just a little past her prime but with a wealth of experience and with a twinkle in her eye. The city has a distinct Parisian feel, not surprising when you find that, in its heyday, the architects for a large proportion of city buildings had been brought out from Paris to replicate the ambiance of that city.
Today, Buenos Aires is a little run-down at the edges, mainly because of the economic mismanagement from the time of Peron. But Argentines are a resilient lot and like to live well. The impression is that things are picking up and that those who will visit Buenos Aires a decade or so down the line will see a city restored to its former glory.
Portenos (people of the port), as citizens of Buenos Aires call themselves, joke that Mexicans came from the Aztecs, Peruvians from the Incas, and Argentineans from the migrant ships that brought their ancestors from Europe. The average Porteno's greatgrandparents are likely to have been English, Italian, Spanish or German rather than South American Indian. When these Europeans first settled in Argentina and brought their cattle with them, the latter thrived on the rich grasses of the Pampas. No hormone shots or special feeds have ever been necessary to make Argentine cattle the superb animals they are. The combination of bounties that nature provided -- good feed, good climate, plenty of water and wide, open spaces -- did it all. The result is some of the finest beef in the world. And nowhere will you find bigger, better, juicier, tastier and more tender steaks than in the top Parrillas (steak houses) of Buenos Aires.
Barrancas de Belgrano
Barrancas of Belgrano it's located (obviously) in Belgrano. On weekends many people can be seen dancing tango and salsa.
Barrancas de Belgrano queda (obviamente) en Belgrano.
Los fines de semana se pueden ver muchas personas bailando tango y salsa.
Argentine empanadas can be baked or fried depending on the occasion or cook. It is more common in the city to have a baked empanada. They are dough that is filled with filling and folded over into a half moon or triangle shape. Empanadas are not all the same with different fillings such as: beef, chicken or pork, Seasonings can also vary as well as the stuffing.
I have had several different types and styles of empanadas while in Buenos Aires and for the most part I like them all. They make a nice meal on the go or a good snack.
Estancias: a day in the countryside
Either as a day or as a weekend trip, going to an estancia is a great choice. These usually consist of colonial houses sorrounded by extense parks, located in the countryside.
They played an important part in the Argentinean society in the past, but nowadays they are used as locations for wedding receptions as well as a place where to unwind at the weekends.
You can spend a day there (the lunch includes barbecue of course, and other typical foods from the countryside) walking around its parks, swimming in the pool, taking a nap under a big tree and horse riding. It's also a good way of escaping from the city, so most estancias offer rooms. Also, they offer the possibility of seeing what life is like in the countryside, and you'll meet gauchos, our cowboys.
Plenty of them are located 1 or 2 hours away from Buenos Aires. There are different sorts of estancias, some being very luxurious.
Check the website below to choose the one that suits you most. It has an English version.
The Mall of Argentina
Unicenter is a long way from Centro and Recoleta. The taxi from Recoleta was $20 pesos and took about 30 mins. When I first saw the mall, the first thought that came into mind was the Mall of America in Minnesota.
Unicenter is by far the largest mall in Argentina. On weekends the place is packed with families, teens and other shoppers, just like any mall in the US. Actually it totally reminded me of a large surburban mall in the US.
The mall features 300 shops including a large supermarket , appropriately named Jumbo. It also has Argentina's only department store. There is a large food court and 14 screen cinema on the top floor. And just like the Mall of America, has an indoor theme park and amusement areas. Also like the MOA, there is a large parking garage that is attached to every level of the mall.
Unlike the malls within Buenos Aires, tourists are far and few. Getting taxi back into town is pretty easy but you'll need to wait 10 mins. or so. Outside the mall are taxi and remise stands. Anything and everything. As much or as little as you want.