If you find yourself on the streets of Buenos Aires, you might be confused: the capital of Argentina has a strong European influence, and it’s easy to imagine Anthony Bourdain strolling the streets of any European city during the visits he made here.
Anthony Bourdain visited Buenos Aires to film season 3 (episode 13, “Argentina”) of No Reservations and season 8* (episode 8) of Parts Unknown; these were his only two visits to the Argentine capital, and he showed off all the good flavors the city has to offer. (*This episode is also listed/available as season 7 (episode 8) depending on the streaming service.)
Whether you’re planning a trip to Argentina or call Buenos Aires home, it can be fun to explore a city by following in Tony’s footsteps. Below you’ll find a list of all of the places visited by Anthony Bourdain in Buenos Aires during his travels; you’ll also discover what he ate in each place – even if you can’t visit some of them today, you can still savor the flavors he did.
Ready to discover these spots and dishes? ¡Buen provecho!
Want to watch the episodes where Anthony Bourdain visits Buenos Aires?
The No Reservations episode is available on Amazon, Hulu, and Apple TV, and the Parts Unknown episode is available on Amazon and Apple TV.
In this post, I promote travel to a destination that is the traditional lands of the Günün a atük (Günün a küna) peoples, among others. With respect, I make a formal land acknowledgment, extending my appreciation and respect to the past and present people of these lands. To learn more about the peoples who call these lands home, I invite you to explore Native Land.
No Reservations (2007)
Anthony Bourdain’s first visit to Buenos Aires was part of a larger trip to the country as a whole; as such, he. doesn’t spend much time in the city and actually doesn’t name either of the places he ate on-screen. If you know Buenos Aires well and can help identify these spots, please let me know in the comments!
Tony starts his culinary experience in Argentina by trying a choripán. The choripán is a typical sandwich made with grilled chorizo, homemade mayonnaise, and chimichurri, an Argentinian sauce made with chopped fresh parsley, oregano, garlic, olive oil, vinegar, and red pepper flakes.
Unnamed Market in a Villa
Before I write anything about the food, the word villa in Argentina refers to the slums of a city. Since our friend Tony likes to keep it real and show the authentic side of the countries he visits, he goes to a villa on the outskirts of Buenos Aires.
Ramón cooks for him various Argentinian dishes: locro, a concoction of poroto beans with pumpkin, lots of pig parts, chorizo colorado, and pancetta; and then a roasted pig head.
Parts Unknown (2016)
After visiting just a few places in Buenos Aires during his first visit, Anthony Bourdain made a return trip late in his career to focus entirely on the Argentine capital. Here’s where he ate during that return trip.
Bodegón Don Carlos (CLOSED)
The first stop Bourdain makes on his journey through Buenos Aires is Bodegón Don Carlos. He’s joined by Francis Mallmann, one of Argentina’s most famous chefs.
They start with empanadas de carne, one of the most popular ways to start a meal in the country. Then, the waiter brings a solomillo topped with salsa criolla, a typical sauce made for meats with chopped onions and red, yellow, and green pepper. To culminate the meat experience, Tony has morcilla (blood sausage).
While Tony asks Francis why is psychotherapy so huge in Argentina, both chefs indulge in a picada. A picada is a typical Argentinian dish with roots in Italian antipasto and Spanish tapas. It’s served as a starter typically on a wooden board and consists of savory snacks like different types of cheese, olives, escabeches, cured meats, and pâtés.
Unfortunately, this restaurant is closed as of mid-2023.
Las Talas del Entrerriano
Tony’s next stop is Las Talas del Entrerriano, a famous parrillada on the outskirts of Buenos Aires.
He’s accompanied by Mariana, an Argentinian psychologist who becomes Tony’s therapist during his visit to Argentina. Here, Tony enjoys a proper asado experience, the traditional Argentine barbecue. An asado always starts with achuras, the grilled starters consisting of the internal organs of the cow. The table of achuras comes with chorizo, morcilla, kidneys, chinchulines (cow’s intestine), and molleja.
And finally, the meat cuts. Lots of meat cuts. The waiter comes to the table and leaves a boar overflowing with costillas (ribs), entraña (outside skirt), vacío (flap meat), and matambre (rose meat).
In Bar Sur, Bourdain meets Mario, a waiter from the very same bar. Tony and Mario enjoy again a picada while they debate the death of the waiter, the career server. They start with a beer and then a picada, the Argentinian board of charcuterie, with prosciutto, blue cheese, ham, hard cheeses, and olives.
Buenos Aires Food Tours to Try
If you’re keen to try these foods and as many other Argentine flavors as possible, you might want to consider booking a food tour in Buenos Aires. While these weren’t really Tony’s style, they do offer travelers short on time a good chance to sample as much as possible. Here are a few that look good and allow you to try some of the dishes already mentioned as well as new ones.
Have any other questions about the places visited by Anthony Bourdain in Buenos Aires? Let me know in the comments below!