Apr 15, 2009

La Cabrera, The Best Meat in Buenos Aires

Nothing beats a slab of Argentinean beef, cooked medium rare with sprinkles of salt and fresh cracked black pepper. That's it. No thick sauce. No "artsy fartsy" presentation. Just perfect meat . Simple. And if you happen to be in Buenos Aires, La Cabrera, in the vibrant Palermo Soho neighborhood, is the Alpha and Omega of carnivorous temptations. There are a lot of good restaurants in which you can devour a good piece of meat in BA, but none can top the quality of the beef combined with good wine selections and a bustling late-night restaurant scene than at La Cabrera's.

I first visited La Cabrera on my first night in BA last December. And it was a family affair - my tango dancing mother, Chita, who resides in Paris but calls BA her home in the winter; my Hong Kong based, globetrotting sister, Haj, her husband, Raph, and their two boys, Zach and Matt (and yaya Vicky, too); the Gotham duo of Brian, my brother, and his girlfriend, Vivian; aunt Shannon from LA; and of course, Elena, my wife, and our three kids - Margaux, Jules and Francesca. We arrived at La Cabrera around 10PM; without reservations. We were finally seated two hours later, slightly buzzed from the couple of bottles of complimentary champagne we consumed during the ordeal. We quickly forgot about the long wait as soon as the massive amount of meat was sky-lifted from the open kitchen to our table. Ramekins of glazed onions, mashed potatoes, roasted garlic and sauteed mushrooms accompanied the filet, the blood sausages, the leg of lamb. Raph ordered bottles of the luscious Catena Malbec. We were content and the price was surprisingly reasonable (around $30 per person plus wines) It was delicious all the way around.

To show our respect, we returned to La Cabrera on our last night in BA. This time, armed with a 9:30 PM reservation (which we were seated immediately) and several bottles of our favorite Argentinean Cabs and Malbecs we purchased from, Hugo, the wine vendor around the corner from the loft we stayed in. By midnight, the kids were back in the loft, and the adults were on their way to the next late-night haunt in BA.


Mary and Sean said...

We love meat in Argentina as well! We didn't know about this one, but we visited Cabana Las Lilas, I believe which was also wonderful and waited forever on our last night there too so we could savor it one more time!

Carla said...

Definitely one of the best restaurant in town. Though it is hard not to find a good restaurant in a country that earns most of the money by exporting meat. You will find that "parrillas" (places where they sell meat made in a special way) are expensive in the neighbourhoods of Palermo and Recoleta. If you want to find good, homemade and affordable asados you need to go to the neighbourhood in which I had the Buenos Aires temporary rent: San Telmo. It is one of the historical areas of the city and the heart of Tango. The classic exquisit Argentine beef is there!