SATURDAY was rainy and hot – a sweet, warm drizzle bringing happy folliage – and a happy me [no snow in sight!]. We walked down to Av. Florida to the Galerias Pacifico (~ 1.5 m) to purchase tickets from Centro Cultural Borges which is on the top floor of the Galerias.
The mall is sophisticated and rather elegant – but it is still a mall. Av. Florida, on the other hand, is an experience unto itself (and I know there are some who prefer to keep it that way). Yes, the action is somewhat frenetic with lots of hawkers, dancers, sidewalk musicians and artists and just folks strolling. This was Saturday, but not much different from our experience on a weekday. And even in the evening, sticking to Florida, we were careful, but in no way uncomfortable or manaced. It is a piece of BsAs life that, IMO, warrents at least a short, musical stroll along the many stores and trinket kioskos.
We had lunch in a corner café – FLORIDA GARDEN CAFE –and really enjoyed delicious toasted souflee sandwiches that were made with a light, French-style ham and a very good cheeze. The coffee was good too.
Walked home, did some chores and rested up for dinner at CASA SALTSHAKER.
As most of you probably know, this is a private home dinner experience. There were 12 ‘guests’ there to enjoy the chef’s selection: Menu Mediteraneo. (nice not to struggle with a menu in Castillano)
We met in the living room and terrace and had a get to know you apperitif (I forgot what it was, but DH remembers plum and Vodka) Then, we seated ourselves (without sitting near those with whom we came) at 2 tables. And the dinner began:
Pizza Nicense paired/w Las Perdices Extra Brut – very very tasty
Sopa de Hinojo con falafel – paired/w Colome Torrontes I love fennel and Torrontes, so - excellent.
Cous-cous con salsa de Atun Albacore y Bamia – paired w/Weinert Montfleury Garan Rose - love the wine.
Cordero a la Plancha, Pesto de Pecanes – paired w/ Dan Baltazar Cabernet Franc. My lamb was very good, but my husband’s was a bit dry. The wine was very fine, but at this point I no longer qualified as taster.
Cheesecake con Duraznos Estofados – just delicious – paired w/ S. Felipe Tardio – too sweet for my taste, but others liked it well enough.
We enjoyed the evening, the meal, the company – but were a bit disappointed that the American guests so outnumbered the others. We would recommend Casa Saltshaker and would return. http://www.casasaltshaker.com/
SUNDAY: A lazy, rainy day. Reading, e mailing, house chores. Tried to eat at Rodi Bar, a classic, neighborhood Parilla, but it was closed – so we doubled back to a Uruguayan Parilla, Jugo, that we’ve had our eyes on, but they closed for siesta in the (I swear, I am not exagerating) 45 seconds it took to get back there! Oh well, Flexibility! Resilience! It’s Sunday! So we went back to Winner where we bought take-out: A Soufle that might be the most delicious take-out I’ve ever had, and a sweet.
MONDAY: “Despehado” Yes, Monday was clear, sunny and oh so delightful! We walked to the Cemetary with the City of Angels book by Omar Lopez Mato (thank you, PUNTA LUGANO). This was a different visit from the one we had last year on a Cicerones Tour. We liked the tour as a first experience of the cemetary, but with this book, we could take our time, focus on our interests and have a deeper experience of the history of the cemetary and the lives of its inhabitants. So interesting and so beautiful. Very moving. Need more time there.
We visited the Pilar Church which is an active chapelle with such inviting proportions and art work – it exhuded a holiness and spirtuality, especially in its location next to the Cemetary. From there we enjoyed the grassy knoll and the elegance of the neighborhood.
Lunch at RODI BAR, in Recoleta. Oh, I just love this place. It is a real neighborhood parilla – and it’s in OUR neighborhood. Our waiter is an absolute double – in looks and personality – of Walter Mathow. At first, he was taciturn, but was very helpful and really so nice. He wouldn’t let us order a la cart when what we wanted turned out to be the same as the specials (there’s that d--- Spanish language problem again – got to get more lessons!) The food was excellent!
Yea Rodi Bar and TA experts!
Monday night we headed back (collectivo #10) to Borhes Cultural Ctr. in Gallerias Pacifico. The performance of QUINTAESENCIA – Tango & Fusion at the BORGES CENTER was so great! The tickets were $50 pesos (~$US 15) for the very best seats – and I don’t believe there were any bad seats. This was not a ‘tourist, tourist’ show. Rather it was Tango mixed with modern dance with a 10 person ensemble. The music was not live – but the dancing and the theatrics were really fabulous. We will definely check out other espectaculos at the Borges Centro Cultural. http://www.ccborges.org.ar/
TUESDAY: We took the collectivo to MALBA - oops! Closed on Tuesday...who’d a thunk it? Oh well, the best laid plans, again with the Resilience and it’s not even Sunday. We walked to 3rd of February Park and El Rosedal – a gorgeous rose garden on the water. We sat by the water and chatted up some lovely white and grey ducks overlooking the roses and other greenery. Then to my surprise, we saw a rose tribute to Pierre Ronsard – one of my favorite French poets who was rose horticulturalist. Tres Gentil!
The evening found us walking to the charming bar-bookstore, CLASSICA Y MODERNA. Great Burbon (ok, even a Malbec and Torrontes lover has to get back to her roots sometimes) in a charming setting but a mediocre, overpriced platter of multiple picata type things. But the music, Porgy & Bess with Alberto Favero, was worth it. Time to check out other programs there, but skip the picata. http://www.clasicaymoderna.com/ Go for the cheeze platter or a small whatever. Drinks are expensive, but good quality.
WEDNESDAY: Yet again, a picture perfect day. Took collectivo #102 back to MALBA for a second try. And it is free on Wednesdays. Quite a nice setting for seeing some modern (and I do mean modern) Latino art. Fanciful, colorful and very mixed media.
We had quite a good, white Torrontes to accompany an excellently prepared and presented light, seafood platter on the musuem terrace. Even the oysters were first rate – and DH and I are both picky when it comes to oysters.
Then home to pack for San Antonio de Areco tomorrow –but wait....Dinner tonight at Jugo (pronounced shugo) that Ur parilla around the corner.
OK, back from parilla YUGO and I am in love :-) The ojo de Bife (they even have ½ portions, bless them) was the best I have had since La Cabrerra last year. We have avoided La Cabrerra (although great food) because it has become such a tourist haven. But now, yes! We have a new favorite parilla – YUGO.
The food was fabulous, the service great and a very nice atmosphere. Really, the wait staff were charming and happy to be of help, if needed. I had Ojo de Bife with mixed pure of potatoes and pumkin and DH had Bife de Chorizo with fried sweet potatoes. WOW! Both were succulent, juicy and flavorful, perfectly cooked and soooooo delicious. He had a Quilmes and I had a Norton, Malbec. We ended with a shared (compartir) helado (vanilla) with dulce de leche. We ambled home and here I am.
My new favorite restaurant awaiting our return from the Pampas.