If you read enough guidebooks, you can be forgiven for thinking that half of a country falls into the “can’t-miss” category. While this phrase is heavily abused by the travel writers of the world, some things truly cannot be missed. This is the case for landmark restaurant Andrés Carne de Res near Bogotá.
The restaurant, which has been an institution in the central Andes since it opened its first location in 1982, is nothing short of a delicious, colorful, musical all-night party. Plus, the fact that the flagship location takes up the space equivalent to a city block makes it literally impossible to miss it if you’re within a mile of it. READ MORE
If there ever was a city ripe for the gourmet food truck pickens’, it would be São Paulo, one of the best foodie cities in the entirety of the Southern Hemisphere. The obvious combination of a captive audience of 21 million hungry mouths coupled with a city that works hard, eats even harder, means this culinary hotspot should be one giant traffic-snarled gastro rush hour. Except it’s not.
Sampa has no gourmet food trucks.“Currently, there is no law that allows food trucks in São Paulo,” explains local foodie and event coordinator Mauricio Schuartz. “We see it happening in the near future but no one knows exactly how.” READ MORE
Brazil doesn’t actually roll off the tongue of discerning oenophiles three-glasses deep into conversations about the next great terroir – it is, after all, a country fueled by caipirinhas and chope (draft beer), two beat the-heat-treats that would almost always be the go-to tipple of choice in the tropical heat. But that is changing. Brazil’s Vale dos Vinhedos, located 120km north of the country’s southernmost capital, Porto Alegre, is finally producing wines that have the Chileans and Argentines starting to glance over their shoulders. READ MORE
They are an odd sight even when expected. The Curuchos –dressed in purple robes, masked from head to toe, and wearing a large cone on their head – are part of Quito’s Easter, celebratory tradition. The cones symbolize humility and the color purple, penitence. READ MORE
Visitors to Argentina may notice that the country has something of a sweet tooth: Heladerías (ice cream shops) can be found on nearly every street corner in Buenos Aires, and most of the coffee for sale in supermarkets comes with sugar already added to the grounds. But no sweet treat is as popular or ubiquitous as dulce de leche, a caramelly concoction used as a spread for bread, as a filler for cookies and cakes, and as a flavor and add-on for ice cream. READ MORE
Did you know that Lima hosts the largest gastronomy fair in South America called Mistura? Last September this iconic event attracted half a million visitors and this year they are expecting around one million!
This 10-day fiesta welcomes cooks, bakers, street food vendors, sweet vendors, restaurants, culinary institutes, patrons, and many more. READ MORE
In a country famous for its steak, it’s no surprise that barbecues are a heralded event in Argentina. These “asados,” as barbecues here are called, are traditionally a family event and take place each week on Sundays. Generations gather in the afternoon and cook large amounts of different kinds of meat— everything from steaks, chicken, beef ribs, chorizo sausages, morcilla sausages, and, in Patagonia, lamb— over a large grill, which is usually set up outside, like a campfire pit or a stand-alone chimney. While the meat cooks throughout the afternoon, people nibble on charcuterie plates of cheese and sausage (in Argentina they are called “picadas”) and sip on red wine or cocktails of Coca-Cola and Fernet Branca, a bitter spirit made of herbs and spices. When the meat is ready, it’s often served with bread and simple salads; the classic Argentine salad is lettuce, tomato, and white onion, with a bit of olive oil and salt as dressing. READ MORE
From alcohol to ice cream, the exotic fruits of Ecuador are commonly enjoyed every day as part of Ecuador’s rich gastronomic culture. Residents often do not think twice about them, but the fruits of Ecuador are one of the first things visitors notice as dozens and dozens of exotic fruits, many never before seen by tourists, are utilized in many different ways. But two of the most common preparations are juice and ice cream.
No matter where you choose to dine, it seems that most restaurants have ready at least half a dozen fresh fruits juices. Some of the more common options are naranja (orange), piña (pineapple), and mora (blackberry), and fresa (strawberry), which usually need no explanation. But three others might require some clarification: tomate de arbol (tree tomato), naranjilla, and guanabana. READ MORE
Food is an eternal theme that never seems to lose its appeal with travelers. For that reason, cookbooks in foreign countries can be coveted by those who travel to discover flavors. And in recent years Ecuador has produced some of the finest publications to introduce the world to its rich cuisine.
What is Ecuadorian Cuisine?
Few outside of Ecuador really understand Ecuadorean cuisine, but that has begun to change with efforts by Chef Carlos Gallardo and the “Rescuing Flavors” program sponsored by the University of the Americas (UDLA). In just three short years he and his team have produced the most comprehensive and beautiful publications on regional food, and resurrected the country’s oldest recipes throughout Ecuador. It is an authentic work of genuine research converted into half a dozen attractive publications that have been disseminated for free. And if it shows anything, Rescuing Flavors demonstrates that the best way to categorize Ecuadorean food is to give it its own category. READ MORE
Chile is a country of many flavors. A combination of European and aboriginal traditions allows for wide gastronomical variety.
Seafood fans will be glad for the long coastline of Chile. Some of the most famous coastal dishes are: caldillo de congrio (soup with onions, potatoes and carrots); pastel de jaiba (Chilean crab pie); chupe de locos (sea snail soup); machas a la parmesana (clams with grilled parmesan cheese); and mariscal (cold soup with a variety of raw seafood). READ MORE