Want to find the best steak in Buenos Aires to try on your trip? We have been on a mission to find the city’s top steakhouse restaurants and parrillas on repeat visits to Argentina’s capital. In this quick guide, we share our recommendations on the very best we’ve tried.

We’ve had great steak in London, New York, Paris and many other places, but the quality of meat in Argentina is simply on a different level. And the country’s boisterous capital is the best place to indulge. But where can you find the best steak in Buenos Aires? Let’s get into it.

We tried all the steak restaurants featured in this article personally, we paid for our meals ourselves, and we have not been paid by any of the restaurants included. This site contains affiliate links, which means we may make a small commission from bookings at no extra cost to you. We always given honest, genuine travel recommendations based on our own experiences.

Best steak in Buenos Aires: our top picks

In a hurry? These are our quick recommendations on the best steakhouse restaurants in Buenos Aires to try on your visit:

🥩 La Carnicería – best all-round steak restaurant in Buenos Aires
🥩 Don Julio – best high-end parrilla in Buenos Aires
🥩 La Cabrera – best steakhouse in Buenos Aires for couples
🥩 Fogón Asado – best asado night in Buenos Aires (book here)
🥩 Santos Manjares – best budget steakhouse in Buenos Aires

Read on for our in-depth reviews and more recommendations.

Our mission to find the best steak in Buenos Aires

We have spent a lot of time in the capital of Argentina. As you will read in our guide to one week in Buenos Aires, we have been to the city multiple times, sometimes for weeks, and others just flying visits.

On our first trip to Buenos Aires we knew that we wanted to try some of the city’s famous steakhouses. But deciding where you want to eat steak in Buenos Aires is not easy. Especially if you’ve only got time to try one or two places.

If you ask for recommendations, everybody will give you a different one, and there are literally hundreds of steak restaurants that score four stars or higher on TripAdvisor.

The reviews on TripAdvisor are not the most reliable either. Many are written by people who have only visited one steak restaurant, and so have nothing to compare it to. You have to be careful to read between the lines.

Having spent several weeks in Buenos Aires and eaten close to our body weight in steak, we’ve learned the lay of the land, and in this guide I will attempt to give a comparative overview of the various places we have tried.

Don Julio Buenos Aires steak Alex and Lisa
Enjoying steak at Don Julio, one of the great steakhouses of Buenos Aires

When we originally published this article, I included details of what we paid for our meals. However, the currency situation in Buenos Aires is so volatile, with constant fluctuations, I’ve decided to take the prices out as it might be misleading. Instead, I’ve included an indication of the general price level of each steakhouse, from $ as the cheapest to $$$$ as the most expensive.

Eating steak in a parrilla is definitely one of the best things to do in Buenos Aires if you’re a foodie. So, let’s dive in.

Best steak in Buenos Aires

These steakhouses are not numbered in any particular order, so don’t consider the numberings as a ranking. Every restaurant we have listed has its own special vibe, and maybe our experiences at each will help you decide which will best suit the mood you’re looking for.

1. La Carnicería – best steak in Buenos Aires for overall quality

Seeking the best steak in Buenos Aires: La Carniceria, Palermo
Seeking the best steak in Buenos Aires: La Carnicería, Palermo

💰 Price: $$$

Palermo is a great neighbourhood for eating out, as well as being the city’s most popular nightlife spot, teeming with bars spilling revellers into the streets in the evenings. This is the setting for La Carnicería, a wonderful little parrilla where we enjoyed the best steak in Buenos Aires in terms of sheer quality.

With only eight tables and exclusively open for dining slots at 7pm, 8:45pm or 10:45pm, booking ahead is essential. When we dined here, there were more staff than tables, and so the service was very attentive, but not annoyingly so.

I subscribe to the view that the fewer menu options a restaurant offers, the better the food is likely to be, and that was absolutely the case here. There are four cuts to choose from: parrilla cut, smoked cut, wild boar, or catch of the day (but who would come here and order fish?!).

We decided to warm up with some starters only to find they were big enough to satisfy a full meal, but we weren’t complaining. I had the chorizo, served in a frying pan with egg, potatoes and spinach (basically a mini fry-up), and Lisa the steak tartare.

For the main I went for the smoked cut and Lisa the parrilla cut. This was the most delicious piece of meat I have tasted, not only in Buenos Aires but possibly in my entire life! Melt-in-the-mouth, knock-you-over incredible – and gigantic portions as well.

Well and truly satisfied, we headed on out for a dessert of the famed Palermo nightlife. Considering our backpacking budget when we dined here, we did pay a pretty penny for the pleasure in La Carniceria. But if you are willing to splash out a bit for your Buenos Aires steak experience, you will not walk away from here disappointed.

2. Don Julio – one of Latin America’s top restaurants

Don Julio free Champagne
Waiting for our table at Don Julio with free Champagne!

💰 Price: $$$$

Don Julio is a restaurant that is preceded by a spectacular reputation. It has featured repeatedly in international food guides, including 50 Best Restaurants, where is has consistently been included as one of the top three restaurants in Latin America. Stars like Lionel Messi, Robert De Niro and Matt Damon have eaten in Don Julio.

So, we couldn’t visit Buenos Aires as steak lovers and not try this place out. The price tag is higher than any other steakhouse we’ve visited in Argentina, so you will need to be prepared to part with some cash. But the experience you get for that is a special one.

A word on booking. In order to secure a table at Don Julio, you need to book several months in advance, which is an indication of its popularity. However, don’t worry if you can’t get a table for the dates of your visit – you can still dine at Don Julio. That is, if you are willing to wait a few hours while drinking free champagne.

Yes, you read correctly. Free champagne! Don Julio does walk-ins on the day, but you have to get there very early (before the restaurant opens) and then be patient for a table to come up. That’s how we ate here, and despite having to wait for hours, it was one of our favourite days in the city.

When you arrive, you need to join the queue to add your name to the waiting list. Only a small handful will be able to do this each day. Then you can stand outside the front of the restaurant and the staff will keeping topping up your glass of champagne and bringing you homemade empanadas.

After arriving at around 11:20am, we eventually got a table at about 4:30pm (it stays open a bit longer than its advertised opening hours). We were seated outside, which was lovely, and we also took a look inside, where the ambience and decor is wonderfully simplistic and unpretentious. This is a restaurant that has gained its reputation purely through the brilliance of the food it makes.

We ordered a mountain of food, probably too much! As an appetiser we had a chorizo pork sausage, which set the bar high with its wonderful flavour. Then, the main event: an entrecot (like tomahawk steak, with the bone in) and bife de lomo (tenderloin), topped off with French fries and asparagus.

The meat was just incredible and worth every second of the wait and the money spent. If you are looking for one single premium steak experience in Buenos Aires, and you are happy to pay for it, you cannot go wrong with Don Julio.

3. La Cabrera: steak with a romantic ambience

La Cabrera
Our steaks at La Cabrera, a popular parrilla in Palermo

💰 Price: $$$

Like the first two parrillas we have already covered, La Cabrera is in the Palermo neighbourhood. If you walk past the restaurant in the evening you will see queues of people outside waiting for their table, eagerly anticipating a meal at one of the best steakhouses in Buenos Aires.

La Cabrera began as a modest parrilla run by a team of four people a little more than two decades ago. Word got around, its reputation grew, and now it has become a highly successful chain with steakhouses in several countries. But despite this success, La Cabrera has still stayed true to its modest roots.

The atmosphere has a romantic essence to it. Mood music, dim lighting and mahogany furnishings set the tone that makes it a popular destination restaurant for couples.

And there is more to this place than the ambience. While La Cabrera doesn’t quite have the same lofty renown as Don Julio, it has still won multiple awards and been featured on 50 Best Restaurants lists for the quality of its food.

Even if you book a table at La Cabrera (which is advisable), you still may need to wait a little while. We booked a table for 8pm and arrived ahead of time (after a glass of red at DOC Bar de Vinos a few doors down), only to find the system quite chaotic. Staff at the door were checking off names and we were asked to wait among the crowd. It was some 45 minutes later we reminded them we hadn’t been called yet, and we were then brought in to our table.

We’ll forgive the team at La Cabrera for that little debacle, because the meal we had was absolutely delicious. As with Don Julio, we ordered more than we really needed. One steak may well be enough for two to share, but we ordered one each – a brochette de lomo (like a kebab stick of tenderloin and vegetables), and a large bife de chorizo (sirloin). Before that, we also indulged in a morcilla criolla (creole blood sausage) and some incredible buffalo mozzarella.

The homemade chimichurri was fabulous here, and the steaks also came with some other freshly prepared sauces and dips. We left thoroughly satisfied and would happily dine here again, if it weren’t for that urge to keep trying new steakhouses…

4. El Desnivel – a proper old-fashioned steak experience

Desnivel in San Telmo was a great place for an authentic local steak experience
El Desnivel in San Telmo is great for an authentic local steak experience

💰 Price: $$

In the heart of the lively San Telmo district, El Desnivel is an authentic, no-frills local parrilla. Think budget but quality, and tradition over flair.

No elaborate décor, no wooden slabs or sauces in fancy patterns, just a hunk of meat served with tongs on a plate. Booking is not essential: we were warmly welcomed here on a Friday night after being turned away from a couple of other nearby joints that were full.

They cram a lot of tables into a tight space at El Desnivel, but it feels comfortable nonetheless, and if you don’t want to dine in they offer a takeaway service. When we arrived there were more locals dining than tourists – always a good sign!

We went for the 900g bife de chorizo (sirloin) to share for a bargain price, with a side of papas fritas provencal (fries in garlic and parsley). The meat was cooked just right and full of flavour. They put a lot less salt on the meat in comparison to other restaurants we tried, trusting instead in its natural flavour.

Won over by the excellent food and super-friendly service, we decided to go back a couple of days later for a choripan at lunch. It didn’t disappoint.

5. Fogón Asado – best asado in Buenos Aires

Fogón Asado fire
Fogón Asado is as much a show as it is a dining experience

💰 Price: $$$

If you want to experience the pinnacle of Argentine hospitality and social gathering that is an asado, then Fogón Asado is a fantastic place to start.

We’ve actually written a full review of our experence at Fogón Asado, so give that a read if you want to know more about the incredible 9-course tasting menu at this place, and some further background about the asado tradition.

Fogón Asado does not work like a regular restaurant. It’s as much a show and an event as it is a meal, and so you can’t just turn up. You can book a place via GetYourGuide, which is how we booked it, including free cancellation if you need it.

The experience begins at around 7:30pm, when you will be asked to arrive at the entrance – an unassuming door in Palermo, no restaurant front in sight. But once you enter, it’s like a mini theatre of cookery, beginning with a welcome cocktail. You are seated around an open kitchen while the staff talk you through each cut of meat and each glass of wine.

There is more to Fogón Asado than gimmick. The quality of the food is fantastic, right up there with La Carnicería and Don Julio, or at least close enough to barely notice the difference. We also enjoyed the interactive elements, like making our own chimichurri sauce with a secret recipe scroll to take away.

The menu typically includes pork flank, blood sausages, provoleta cheese, rib-eye heart and other delights, changing accordingly with the season. We had a fantastic night, and if we weren’t so full, we might have danced the night away in Palermo afterwards!

6. Santos Manjares – best value steak in Buenos Aires

Bife de chorizo is the house special at Santos Manjares

💰 Price: $

This popular lunch spot near Retiro is not in one of the hotspot areas for Buenos Aires parrillas, but is within 30 minutes’ walk from either Recoleta or San Telmo. It’s also not far from some of the city’s major icons, like the Obelisk and Plaza de Mayo, and so can be neatly slotted into a day of sightseeing.

When we first dined at Santos Manjares it was only open during lunch hours, but due to popular demand it has extended until late in the evening. So now, you also have the option to come for a steak dinner here.

We came in for lunch after taking a morning free walking tour from Congreso. It’s a cosy place and it was packed even at 2.30pm – mainly with tourists – probably owing to the fact it rates among the highest in the city on TripAdvisor for steak at budget prices.

The steak was prepared and cooked to perfection, and while not being quite the elite standard as the likes of La Carnicería or Don Julio, it was indeed excellent value for money. We both opted for the house speciality of bife de chorizo (sirloin) accompanied by jacket potato stuffed with cheese and bacon. It would have been worth it just for the potato-cheese-bacon tastiness!

This was the only place on the list where we didn’t have wine or beer to accompany our steak. Not wanting to weary ourselves for the afternoon of activity ahead, we instead had some Aquarius pomelo, a fizzy grapefruit drink that we had only seen in Argentina.

So in a nutshell: not blow-you-away amazing food, but a good option to try Argentinian steak on the cheap. Be prepared to queue for a table if you turn up at peak lunch time.

7. La Brigada – a steak institution in San Telmo

Best steakhouses in Buenos Aires: La Brigada
Our tender steaks at La Brigada in the San Telmo neighbourhood

💰 Price: $$

La Brigada is a parrilla in the San Telmo that has become quite hyped. It’s been around for more than three decades and really made a name for itself on the steak scene, and you might hear different views of the place. Before trying it ourselves, we were told by one person that La Brigada does the best steak in Buenos Aires, but by another person that it’s overhyped.

Our verdict after trying it? It’s a lot of fun, with an electric ambience, and does excellent steak! La Brigade wasn’t our very favourite steakhouse in Buenos Aires, but we love it enough to include it in this list.

Waiting for at table was part of the fun at La Brigada. You might notice that’s been a theme at a few of the best steakhouses in Buenos Aires! It is possible to book, but we had a great time turning up on the door. Put your name down on the list, and then you can grab a beer and soak up the ambience while you wait, either outside on the street or in the lower restaurant floor.

It was about an hour until we got a table, but the time flew with good beer, conversation and admiring the array of sporting memorabilia on the walls. Once seated, we perused the menu, which is long and complicated! If you’re not sure which steak to order, you can always ask for recommendations.

We had bife de chorizo and bife especial, two house classics, and we shared them between us. The steaks were delicious, with impeccably succulent and tender meat, and they went beautifully with a bottle of Mendoza Malbec and a salad bowl piled high.

Considering the popularity of La Brigada, the prices aren’t bad at all. This place is a great option if you want to try one of the most popular places for steak in Buenos Aires without breaking the bank.

8. PES – a hidden gem in San Telmo

My huge plate of ojo de bife at Pes in San Telmo

💰 Price: $

PES is a little restaurant that has someone gone completely under in Buenos Aires. You won’t find it listed in any food guides and it doesn’t even seem to have a TripAdvisor page. We stumbled on it mostly by accident as we wandered San Telmo on a return visit to Buenos Aires, and we are so glad that we did!

Located on a side street by the old San Telmo Market building, PES is quite obscure and easy to miss. The restaurant is not just a steakhouse, it does quite a varied menu, with lots of tantalising fish options. Lisa actually ordered a ceviche, which was the best one we’ve tried outside of Peru.

I order the ojo de bife (rib-eye), and I was not quite prepared for how huge it would be, especially considering the low price. I only just about managed to finish it, but I wasn’t going to leave any of that delicious meat on the plate! It was served with a sort of layered potato-cake side, which was crisp and flavoursome.

Altogether, PES is a lovely place to try a cut of ofo de bife if you are travelling on a budget in Buenos Aires, and especially if you’re staying in San Telmo.

9. Chin Chin – craft beer bar that does great steak

Bar Chin Chin San Telmo
We love Chin Chin for evening drinks, but it also does a lovely steak

💰 Price: $

While it’s easy to get lost in the mess of bars, cafés and restaurants that line the streets of San Telmo, you can’t miss Chin Chin, standing out proudly on the corner of Bolivar and Estados Unidos.

This place a bit of an institution among travellers around the area, and liked by locals too. More rustic pub than formal restaurant, a craft beer with your steak feels more appropriate than wine here. In the evening groups often come in just for beers and it can get pretty rowdy, so don’t expect a peaceful meal; but if (like me) you like a bit of raucous, then come on down for some quality value steak.

Chin Chin is not exclusively a steak outfit – it serves a typical range of local pub fayre, such as fish, pork ribs or curry. We went for the signature ojo de bife (rib-eye), garnished with fries, and of course washed down with a craft beer.

As it seems the norm for Buenos Aires steakhouses to serve enough meat to feed a small army, we were almost taken aback by the more manageable portion, but it was still more than enough to fill us up, and full of juicy flavour. You’ll struggle to find a better steak for the price.

Best steak in Buenos Aires: honourable mentions

Hostel asado nights

Tucking into my steak at the Viajero Hostel asado night

We like to stay at hostels on our Buenos Aires trips. If you’re looking to do the same – maybe you’re backpacking on a travel career break – then you should look out for hostels that run an asado night. These are a wonderful introduction to the communal tradition of the asado, and very often the cheapest way to try Argentine steak.

Rayuela Hostel

Our accommodation during our longest stay in Buenos Aires was Rayuela Hostel, a popular budget spot for travellers between San Telmo and Montserrat. This place became a home away from home for us, and won our hearts over with the asado night it runs once every week.

The asado night is intended for hostel guests in the spirit of getting everyone socialising, and providing an Argentinian meat experience for those passing through. It’s billed as “more meat than you can eat”, with unlimited wine. It lived up to the billing.

We were lucky enough to attend three asado nights at Rayuela, and it was packed out every time. Hosted by the hostel owner Christian, it gets under way at 9pm, the way any Argentinian asado experience does. He serves various cuts of meat that have been slowly cooking on the barbecue through the day, giving explanations of what they are and how they’re prepared – usually sirloin, ribs, pork, blood sausage, choripan and more.

Salad is served to garnish, and later in the night a helping of crispy potatoes cooked in meat juices. Veggie options are provided as well, and to ensure a truly fair balance, a full-on vegetarian food night is hosted on a different night of the week.

The Rayuela asado night was our very first steak experience in Buenos Aires and the perfect introduction, giving us an education on the essentials and a taster for what was to come. We also made a bunch of new friends, shared travel experiences and wound up with three thoroughly worthwhile hangovers.

Viajero Hostel

On our most recent trip to Buenos Aires, for my 40th birthday, we stayed at Viajero Hostel. This is a big hostel with a great social atmosphere, and the team run a variety of activities every day, including a weekly asado night.

The asado is held in the hostel’s bar area, which is transformed into a social gathering with neatly laid tables. Our host was Dante, who became a good friend, and he served up our cuts of meat while we got to know some travellers around the table from Brazil, Germany, the Netherlands and Australia.

Conveniently, the asado night also happened to be followed by the weekly pub crawl, so we could continue the socialising and head out for some drinks with our new friends. Another fantastic hostel asado night that gave us some great memories to take away.

Steak at a tango show – El Querandi

Alex and Lisa at El Querandi tango show with dinner
Enjoying a traditional three-course dinner at the El Querandi tango show!

If you want to combine a steak in Buenos Aires with some proper Argentina entertainment, then you could go to a tango show with dinner.

That’s what we did at the El Querandi tango show, and we had a fabulous night out! Check out our full review of El Querandi tango show to find out more about this experience, which brings together 150 years of tango in a one-hour performance.

The three-course menu includes the option for a traditional bife de chorizo steak, and with unlimited wine as part of the deal, it means you can combine three of Argentina’s proudest traditions.

El Banco Rojo – best burgers in Buenos Aires

El Banco Rojo
Enjoying the amazing burgers at El Banco Rojo, Buenos Aires

There is one Buenos Aires eatery that I cannot omit from this article, even though it does not serve steak. The very first place we ate in the city was El Banco Rojo – once again in San Telmo – a trendy burger bar that prides itself in serving super-messy, super-greasy food at ridiculously cheap prices.

Back home in London, hip burger shacks have been sprouting all over like flowers in the spring over the last few years. El Banco Rojo feels like what they’re all trying to be: great burgers, and no holds barred on tasty, fatty toppings and accompaniments.

We paid a tiny amount for the special burger of the day with fries and two house craft ales each. Amazing stuff, and you’ll do well to find anywhere cheaper to eat out in Buenos Aires.

El Zanjón del Gato (our favourite all-round experience – now closed)

We had our best all-round steak restaurant experience at El Zanjón del Gato in San Telmo
We had our best all-round steak restaurant experience at El Zanjón del Gato in San Telmo

We were absolutely gutted to find out that El Zanjón del Gato has sadly closed its doors permanently. I was going to take it out of this guide, but I’ve decided to leave it in as a special mention, for a couple of reasons.

One is so we can relive the memories whenever we re-read this guide, but another is in case any of you, our readers, know what became of the owners. Perhaps they opened another steak restaurant somewhere? If so, we would love to know, as it’s bound to be special.

Here we go for the memories, then. El Zanjón del Gato was our favourite all-round steak experience in Buenos Aires by far. A San Telmo establishment surrounded by noisy bars, this place was so small and inconspicuous that we walked past it at first, and when we did find our way inside, the vibe was plain and minimal. But we left an hour and a half later with smiling faces and slightly woozy heads.

Let’s begin with the wine. There were multiple options on the list, but we did not need to look further than the house bottle, a malbec–syrah blend that was only about $4 a bottle. This was superb wine for such a low price.

Then came the entradas. Oh my word. We ordered roasted eggplant and squid fritters with pickled chorizo to share. This might sound like something from a pretentious East London gastropub, but the chef clearly knew what he was doing – simple, creative, delicious, and just the right amount to whet our appetite for a kilogram of steak.

That’s right – a kilogram of steak – T-bone to be precise. This house favourite came with with sides included, a large helping of aligot (cheesy mash) and a bowl of cherry tomatoes cooked in meat juices and balsamic vinegar.

The steak arrived readily cut into pieces for our convenience, glistening with juicy goodness, and it tasted fantastic – not quite La Carniceria quality, but not a long way off.

Goodbye, El Zanjón del Gato – we will truly miss you.

Map of the best steakhouses in Buenos Aires

You can click the map below to see the locations of the Buenos Aires steakhouses we’ve featured in this article, which might be helpful to find one near where you’re staying:

Map of the best steakhouses in Buenos Aires

Do you have opinions on the best steak in Buenos Aires? We’d love to hear them in the comments below.

Planning a short trip to the city? Have a look at our itinerary for 3 days in Buenos Aires.

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Argentina has some of the world's finest meat, and its capital is the place to indulge. Here's my quick guide to finding the best steak in Buenos Aires.

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