The 10 best restaurants in Latin America

Latin America is extensively represented in the list of 'The World's 50 Best Restaurants'. We present you the top 10.

The 10 best restaurants in Latin America

Latin America is extensively represented in the list of 'The World's 50 Best Restaurants'. We present you the top 10.

The 10 best restaurants in Latin America

Latin America is extensively represented in the list of ‘The World’s 50 Best Restaurants’. We present you the top 10.

1.   Astrid Y Gaston in Lima, Peru

“Peruvian meets haute cuisine”

Two young chefs meet in Paris. She’s German, he’s Peruvian. They fall in love and dream of having their own restaurant. He persuades her to go to Peru to realize their dream. That’s over 20 years ago…

Culinary whimsy, indigenous cuisine and brilliant execution. Latin America’s best restaurant has been on the ‘The World’s 50 Best Restaurants’ list for years.

You can eat á la carte here, you can choose the ‘traditional’ tasting menu and since this season a multi-sensory dining experience is presented, ‘El Viaje’. Does this sound pretentious to you? Don’t worry, Gastón Acurio assures you of a wonderful experience.

2.   D.O.M. in São Paulo, Brazil

“Contemporary Amazonian Brazilian”

Alex Atala (chef, historian and botanist) is the man behind the success of this innovative restaurant. At the time of the opening of D.O.M. in 1994, Italian and French cuisine dominated the high end dishes. Indigenous ingredients were hardly used by top chefs. Atala was determined to use the incomparably rich sources of ingredients from the Amazon rainforest.

After gaining experience in France and Italy under renowned chefs such as Jean Bruneau and Bernard Loiseau, he returned to his homeland and opened D.O.M. and the more casual Dalva e Dito.

D.O.M. has been on   the list ‘The World’s 50 Best Restaurants’ for years.

3. Pujol in Mexico City, Mexico

“Mexican reinvention”

When chef Enrique Olvera Pujol opened more than 15 years ago, the budget was so minimal that his wife had to paint the walls. Those times have changed! Olvera is now the chef of Mexico, Pujol restaurant number one in Mexico   and employs a peleton of no less than 27 chefs and interns from all over the world.

Pujol recently reopened after a renovation and is today one of the leading exponents of new Mexican gastronomy. Dishes are prepared with ancient native herbs such as agave, chayote and the rare chilhuacle chili. Pujol likes to work with dried insects. Favorites include roasted ant larvae and locusts, such as the grasshopper salsa that accompanies the egg hidden in bloated tortilla. Other ingredients are purely inspired by what is available, from frog’s legs to a dessert of a 20-day-old banana.

Olvera has been awarded the coveted and well-deserved Chefs’ Choice Award. Pujol has been listed on   the list ‘The World’s 50 Best Restaurants’ for years.

4. Central in Lima, Peru

“Peruvian/international fusion”

The success of the eatery with virgilio Martinez’s signature is “Peruvian gastronomy with roots all over the world”. Martinez worked for many years in leading kitchens around the world, including as executive chef at Astrid Y Gastón. This has resulted in aspects of Japanese, Vietnamese, French and Italian cuisine in Central’s varied menu. Add to that the Brazilian flavours and arts of Chef Pía León -now Mrs Martinez – and the cosy but modernist interior designed by her mother and her mother. Central is now high on the list of ‘The World’s 50 Best Restaurants’.

It’s no wonder Martinez is spreading his wings; he opened a restaurant at the acclaimed Monasterio hotel in Cusco, Lima in London and next year he will open another venture in the U.K. together with gastron Acurio.

5. Mani in São Paulo, Brazil

“Brazilian-European fusion”

This restaurant is named after the goddess of manioc, Brazil’s most beloved tuber crop, and not without reason. Mani combines the contemporary with the traditional and goes beyond food. The dining room is designed Mariana Kraemer, an illuminated interior designer from the 70s, which has resulted in a space where minimalist whites and yellows come together with cobalt blue tables and rustic furniture, Murano glass and Alpaca skin lampshades.

That same fusion can be seen in the kitchen; The team of husband and wife Danielo Redondo and Helena Rizzo combine Brazilian, Spanish and Italan influences in their organically created and ever-changing menu. Dishes range from crispy lapsang souchon roast beef to pumpkin tortelli. Mani’s most popular speciality remains ‘Maniocas’, baked and served with tupici foam, coconut milk and a drizzle of white truffle olive oil.

6. Biko Mexico City, Mexico

“Spanish and Mexican modern fusion”

Biko’s dining room is an understated oasis of warm browns and dark wood. Comfortable and easy, while the menu is described by chefs Bruno Oteizo and Mikel Alonso as “lush with surprises”.

There are two contrasting menus: a traditional menu, with influences from Basque cuisine (Alonso and Oteizo were born in San Sebastián, Spain), and a menu that chef Gerard Bellver characterizes as “modern using cutting-edge and creative techniques”.

This combination gives them all the freedom to live out their life. For example, a tasting can seamlessly transition from an inventive Iberian first course of a cotton candy from foie gras (served with dessert wine) to a turret of crab, tomato and capers and then serving Mexican pork cheek with tomato emulsion and chicharrones.

No wonder the ‘comfort food’ cooking classes that Private members’ Club Biko House recently started are now fully booked.

Biko has also been listed on   the list ‘The World’s 50 Best Restaurants’ for years.

7. Malabar in Lima, Peru

“Amazon fusion”

Unknown molluscs and prickly fruits from the Peruvian Amazon; no one knows the products that chef Pedro Miguel Schiaffino – alumnus of New York’s acclaimed Culinary Institute of America – and his kitchen brigade expertly prepare in the famed Malabar.

By his own admission, cooking in Malabar is not high tech or showy. The four years he has worked in Italy under Nadia Santini of Dal Pescatore in Mantova, has produced a taste for Mediterranean ingredients. A low-key approach, botanical mastery and a hotbed of creativity, so the kitchen comes to extraordinary dishes. Malabar has a high priority on sustainability.

Malabar also has an extraordinarily well-equipped bar, which enjoys almost as good reviews as the restaurant.

8. Boragó in Santiago, Chile

“Ground-breaking Chilean”

Natural Chilean techniques, varied seasonal menus and a simple but cosy décor. A dialogue between nature and cuisine.

After his training by Andoni Luis Aduriz, Rodolfo Guzman has been applying his magic with seasonal ingredients – including shellfish, mushrooms, herbs and edible flowers and berries from the Patagonia wilderness – to Boragó’s dishes since 2007. The kitchen is decorated on the techniques and methods that have been passed down from generation to generation. This is why it is cooked on stacked rocks and ingredients are smoked on wood from the region.

Crockery is usually not used. Bite-size dishes are served on polished wooden branches, smooth rocks and jagged slate stones.

9. Tegui in Buenos Aires, Argentina

“Eclectic international”

This restaurant is named after chef Germán Martitegui. Tegui now has a cult status, a reputation partly due to the graffiti-surrounded entrance. Once inside, that first impression fades; a plush bar with comfortable sofas and views of an impressive kitchen promise an unforgettable experience.

Martitegui’s ever-changing style of cooking creates a continuous mysterious atmosphere. One week the menu resembles that of a European restaurant, the next it has a more ‘dinner-like’ feel, depending on the ingredients the chef has been seduced by.

10. Roberta Sudbrack in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil


It is one of Brazil’s most beloved restaurants, Roberta Sudbrack’s flagship, which opened in 2008. Not cheap but equally accessible due to the significant discounts on the quieter evenings of the week. The restaurant has a bit of a bistro feel, inviting with its pale walls, burgundy carpeting and wooden design tables and chairs. Sudbrack cooked at the Brazilian presidential palace for seven years.

The eight course menu is subject to what is available on the food market that day. The cooking style is modern but relatively simple. Finely made plates with perfectly cooked ingredients and little decoration. Sudbrack’s most famous dishes are smoked okra ‘caviar’, paired with lightly cooked shrimp and dourado fish with a corn compote tart.

The desserts are irresistible, all based on ripe Brazilian fruits.

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