Guest blogger: Fede Cuco’s Taste of Britain

cucoThe Fierro’s guest bartender Fede Cuco shares his favorite spots to indulge in British culture in Buenos Aires.

I don’t really know why I like the British culture and food scene.

But I remember the first time I met it, when I was little, nine years old. I had an English neighbor, Mrs. Owen. I remember coming back from school and I didn’t have any keys so I sat down and waited for my mum to arrive. But my neighbor felt sorry for me and invited me in for tea.

Chipper, courtesy of Pick Up The Fork

Chipper, courtesy of Pick Up The Fork

Tea, in a home like mine with Italian heritage, was a little bag in a mug heated up in the microwave.

At my neighbor’s house, it was something else – almost a ritual – the teapot, the porcelain cups, Earl Grey  with toast, jam, cheese plus a good manners class thrown in: “Federico, you have to learn to be a gentleman,” she said.

When I was older, my work as a bartender naturally led me to meet gin and I’m a big fan of gin – although my favorite is Beefeater, it’s hard to find Sipsmith or Jensen in Buenos Aires other than at my bar.

I’ve worked in several pubs and among other things, I discovered that every man has his own recipe for Gin & Tonic and Bloody Mary.

Bangalore, courtesy of BsAs Mapas

Bangalore, courtesy of BsAs Mapas

I  married a lady from a family with British descendancy, so I also discovered things such as banana bread – my life was never the same after that. In our kitchen at home, for example, you can always find curry or good tea.

At Inés Rosalind’s grandma’s house, you would always be fed well and for my palate, exotically: a Lea & Perrins sauce with meat, curry and beautiful cakes at tea time.

And coming up now, a funny anecdote dating back to when I went to live with my wife. The first thing my mother-in-law did was give us a teapot. We had a completely bare house, we didn’t have anything but, we had to drink tea correctly.

Pint at Bangalore courtesy of DoNotLick on Flickr

Pint at Bangalore courtesy of DoNotLick on Flickr

In Buenos Aires and outside of my home, you can find British flavors in several places. My favorites come down to the atmosphere, such as The Gibraltar in San Telmo, which has a good selection of beers and finger food…. I don’t know how to explain it but it has that pub feeling, of a real pub.

I also like Cunningham in Martínez in the suburbs, a dark place with comfy chair where you can have a beer or a Gin & Tonic and enjoy bar snacks. It also has a plus because it’s inside the train station building and as everyone knows, those building were constructed by the English when they built the railway lines.

I love Chipper for their fish and chips – cod and chips with curry sauce is my favorite, and also my son’s favorite.

The Gibraltar courtesy of La Nación

The Gibraltar courtesy of La Nación

I also like the Bangalore Pub & Curry House (Humboldt 1416, Palermo Hollywood) for a Gin & Tonic pitcher with a curry to accompany it – they do a mix of curries you can pick at, which is amazing.

That said, though, I don’t think anything is better than an English mother-in-law who makes you something tasty at home.

And if you miss these flavors, particularly a Pimm’s Cup, I’ve created a few cocktails in my time and would like to share one of my recipes with you.

Sorrelita

In a pitcher of Clericot with plenty of ice, add:

1 cup of London Dry Gin

Half a cup of Earl Grey tea

Quarter of a cup of Martini Rosso

Quarter of a cup of Aperol

Add cucumber, orange and lime slice to taste

Finish with a splash of soda

Cheers!

Fede Cuco is the Fierro Hotel’s guest bartender for TFIF happy hour, and is the head bartender at Verne Club in Palermo.  

This week Feb 24-March 2

Monday

And this is how the next seven days begin… Buenos Aires Fashion Week Autumn/Winter 2014. Actually BAF Week already kicked off last week with a show from women’s wear designer Benito Fernandez but official shows start tomorrow. La Rural, 2pm, 50 pesos.

Courtesy of BAF Week

Courtesy of BAF Week

But to warm matters up, head to Plaza Armenia this evening at 7pm for an outdoor show by Vero Ivaldi. For a sense of her women’s wear, check out her SS2014 collection, Cinemática,.

And as per Monday night, our very own chef Hernán Gipponi will lead hungry diners through his epic One Table, communal dining experience, complete with wine pairings.

Tuesday

To get a head’s up on one of the week’s closing fashion shows, drop by the Kostüme store in Palermo Soho. Sharp lines and a simple palette are key to men’s and women’s collections tailored by design duo Camila Milessi and Emiliano Blanco. Kostüme, Gurruchaga 1585, Palermo Soho.

Courtesy of Kostüme

Courtesy of Kostüme

Wednesday

Today’s runway pick is Cosiendo Redes, which helps people of any age to work their way into the textiles industry. From the very young to those looking to re-enter the work arena, it’s a great opportunity to get some practical experience. BAF Week, 4pm, La Rural, Plaza Italia.

Courtesy of Cosiendo Redes

Courtesy of Cosiendo Redes

Thursday

Today’s show of the day is Cora Groppa, a lady who’s been a staple on the design circuit for many years and is known for her voluminous style of women’s wear. Think elevated ruffs that appear to be held in place with plenty of hairspray. She brings her Anniversaire collection to the table this evening. BAF Week, 6pm, La Rural, Plaza Italia.

Courtesy of L'Inde Le Palais

Courtesy of L’Inde Le Palais

Friday

While Kostüme‘s unmissable show takes place at 6pm, the close of this AW2014 BAF goes to top dogs Garza Lobos. Fun, sexy and feminine sums up GL to a T. If you can get in to this final show, live it and love it. Then buy it. BAF Week, 8pm, La Rural, Plaza Italia.

Courtesy of Garza Lobos

Courtesy of Garza Lobos

Weekend

Jazz fans, give a warm, spontaneous, round of applause. There’s a new music club in town. Bebop Club opens tonight, kicking off with Delfina Oliver and Artistry Big Band as the very first artists to appear onstage. Saturday night’s late session will be led by Maxi Trusso, the voice behind the massive Poncho track Please Me. Bebop Club, Moreno 364, San Telmo Tel: 4331-3409

Guest blog: Allie Lazar’s BA

allieFood blogger and writer Allie Lazar shares her favorite panoramas around Buenos Aires.

While most of my Buenos Aires domain consists of picking up forks and consuming chorizos by the mouthfuls, an essential part of porteño living means finding that idyllic city view and having a good old-fashioned zone-out session. Up high in the sky, walking over busy intersections, or gazing at terrifyingly awesome plastic surgery post ops, these are my favorite spots to really soak in the distinguishing views of what makes Buenos Aires bueno.

Courtesy of Daniel Estrada

Courtesy of Daniel Estrada

Tree Tunnels, Lake Sunset, Tranny Central @ Bosques de Palermo

We have a trifecta up in the Palermo woods: begin the afternoon chilling underneath the fairytale-like tree tunnels, move along to the lake and watch the sky turn vibrant pink and purple at sunset, and stick around to catch the trannies put on their Sunday best getting ready for the nightshift.

Courtesy of Fio via Foursquare

Courtesy of Fio via Foursquare

McCafé @ Recoleta Mall

Yes, I just recommended going to McCafé in Buenos Aires. If you are not familiar with McCafé, you really should be – he’s Ronald McDonald’s classier and more sophisticated younger brother (?) serving elegant coffees and luxurious medialunas. No, none of that is really true. But if you head up to the top floor, the most magical view of the Recoleta Cemetery will await you… of course as magical as magical can be while sitting in a McDonald’s.

Courtesy of Allie Lazar

Courtesy of Allie Lazar

Mirador of the City @ Panamericano Hotel

I’ve never quite bathed in such an iconic Buenos Aires view as at the Hotel Panamericano Club & Spa. High up on the 23rd floor, the space is enclosed head to toe in glass with skylights and massive windows. Nothing quite beats this view over Avenida 9 de Julio: look left and you see the Obelisco, right and you can glimpse Río de la Plata, and straight ahead a direct shot of the Teatro Colón. Extra bonus: find your way up here during purple blooming jacarandá flower season.

Courtesy of Allie Lazar

Courtesy of Allie Lazar

Bridge over Avenida Figueroa Alcorta @ Recoleta

Hovering over Figueroa Alcorta Avenue, this bridge gives a direct shot of the law faculty, the Bellas Artes museum, the defected solar flower sculpture, hippie haven Plaza Francia, and not to mention all the mental bus and car traffic below.

Courtesy of Buenos Aires Playa

Courtesy of Buenos Aires Playa

River, Hot Bods and Beachwear @ Buenos Aires Playa

No need to travel all the way to the ocean to get into the beach vacay mood – you can  stay in Buenos Aires and get the whole playa experience complete with city coastline: families, yellow umbrellas, beach volleyball, surf simulator, outdoor showers – you know, all the important stuff minus the actual ocean. The sand might be as artificial as some of the fake tetas and culos MILFs parading around, but you’ll feel as if you kinda-sorta-not-really are at the beach with a lovely river outlook. Moving even further north to Perú Beach or outside Alvear Abajo restaurant, there’s another more tranquilo view of the capital’s subdued skyline.

Courtesy of Allie Lazar

Courtesy of Allie Lazar

Coffee Town @ San Telmo Market 

Okay, so I guess I can’t write a whole blog post without mentioning something ingestible, but Coffee Town’s coffee hut inside the San Telmo market never fails as a prime spot for people watching: Nordic-looking confused tourists dressed as if they are ready to hike the Himalayas, loud Brazilians in Adidas track suits loudly asking where to find the San Telmo market, classic barrio characters roaming around hitting on anything in a skirt and regulars shopping for their daily dose of meat and veggies. Sit for a while and observe the weird and wonderful.

Allie Lazar is a freelance eater and writer. She shares her culinary finds on Pick Up The Fork.

This Week 17-23 February

And it’s all about what you put in your mouth this week. From the Petit Marché to One Table and Cocina sin Fronteras, it’s a great week to be hungry in Buenos Aires.

 

Monday

Courtesy of Jocelyn Mandryk

Courtesy of Jocelyn Mandryk

Tonight’s One Table might already be fully booked – that tempting sirloin rump steak smoked in apple wood on today’s menu was clearly a sure-fire meal winner – so it’s full-steam ahead on the bookings front for the next few Mondays. Our chef Hernán Gipponi changes up his chef’s table menu each week, executive sommelier Andrés Rosberg picks the wine and the ensemble that is One Table is complete. Soler 5862, Palermo Hollywood.

 

Tuesday

Courtesy of RAW Fest.

Courtesy of RAW Fest

RAW Fest kicks off today for until Saturday for the first in a line of alternative eating and lifestyle events. Organized by Faena and Raw Club, RAW Fest will host various talks from local experts who will share their knowledge about raw diets, rebirthing and yoga. Subscritpion is daily and includes a live lunch, with yoga classes held by the Faena Hotel’s spa director Agustina Caminos. Faena Arts Center, Aime Paine 1169, Puerto Madero.

 

There’s more kitchen syncing when Daniel Kantorowicz takes over the kitchen at Blanch Restaurant, with the noble assistance of course, from Blanch’s owner Diego Rizzi. Expect poetry in motion as well as poetic dishes from the pop-up team. From 9pm, Andrés Arguibel 2813, Las Cañitas.

Thursday

Courtesy of Nicolas Faig

Courtesy of Nicolas Faig

One of BA’s more successful party nights is High on the Roof. Last year, the event took over the rooftop at La panadería de Pablo opposite a stunning church in Montserrat and the 13th floor at the Pulitzer; fresh for 2014, it’s takes place at Primafila at the BA Design Center. With music from Zuker, Santiago Martinez and Rumanians, this is guest list only so be sure to email over your details. From 8pm until 1am, Primafila,  Pueyrredón 2501, Recoleta.

 

Friday

Courtesy of Jocelyn Mandryk

Courtesy of Jocelyn Mandryk

Our monthly happy hour is back! That’s right, Thank Fierro It’s Friday returns for another evening of cocktail sipping and tapas picking in our gorgeous back garden. Tapas by Hernán Gipponi, drinks by Fede Cuco, music by Buddha Beats. For the tapas and drinks list, visit our Facebook page, and check out this blog for a look at what happened last time… 7pm to 10pm, Fierro Hotel, Soler 5862, Palermo Hollywood.

 

Weekend

Leonardo Choi courtesy of El Baqeuano

Leonardo Choi courtesy of El Baqeuano

 

One innovative dining event that takes place on a monthly basis is Cocina sin Fronteras. Chef and owner of San Telmo’s El Baqueano, Fernando Rivarola, invites his fellow chefs and friends from around Argentina and South America to literally cook without borders together. Saturday sees Argentine chef Leonardo Choi and Peruvian-Nikkei chef Mitsuharu Tsumura team up with Rivarola for a six-handed, 12-course tasting menu. Expect ceviche, alligator gyoza and slow-cooked Wagyu beef among other creations. 8pm, Chile 499, San Telmo. Tel: 4342-0802.

 

Courtesy of Buenos Aires Market

Courtesy of Buenos Aires Market

 

Also this weekend, Buenos Aires Market makes its debut in  the Palermo Hollywood-Colegiales borders, Two days of food fair fun will take place at El Dorrego, Zapiola 50, Colegiales. From midday, Saturday and Sunday. SAVE THE DATE: Next week is all about fashion and style. BA Fashion Week swings into action, as does La Ciudad Es Moda.

 

And for the Francohiles, the Petit Marché makes a welcome return to the market scene on Sunday. For one day only, crepes and eclairs and all manner of yummy French-ness will be happening. More info here.

Guest blog: Jocelyn Mandryk’s Buenos Aires

Photographer Jocelyn Mandryk shares her mix ‘n match tips – your wardrobe can complement your cocktail.

Buenos Aires is a cosmopolitan culture hub of expression; a place where dogs wear onesies, everyone goes by their nickname, and couture can be anything from faux fur to Roberto Cavalli. But when and how to dress while visiting the city that only sleeps during the day? Climate and company are worthy considerations, but I say veto these factors and dress for your cocktail… as in, the one that’s currently in your hand. Here are my favorite liquid BA indulgences and how they fit with your closet.

Hot damn, that Negroni is upstaging me.

Hot damn, that Negroni is upstaging me.

Negroni To offset the ruby red flamboyance of anything made with Campari, both women and men should stick to neutral tones such as beige, off-white, terracotta, or my personal fave, warm greys. You can let yourself go with a shiny pair of shoes to bolster this look. For virgins to the Negroni, this cocktail packs a punch, so your wardrobe doesn’t need to. Be natural, let your skin tone do the talking – guaranteed, your drink will do the rest.

Best places to get one in Buenos Aires: Negroni, Milion, Mundo Bizarro

Don't be bashful with Mary

Don’t be bashful with Mary

Bloody Mary
It’s all about the florals and patterns – this is not a subtle drink, people. It’s Sunday morning brunch at 4pm and it’s time to sober up… and then down again. Dress loud, and use a straw. Ask for extra salt ‘n peppa, and tuck a napkin into your plunging neckline. For the gentlemen, colored socks, or a Hawaiian shirt will be fine. There’s no need for sunglasses as an accessory. We all know you’ve chosen to indulge in your vices on the Day of the Lord and we’re totally cool with it. It’s no time to be bashful.
Best places to get one in Buenos Aires: Florería Atlántico, 878, Hernán Gipponi Restaurant
Fernet 'n Coke - a cocktail or a remedy?

Fernet ‘n Coke – a cocktail or a remedy?

Fernet & Coke
It’s debatable on whether we’d call this a cocktail or a remedy, but nonetheless it’s a liquid staple in Argentina, so if you find yourself drinking one out of a plastic cup or otherwise here’s what you need to wear: Leather (or pleather if you’re on a budget ). You’re not fooling anyone with this drink and an innocent white cardigan, so tap into your rebellious side and go for leather boots, pants, jacket, or even gloves if it’s chilly out. Cross your legs and try not to burp. When your tongue feels a bit numb, just point to the glass and have the bartender bring you another round. No talking necessary.
Best places to get one in Buenos Aires: Anywhere! Everywhere! But Gibraltar, La Puerta Roja and MOTT for mint-flavor Fernet and Sprite are my picks.
You're Betty Draper and everyone wants to be you

B is for Bellini and Betty Draper – and everyone wants to be you

Bellini 
Elegance is the name of the game and it’s time to go a bit more formal. Often served in a Champagne flute as the first drink of the evening, Bellinis should be matched with a pair of diamond studs or a tennis bracelet. For the gentlemen, this is where you wear cuff-links or a dress watch, and maybe even carry a money clip. Go with a classic tones such as black, white, navy or royal blue. You’re Betty Draper going to a polo match and everyone wants to be you – dress accordingly.
Best places to get one in Buenos Aires: Faena Hotel, Gran Bar Danzón, Doppleganger
This drink is fun-loving

This drink is fun-loving

Caipirinha
My personal favorite first date preference – consequtive caiprinas…emphasis on the consecutive. This drink is fun-loving and relaxes the mood and conversation. Great for a hot summer’s night or a rainy one where you wish you were in Rio.
Ladies: Skinny jeans, mini skirts, or short shorts and a  brightly colored top. Pony tails, head bands, or tousled long hair pairs nicely. If you’re doing a passion fruit caipi, consider wearing some colorful earrings or lime green accents – you’ll give off a tropical vibe.
Gents: Bermudas, graphic Ts, bright colored polo shirt, maybe a V-neck if you’ve got a nice chest. Your wardrobe shouldn’t look like your trying too hard because you’re sipping on a Caipirinha – you’re already trying hard enough.
Best places to get one in Buenos Aires: Boteco do Brasil, La Fábrica de Tacos, Green Bamboo
jossPhotographer Jocelyn Mandryk is a co-owner of Foto-Ruta. Collages compiled by Jocelyn.

This Week in Buenos Aires 10-17 Feb

Monday

Test your mettle against the quiz master extraordinaire at the Pub Quiz Buenos Aires tonight. With three rounds of 10 general knowledge questions and one themed round of 25 questions, you’ll either be breezing through with a perfect score or scratching your head in extreme bafflement. 7.30pm, La Cigale, 25 de Mayo 597 (corner of Tucumán). 15 pesos.

And of course, those in need of a fabulous feed should book at One Table – five course, five wine pairings, one chef – our very own Hernán Gipponi. Tel: 3220-6820. Reservation only.

Courtesy of Pub Quiz Buenos Aires

Courtesy of Pub Quiz Buenos Aires

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tuesday

There’s an all-star international cast of DJs at Hype at Kika tonight with a strong contingent from the US. Mr Kitt and Nebakanza join Hype regular Matt Ashley for a full-on night of electro, dubstep, hip hop, trap. moombahton, drum&bass and house. From midnight, Honduras 5539.

Courtesy of Lucas Calderón

Courtesy of Lucas Calderón

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Wednesday

Still riding high after their third anniversary, Rocking Rio is still the night to be seen at come Wednesday evening. Wander through the crowded bar to the buzzing back patio and find the beautiful people sipping on cooling beers. From 11pm, Honduras 4772.

Courtesy of Rocking Rio

Courtesy of Rocking Rio

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thursday

Continuing with the fantastic Rolling Stones tribute – Stones 50 – a photography exhibition of Michael Cooper’s work with the legendary band curated by his son Adam at the Centro Cultural Borges, get your groove on with Casino Boogie. Live and direct, this tribute band is set to bring the proverbial house down. 6.30pm, Viamonte 525. 60 pesos.

Courtesy of CC Borges

Courtesy of CC Borges

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Friday

“When you trip over love, it is easy to get up. But when you fall in love it is impossible to stand again” Albert Einstein Love is in the air alright, and the best way to your beloved’s heart is obviously through their stomach. Hernán Gipponi Restaurant has concocted a romantic menu so why not give the gift of fine dining this Valentine’s Day.

Weekend

One of our favorite new cafés has a fabulous menu and serves the perfect caffeine injection in a no-handle cup in a beautiful open kitchen, From mouth-watering pastries and cakes to fruit-laden waffles and invigorating fruit juices, Ninina Bakery holds breakfast, brunch and tea in spade. Gorriti 4738.

Courtesy of Ninina

Courtesy of Ninina

Guest blog: Adrian Bono’s Buenos Aires

AdrianJournalist Adrian Bono shares his favorite eateries in Buenos Aires.

I’m not a foodie. I love food, like everybody else does, but I must admit my taste buds are not nearly as cultivated as those belonging to the foodie royalty of Buenos Aires. In fact, it is probable that I could experience the most delicious meal in my entire life and forget about what I had 30 minutes later. “Sure, it was the best burger I ever tasted. It contained beef and… something else.”

To me, eating out is a wholesome experience in which the originality of the menu goes hand in hand with the ambiance of the establishment. And the Buenos Aires restaurant, bar and café scenes thrive on that. So here’s a list of some of my favorite places around the city. Just make sure you don’t go when I’m there. I don’t like sharing.

1. Perón Perón

If you want to get in touch with your inner Peronist and surround yourself with Evita and Cristina memorabilia, then Perón Perón is a must-visit. Try the osobuco empanadas, the locro for main course and the flan with dulce de leche for dessert while enjoying the political propaganda on the walls and TV screens.  It’s an immersive experience of Argentine politics, even though it’s located in the heart of the not-so-Peronist Palermo. Angel Carranza 2225, Palermo Hollywood.

Courtesy of Perón Perón

Courtesy of Perón Perón

2. Enfundá la Mandolina

Oh, and don’t worry. If political apathy is your thing but you still enjoy retro pop culture you can always drop by Enfundá la Mandolina for dinner. It’s somewhat distant from the busy SoHo streets but worth every peso. Not only will you feel like you’re being served in a flea market, they also use tiles for plates! That is totally worth a trip. That and the fact that they serve you warm wine in old tiny ink bottles. Don’t miss the chicken suprema with mandioca. Because I said so. Salguero 1440, Palermo.

3. Bar du Marché

Those two definitely have an Argentine flair, but the third one certainly doesn’t. Bar du Marché is a small restaurant in Palermo Hollywood (yes, Palermo again, don’t roll your eyes) that will take you and your spouse/lover/friend with benefits to the streets of Paris. Not that the street where it’s located looks like Paris, of course. It so doesn’t. But once you’ve had one of the cheese platters and a glass of wine, you’ll be feeling like King Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette. Pre-beheading, obviously. Also, there’s sushi, for some reason. Nicaragua 5946, Palermo Hollywood.

Courtesy of Bar du Marché

Courtesy of Bar du Marché

4.  El Desnivel

Contrary to popular belief, Argentine food doesn’t revolve around beef. Problem is, many people don’t care. Many people feast on asado while visiting the land of the Pampas and who could blame them? We truly have the best beef here. However, while many choose the fancy, über-expensive parrillas to devour a regular choripán with fries, I prefer the more authentic experience. At least one that doesn’t feel like a tourist trap. So if you want a great bife de chorizo travel all the way to San Telmo and grab a table at El Desnivel. Overcrowded? Maybe. Classy decoration? Sure, if plastic flowers are classy. Great meat? You bet. Defensa 855, San Telmo.

Courtesy of El Desnivel

Courtesy of El Desnivel

5. Florencio Bistro

Then there’s the one I choose when I’m feeling anti-social. It’s not that often, believe it or not. But when I feel like I need to concentrate on my work and go off the grid, there is just one place I like to go to, and that’s Florencio, a small café that’s a few blocks away from the busy corner of Pueyrredón and Las Heras, but so small that you’ll probably miss it if you don’t know the address. No, really. It’s very small. There’s, like, three tables inside, and one of them will probably be taken by me, so chances are you won’t be able to sit. Try the cheesecake. And bring a GPS. Finding it may take longer than you think. Francisco de Vittoria 2363, Recoleta.

Courtesy of Florencio Bistro

Courtesy of Florencio Bistro

There you have it. I had close to 20 more places to add to this list but I was told people really didn’t care that much for my opinion. I guess five will have to do. Have fun!

Adrian Bono is a host and journalist on InfobaeTV and the Editor-In-Chief of The Bubble. He previously worked for the Buenos Aires Herald and The Argentina Independent and contributed regularly at Ambito Financiero. He was born in Spain.