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The covered market in San Telmo takes up nearly a full city block between Defensa, Bolivar, Estados Unidos and Carlos Calvo streets. Each side has an entrance, and the perimeter of the block is comprised of places to eat and drink, as well as shops and grocery stores.
In the past, the market may have been more well-known for its antiques shops, where you can get a huge array of brick-a-brac, souvenirs and high quality vintage clothing, but more recently it has transformed into something of a gastronomic hub in the city’s oldest neighbourhood. Under the covered market, which has all the typical trappings and period features you would expect from San Telmo, you can also find some culinary gems that will leave you feeling like you’ve had a true taste of Argentina.
A far cry from the traditional parillas that you can find all around Buenos Aires and in certain nooks around the outside of the market, the fare indoors gives visitors a bigger flavour of world cuisine.
A big hit in the market since landing a few years ago is French cafe-bakery Merci. Baguettes, pain au chocolats and croissants pepper the counter inside the main cafe, as customers while away a few hours chatting in the quaint surroundings underneath the industrial metalwork of the market. If you happen to arrive in the evening, you can enjoy a beer or wine with some delicious tapas.
Coffee Town is San Telmo’s favourite coffee joint. A longstanding mainstay of the market, this coffee shack brews up delicious cups of the best coffee from Latin America and Africa.
The Market Burger gives customers the beef injection they have been dreaming of ever since setting foot in Argentina, and is a big step up from many of the burger bars that have been popping up all around Buenos Aires over the past few years. Their burgers span the globe from Mexico to New Orleans, so you can take your pick of where you want to travel to.
Il Nonno Bachicha offers clients the real deal Argentine experience, with mouthwatering steak to die for, all washed down with a glass of the country’s famous Malbec wine. You can also check out some typical fileteado artwork on the windows, complete with tango dancers, reminding you you are in Buenos Aires.
And for anyone craving a taste of the Orient, head to Saigon, San Telmo’s most well-loved Vietnamese restaurant. Grab a bowl of piping hot pho, and cool down with a craft beer served on draft.