You may not be able to make your way to Argentina right now, but we’ve got the next best thing. Let Culture Trip be your guide on a special evening out in Argentina – from the comfort of your own living room. Immerse yourself in Argentinian cinema, treat yourself to a street food feast and then dance the night away with our guide to going out (while staying in).
Start your night with a movie to set the scene. Argentina has a rich cinematic heritage, so there are plenty of great movies to choose from. Crime drama Nine Queens and dark comedy anthology Wild Tales have garnered international attention and awards in recent years, but to get a feel for rural Argentina, Adolfo Aristarain’s Lugares Comunes is the perfect place to start. A bittersweet tale about a couple who retire to the countryside of Córdoba, the film transports you from the bustling heart of Buenos Aires to the rural quiet of the couple’s new lavender farm.
Lugares Comunes is a continuation of the artistic partnership between director Aristarain and award-winning actor Federico Luppi, who sadly passed away in 2017.
For a taste of Argentina, you could do worse than fire up the barbecue and have a traditional asado, piled high with marinated steaks, sausages and vegetables. But it’s the street food staple empanadas that we’d recommend for your Argentinian night-in. Found all over the country, they’re the signature sustenance for any night out. There’s even fierce competition between Argentina’s provinces to find the finest empanada there is.
These delicacies are small savoury pies that come with a wide variety of fillings. Beef is the most customary choice, but there are plenty of vegetable and cheese options, too. And they’re easy to make in your own home; you just need pastry, a filling of your choice and an oven. A quick, easy and authentic taste of Argentine cuisine. You’ll find plenty of recipes online for inspiration.
After your main course, you’ll want to sample Argentina’s most famous sweet snack. Alfajores are sensational – they are shortbread biscuit sandwiches, most commonly filled with a dulce de leche caramel.
Believed to have been introduced to Argentina by Spanish explorers, the treats are popular across South America. But Argentina is the largest consumer of alfajores in the world, and these sweet treats are an essential (and delightful) part of many people’s daily routine.
Argentina has a proud tradition of wine production. The country is famous for it, and is the fifth largest wine producer in the world. A huge range of Argentinian wines are exported across the globe, with the pick of the bunch being the ever-popular malbec. Made from a grape varietal imported from France, but now synonymous with Argentina, malbec’s deep fruit flavors give way to chocolate notes, and a sweet tobacco finish lingers on the palette.
Wine not your thing? Then perhaps maté could be your cup of tea. Argentina’s national beverage is a high-caffeine drink not unlike green tea, and made by steeping yerba maté leaves in hot water. It’s traditionally served in a gourd-shaped vessel using a metal straw.
According to Argentinian author Jorge Luis Borges, “Without the streets or dusks of Buenos Aires, a tango cannot be written”. Forget Strictly, this is the real deal. From its early 20th-century roots in working-class neighborhoods, to the buzzing dance halls of today, this sensual dance has become ingrained in Argentinian culture. In any city across the country you’re almost guaranteed to find somewhere to tango any night of the week.
As the old saying goes, “It takes two to tango”, so grab a partner, pop on a live stream from one of Argentina’s famous milongas (clubs), or take an online tutorial to learn the basic steps. You’ll be dancing until the early hours, or until your feet get sore.