Salta's 10 Best Estancias & Local Restaurants

Plaza 9 de Julio, Salta
Plaza 9 de Julio, Salta | © Hemis / Alamy Stock Photo
Photo of A. J. Samuels
9 February 2017

When the city of Salta in the northern region of Argentina is mentioned in conversation, it is often in reference to its fine weather, its rich culture and delicious food. The city is filled with Hispanic colonial architecture and a musical history drawn from the surrounding pampas. Eating out in Salta is reason enough to visit, with restaurants serving local specialties until the early hours of the morning.

La Casona del Molino

La Casona del Molino Bar, Salta City, Argentina, South America | © robertharding / Alamy Stock Photo

La Casona del Molino is painted a bright sunburst yellow. Its inner courtyard is a perfect place to dine while listening to the folkloric songs of Salta. Local musicians pick their way through their repertoires in different sections of the building. On the walls are pictures of poets, singers, and local heroes. La Casa del Molino is located outside of the main tourist district but the short trip rewards its visitors with an atmosphere unlikely to be found anywhere else. The kitchen can be relied upon for its stews, empanadas, and manifold cuts of meat flamed on the giant grill, the infamous Argentine parilla.

La Céfira

Italians were one of the largest contingents among the successive waves of immigrants to Argentina and their influence on the country’s culture is vast, especially when it comes to food. La Céfira serves pasta of all shapes and sizes take center stage. The kitchen has honed the art of producing ravioli, pansotti and gnocchi in the reds, greens, and whites of Il Tricolore. Artisanal pasta shaping aside, La Céfira also has a wide range of fish, grilled meats, and salads, ensuring diners have plenty of choice for the their primi and secondi piatti.

La Céfira , Córdoba 481, Salta, Argentina, +54 387 421 4922

Ma Cuisine

Ma Cuisine has a small but fantastic menu. Whether you’re looking for glistening steaks or vegetarian tagliatelle, this little venue consistently serves some of the finest dishes in Salta. As its name suggests, there is a French connection, which shows itself in the flavors suffusing the dishes. Grilled fish and different varieties of pasta will often find their way onto the menu and are all popular dishes. For travelers that have visited countless parillas, the diversity and quality on offer at Ma Cuisine is a welcome change.

Ma Cuisine, España 83, Salta, Argentina, +54 387 576 8786

El Charrua

Restaurant, Argentina, Italian, Seafood, Gluten-free, $$$
El Charrua is a bustling establishment right in the center of Salta, within a few minutes walk of the Museo de la Cuidad and the Museo Histórico del Norte. The menu features traditional regional fare and the kitchen creates dishes in which depth of flavor is paramount: chicken can come cooked in cognac or a creamy mushroom sauce, and the parrillada classica for two includes three different kinds of meat and twice as many cuts. On the wine front, El Charrua has a well-stocked selection from both the Salta and Mendoza regions of the country, meaning there are plenty of combinations to try with the ravioli, cannelloni, ribs or grilled seafood.

Restaurante Don Salvador

Located within Hotel Almería, Don Salvador combines fresh local ingredients with modern cooking techniques and a taste for the avant-garde. Ideally placed just off the main square, a few blocks from the beautiful Catedral Basílica de Salta, Restaurante Don Salvador is the perfect place for those who like their wine caves to be extensive and their plates to be adorned with strokes of balsamic glaze. Seafood cocktails, sirloin steaks, and chocolate mousses are served up on tables set with crisp tablecloths by the restaurant’s attentive staff. After an evening stroll round the cultural center of Salta, Restaurante Don Salvador offers its diners high-class food in a high-class setting.

Restaurante Don Salvador, Vicente López 146, Salta, Argentina, +54 387 431 4848

Jovi Dos

Restaurant, Italian, Spanish, Argentina, Vegetarian, $$$

Jovi Dos had a humble start, as a small family run restaurant catering to the local neighborhood, but its reputation and clientele has only expanded over time. Serving traditional fare, this place is busy at lunch and dinner every day of the week. With a view out over the Plaza Güemes Jovi Dos is a fine place to visit while exploring the city. Typical for the region, the menu consists of pizzas, pastas, grilled meats and seafood. The empanadas, stuffed pastries ubiquitous in Latin America, are especially worth trying here.


Salta has much to offer visitors by way of architecture, music, and fine weather. Thanks to the people behind Chirimoya, Salta now has a place that offers mostly vegetarian (and mostly vegan) delicacies for breakfast, lunch or dinner. The menu is delicious, serving Waldorf salads, vegan aubergine lasagna, and mushroom infused chick pea burgers, kiwi tart, cacao mousse, and forest fruit cheesecake.

Chirimoya, España 211, Salta, Argentina, +54 387 431 2857

House of Jasmines

Restaurant, Argentina
Go for the view but stay for the food. At House of Jasmines immaculately manicured lawns set the stage to plants of violet and lilac, while in the distance the grandeur of Andes looms large and blue. House of Jasmines is a retreat in an area already known to many as remote. The upside of this relative isolation is the spangled nighttime sky that diners can enjoy while dining outdoors. La Table, as the restaurant is known locally, boasts an impressive kitchen with an open fire, offering nightly servings of braised kid or llama tenderloin with Andean potatoes.

La Vieja Estación

Opened at the start of the millennium, La Vieja Estación aims to uphold traditions from the distant past. For an evening of music, poetry, wine, and traditional Argentine food, there aren’t many places better than here. In a country where everything simply starts later, it’s in keeping that the musical action here doesn’t kick off until 10pm. La Vieja Estación is an excellent place to visit for an interactive cultural history of the region, as told by gauchos in traditional dress who handle their guitars as skillfully as the chefs here handle the food.

La Vieja Estación, Balcarce 877, Salta, Argentina, +54 387 431 7191

La Rinconada

Restaurant, Argentina, Steakhouse, $$$
If visitors stay long enough in Argentina, then they will inevitably be invited by a family at least once to attend a traditional asado. However, if time is of the essence, then La Rinconada is the place to go; the restaurant has two large grills from which chefs prepare all manner of meat. The excellent selection of wines from Salta, San Juan, Mendoza and beyond is racked up against brick walls in the vein of traditional Italian restaurants. La Rinconada’s offerings include cuts of beef, chicken and goat but one cut to try in particular is the matambre, a thin cut taken from between the ribs of a cow whose name derives from combining matar and hambre. It is simply delicious.

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