We start our day off healthy – instead of a massive plate of parrillas, we get vegetarian wraps from a hole in the wall shop on the corner near our place. I forgot what it was like to eat a vegetable!
We catch the Subte in a different direction today, to the central city. It’s about 10 stops from our current accom, but without the hassle of a transfer so that’s pretty good. We only pay 20 ARS ($0.35, or basically free) each per ride.
The central city is much more what I expected Buenos Aires to be. It’s busy and bustling. And here, way more people speak English. I made the mistake of assuming all of Buenos would be non-English speaking, based on the few experiences I had in the two neighbourhoods I’ve been in… I was wrong. Whoops. Everyone in this area speaks English. I’m almost offended when people swap to English when I’m doing my best with Spanish. Noooooo! Let meeeee!
We do the obligatory tourist stops, at the Obelisco, Plaza de Mayo, and some statue of a guy holding a knife, before hitting the waterfront.
“In England, the Thames is known for hosting the eye of London, and in France, la Seine for it’s culturally rich book stalls. Today we discovered a unique thing about the canal along the Buenos Aires CBD: A dead fish and a number of floating condoms. A large ruby fish floated motionless down the river alongside not one, but five condoms released into the wild, snaking their way through the murky brown waters of the Puerto Madero.” – Chesney McDonald
We catch the end of a small tango show between two couples along the water front. This is what Argentina is all about!
Walking back into the city, we stop at a shop selling Alfajores from a window, but decide to go inside and enjoy them with a coffee (or tea, in my case). Alfajores are a classic Argentinian dessert, kind of like a chocolate covered cookie. We order two: cocoa and of course, dulce de leche. undeniably delicious, but helllllllla rich.
We take a straight walk 20 minutes down the road to the neighbourhood of San Telmo, which was also on our list of potential liveable areas. There’s a cute market for us to explore, and tons of cute restaurant stalls for us to try, so we stop for a delicious pinchos.
I’m confused…. the pinchos, or, pintxos, as I knew them in Spain, are like tiny open faced sandwiches and usually run for super cheap. Here it looks like everything is a flame grilled skewer, and they’re not going for the equivalent of a euro. All the same, feed me.
Food here often comes with bread, but not “comes with” like, free. Like… you don’t ask for anything, but chimmi churri and other sauces show up on your table with bread. Then an extra charge of 20 ARS ($0.35) mysteriously shows up on the bill as well. Obviously 20 ARS is no big deal but I think its weird to charge for food we haven’t asked for. Next time, we’ll not touch the bread just to see what happens.
The pinchos and wine are still pretty reasonably priced, but not what I would classify as cheap. We’re really just here to watch stuff get cooked by fire. A total of 500 ARS ($9) for two glasses of wine and a pincho is not bad!!
We head back home and stop at the shop directly below our apartment to grab a bottle of wine. We find some bottles of wine for as low as 25 ARS ($0.44) so a taste test is in order. We grab a bottle of 25 peso Malbec, and a bottle of 110 peso Malbec ($2) for comparison. Back in our apartment, we pour a glass of each and both try to do a blind taste test. Obviously this doesn’t work out so well, because now neither one of us know which wine is which because we’ve both covered our eyes and swapped the glasses around. Chesney is confident he can tell the difference. But really at the end of the day they’re same same, and he’ll never know for sure, and imma keep drinking 25 peso wine.