Ideas for Taking Out-of-Town Guests to Dinner in Santiago

What's New — By Bearshapedsphere (Eileen Smith) on October 14, 2011 at 12:41 pm

Photo by williamcho on flickr.

When people come to visit you in your hometown, or the town (or city) you’re living in, you want to show them the best it has to offer. Sightseeing, parks, nightlife and of course food are high on the list. Below are some ideas for taking out of town guests out to dinner in Santiago, Chile.

In no particular order, here are a few restaurants you might consider, along with a description of why each is a good place to take guests.

La Peluquería Francesa/Boulevard Lavaud This popular restaurant serves Chilean and French specialties in a quirky, antiques-filled old mansion, above a (still functioning) barber shop. It has smoking and non-smoking sections, tons of charm, and it a great place to come in groups or when you’d like a great backdrop for pictures.

Astrid and Gastón This pricey, elegant restaurant in Providencia shows off some off the best products of Chile, though the concept comes to Chile from Peru. The menu changes periodically, but fish and meat figure prominently, the courses are separated with a spoonful of a bright lemony sorbet and the deserts are complex and fantastic, such as fried rice pudding with cinnamon ice cream.

El Hoyo If you’re all about meat, and trust Anthony Bourdain’s recommendations, then this is the place for you. It’s set near Estación Central, so you’ll want to take a taxi, especially at night, but specialties like arrollado de huaso, and various cuts of meat and types of sausages steal the show here, as people eat at this informal restaurant.There are barrels that serve as tables for those who’ve come just to drink, including the signature drink terremoto, a green wine with pineapple ice cream and a splash of Fernet.

Juan y Medio This restaurant, a location of which opened on Plaza Brasil not that long ago is a Chilean classic, in a nice (but not stuffy) atmosphere. There are foods such as porotos granados (a stew of white beans, squash and corn), meatier options such as perníl (a pork shoulder) and everything in between. Desserts include Chilean favorites like castañas en almibar (chestuts in syrup).

Liguria This bar/restaurant does brisk business at any time of day, when well-heeled Santiaguinos pop in for an after-work drink or specialties made from some of Chile’s best products, such as crab claws in spicy sauce, or a hearty salad with smoked salmon. Meat is also popular, as are the pastas. It has a friendly, lively vibe, without being a pick-up scene or overly loud.