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Buenos Aires pizza plus

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This visit to Buenos Aires, our third, I decided to concentrate my writeup on smaller pizza neighborhood places. I didn’t want to rehash the same old parillas that everyone knows by now. I do want to give a short plug to Las Cholas in the Las Canitas neighborhood. Add this to your must try list. I also say with regret that I was very disappointed with La Cabrera this trip. Their quality and flavor has slipped noticeably, particularly in their side dishes which were one of their attractions for us.

My standard for judging is the Napolitana pizza. This is as close as I could get to the real pizza of Napoli but they are still worlds apart. I think a standard is necessary if a reasonable comparison is to be made. I grant that there are many tasty variations concocted in BA and you may have a different preference. All of the reviews here are based on pizza Napoliana.

Morelia, Las Canitas & Palermo Hollywood.Tried it but didn’t like the flatbread it is served on. Not a real pizza by my standards. Yes, I had it “a la perilla”, cooked on the grill.

Lucio, Scalabrini Ortiz & Guemas. Still one of my favorite small restaurants in BA. The pizza is very good and is tops on my neighborhood list. Good pastas also.

Bonjour Pizza, Guemas & Coronel Diaz. A small place that was always busy when I passed. I tried it and found the pizza to be very light and tasty with a flavorful crust. The only one I could eat an entire Pizzeta at and not feel bloated. Second place after Lucio.

Pizza Donna, Santa Fe & Coronel Diaz. A large place that always seemed to pack them in. A bit of a disappointment though. Not much flavor and a mediocre crust.

Kentucky, Santa Fe near the Palermo train station. In business since 1932. Crispy crust with good flavor, good cheese, good sauce. A working man’s lunch place with a stand up counter as well as seating.

Guerin was a must because we had loved it in previous visits and now wanted to test it against another old time pizzaria, Las Cuartetas, Corrientas 8347. We went to Guerin one day and to Las Cuartetas the next. Both are great with some major differences. Guerin is more standard with a thin crust. Their cheese is very salty, resulting in dry mouth which is easily solved by drinking more beer. Las Cuartetas has a less salty cheese but a quite thick crust such as is called a Sicilian style crust in New York. The judgement was that the differences keep them separate but equal in preference. BTW, Las Cuartetas does not call their pizza Napolitana but Mozzarella which is the same style there.

My final thought on the pizza shootout is that there are so many styles that appeal to so many tastes that it is unfair to rate the pizzeria and one is best and another way down the list. What appealed to me one day might be overshadowed the next and then craved again when my desire changed. Try the local pizza where ever you are; you might be surprised at finding a treasure where you didn’t expect it.

Speaking of treasures, here are a few that we stumbled upon by chance.

La Perlita, Jujuy 74. Possibly the best food in this area. Very near to the train station in Once. When you are tired of rooting through all the junk stores in Once head for this oasis in a sea of questionable businesses. Great food and friendly service.

Rodi-Bar Restaurant, Vincente Lopez 1900. A neighborhood favorite for the locals just a few blocks from the cemetery and Plaza Francia.

Lo de Juan, Charcas 2818.You did rent an apartment instead of staying in a hotel room, didn’t you? One of the benefits of doing so is that you can take advantage of the many stores that sell pre-made food to take home. Here is a real gem. Family run with a fairly large menu of very tasty dishes served out by friendly and helpful people. If you are in the area use them by all means.

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