There are many restaurants and places to eat in Santiago and plenty of websites available to locate what you are looking for. This article is not intended to be yet another of those sites… These are just some personal favourites that are reasonably close to my part of the city, Las Condes and Vitacura. As I discover and remember more I will add them to the list.
In the mood for…a good Tapas Bar
De la Ostia: This is not just any tapas bar, but is pretty close to an authentic experience, complete with Metro map of Barcelona and lots of bare brick,wood and ceramic. There’s a wide variety on offer, and selecting 2 or 3 dishes would really suffice as each provides a fairly generous portion. Count on paying about $3000 CLP to $4000 CLP for each of these. The Pintxo (like a toasted slice of baguette with various toppings) offering is also extensive and at approximately $1000 CLP for each, you can’t go wrong – they’re really tasty morsels. There’s a good selection of beers and wines. The main bar area unfortunately permits smoking but they do have a non-smoking area on the ground floor and the upper floor is non-smoking also. Address: Orrego Luco 065, Providencia. Metro stop: Los Leones.
In the mood for… Chilean – Very Casual
Raul Correa & Familia: An odd combination of indoor casual and outdoor very casual in an old family residence, located at the mountain end of Avenida Kennedy. An event location with outdoor garden space (complete with pool) for birthdays, office events, anniversaries and the like, catering to large groups. Very extensive Chilean menu with tasty food. Reasonable shade outdoors for those sunny days. Address: Av. Las Condes # 10480.
In the mood for… Chilean – Very Casual
Dona Tina: This is an alternative “very casual” option. Although its menu is much more limited, especially for fish and seafood, the outdoor shaded patio setting makes for a relaxing late lunch. Very popular for Sunday lunch and if you want the Chilean rustic experience, this is a good option. Located in the Arrayan area. Just keep driving towards the mountains on Av. Las Condes and when you cross over the bridge, the restaurant is on the left where the road makes a sharp turn right. Address: Camino El Refugio de Arrayan # 15125.
In the mood for… Chilean Casual
La Casa Vieja: If you want good Chilean dishes with extensive fish and seafood options, and you want it indoors with good service so you can show off to your visiting friends, then this is a great option and a favourite of mine. It is very popular so either reserve at lunchtime or go later in the afternoon. I have never been disappointed here. It is casual and the food is good. Address: Av. Vitacura 8411.
In the mood for… Unique Menu Offerings in a Happening Environment
Tanta: Of the several locations of this restaurant, my favourite is in Parque Arauco. Perfectly located in the Boulevard restaurant court, it is a destination for the evening crowd wanting great drinks and unique menu items. Enjoy great Peruvian cuisine with friendly service and at weekends you will be entertained with live music right in front of the restaurant. Possibly the best Pisco Sour in town. Address: Av. Kennedy 5413, Las Condes.
In the mood for… Italian
Tiramisu: There are some restaurants that seem to have the magic formula for success. Tiramisu certainly has it. In the El Golf area on Isidora Goyenechea if you see a patient crowd waiting on the sidewalk for a seat, then you know that you are at Tiramisu. Extremely popular, you can have any type of pizza you can think of, and satisfy your Italian craving in a rambling setting that exudes energy. Visiting friends and family will love it… Just make a reservation if you don’t want to wait. Address: Isidora Goyenechea 3141.
In the mood for… Lunchtime Sandwiches and Beer
Da Dino: Attracts a lunchtime crowd for pizzas and Chilean sandwiches. If your craving is for a fresh snack washed down with a cold beer then this is a good option. They have a great but small bakery section also, and with all their items prepared freshly on site you can’t go wrong. Take away is available. Great for empanadas, quiches, cakes and strudel. Address: Av. Apoquindo 4228, Metro stop Escuela Militar.
In the mood for… Coffee Break
Lo Saldes: They have a limited lunch menu but really you need to visit here for a coffee break and snack. They have various types of empanadas, quiches and breads, but their sweet bakery offerings is my reason to visit. Freshly made cheesecakes, especially with blackberries, are delicious as are many of their other calorie-laden treats. Put the diet on hold and indulge. Find it about midway between metro stops Escuela Militar and Manquehue on the west side of Av. Apoquindo. Address: Av. Apoquindo 5158.
In the mood for… a French Contemporary experience
KM 0 (or Kilometro Zero): Supposedly French Bistro, they have a limited number of options for each course but these options are very appealing and out of the ordinary. Boasting a Peruvian chef, the kitchen provides a menu which is unique, tasty and good value. Located on the below-ground level of the W Hotel building on Isidora Goyenechea, it conveys a contemporary atmosphere with lots of light, glass and metal. Probably a destination for the business crowd on an expense account but don’t let that scare you as the prices are reasonable and the menu interesting e.g. mussels and oysters. Very extensive wine list as it is directly beside the best wine store in Chile (Mundo del Vino), but you don’t have to order that bottle for $1,000 USD. Do try the pisco sour though… It is really good. Address: Isidora Goyenechea 3000.
In the mood for… a sunset inspired romantic hideaway
NOI Hotel, Tramonto Bar & Terrace: Make time at sunset for the rooftop terrace bar at the NOI Hotel in Vitacura. Only opened about a year ago, this oriental inspired hotel displays class in a classy neighbourhood – its neighbours being the designer stores of Av. Alonso de Cordoba. But don’t feel intimidated, the poolside open air rooftop terrace on the ninth floor is casual but classy with intimate lighting and plenty of comfortable loungers to transform the spectacular view at sunset into a romantic hideaway. Don’t forget your wallet, although the extra pesos for the drinks and snacks are worth it for the 360 degree view. Address: Av. Nueva Costanera 3736, Vitacura.
In the mood for… an outdoor cafe with a French feel
Restaurant & Cafe Torres Isidora: No French cuisine here, but it has the ambience of a Parisian cafe, especially on the covered terrace a few steps above street level. It’s place to enjoy the cool air on a spring evening and excellently situated to enjoy the French tradition of people-watching, as the continual bustle along Avenida Isidora Goyenechea extends late into the night. This is a snack place primarily, with an abundance of good tasty dishes and desserts. I can recommend the ‘Antipasto Torres’ which includes a variety of tasty bites, perfect for two people to share. Washed down with a cold beer, it is a highly enjoyable way to let the day wind down. Address: Av. Isidora Goyenechea 2962.