Latin America's 50 Best Restaurants 2018:
the list in pictures

Giulia Sgarbi

30/10/2018

The latest edition of the Latin America's 50 Best Restaurants list, sponsored by S.Pellegrino and Acqua Panna, was announced on Tuesday 30th October at Ágora in Bogotá, Colombia, in front of an audience of chefs, media, restaurateurs and gastronomes. 

The 2018 list was topped by restaurant Maido in Lima, Peru, for the second consecutive year. Browse the list in 50 delicious pictures, taking in six new entries and one re-entry, as well as restaurants across Argentina, Chile, Mexico, Uruguay, Panama, Colombia, Peru and Brazil. 


No.50 Tuju, São Paulo, Brazil

Tuju-LATAM-2018-DISH1
Burrata dessert (image: Gilberto Bronko)

A beautiful restaurant set in São Paulo’s Vila Madalena neighbourhood, Tuju is well worth a visit for the urban garden and open ‘kitchen theatre,’ as well as chef Ivan Ralston’s heavily researched seasonal cuisine. Desserts are exquisite, presenting native products from the region.

Fradique Coutinho 1248, São Paulo
+55-11-2691-5548
tuju.com.br
 

No.49 Oro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - NEW ENTRY

Oro-LATAM-2018-DISH1
Fish, roasted tomatoes and persimmon moqueca (image: Tomás Rangel)

Oro, located in Rio de Janeiro’s upmarket Leblon, is a reflection of chef Felipe Bronze’s identity as a Rio native, or carioca. The restaurant serves two menu options: Creativity, a daily-changing menu focused on seasonal ingredients, and the shorter Affectivity, showcasing signature dishes. From pão de queijo (cheese bread) with praline to oysters with caipirinha, almost all courses are eaten with the hands, with the cutlery coming out for dishes such as 48-hour braised ox ribs with crumbly banana farofa and smoked yolk.

Av. Gen. San Martin, 889, Leblon, Rio de Janeiro
+55 21 2540-8768
ororestaurante.com.br

No.48 Amaz, Lima, Peru

Amaz-LATAM-2018-DISH1
Grilled scallops with camu camu (images: Jason Sullivan)

Ámaz is the first and only restaurant of its kind presenting Amazonian cuisine with urban vibes. Chef Pedro Miguel Schiaffino has managed to bring much research and passion into a concept that brings enjoyment to every kind of customer.

Av. la Paz 1079, Miraflores 15074, Lima
+51 1 2219393
amaz.com.pe

No.47 Osaka, Santiago, Chile - RE-ENTRY

Osaka-LATAM-2018-DISH1
Ceviche Osk 

Offering up the finest flavours of Peru while taking advantage of Chile’s extensive coastline, Osaka brings Nikkei fusion to Santiago. After seven years in the W Hotel, the re-opening of Osaka in a new venue in Vitacura breathed new life into the place.

Av. Nueva Costanera 3736B, Vitacura, Santiago
+56 2 770 0081
osaka.com.pe

No.46 Narda Comedor, Buenos Aires, Argentina - NEW ENTRY

NardaComedor-LATAM-2018-DISH1
'Palta que lo parió' with halloumi cheese (image: Eugenio Mazzinghi)

Narda Comedor is built around a few simple concepts: eat seasonal, eat vegetables, drink water, try new things and eat well. With the opening of the restaurant in Buenos Aires in 2017, chef Narda Lepes wanted to show her compatriots what a healthy diet looks like, while proving that it can delight the palate as much as the stomach.

Mariscal Antonio José de Sucre 664, Buenos Aires
+54 9 11 6131-0664
nardacomedor.com

No.45 Mocotó, São Paulo, Brazil

Mocoto-LATAM-2018-DISH1
Torresmo (image: Ricardo D'Angelo)

Mocotó was opened in 1974 by Rodrigo Oliveira’s father, ‘Seu Zé’, as a neighbourhood bar near the airport, soon gaining a reputation for hearty, tasty food. In 2002, young Rodrigo took over, gradually turning it into the Brazilian gastronomic institution of today.

Av Nossa Senhora do Loreto, 1100, Vila Medeiros, São Paulo
+55 11 2951 3056
mocoto.com.br


No.44 Proper, Buenos Aires, Argentina

Proper-LATAM-2018-DISH2
White polenta, artichoke and nduja sausage

When chef Leo Lanussol and pastry chef Augusto Mayer opened Proper in 2016, it was an instant success. Carnivores take a break from meat-heavy Buenos Aires steakhouses and enter into a world of vegetable-forward seasonal small plate dining.

Aráoz 1676, Esquina Costa Rica, Buenos Aires
+54 11 4831-0027
properbsas.com.ar

No.43 Restaurante 040, Santiago, Chile

Restaurante 040-LATAM-2018-DISH2
Paella rice onigiri and Béarnaise butter

There is no other dining experience in Santiago quite like 040, which applies a high level of technical skill to Chile’s rich native ingredients. Its well-hidden location on the lower level of the fashionable Tinto Boutique Hotel in bohemian Bellavista neighbourhood adds to the intrigue of this 40-seat restaurant.

Antonia López de Bello 040, Providencia, Santiago
+56 2 2732 9214
040.cl/es

No.42 Aramburu, Buenos Aires, Argentina

Aramburu-LATAM-2018-DISH2
A dish at Aramburu

An amalgamation of textures, flavours and aromas shakes the tastebuds into action during the 12-course menu served at this petite establishment by a leading purveyor of modern Argentine cuisine. Gonzalo Aramburu honed his culinary skills in Europe at the likes of Martín Berasategui in Spain and Joël Robuchon’s Jamin in Paris before returning to his homeland to open Aramburu.

Salta 1050, Buenos Aires
+54 11 4305 0439
gonzaloaramburu.com

No.41 Rosetta, Mexico City, Mexico

Rosetta-LATAM-2018-DISH2
Red snapper, tamarind and habanero chilli (image: Ana Lorenzana)

Rosetta has always had an Italian flavour, epitomised by the chef’s exquisite hand-made pasta dishes. In recent years, however, its emphasis has shifted towards a deeper Mexican sensibility with reinterpretations of tamales and mole dishes, alongside the likes of quail served with faro, dates and mustard leaves. The bread and desserts – as you might expect from a group with hugely successful panaderias in its portfolio – are a revelation in themselves.

Colima 166, Roma Norte, Mexico City
+ 52 55 5533 7804
rosetta.com.mx

No.40 La Docena, Guadalajara, Mexico

LaDocena-LATAM-2018-DISH1
Pescado zarandeado (image: Ana Lorenzana)

Tomás Bermudez’s New Orleans-inspired temple of oysters is the place to go for fresh, local ingredients, great value for money and excellent service. Signatures include grilled oysters with clarified butter, shallots and parsley, octopus tostadas, prawn aguachile and wagyu beef from Durango. Artisanal beer, Mexican wine and locally fermented drinks make up the beverage menu.

Av. Américas 1491, Col. Providencia, 44630 Guadalajara
+52 (33) 3817 2798
ladocena.com.mx

No.39 Malabar, Lima, Peru

Malabar-LATAM-2018-DISH2
Rice 'concoclon' with seafood

Malabar is a unique Peruvian experience that cannot be recreated in any other part of the world, with plated masterpieces featuring exotic ingredients, flavours, textures and ancient Andean cooking techniques. Located in the city’s financial district, the dining space is understated but sophisticated.

Camino Real 101, San Isidro, Lima
+51 1 440 5200
malabar.com.pe

No.38 Gran Dabbang, Buenos Aires, Argentina - NEW ENTRY

GranDabbang-LATAM-2018-DISH1
Labne cheese, black sesame and pickes with kirkiña (image: Jose Pereyra Lucerna)

Young chef Mariano Ramón has brought Asia’s vast street-food scene to Buenos Aires. From a tiny spot in Palermo, he draws on Asian flavours and ingredients and brings them together with Latin American ones to create an original sensory experience.

Av. Raúl Scalabrini Ortíz 1543, Buenos Aires
+54 11 4832-1186
grandabbang.com
 

No.37 Nicos, Mexico City, Mexico

Nicos-LATAM-2018-DISH2
Lamb neck with 'pulque' sauce and chilli (image: Beto Lanz and Carlos Soto)

A much-loved institution, Nicos has been satisfying Mexicans' stomachs for more than 60 years. Architect-turned-chef Gerardo Vázquez Lugo creates dishes that take diners on an odyssey through the country's rich culinary heritage. Having just celebrated the restaurant’s 60th anniversary, Vázquez Lugo and his mother Maria Elena Lugo Zermeño this year received The Diners Club Lifetime Achievement Award 2018 for their joint contribution to Mexican cuisine.

Av. Cuitláhuac 3102 Clavería, Azcapotzalco, Mexico City
+52 55 5396 7090
nicosmexico.mx

No.36 El Baqueano, Buenos Aires, Argentina

ElBaqueano-LATAM-2018-DISH2
A dish at El Baqueano (image: Pablo Baracat)

Chef Fernando Rivarola scours Argentina for smallholders and producers in his quest to unearth native ingredients, such as llama and alligator. Super friendly and relaxed, the dining room is flanked by a traditional wooden bar. The wine list is also accessible but varied in style.

Chile 499, Esquina Bolivar, San Telmo, Buenos Aires
+54 11 4342 0802
restoelbaqueano.com

No.35 Corazón de Tierra, Valle de Guadalupe, Mexico

CorazonDeTierra-LATAM-2018-DISH2
Bean soup (image: Luis Meza and Alejandro Alarcón c/o Bien Media)

Set in the beautiful surroundings of the Valle de Guadalupe in Mexico’s Baja California peninsula, Corazón de Tierra is the perfect showcase for chef Diego Hernández Baquedano’s inventive cuisine. Taking his international experience and combining it with Mexican ingredients, Hernández creates modern versions of traditional dishes such as the tamal, Mexican bean soup, or pain d’epice with cactus dessert.

La Villa del Valle, S/N Km 88, Valle de Guadalupe, Baja California
+52-646-156-80-30
corazondetierra.com

No.34 Le Chique, Cancun, Mexico - NEW ENTRY

LeChique-LATAM-2018-DISH2
Morelian gazpacho (image: Fernando Carvajal)

Specialised in contemporary Mexican cuisine, Le Chique offers an experience that is equal parts theatrical, multi-sensory and delicious. Set in the luxurious Azul Beach Resort in Cancún, it is a stone’s throw from beautiful white beaches and clear waters.

Azul Beach Resort Riviera Maya, Carretera Cancun-Puerto Morelos km 27.5, Riviera Maya
+52 998 872 8450
lechiquerestaurant.com

No.33 Oteque, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - NEW ENTRY

Oteque-LATAM-2018-DISH1
Fois gras pudding, mushrooms and tucupi (image: Rubens Kato)

Focused on local products, chef Alberto Landgraf's cuisine is mathematical and inventive. His eight-course tasting menu features creative dishes, layers of flavours and precise techniques, from his famous signature creations, such as the onion stuffed with uni and served with mussel cream, to a foie gras boudin, that has become an instant hit since the opening.

Rua Conde de Irajá 581, Botafogo, Rio de Janeiro
+55 21 3486-5758
oteque.com

No.32 Elena, Buenos Aires, Argentina

Elena-LATAM-2018-DISH2
Roast kid and creamy 'humita' (image: Juan Hitters, Erika Rojas and Damian Liviciche)

A local restaurant gem in Recoleta, Elena appeals to the whole family, making it the ideal spot for special occasions, family gatherings, and for travellers unfamiliar with porteño cuisine. Among the most beloved dishes are grilled sweetbreads; burrata al salmorejo; squid-ink rice; Elena stuffed potato and 45-day dry-aged T-Bone steak.

Four Seasons Hotel Buenos Aires, Posadas 1086/88, Buenos Aires
+54 11 4321 1200
fourseasons.com/buenosaires

No.31 Alcalde, Guadalajara, Mexico

Alcalde-LATAM-2018-DISH1
Suckling piglet terrine with puya chili sauce

In the four years since its opening, Alcalde’s star has quickly ascended, winning the One To Watch Award in Latin America’s 50 Best Restaurants 2016 and entering the list in 2017 as Highest New Entry. Chef Francisco ‘Paco’ Ruano’s simple, ‘frank’ Mexican cooking in a stylish, welcoming setting in Guadalajara makes diners want to return again and again.

Av. México 2903, Vallarta Nte., 44690 Guadalajara
+52 (33) 3615.7400
alcalde.com.mx

No.30 Pangea, Monterrey, Mexico

Pangea-LATAM-2018-DISH1
Rib eye two ways 

Guillermo González Beristáin's Monterrey restaurant has put the northeast of Mexico on the culinary map by applying modern French cooking techniques to the region's superb local produce. Choose a seven-course tasting menu or go à la carte with eye-catching mains including roasted duck breast and braised leg with Castilla squash ravioli and morels mushrooms, or grilled octopus with chickpea stew, chorizo and piquillo peppers.

Bosques del Valle 110-b, San Pedro Garza García, Monterrey
+52 81 8114 6601
grupopangea.com

No.29 Maito, Panama City, Panama

Maito-LATAM-2018-DISH1
Coconut octopus (image: Gonzalo Picón and Juan Lee)

Chef Mario Castrellón’s tasting menu is a tropical journey through Caribbean, Indigenous, Asian, Creole, Afro-Antillean and American cuisine that expresses Panama’s multicultural culinary identity like no other. The very casual fine dining experience here is perfectly adapted to the hot weather, with light, exciting dishes.

Final de la Calle 50, 4to local a mano izquierda, Panama City
+507 391-4657
maitopanama.com

No.28 99, Santiago, Chile

99-LATAM-2018-DISH1
Chocolate mousse with cherry

99 is super-casual but gastronomically sophisticated. Rough-hewn wooden tables and recycled furnishings adorn the dining space, which also features a kitchen counter, behind which the brigade works its magic. 99 has been dubbed the leader of ‘Chilean bistronomy’ movement.

Andrés de Fuenzalida 99, Providencia, Santiago
+56 2 2335 3327
99restaurante.com

No.27 Olympe, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Olympe-LATAM-2018-DISH2
Cracked beans, mini vegetables and pork broth (image: Tomás Rangel)

Olympe provides a perfect balance between French elegance and Brazilian soul. Chef Thomas Troisgros – son of Claude Troisgros, winner of the Diners Club Lifetime Achievement Award 2016 – is the fourth generation of a family known for pioneering Nouvelle Cuisine in their native France, and has been running the kitchen since 2015.

Rua Custódio Serrão 62, Lagoa, Rio de Janeiro
+55 21 2539 4542
troisgrosbrasil.com.br

No.26 Lasai, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Lasai-LATAM-2018-DISH1
Banana, bok shoy, manioca and sour cream (image: Rubens Kato)

Lasai opened its doors in 2014 in a historic house dating from 1902, garnering near-instant critical acclaim. The room mixes natural and modern materials with wood from old houses, together with designer lamps. Here, chef Rafael Costa e Silva makes farm-to-table innovative cooking with daring ideas and the best local seasonal produce.

Rua Conde de Irajá, 191, Botafogo, Rio de Janeiro
+55 21 3449 1834
lasai.com.br

No.25 Osso, Lima, Peru

Osso-LATAM-2018-DISH1
Steak tartare (image: Oliver Lecca)

A butcher’s shop and restaurant all rolled into one, Osso is the place to go in Lima for all the best cuts, from perfectly cooked ribeye to flavoured sausages (cheddar, rocoto pepper marmalade and limo chilli). Almost everything is grilled over the barbecue and there’s a casual a la carte as well as a tasting menu to be eaten with the hands only.

Calle Tahiti 175, La Molina, Lima
+51 1 368 1046
osso.pe

No.24 Ambrosia, Santiago, Chile

Ambrosia-LATAM-2018-DISH2
Fish tartare, meat broth and egg yolk (image: Ignacio Rojas)

Ambrosia provides a market-to-table experience that combines French flair with Chilean produce, where clean yet homely flavours fuse together in impeccable fashion. Typical dishes may include fresh oysters with orange butter; homemade pasta with Chilean truffle and egg yolk; or wild deer with mushroom purée and vegetables.

Pamplona 78, Vitacura, Santiago
+56 2 217 3075
ambrosia.cl

No.23 Harry Sasson, Bogotá, Colombia

HarrySasson-LATAM-2018-DISH1
A dish at Harry Sasson (image: Juan Pablo Gutierrez)

Harry Sasson serves an eclectic menu that blends Latin American, Asian and European flavours. Having celebrated its 20th anniversary in 2016, it remains one of the country's must-visit dining destinations and it was the winner of the Highest Climber Award in 2017.

Carrera 9, 75-70, Zona G y Quinta Camacho, Bogotá
+57 1 347 7155
harrysasson.com
 

No.22 Parador La Huella, José Ignacio, Uruguay

ParadorLaHuella-LATAM-2018-DISH2
Grilled corvina fish and vegetables (image: Eric Wolfinger)

The ultimate in chic beach eating, Parador La Huella’s repertoire in grilled seafood led by Vanessa González is second to none, making it a regular summer spot for trendy and fashionable visitors from Argentina, Brazil, Chile and beyond.

Playa Brava, José Ignacio
+598 4486 2279
paradorlahuella.com

No.21 El Chato, Bogotá, Colombia - NEW ENTRY

ElChato-LATAM-2018-DISH1
Aged beef tartare, nastrutium mayo and petal rose vinaigrette (image: Guillermo Campuzano and Denise Monroy)

Chef Alvaro Clavijo’s cooking is influenced by time in Europe and the US, but the produce is Colombian, and the style very much his own. The menu changes according to what’s in season, but usually features classics such as Arroz El Chato, the house rice with chicken and vegetables, as well as mushroom tartare and squid-ink-stained rice crisps with crab.

Calle 65 #3B-76, Bogotá
+57 1 7439931
elchato.co

No.20 Máximo Bistrot, Mexico City, Mexico

MaximoBistro-LATAM-2018-DISH1
Octopus dish at Máximo Bistrot

With a shared passion for great food, chef Eduardo García and his wife Gabriela set up Máximo Bistrot to showcase fresh produce from in and around Mexico City. Up to two thirds of the ingredients come from local farms, including the famed floating gardens of Xochimilco in the city.

Tonalá 133, Colonia Roma, Mexico City
+52 55 5264 4291
maximobistrot.com.mx
 

No.19 Chila, Buenos Aires, Argentina

Chila-LATAM-2018-DISH2
Boga fish and roasted beetroot (image: Magdalena Staurino)

With a focus on seasonal ingredients, traceable produce and Argentina’s multicultural make-up, Chila offers an innovative interpretation of Argentine cuisine. Highlights include black hake with Jerusalem artichoke; cured beef with yoghurt and chimichurri; or young squid, lettuce and capers.

Alicia Moreau de Justo 1160, Puerto Madero, Buenos Aires
+54 11 4343 6067
chilaweb.com.ar

No.18 Mishiguene, Buenos Aires, Argentina

Mishiguene-LATAM-2018-DISH1
Babaganoush 

Mishiguene, which means crazy in Yiddish, honours Argentina’s Jewish immigrant heritage by reinventing Ashkenazi, Sephardic, Israeli and Middle Eastern cooking. Here, nouvelle techniques are applied to old world recipes, using the highest-quality ingredients possible. Mishiguene is the winner of the Highest Climber Award 2018, jumping 32 places in the list from No.50 in 2017 to No.18 this year.

Lafinur 3368, Palermo, Buenos Aires
+54 11 396 90764
mishiguene.com
 

No.17 La Mar, Lima, Peru

LaMar-LATAM-2018-DISH2
Stewed diablo fish in five-flavour nikkei sauce (image: Archivo La Mar)

Visit La Mar to mix with Lima’s buzzing foodie crowd and sample chef Gustavo Montestruque’s creative repertoire of ceviches that include octopus, sea urchin, shrimp and grouper – along with a pisco sour or two. The restaurant takes its social responsibility seriously by promoting sustainable seafood sourcing. It only uses fresh fish of the day in order to alleviate over-exploited fish species.

Av. La Mar 770, Miraflores, Lima
+51 1 421 3365
lamarcebicheria.com/lima
 

No.16 Rafael, Lima, Peru

Rafael-LATAM-2018-DISH1
Basque cheese tart, quince and raspberry (image: Rodrigo Alzamora)

Rafael Osterling's eponymous restaurant, housed in a beautiful Art Deco townhouse in the chic Miraflores area, celebrates Peru's eclectic food culture. The menu draws on Peru's diverse culinary heritage, fusing traditional native ingredients with Italian, Asian and Nikkei influences.

Calle San Martín 300, Miraflores, Lima
+51 1 242 4149
rafaelosterling.pe
 

No.15 Villanos en Bermudas, Bogotá, Colombia

Villanos en Bermudas-LATAM-2018-DISH1
70% chocolate, melon and sweet potato

The dynamic duo formed of Mexican Sergio Meza and Argentinian Nicolás López is shaking up Bogotá’s gastronomic offer with a daring daily-changing menu inspired by surprising combinations of local ingredients.

Calle 56 #5-21, Chapinero, Bogotá
+57 1 2111259
villanosenbermudas.com
 

No.14 Sud 777, Mexico City, Mexico

Sud777-LATAM-2018-DISH2
Cucumber cake, clarified melon and roasted pepper stuffed with local foie (image: Trendsetera)

It’s worth voyaging outside Mexico City’s gastronomic centre for a meal at Sud 777, where chef and co-owner Edgar Nuñez delivers his take on Mexican cuisine, extracting the best from simple ingredients. In keeping with the social chef, Sud 777 has a pre-party atmosphere with a super cool dining space and several rooms.

Boulevard de la Luz 777, entre Camino Santa Teresa y Paseo del Pedregal, Mexico City
+52-55-5568-4777
http://sud777.com.mx

No.13 Isolina, Lima, Peru

ISOLINA-LATAM-2018-DISH1
Kidneys in wine sauce (image: Carlos Vela)

Chef José del Castillo is giving back to Lima the ultimate comfort food experience, recreating the feeling of a mother’s love at the table with delicious and nostalgic food in generous sharing portions. Set in a historic house in Barranco – the favourite area in Lima for bohemians, artists and intellectuals – it has the authentic ambience of an old family home.

Avenida San Martín Prolongación 101, Barranco, Lima
+51 1 2475075
isolina.pe
 

No.12 Maní, São Paulo, Brazil

Mani-LATAM-2018-DISH1
Black tucupi-lacquered catch of the day with cabbage, mustard greens and pear (image: Roberto Seba)

Named both Latin America’s and World’s Best Female Chef in 2014, Helena Rizzo is one of Brazil’s best-known chefs, as well as a mentor on culinary TV show The Taste Brasil. Typical dishes here include foie gras ‘bonbons’ with Brazilian guava paste and Port wine or black tucupi-lacquered catch of the day with cabbage, mustard greens and pear.

Rua Joaquim Antunes 210, Jardim Paulistano, São Paulo
+55 11 3085 4148
manimanioca.com.br

No.11 Tegui, Buenos Aires, Argentina

Tegui-LATAM-2018-DISH1
Vines, pistachio and lemon (image: Jose Pereyra Lucena)

A smart setting with an equally sophisticated tasting menu, Tegui has put contemporary Argentine cuisine on the map, with the restaurant making an appearance on The World’s 50 Best Restaurants list in 2017. Chef German Martitegui's signature dishes include scallops, kefir cream and quinoa; goat’s cheese, kiwicha and cayote; long-finned tuna, egg yolk and breadcrumbs.

Costa Rica 5852, Palermo, Buenos Aires
+54 11 4770 9500
tegui.com.ar
 

No.10 Leo, Bogotá, Colombia

Leo-LATAM-2018-DISH1
Shrimp, lemon, basket pepper and coconut milk (image: Agencia Creativa Vishop)

Celebrity chef Leonor Espinosa’s flagship restaurant showcases little-known Colombian ingredients such as corozo fruit (a tangy red berry), arrechón (an aphrodisiac drink) and bijao (a banana-like plant), while championing local communities and gastronomic traditions. Since opening Leo she has had a great influence on Colombian cuisine and in 2017 Espinosa won the title of Latin America’s Best Female Chef.

Pasaje Santa Cruz de Mompox, Calle 27b, No 6-75, Bogotá
+57 1 286 7091
restauranteleo.com
 

No.9 Quintonil, Mexico City, Mexico

Quintonil-LATAM-2018-DISH1
A dish at Quintonil (image: Fernando Gómez Carbajal)

Quintonil is the name of a green Mexican herb which features in some of the dishes and cocktails, and pretty much sums up this restaurant: fresh, authentic and brimming with flavour. Chef Jorge Vallejo’s menu is based on local produce and showcases the best of Mexico.

Newton 55, Polanco, Mexico City
+52 55 5280 2680
quintonil.com

No.8 Astrid y Gastón, Lima, Peru

AstridYGaston-LATAM-2018-DISH2
Tongue anticuchos (image: Acurio Restaurantes)

This is where the magic began, the first establishment helmed by chef and patron saint of modern Peruvian cuisine Gastón Acurio – who fortunately jacked in his law degree for hospitality – and pastry chef wife Astrid Gutsche. Opened in 1994, over the years the restaurant and its owners have grown exponentially, changing concept to focus exclusively on Peruvian culture, dishes and ingredients, as well as moving house: the eponymous restaurant relocated to Casa Moreyra in Lima’s San Isidro district in 2014.

Av. Paz Soldán 290, San Isidro, Lima
+51 1 442 2777
astridygaston.com
 

No.7 A Casa do Porco, São Paulo, Brazil

ACasaDoPorco-LATAM-2018-DISH2
Pork six ways (image: Mauro Holanda)

A carnivore’s idea of heaven, A Casa do Porco means ‘House of the Pig’ in Portuguese, and with everything from crunchy chunks of pancetta crackling to pork tartare, it’s a true homage to the hog, with all meat 100% Brazilian. Chef Jefferson Rueda’s food is complemented by delicious desserts from Saiko Izawa, winner of last year’s Latin America's Best Pastry Chef Award.

R. Araújo, 124 - República, São Paulo
+55 11 3258-2578
facebook.com/acasadoporcobar

No.6 Don Julio, Buenos Aires, Argentina

DonJulio-LATAM-2018-DISH2
Ribeye steak (image: Eugenio Mazzinghi)

All the beef at Don Julio is from grass-fed Aberdeen Angus and Hereford cattle, raised in the countryside outside Buenos Aires. It is stored in a climate-controlled refrigerator for at least 21 days to reach optimum maturity. Then grillmaster Bienvenido ‘Pepe’ Sotelo cooks all the beef on a traditional “V” iron grill. Match with beautiful Malbec for the full experience.

Guatemala 4691 (esquina Gurruchaga), Palermo Viejo, Buenos Aires
+54 11 4831 9564
parrilladonjulio.com
 

No.5 D.O.M., São Paulo, Brazil

DOM-LATAM-2018-DISH1
Flower ceviche with Brazilian bee honey (image: Leandro Lourenço)

Former punk and DJ Alex Atala ripped up the rule book in true rock 'n' roll style when he set up D.O.M. in 1999, fusing fine dining with wild and wonderful ingredients from the Amazon basin. Native ingredients are a hallmark of D.O.M., from jambú, a herb that creates a tingling sensation on the tongue, to Atala's now world-famous use of ants, paired with pineapple.

Rua Barão de Capanema, 549, Jardins, São Paulo
+55 11 3088 0761
domrestaurante.com.br
 

No.4 Boragó, Santiago, Chile

Borago-LATAM-2018-DISH1
Raw picoroco, pewén and chilean hazelnuts 

A play on the word ‘borage’ in Spanish, Boragó in Santiago deals in territory rather than technique, according to chef Rodolfo Guzmán. He and his energetic team source native Chilean products used by the Mapuche indigenous people to create Endémica, a menu starring diverse preparations that can change during the course of an evening according to produce supply, paired with natural and biodynamic wine or juices.

Av. Nueva Costanera 3467, Vitacura, Santiago
+56 2 2 953 8893
borago.cl

No.3. Pujol, Mexico City, Mexico

Pujol-LATAM-2018-DISH1
Naked crab taco (image courtesy of Grupo Olvera)

Celebrity chef Enrique Olvera is credited with proving that rustic Mexican flavours deserve as much attention as any other haute cuisine in the world. And Pujol has been his pedestal to make that point via a tasting menu of refined and elegant plates built from indigenous ingredients that pay tribute to Mexico’s rich culinary history.

Tennyson 133, Polanco, 11550 Mexico City
+52 55 55454111
pujol.com.mx

No.2. Central, Lima, Peru

Central-LATAM-2018-DISH2
Colours of Amazonia (image: César Del Río)

Chefs Virgilio Martínez and Pía León’s flagship restaurant is a shrine to all things Peruvian, including many ingredients that are seldom served elsewhere. The husband-and-wife team have been travelling the length and breadth of the country for several years to source interesting and unique produce from land, sea and mountains.

Av. Pedro de Osma 301, Barranco, Lima
+51 1 2428515
centralrestaurante.com.pe

No.1. Maido, Lima, Peru

Maido-LATAM-2018-DISH2
Macambo (image: José Cáceres)

When Peru meets Japan on the plate, Nikkei is born – and chef Mitsuharu ‘Micha’ Tsumura is the Nikkei king. This translates to a welcoming spot where fresh fish and citrus-packed sauces reign supreme. No wonder it was voted The Best Restaurant in Latin America again in 2018, after knocking nearby Central from its three-year stint at No.1 in 2017.

San Martín 399, Miraflores, Lima
+51 3135100
maido.pe
 

Now watch the list in pictures video:

Header images: a selection of dishes from the Latin America's 50 Best Restaurants 2018.

Follow us on Facebook, Instagram, YouTube and Twitter for all the latest interviews, photos and videos from Latin America's 50 Best Restaurants.

Latin Americas 50 Best Restaurants 2018: the list in pictures
  • Giulia Sgarbi