A work in progress, this is my attempt to make an exhaustive guide to good restaurants in Santiago. All feedback is welcome!
Japanese: Over the last 5-10 years, sushi has become a big craze in Santiago. However, they seem to be more into the concept than the actual food itself, creating mediocre sushi with bad rice , no actual fish, too much palta. There ARE exceptions however, and here are some listed below.
Calm, relaxing atmosphere and an authentic, JAPANESE chef who knows how to make delicious authentic sushi. The menu can be confusing, and some menu items don’t have pictures, but the tuna rolls (the arcoiris (rainbow roll) is particularly good) rock and shrimp tempura, although they added a few unusual items (red pepper? eggplant?) was crispy and light. Prices range from 3,000-15,000 CHP. Baron Pierre de Coubertin 39, Providencia. phone: 026650131
Headed by a excellent Japanese chef who has lived in Santiago for years, this little whole in the wall serves highly authentic Japanese food that is fresh and delicious, as well as moderately priced. The veggie tempura and salmon sushi were especially tasty. Santa Lucia, Monjitas 460. phone: 638 2448
Café Malas Artes
Great place for happy hour where you can get good sushi and Chilean cocktails (the pisco sours particularly tasty) Lastarria, José Ramón Gutiérrez 277. phone: 56-2) 633 97 81
They have tuna. Enough said. Get there for any time afer 18:00 and all the sushi is HALF OFF. Moneda 856. Local D. phone: 4239911. http://www.miyako.cl/
This upscale sushi joint has fun cocktails and inventive rolls to share. Come during happy hour and get a 30 percent discount!
José Victorino Lastarria 307. 639 3604
Kaia says: Japanese food place. They serve Japanese dishes, not just sushi, the owner is Japanese, and every Wednesday they have a movie night with a Japanese movie (subtitled) and special dinner deal. It’s our favorite place!
Mediterranean: I have to say, one of the things I miss most about Spain was the killer gyro stands on every corner. In Chile, not so much, but you can find some decent Greek gyros (or shawarma as they say in Chile) at the places below:
Sanwicheria El Gringo
Best bets include the falafel and hummus and people love the shawarma. Providencia, Antonia Lopez de Bello 364-A. phone: 09 8691 1100
Instanbul Doner Kebap
This gyro is addictive in all the wrong ways. The meat, the sauce…it’s not super fresh but its delicious. Hernando de Aguirre 156, Tobalaba, Providencia (for more locations check the website) http://www.donerkebapistanbul.cl/
This is not the best greek food I’ve ever had in my life, but it’s fresh, light, and a good value for the price. Their hummus special was particularly tasty and lemon infused. Avenida Providencia, 1331 Manuel Montt
Vietnamese: Can’t say this is the most thriving of cuisines in Chile, but the place below has good reviews!
Upscale Vietnames food in one of the best neighborhoods in Chile! You can make reservations online and they also do delivery. They even have a vegetarian menu. Ryan says:
This place looks like a total shithole from the outside, and the area is honestly kinda nasty.. But the inside is super swank, and the soup & tamarind duck dishes I ate there were incredible — plus, they definitely know their spice and have actual sriracha on hand. Good place for a date!
Prices range from 1,500-10,000 CHP. Bellavista, Loreto nº 324. phone: 7372037. http://www.vietnamdiscovery.cl/
Healthy vegetarian at its best! They have all the fixings from tofu to quinoa. Providencia, Orrego Luco 054. elhuerto.cl/index/
Breakfast/American: Sigh. Oh, how I miss a good American brunch! Here’s a few places that deliver it right.
Only a few choices available on weekdays, but the brunch menu has eggs benedict, which is worth any amount of money as far as I’m concerned. Right in the heart of “cuico” Las Condes (rich, business sector) you can dine on American fare on their outdoor patio in the company of business casual. The prices are a little high, but worth it and definitely won’t break the bank. Prices range from CHP 3,000-15,000. Las Condes, Don Carlos 2892. phone: 02-232-4546
Cafe del Opera
Mexican: Chileans typically don’t understand Mexican food at all, but these are some excellent exceptions to kick the craving.
This is an international chain, apparently, of Mexican food. The dishes can be a little pricey, but the atmosphere is fun and colorful, rocking day of the dead decor, and margaritas are strong enough for two. www.lamordida.com Bellavista, Dardignac 0143
This is a very popular, busy bar and restaurant for gringos and chileños alike. The walls are decorated with famous American musicians, and the back room dons a surfboard ceiling, giving a laid back, gringos welcome atmosphere. More like baja than pure Mexican, you can expect some excellent burgers, burritos (the carne asada is superb), and fish tacos to accompany your tasty pitcher of sangria. Cow-a-bunga baby. Las Urbinas 56, Providencia, Santiago. californiacantina.net
This place hardly even has a sign, it’s so hidden, but it does have killer burritos with delicious guacamole. Eat at their little stand or take it to go. Worth the trip out to Bio Bio to get your hands on one. They also have killer, fresh-squeezed juices.
606 Franklin, Bio Bio Market, Santiago
Peruvian: You should go to Peru to eat Peruvian, but if you can’t check these out.
Ryan says: ¨Go with the Chicharrón or the Lechón and kill them in sauce. And get a juice! And a dessert!¨ (Peruvian sandwiches on the corner of Mosqueto & Merced near Bellas Artes metro)
Casa del Chef
Let’s be real, this is a chain restaurant and probably doesn’t rival the food in Peru. But, it is very affordable, delicious, and a good deal. I’m a particularly big fan of their aji de gallina and tiriditos (strips of raw fish with aji sauce, like a japanese ceviche). The atmosphere is friendly (lots of yellows and greens) and service is fast MOST of the time.
(see website for details) www.lacasadelchef.com Prices range from 2,000-10,000 CHP. Nuñoa: Irarrazaval (3434172) Providencia: Vicuña Mckenna 143 (6356193) and Rancagua 43 (6651161)
Aji del Seco
Another chain, but a damn good one. The tiriditos and ceviche are mouthwateringly good. They have many locations in Santiago, including Santiago Centro and Providencia. The food is very affordable and tasty. Prices CHP 2,000-10,000 www.elajiseco.cl
Santo Domingo 771, Santiago Centro 6329528
Chilean: Sometimes I can be hard on Chilean food, but really, there are some excellent dishes to try and you should try them all the places below.
Very good (if a bit pricey) traditional seafood dishes. Try the Machas a La Parmesana, Chupe de Locos. http://www.ela
Ryan says: (Chilean dishes at the new La Vega, near the center of the building, facing the river) This is the place that is run by the ex-chef from the Chilean embassy in Italy. There is a simple menu every day, and the ingredients are definitely not what you would expect from any old picada in La Vega.. I had a perfectly cooked lomo vetado in a roquefort sauce with risotto & a real salad! For $4.500!!! Just shoot me.
Ryan says: (Chilean dishes near Estación Central) For me, this place is all about the atmosphere and the terremotos (easily the best I’ve tried), but if you’ve seen that Anthony Bourdain episode you also know they have some craaaazzzyyy meat preparations here.. And at really modest prices, too. I’ve tried a lot of them but settled on the costillar long ago.. One of the best pork dishes I’ve ever had.
One of the nicer restaurants on the list, this La Estarria neighborhood favorite features “new Chilean”. Deconstructed favorites like Pollo a lo Pobre is worth the price and a perfect example of the future of Chilean cuisine. Metro Universidad Catolica, Lastarria 70, http://www.casalastarria.cl/
Pollo de Diablo (Chicken with small french fries topped with a creamy merken sauce )
This is one of the first Chilean restaurants I ate at when I came to Santiago and I still think it’s one of the best for hearty, homemade dishes. It has nice, outdoor seating and the service is efficient and friendly. Must try dishes include the pastel de choclo (gigante and delicious), the porotos granados con longaniza (white beans and sausage) and the cazuela. Prices range from 3,000-20,000 CHP. Bellavista, Dardignac 098. phone: 56-2-7770116. galindo.cl
Lonely Planet says: “The name means ‘fat cows’ and cow-print paint plasters the outside walls and pavement: if it once said ‘moo,’ it’s on the menu and in hefty portions, too. Your steak sizzles on the giant grill at the front of the clattering main dining area, then dead-pan old-school waiters cart it over to your table. It’s usually packed, so reserve or get there very early” Prices range from 4,000-6,000 CHP. Cienfuegos 280. phone: 56-2-6733962
La Vieja Cuidad
From the same owners of Cuidadano, comes this delicious, authentic Chilean style sangucheria right in the heart of bellavista. Pretty wrought iron balconies and homey decor make for great people watching while chomping on a sandwich. Try the lechon, made with pork soaked in milk sauce. Its delicious.
Constitución 92, right across from Galindo. Bellavista
This list would not be complete without this famous Chilean soda fountain chain. On appearance, it seems like it only serves completos (which are very good here I should mention), but they also serve an abundance of “exotic” juices (carrot-orange, melon and tuna (tuna is a fruit), and chirimoya to name a few…) fresh salads, and some really cheap and excellent breakfast specials (the egg scramble with ham and toast or paila jamon comes with coffee and juice for only 1,800 luca).
(completo dinamico with chirimoya juice)
Typical Chilean fast food done right. Empanadas, churrascos, french fries, and beer, repeat! Perfect for a friend in town who wants to try the local cuisine.
Bellavista Sandwich Club
Another excellent Bellavista joint. Get the perfect sandwich at a reasonable price—you can even get some bloomin- onions! Nom.
Pio Nono 5, Bellavista, Santiago
Galería Interprovidencia, Av. Providencia 2169 L.11 (In front of Santa Isabel de Lyon, Metro: Los Leones) 02-3354757, 08-2480296
Providencia, Holanda 160.phone: 2313257. www.rishtedar.com
Everyone always raves about this place, and gringos love it cause the food is actually spicy!
Merced 565 local 1. Centro
This is one Santiago’s hottest places to eat and perfect date night spot. Located right in the heart of Providencia, it serves a combination of Italian and Chilean style seafood and savory dishes in a funky meets fine dining locale. This is a must for any foodie in Santiago. Providencia (There are three different locations see website for details) http://liguria.cl/ingles/portada.html
This really great foodie sandwich place with good drinks -including an all you can drink champagne (for a price) http://www.tasteit.cl/
Tasty, melt in your mouth pizza and paste without breaking the bank. Las Condes, Isidora Goyenechea 3141. phone: 5625194900.tiramisu.cl/pc/menu.html
Allie says: Pizzeria in Bellas Artes, they have a great selection, fantastic homeade pizza dough and as a bonus, AMAZING homeade helado artesanal with the best quirky flavors.
Reasonable priced, delicious, authentic Italian food.
Seminario 400, Priovidencia
This is a small, quaint little pizza joint right on Providencia by Manuel Montt metro (they have other locals in Vitacura, see website). The pizza crust is thin and crispy and the cheese is lovely. I found the Napolitana (tomato, ham, cheese and olive) to be particularly good, and the lunch special (2 pieces and a drink for 2,900) worth the price. They have hip music and a relaxed vibe, and I really liked that they put artisanal olive oil on the table and parmesan, merken, and oregano. It’s not the best pizza in the world, but it’s a great lunch option and surpasses Telepizza any day.
I went to this place for a despedida the other day for this first time. It was ironic I´d never been there, seeing its right by my house. This is a very small place, with lovely bamboo decor, right next to like a car dealership.They are fairly new and trying to create a buzz. Unfortunately the service was outrageously bad. It may have been due to the 10 people party we had, but it took over an hour. However, many dishes were quite excellent. I highly reccomend the green curry and the Thai beef salad (Yum Neum). Both had a lot of flavor, and even some spicy kick, believe it or not. Prices are a little high (around 5,000 or 6,000) but worth it for the authentic flavor (They have a real Thai chef!). Come for a special occasion, worth the trip out to Nuñoa.
Irarrázabal 1053, Ñuñoa, 2235764
Fresh, authentic Thai food (that can be prepared super spicy – a rarity in Chile) and neat ambiance (great background music, cool decor, and an awesome patio. The curries and rice noodles are particularly tasty. http://padthai.cl/
Slightly more expensive than PadThai but the food is more authentic with richer flavor. Providencia, Manuel Montt 1020 thaihouse.cl/thaihouse/2.0/
Located right in the heart of Persa Bio Bio market is a legit Thai stand offering tasty authentic thai food at a reasonable price. Get the Phad Thai…worth the trip! See this article in Buena Vida for details. 602 Franklin, Santiago
Korean: There is definitely not much Korean food in Santiago, but this place holds its own, serving kimchi and bulgogi among the various completo stands.
I went to this hole in the wall Korean joint for a friend’s birthday and was very impressed. The menu is in Korean/Spanish which can be a little challenging. However, must eat items include the glass noodles, seafood pancakes, korean barbecue (the beef was the best) and bibimbap (egg and rice with sides). Prices range from 3,000-6,000 CHP. Antonia Lopez De Bello 244. Phone: 02-7358693 www.sukyne.com
Restaurante Coreano Kil Mok
247 Av. Recoleta, Local 26, Barrio Bellavista
Av. Manquehue Sur 674, Las Condes