The Best Restaurants in Santiago

Santiago’s restaurant scene is rising as young chefs playfully reinterpret traditional cuisine and fuse it with European techniques. Here’s a roundup of best restaurants for a true gourmet experience in Chile’s capital city.

“Chile has nearly 4,000 miles of coast, one of the most arid deserts on earth, and mountains that climb to 22,000 feet. Imagine the diversity,” marvels Rodolfo Guzmán. The chef behind Santiago’s restaurant Boragó is on a mission to promote his country’s over-looked ingredients, such as the superacidic copao fruit, which grows in the Atacama desert. “We want to show diners something that is only found here.” Many chefs source locally but then use European techniques in the kitchen. Guzmán, however, bakes his grouper and basil chlorophyll in a mud oven—a technique the indigenous Mapuche people have used for centuries. Avda. Nueva Costanera 3467, 56/(0) 2-953-8893. This appeared in the October 2012 issue.
Isidora Goyenechea 3000, Las Condes, Región Metropolitana, Chile
The Santiago outpost of Lima’s most famous Nikkei restaurant (Peruvian-Japanese fusion), Osaka has been a smash hit since it opened in the W Santiago. Cosmopolitan, chic and with sensational sushi, come with an appetite as you try sushi with a twist. Savor their “tiraditos,” a play on sashimi with citrusy-chili sauce or rolls with unorthodox toppings like gratin scallops. Perfect service, a beautiful crowd, and delicious food. Wine is extremely overpriced; we recommend sticking to the cocktail menu or paying corkage to bring your own bottle. Isidora Goyenechea 3000, Fourth floor, Las Condes (Metro El Golf) Phone: 56 (2) 2770 0000
Av. Paz Soldán 290, San Isidro, Lima 15073, Peru
While some say Gastón Acurio’s flagship restaurant may have lost ground to Virgilio Martinez’s Central, Acurio has been instrumental in putting Lima on the map as South America’s culinary capital and has promoted its cuisine throughout the world. Since 2015—following worldwide travels promoting the nation’s gastronomy—he’s back at the helm at Astrid & Gastón. You can order meals à la carte, but to truly experience the master’s touch, try a (short or long) tasting menu. Gastón’s wife and partner, Astrid, is a celebrated pastry chef, so save room for dessert. Pisco cocktails are outstanding, and a superlative wine list offers more than 250 choices.
Alonso de Córdova 2417, Vitacura, Región Metropolitana, Chile
Located in the chic, affluent area of Vitacura near Nueva Costanera, Europeo delivers a flawless fine dining experience in Santiago. The menu, overseen by executive chef Francisco Mandiola, incorporates European technique with seasonal ingredients. The dishes are perfectly seasoned and delicate. Try the spring tasting menu with dishes like tender spring vegetables with burrata cheese, or the unusual flavor combination of corn and octopus, all paired with top wines. The ambience is formal and they also put on a fabulous “executive” lunch that is very good price/quality ratio. Alonso de Cordova 2417 (between Vitacura and Nueva Costanera), Vitacura Phone: 56 (2) 2208 3603 Photo coutresy of Europeo Restaurant
1223 Lo Barnechea
This intimate project started by Juan Morales, the ex-chef of the Michelin-starred Arola in the Ritz Carlton Santiago, is all about the producer-to-table experience and understanding Chile’s varied culinary terroir from north to south (which spans over thirty latitudes!). The chef has personally created sustainable relationships with artisan fishing wharves and small agricultural producers throughout Chile to give birth to his simple yet refined interpretations of traditional Chilean cuisine. For example, the “vidriola”, a firm, white-fleshed fish from the far flung archipelago of Juan Fernandez, graces the menu paired sautéed fava beans and a delicate almond cream. We love the hand-pulled “pantrucas”, a homemade pasta eaten during the winter, with a truffled poached egg. Desserts take most Chileans back to the sweet, sugary treats of their childhood with favorites like “mil hojas” and Chilean papayas from Lipimávida. Av. Lo Barnechea 1223, Lo Barnechea. Dinner only. Monday to Friday 8pm-midnight. Tel.: 02/2216 6793 Photo credit: D.O. Restaurant
Pamplona 78 Santiago, Vitacura, Región Metropolitana, Chile
Making its debut one the list of the 50 best restaurants in Latin America in 2015, young chef Carolina Bazan, takes the abundance of Chilean markets and sensational produce and delivers them with a creative, slightly French flare to diners. Originally located in downtown Santiago, the restaurant has relocated out to Las Condes to more spacious digs surrounded by their gorgeous garden. Standout dishes on the menu are Wagyu pot roast with creamy blue cheese mashed potatoes and they make a delicious homemade ketchup and Bearnaise sauce. Service can slow so go with patience--and a reservation. Pamplona 78, Las Condes +56 2 217 3075 Photo: Carolina Bazan (Ambrosia)
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