When walking along the street in Buenos Aires, you’re bound to catch delicious wafts of sweet pastries on every corner and see groups of friends chatting over coffee and medialunas (a small, sweet croissant) in the windows of cafes. Besides the obvious steak paired with a Malbec, pastries are an essential food group in the Argentinian diet.
Bakeries and cafes in Buenos Aires are often referred to “confiterias”, literally translated to “establishments that serve coffee and pastries”.
The best bakeries and cafes in Buenos Aires are:
- Cocu Boulangerie
- Las Violetas
- Smeterling — Permanently closed
- Dos Escudos
- Bilbo Café
- La Noire Cafe
- Café Vive
- Sablee Vegana
- Libros de Pasaje
- Cafe Tortoni
Cocu Boulangerie (Palermo Soho)
This authentic French bakery serves mouth-watering, artisanal pastries and bread that may make you question whether you’re visiting Buenos Aires or Paris. Stop by Cocu Boulangerie to pick up a crispy baguette for that charcuterie board you’re preparing tonight, or perhaps a bundle of sweet tarts to bring home for breakfast. Or, take a seat and listen to an array of classic French tunes as you feast on a savory quiche, flatbread, or croque.
Sintaxis (Palermo Soho)
Sintaxis is the first completely gluten-free restaurant and shops in Buenos Aires. People with celiac, gluten sensitivity, or who solely choose to avoid gluten can eat here worry-free. Stop by the almacen (market) to pick up a variety of pasta, bread, and other items to bring home. Or make your way to the restaurant for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. Don’t forget your dessert; these gluten-free pastries are very tasty!
Are you a coffee connoisseur? Catoti is a great choice if you’re looking for a café that is truly passionate about their coffee. All of their coffees are from Colombia and are ethically and ecologically sourced. In addition to delicious coffee, Catoti serves an array of tasty pastries, waffles, and sandwiches. Whether you’re looking for a quick lunch, or want to spend a few hours chatting with friends over a coffee, this café is definitely worth a visit.
Malvon (Villa Crespo)
This quaint confiteria is styled to resemble an old Buenos Aires café but has contemporary twists. You can find a variety of cuisines here for any meal– breakfast, lunch, dinner, or an afternoon snack. Additionally, Malvon offers a stellar brunch on the weekends, served from 10 am to 4:30 pm.
Las Violetas (Almagro)
This elegant and historic café was first opened in 1884 and was instantly a huge hit amongst politicians and artists alike. Although Las Violetas was recently restored, it still maintains the ornate charm that it first had over 100 years ago. Las Violetas is known for serving afternoon tea and sweets, but also has food available for lunch. Be aware that the café is often very busy in the afternoon, so it may be beneficial to come earlier in the morning or later in the evening to avoid crowds.
Café Dos Escudos (Recoleta & Retiro)
A simple but reliable bakery and café, Dos Escudos is a great place to get your fix of anything dulce de leche, alfajores, medialunas, empanadas, and much more classic Argentinian pastries and sweets. The café’s interior and the atmosphere is not necessarily memorable, but if you’re around the area Dos Escudos is definitely worth a visit.
Bilbo Café (Villa Crespo)
Once you step into Bilbo Café, you’ll instantly think that the space was created by a skillful designer (in fact, it was designed by art director). The café has a funky, boutique style that meshes contemporary with mid-century. Aside from the lovely atmosphere, tasty coffee and a satisfying food menu are available.
La Noire Café (Palermo Hollywood)
Another space that boasts stylish decor and furniture (albeit sometimes a bit random), La Noire Café is a simple café with a cute and cozy atmosphere that’s perfect for casual dates and study sessions. It also has a very quaint courtyard patio scattered with charming plants and ivy trailing along its walls. The coffee here is actually really good, and you’ll be delighted by a sweet design in the foam of your late. Pair the coffee with some avocado toast, and you’re bound to start your morning off right!
Vive Café (Palermo Hollywood)
Owned by a Colombian-Argentinian couple, Vive Café serves purely Colombian coffee and is another great stop for any coffee snob. You can find coffee in all its forms here – flat white, cold brew, a simple late. Not to mention, they do some pretty interesting coffee art here (including bears!). The café also offers quality sweets and treats for you to munch on as you sip one of their soul-warming, caffeinated beverages.
Sablee Vegana (Belgrano)
Vegans with a sweet tooth don’t fret! Sablee Vegana is an excellent spot to get your fill of cupcakes, cookies, and so many other pastries and without consuming any animal products. This vegan bakery is well known for its cakes, and customers typically carry out orders. In addition to a variety of sweet cakes, cookies, and tarts, the bakery also offers savory options like empanadas.
Libros de Pasaje (Palermo Hollywood)
Although this may not be a typical café, Libros de Pasaje is definitely worth visiting when you go to Buenos Aires. Upon entering, browse through the bookshop and make your way to the back. There, you’ll find a really quaint café amongst stacks of books. If you’re a book-lover, this place will definitely appeal to you; in addition to being cozy and welcoming, the selection of books is very impressive. Grab a pastry, late, and a book from the shelf and take a seat in the courtyard.
Café Tortoni (Monserrat)
Another historic café, Café Tortoni was built in 1858 and is the oldest café in Buenos Aires. If you’re interested in stepping back in time and getting a taste of what Buenos Aires was like almost 200 years ago, put this café on your bucket list. While there, order a submarino (a classic Argentinian dessert consisting of a bar of dark chocolate dunked in hot milk) and catch a show at the tango theater attached to the café.
Best coffee in Buenos Aires
In addition to some of the cafes I mentioned previously, check some of the following cafes and coffee shops for high-quality coffee:
- Coffee Town
- Barrio Cafetero
- The Shelter Coffee
- Usina Cafetera
- Café Zavalia
Best medialunas in Buenos Aires
Medialunas are rampant in Buenos Aires; you can find a medialuna just about anywhere. Check out the following spots for the best medialunas in Buenos Aires:
- Dos Escudos
- L`epi Boulangerie
- Oui Oui
- La Biela
- El Galeon
- Confiterias y Panaderias La Argentina