Rain or shine, hot or cold, Argentines proudly celebrate their fondness for ice cream year-round, regardless of the weather. Some argue that the exquisite ice cream in Buenos Aires can be accredited to the the happy-go-lucky, grass-fed cows that freely roam the pampas just outside the Buenos Aires metropolitan area. Others, however, attribute the reputation that Buenos Aires ice cream has accumulated to the indisputable Italian heritage that attracts so much travel to Argentina. Whatever the case, everyone can agree that Buenos Aires ice cream is, quite literally, to die for. However, because finding life-changing ice cream in Buenos Aires is no true challenge, it’s important to note that this article is not an all-inclusive Argentine helado-guide, but rather a select list of a few undisputed local favorites…
Cadore – Corrientes 1695
If you’re a fan of traditional, old-school Argentine ice cream, head to Cadore in downtown Buenos Aires. With origins in northern Italy tracing back to the 1800’s, this store migrated alongside millions of other Italians to Buenos Aires where it reopened in 1957. Located on Avenida Corrientes next to various theatres, Cadore is a classic ice cream parlor to visit after a night out seeing a play or musical. Though the shop fills quickly with locals hovering over the fifty-some flavors, tourists in Argentina should request taste-tests before committing, as not all Buenos Aires ice cream flavors are created equal.
Rapa Nui – Arenales 2302
Based out of Bariloche (the Mecca of Argentine chocolate) this heladeria has remained in business for nearly a century, and remains a favorite for both locals and tourists in Argentina with a sweet tooth. Famous for their chocolate and raspberry flavors, it’s no surprise that this ice cream parlor was featured in a National Geographic Channel episode about Bariloche-based delicacies. Apart from their world-class ice cream, Rapa Nui also serves a variety of chocolates and sweets, most notably their famed chocolate-bathed raspberries.
Freddo – Multiple Locations
When someone mentions the phrase ‘chain restaurant’ all enthusiasm seems to wither up, especially as travel to Argentina revolves around embracing local authenticity and tradition. That being said, a visit to an Heladerías Freddo location surely won’t disappoint. This chain of highly-respectable Buenos Aires ice cream parlors has over 150 branches that maintain family-run quality favored by both Porteños and Buenos Aires tourists. Like many ice cream parlors in the city, Freddo also offers delivery service, making it a likely temptation to indulge in while tucked away in your hotel room. If you’re out and about though, ask your tour-guide to make a rest stop during your day tour in Buenos Aires at any Freddo store for a quick taste.
Dumbo – Rivadavia 3929
Owned and operated by the same Italian family since 1942, Dumbo is a humble and classic neighborhood heladeria that sells ice cream made on site in the neighborhood of Almagro. One step inside Dumbo, and you’re reminded of the nostalgia that this Buenos Aires ice cream parlor evokes in its regular customers. Insider Tip: order the ‘Crema Dumbo’, a crunchy mix of fresh vanilla, almonds, chocolate chips, and cherries.
Ready for your first scoop of unforgettable Buenos Aires ice cream? When planning your trip to Argentina, just don’t forget to pack an appetite…
- Pampas: Flatlands outside Buenos Aires
- Helado: Ice cream
- Heladeria: Ice cream parlor
- Porteños: locals of Buenos Aires
By Daniel Whelden