The sixth edition of the Al Dente Italian gastronomic and cultural festival will return to Palermo this weekend, on December 8th and 9th. The festival is organized by the creators of Il Ballo de Mattone, which for those of you who don’t know, is a little pocket of Italia located here in Palermo, most well-known for its signature restaurant, which arguably offers some of the most authentic and reasonably priced Italian food in town. Expressing culture and traditional gastronomy through art is what originally inspired this pocket of Italian-inspired attractions to emerge, with the ambition of creating a so-called Little Italy within Buenos Aires.
This particular festival also revolves around celebrating the true and authentic roots of Italy and the strong influences which are so apparent here in Buenos Aires. I mean if you have ever read The Bubble before, you will know that whether it’s our tips on where to head during Italian Week, – yes there was already a whole week dedicated to celebrating Italian cuisine, in case you missed it – or tips on where to go for your next pizza fix, you don’t have to be Sherlock Holmes to sniff out the next Italiano something or other happening around town.
The whole concept of this particular festival stems from a philosophy of eating and drinking amongst both friends and artists, eating and expression being two of the most primitive acts of mankind. Originally an idea to honor a “Day of Italian-ness,” the festival began on Gorriti street in Palermo and became so popular, so quickly, that eventually it was declared a verified celebration of cultural interest by the City Government of Buenos Aires.
What to Expect at Al Dente and Where to Find It
This celebration of Italian culture will take place in el Mercado de las Pulgas (Flea Market) and the best part? Entrance is free! Due to the popularity of Italian culture in Buenos Aires becoming stronger year on year, this year’s edition of the festival is expected to welcome more than 80,000 attendees.
The main focus of Al Dente will be to celebrate new Italian culinary trends, music, and art. However, there will also be representatives of some other cultures offering their own traditional foods. With a total of six food trucks attending, you won’t be stuck for choice – essentially, start fasting now.
Win a Trip to Italy
And that’s not all that will be on offer this weekend. An all inclusive trip to Italy for two people will be up for grabs, with flights, accommodation, and excursions all paid for. This trip will be offered under the #dePalermoaPalermo competition, and coupons will be available at the Italian Stand. To participate, you simply have to answer the three Italian-styled questions correctly; the winner will be announced on Sunday, December 9th at the end of the festival – better start preppipng now.
It isn’t just Italian food on offer, there will also be a tasty musical spectacle for you to enjoy as well. The musical line-up includes well known musicians such as Leo García, Cata Spinetta, Nico Cota, Lenni Funk, La Fanfarria del Capitán, Chasky Pum and la César Pavón Orchestra.
For those born after 1995, on Saturday there will also be a special trap feature on display, which boasts artists such as Under MC and Maomi Preizler, Marciano Crew and, as is always the case at the festival de Al Dente, the final act will be a surprise guest – not one to be missed.
Inside the market itself there will also be a series of talks presented by the Bajonero Committee and Ramitagram, as well as interviews, cooking workshops, and information about the newest trends and influences in communication networks. Contributions include those of Donato de Santis, Santiago Giorgini and Roberto Ottini, as well as a tour of the world and life of YouTuber Marito Baracus, who is an extremely well-known social icon via his video channel which has over 1.3 million subscribers.
The festival will also boast artistic displays of all kinds; a “Comic Space” which will be available for all to enjoy, as well as offering a little refuge for the little ones, or perhaps a little refuge for you, so you can make the most of the Aperol, undoubtedly by the bucket load, and pasta by the shovel. As well as all of this, various artistas plásticos will be accompanying every food stand, as well as filling the streets, surrounding the market with creations and artistic feats of all varieties.
This year’s edition of Al Dente also takes the food frenzy one step further, as there will also be the debut of El Cosmic Vegan Fest, which is organized by the Cosmic Community, and aims to promote the benefits of veganism and healthy eating, but also explains a little about the field of spirituality. It will inform you of all you need to know to feel good about yourself, the world you live in, and most importantly of all, preserving it so that the rest of the human race can continue to enjoy it too. So if you were panicking that there might not be something that tickles your fancy from the pasta party, fear not, looks like even the tanos are going green now!
What Are You Waiting For?
The Al Dente Festival has the institutional support of the BA Capital Gastronómica association, which is a government-run program that promotes the city of Buenos Aires as the gastronomic capital of Latin America – you may have heard about them if you are familiar with the recent Best Pizzeria in Buenos Aires competition, as well as Feria Masticar and so much else. The organization aims to position the city as an iconic destination for people to both visit and consider as a meeting place for families and friends, to eat and enjoy food of Argentine culture, as well as other flavors from all over the world.
With endless fun, food, and festivities in store, you should definitely head down to this year’s Al Dente Festival. The event is completely family-friendly and will leave you feeling well nourished both via the amazing food and drink which you will undoubtedly experience, as well as the atmosphere of happiness and brotherhood which is, at the end of the day, what eating and enjoying food is really all about.
“AL DENTE 6 Lo Hacemos Entre Todos”
Saturday, December 8th, 2PM – Midnight | Sunday, December 9th, 1PM – 9 PM | Av. Dorrego & Enrique Martinez | Free entry | More info