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The Modern Butcher Shops of Buenos Aires

From dry-aged freezers to specialized pork cuts, a photographic journey.

By | [email protected] | February 19, 2019 9:07am

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Despite rampant inflation and prices for pretty much everything that are through the roof, it’s estimated that the average Argentine still consumes close to 50 kg of meat per year, guaranteeing the country’s place among the five largest consumers of the product worldwide. It’s no surprise then, that butchery is a revered, respected, and admired craft. Along with having a go-to psychologist, most Argentines also have a go-to butcher, he who holds the secrets to the perfect cut of meat, just the way they like it.

Despite this love of ritual and tradition, butchery, however, has changed a lot in recent times. New trends include different processes designed to concentrate flavors (hello, dry aged) and an array of exciting cuts rarely experienced by the locals before, such as the Tomahawk steak. These carnivorous craftsmen incorporate timeless technique with novel innovation, paying homage to Argentina’s passion for carne while elevating both the experience and the final product available to the consumer.

The Bubble visited three spots that best represent this cultural shift in the city thanks to Claudio Weissfeld, journalist and creator of the Meat & Butchery tour. Dry aged specialty house Tomahawk, fresh produce and meat supplier PIAF, and pork butchery Chancho Chico are definitely not the kind of traditional barrio spots the old folks used to go to. But there’s little doubt that they are worthy bearers of Argentina’s endless passion for all things meat.

Photos by Julian White-Davis | Text by Pedro Camacho