Top 10 Authentic Food Experiences in Montevideo – Part 2

In South America’s smallest country, Uruguay, the culinary scene is diverse. The influence of European immigrants and the traditions of the indigenous people create a rich food tapestry.

Montevideo, the capital where over ⅓ of the country’s population live, is a great place to explore the local cuisine. In our previous article, we highlighted 5 of 10 Montevideo authentic and local food experiences to have.  

  1. Share a Mate and Visit Museo del Gaucho
  2. Try Morcilla Dulce At Mercado del Puerto – A Parrilla Experience
  3. Enjoy a Tarta from Confiteria Saratoga on La Rambla While Watching The Sunset
  4. Drink Tannat, The National Wine of Uruguay at Bodega Bouza
  5. Make a Stop For Lehmeyun, Montevideo Local Food from Armenia

Here, we highlight the other 5 experiences to have for a total of 10 Montevideo authentic food experiences.

Read on to discover what Montevideo has to offer culinary travelers.

Authentic Food Quest Page_Break

6. Indulge in a Chivito at Lo de Pepe

The Chivito is the national sandwich of Uruguay. The history of this sandwich goes back to the 1960s. “Chivito” means little goat in Spanish. In the story, an Argentine asked a restaurant owner for a dish of roasted goat like the one she was accustomed to back home. The chef had no goat, but he slapped together a sandwich and topped it with a little of just about everything in the kitchen. It was a hit, and the Chivito sandwich was born!

The Chivito is huge and filled with loads of meat. It is made up of a thin slice of churrasco (filet mignon beef), topped with bacon, mozzarella cheese, tomatoes, lettuce, mayonnaise, ham, olives and a fried egg. It is served with french fries or baked potatoes. It can be prepared as a sandwich or as a dish. If you are still hungry from more, you might want to try the Canadiense, a variation of the Chivito sandwich with canadian bacon.

Montevideo Authentic Food Chivito Sandwich

There is no shortage of places to have a Chivito in Montevideo. Honestly, it is a difficult to pick just one places to have this sandwich. Restaurants take great pride in making this awesome national speciality.

Our advice is to have it more than once, at a couple of different locations. Lo de Pepe in the Trouville neighborhood, just a couple of blocks from La Rambla, serves huge portions with local wine. Our recommendation is to go there, share it and indulge.

Chivito Lo de Pepe Top 10 Montevideo Authentic Food AuthenticFood Quest

Where: Lo de Pepe, Roque Graseras 885, Montevideo, Uruguay.

When: Monday to Sunday from 11:30am to 12am.

What to order: Chivito or Canadiense.

7. Visit Mercado Agricola de Montevideo, A Foodie Haven

The Mercado Agricola de Montevideo (Agricultural Market) is an attraction and can be described as a foodie haven. Located just north of the Montevideo, it takes about 10 minutes to get there by bus from the city center.

Mercado Agricola Montevideo Authentic Food Authentic Food Quest

This market is known for its sheer size and its early 20th century architecture. Once you enter through the main door you will notice the modern design and the cleanliness of the place which is quite surprising for a farmers’ market.

With more than 100 vendors, including speciality food stores and restaurants, you will find clean stalls, large selections of fruits and vegetables and organic and specialty stores. Visit the market when there is one of the many events scheduled at the end of the week.

Market Vendor Mercado Argicola Montevideo Authentic Food Authentic Food Quest

You can make this market your place to buy vegetables or enjoy a meal at one of the many local restaurant options. Look for the different types of pumpkins, squash, gourds and zucchini sold that grow in Uruguay. You will be surprised at the range and variety of pumpkins and squash that exist.

Pumpkin Montevideo Authentic Food Authentic Food Quest

Where: Mercado Agricola de Montevideo, José L. Terra 2220, Montevideo, Uruguay.

When: Monday to Sunday from 9am to 10pm.

What to order: Any of the following: Zappalo, zapallitos, calabaza.

8. Dig into The Beef at La Pulperia, The Best Local Parilla

Given the popularity of beef and the many places to eat it, it can be daunting to search for the best places to experience a parilla (steakhouse) in Montevideo. One place that stands out is La Pulperia in the Puntas Carretas neighborhood. La Pulperia is described as one of the best parillas, if not the best parilla in Montevideo.  

La Pulperia Montevideo Authentic Food Authentic Food Quest

It is not a fancy place, but a laid back restaurant packed with locals. It has a simple menu, great service and unrivaled quality of meat.

From the menu, order a Pulpon (rump steak) or an Asado (short ribs), which are the most popular cuts of meat. They come served with a side of homemade fries and a salad. Get it with a lovely bottle of local Uruguayan Tannat wine. An assault of richness and flavor that will leave you wanting more!  

Meat LaPulperia Montevideo Authentic Food Authentic Food Quest

Where: La Pulperia, Lagunillas 448 Punta Carretas,  Montevideo, Uruguay.

When: Tuesday to Saturday from 7pm to 12am and Sunday 12pm to 4pm.

What to order: Pulpon or Asado.

9. Sip on Medio y Medio at the World Trade Center

This is a traditional Uruguayan alcoholic refreshing drink. It is a unique sparkling wine made by combining 50% white wine and 50% sparkling wine (spumante). The name Medio y Medio means “half and half” in Spanish.

Medio y Medio Montevideo Authentic Food Authentic Food Quest

This unique sparkling wine was first created in 1886 at a bar called Roldys which is at Mercado del Puerto. Today, you will find everywhere as a popular aperitif option.

This refreshing drink with a light and sweet-ish taste is incredibly easy to drink. You will also find some blends with red, rose and white wines to cater all tastes.

Choose from one of the many restaurants near the World Trade Center of Montevideo and enjoy a refreshing glass of Medio y Medio.

World Trade Center Montevideo Authentic Food Authentic Food Quest

Where: Av Dr. Luis Alberto de Herrera, 1248, Montevideo, Uruguay.

When: Monday to Sunday 12pm to 4pm and 7pm to 12am.

What to order: Medio y Medio.

10. Sample Tannat Wine and Yerba Mate Ice Cream

Ice cream lovers will not be disappointed in Montevideo. You will find several local options where you can cool off with ice-cream. For an authentic experience, try ice cream flavors that reflect the pride of the country. Try ice cream made from Tannat wine and from Yerba mate, the two national beverages.

Tannat Ice-Cream Montevideo Authentic Food Authentic Food Quest
Yerba Mate Ice-Cream Montevideo Authentic Food Authentic Food Quest

For a gourmet experience, the best place to try these flavors is at Heladeria del Abuelo. This locally owned store ranks high on creativity and innovation. The ice cream here is artisanal where all ingredients are natural and no additives or dyes are used. Go out on a limb and try these unique ice cream flavors.

 

Where: Heladeria del Abuelo, Almeria 4814, Montevideo, Uruguay.

When: Monday to Friday from 4pm to 12am and Saturday, Sunday from 12pm to 12am.

What to order: Tannat and Yerba Mate ice cream.

Authentic Food Quest Page_Break

In Summary

Uruguay’s capital has a lot to offer to the travelers seeking authentic food experiences. If your travels take you to South America, do not overlook Uruguay, which was named by Lonely Planet as one of the Top 10 countries to visit in 2016.

Open up to the tastes and delights of Montevideo authentic food. Taste the flavors and enjoy the local beverages in all forms.

Have you had any of these Montevideo authentic food experiences? Tell us which ones in the comments below.

 

Don’t forget to sign up for our monthly newsletter here and get your free ebook on The 5 Best Ways to Find Authentic Food While Traveling.

Savor The Adventure!

27 Comments on “Top 10 Authentic Food Experiences in Montevideo – Part 2”

  1. For me, when traveling with my kids (who are only 4 and 2) we do not get to enjoy as much “food” as i like, since their wiggly butts limit where we go and how long we stay! i cannot wait for them to be a few years older so we can take advantage of the amazing cuisine that you can find around the world! One day we will make it so South America!

    Reply
    • Great question. We also spent time in Argentina and one of the biggest differences we saw was in the cuts of meat. For example, Argentina does not have morcilla dulce, yet in Uruguay that is a delicacy. In Uruguay, they have a cut of beef called “asado” and that is not the case in Argentina. We would say both offer amazing high-quality beef, but some of the cuts are different.

      Reply
  2. Today I have read maximum no. of posts on food and it’s dinner time here. You can imaging how hungry I am now !
    Chivito sounds very interesting and so does Yerba mate ice cream. 🙂

    Sure, I want to try them out.

    Reply
    • That’s funny Nisha. Always a challenge to read about food when hungry:) Yes, you would enjoy the chivito sandwich. The yerba mate ice cream is a great way to finish off the meal. Appreciate your comments.

      Reply
  3. Like before, my pick would be a market again, so Mercado Agricola de Montevideo would be it. Looking at its entrance, I already know that I’d enjoy taking photos of the building and the stalls inside it. Just wondering how long would I be holed up here if I were to visit Montevideo one day! 🙂

    Reply
    • That’s great:) The good news about the Mercado Agricola de Montevideo, is that there is lots to do. You can shop there, eat there, be entertained and have a great time all around. Hope you can get to Montevideo soon and see the market for yourself. Thanks for the comments.

      Reply
  4. Hi, thanks for your pactical tips. I pretty much love every town where it is possible to buy fresh and exotic veggie – even those bananas you have in the pictures must be so tasty. Just imagine the smoothie. So yes, Montevideo is a place for me.

    Reply
    • In that case Veronika, you would love Montevideo. Interestingly, unlike most of the other South American countries we visited, Uruguay does not have a developed smoothie culture. Regardless, you can enjoy the fresh fruits and exotic vegetables. Appreciate your comments.

      Reply
  5. Definitely not familiar with most of these foods. Thanks for introducing us. Great pictures and descriptions. I cannot believe you can just buy those Chivito’s at fast food places. They look so gourmet. 😉

    Reply
    • Thanks Melody and so glad you enjoyed reading about the authentic food experiences in Montevideo. Given that the Chivito is the national sandwich, it is made with pride all over the country:) Looks gourmet and tastes delicious.

      Reply
  6. I loved reading part two ladies! I would definitely check out the Mercado Agricola de Montevideo. From the picture of the sign it looks like a beautiful building. I have a thing for architecture. While I don’t particularly like wine (please don’t hate me ?), the Medio y Medio sounds really refreshing.

    Reply
    • Hi Marteen, no worries if you don’t appreciate wine 🙂 The Medio y Medio is a great alternative. Yes, the architecture is indeed amazing and one of the most unique aspects of the market. So glad you enjoyed reading the post.

      Reply
  7. Looks like the only problem I’d have is deciding where to start. It all looks scrumptious and worth trying. I’ll definitely take your advice when we visit Montevideo. Cheers!

    Reply
  8. I love food markets, especially when I’m abroad, because I think that they are the perfect place to mingle with locals and enjoy a very genuine atmosphere. The Mercado Agricolo looks just like that, thank you for the tip! 🙂

    Reply

Leave a Comment

Post a Comment

We love to hear from you, so tell us what you think.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked.