Saturday, October 15, 2011

Guido's Italian Dining Experience, Palermo Chico, Buenos Aires

By Roy Heale

There are some well kept secrets in Buenos Aires and Guido's Cafe-Bar is one of them. This authentic Italian restaurant is well-known to local residents, but is off the beaten track for most tourists. With a kitsch atmosphere this wonderful Italian restaurant offers an array of home-cooked Italian specialties served by smiling waiters. The walls, which are covered with movie posters and pictures featuring a variety of old school Italian actors, gives it a fun edge and a real---if not slightly over the top---Italian feel. It is a small cosy place with a few tables outdoors for patio dining. Reservations are a must if you don't want to be disappointed when the house is full!

Although there is a small menu available, most guests opt for the chef's set meals which differ daily. Dinner is a five course affair, including wines and soft drinks for around US$40 plus gratuity. To start there is an array of hot and cold antipasto---including a wonderful cherry tomato and bocconcini salad---with new and old Italian favorites to choose from. This is followed by two different pasta dishes with fresh home-made pasta combined with local ingredients. Then comes the carni---meat dish---and on this particular night it was a wonderful veal tenderloin in a light, creamy tarragon sauce accompanied by the best french fries I have had in Buenos Aires! If that is not enough for most appetites, then the dessert tray will top off the meal. A selection of home made treats included a unique Tiramisu, chocolate gelato, a pineapple cake, and a chocolate surprise. Throughout the meal there were bottomless bottles of excellent red and white wine offered, plus soft drinks and bottled water. The service is friendly plus unusually fast and efficient compared to other local establishments.
I can't believe I ate the whole thing---a testament to the excellent chef!

Guido's is located in the elegant Palermo Chico barrio at República de la India 2843 facing the Zoo grounds. It is open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner but it is recommended to call ahead and check on the opening hours as they have a tendency to vary, phone:(005411) 4802.2391. Dinner begins at 8:30PM which is perfect for those who do not wish to eat late at night, but be sure to allow about three hours to enjoy the many different courses at a leisurely pace.

For Italian food lovers and gourmands this is an absolute must during a visit to Buenos Aires and now my personal favorite Italian restaurant in the city. 

Friday, October 7, 2011

2011 Queer Tango Festival of Buenos Aires

Queer Tango Dancers From 2010 Festival

By Roy Heale

The Fifth Annual International Queer Tango Festival of Buenos Aires will take place from November 14 – 20, 2011. Without a doubt this is one of the best events on the gay and lesbian calendar in South America. The Festival will take place in the city’s principal tango venues and studios. There will be milongas and practices every day of the week, plus shows, orchestras, performances, and classes with renowned Argentine tango experts. Copenhagen is this year’s Honorary Sister City.

During the Festival there will be a salute to Copenhagen, Europe’s pioneer city in the fight for human rights, as the Festival’s 2011 Honorary Sister City. Gunner Svendsen and Tina Solveig Koch, organizers of the International Queer Tango Festival of Copenhagen, will be among the honored participants in Buenos Aires.

The Festival goal is to build a truly open tango community, encouraging new forms of expression within a living tradition of music and dance. Because of her longstanding, unconditional support and counsel, renowned dancer and tango teacher Aurora Lúbiz has been recognized since 2010 as godmother of the Festival.

On Tuesday, November 15, the celebrated Lidia Borda will open the International Queer Tango Festival for the second consecutive year at Milonga Tango Queer (Perú 571). On this occasion Borda will perform with the talented Ariel Argañaraz on guitar and Daniel Godfrid on piano. Borda will sing from her beautiful repertoire of recorded works and unreleased tracks, including Manzi, caminos de barro y Pampa, from her latest album. She is famous for her emotional and profound interpretations of the greatest writers. Rolling Stone Magazine described Lidia Borda as “the best tango singer of the present”. Borda is highly regarded as the foremost female voice in the last few decades, and she has been widely acclaimed. Although inspired by the pioneer interpreters of tango, at the same time Borda is a modern and original interpreter with a classic and unconventional repertoire which rediscovers beautiful pages of the genre, inexplicably forgotten.
Lidia Borda

For the second time, the Buenos Aires Queer Tango Festival will present the Orquesta Típica Los Reyes del Tango on Thursday, November 17, 2011 at Milonga Confitería Ideal (Tango Ideal – Suipacha 380).

The Quinteto Negro de La Boca was born as a band in the neighbourhood of La Boca in 2008. It is their members' intention to rejuvenate the cultural heritage of the community through the music of tango, featuring authors such Pedro Laurenz and Juan de Dios Filiberto. Not in vain was La Boca, one of the most important sites in the creation and development of tango throughout the ages. They will perform on Wednesday, November 16, 2011 at Milonga La Marshall (Independencia 572).

Renowned Tango Artists Alejandro Andrián, Augusto Balizano and Claudio González will dance together for the first time in an unforgettable exhibition on Tuesday, November 15, 2011 at the Festival’s opening milonga at Milonga Tango Queer (Perú 571).

On Wednesday, November 16, 2011 there will be a presentation of experimental dance theater at the Centro Cultural de la Cooperación Floreal Gorini (Av. Corrientes 1543, CABA). Works to be performed are: Appears, directed by Miguel Elías; Dual, directed by Gustavo Soto; SinFilm A staged composition in dance-theater, directed by Maestra Arena Belén and Maestra Celeste Gadea.

Los Reyes del Tango

Whether you are a dancer, a student of tango, or just an observer who is fascinated by this artistic dance form, the place to be is Buenos Aires for the 2011 Queer Tango Festival.