After visiting so many small towns in Northern Argentina, it was a real treat to arrive in Salta, a metropolitan city with European flair. We spent two days there and couldn’t help but splurge and eat at both of the city’s two vegetarian restaurants. For casual meals and quick lunches, there’s Bios Diet, a vegetarian and macrobiotic restaurant with a pay by weight salad bar and daily lunch specials. For fancier meals, there’s Entre Indyas, which has a daily menu and offers Indian and Peruvian inspired dishes made with fresh, local produce.
Entre Indyas was our first stop. We went there for dinner and ordered two out of the three main courses on the menu. Each main cost about $25 Argentinian Pesos ($6.60 USD). The menu options weren’t described in a fancy way. As far as we understood, we were getting a simple bean salad, and a vegetable and rice dish. First to arrive, a jug of mint lemonade. Shortly after, the server brought us some spicy eggplant dip and a bread basket. We were a group of four, it didn’t take long for the bread and dip to disappear.
We were told the portions were generous and decided to order two plates between the four of us. This worked out great, there was just enough food to share. The bean salad was packed with lots of delicious vegetables, beans and fresh herbs. There were radishes, basil, chickpeas, black beans, peas, apples and bean sprouts. On top, there was a citrus and balsamic vinaigrette. The herbs, crisp apples, radishes and variety of beans made for a light, fresh and energizing salad.
The second plate was an amazing medley of vegetables, with crispy rice and papas fritas. There were so many great vegetables, including onion, corn, carrots, bell pepper, broccoli and zucchini. The veggies were cooked in soy sauce but, thankfully, the flavour didn’t over power the dish. There were so many ingredients that every bite had a unique taste.
Entre Indyas has a great vibe and warm decor. You can eat in the open sky court yard near a fountain and lots of greenery, on the main floor close to the kitchen, or upstairs in a tranquil room with cushion seats and low tables. The menu and staff are Spanish, so go with Spanish speaking friends or be prepared to order at random.
Buenos Aires 44
On our second day in Salta, we went to Bios Diet for lunch. There were a few lunch specials, all involving their homemade vegetable soy burgers. For $13 Argentinian Pesos ($3.45 USD) each, we ordered a burger and had unlimited access to the salad bar. The salad bar included carrots, cucumbers, greens, string beans, eggplant, tomatoes, beets and quinoa. There wasn’t any seasoning, which made the salad rather bland but still healthy and refreshing.
We thought we’d ordered one burger each but ended up with four in total. It was a surprise to see how they were served, all alone without a bun or dressings. If we were vegetarian, they would have happily been served with cheese. We ended up mixing them with our salad. We took the extra two burgers home for dinner.
The burgers had a nice texture but tasted a bit weird. I think the “off” taste was a result of the oil they used. There’s this awful oil in South America, a blend of grape seed and olive oil. I enjoy both on their own but can’t stand the awful taste and smell that results when they are combined. The taste of the oil wasn’t overwhelming but it was strong enough to make it difficult to enjoy the burger. For dinner, I had one on salad but the other went to waste.
Bios Diet is a small place, perfect for lunch and takeout. The prices are reasonable and the food is healthy. They have an English menu and friendly staff.
Santiago del Estero 496