The Buenos Aires neighbourhood of Chacarita has seen an influx of artists, galleries and restaurateurs in recent months, thanks to its proliferation of covetable warehouse spaces, cheap rents and convenient location. Rita Restaurante is one of the latest additions to the neighbourhood’s fledgling scene, located on a quiet corner in a converted traditional Buenos Aires convenience store.
Many of the original fixtures and granite flooring have been preserved, with old wooden tables salvaged from the previous establishment sanded down and lustred, and chairs from recycled wood commissioned by La Tosca, a Buenos Aires carpentry co-operative working with local artisans based in Palermo. The vibrant blue walls are offset by white and copper overhead lights from Buenos Aires design studio Artefacto.
Owner Silvina Trouilh previously ran chic Argentine bistro Caseros before selling out to her partner to open Rita. She continues in a similar vein of offering unfussy comfort food with a homecooked feel and premium locally-sourced ingredients based on recipes picked up on her travels or reinterpretations of family favourites. The signature Rita salad of rocket, poached egg, roast pumpkin and beets served up on beautiful vintage porcelain is a highlight, while memorable pasta options include the spinach and ricotta malfatti with toasted walnuts and homemade shrimp ravioli with cream and fresh basil. Argentine desert staples such as pumpkin in syrup or ‘flan mixto’, an eggy flan with delicate Chantilly and dulce de leche round off proceedings, both sating even the sweetest tooth. A set lunchtime menu changes regularly, with teatime options of sweet pastries and cakes baked in-house, and Friday and Saturday evening dining as of September.