I’ve lived in Chile for four and a half years now and have had an ample chance to sample Chile’s many restaurants. Although Chile’s restaurant scene has made incredible strides since 2010, unlike places like New York City, San Francisco, Buenos Aires or Madison, Wisconsin, Chile isn’t a place where you can walk into a random restaurant and find a great meal.
The average Chilean restaurant isn’t that great. You’ll likely end up with some meat and potatoes with little flavor, low quality food or overpriced fare with little connection to value for money. I’ve created a list of the restaurants that I actually like and go to regularly. Please enjoy my favorite restaurants in Santiago and Chile.
I’m always looking for new restaurants to add, so please post any ideas or feedback in the comments!
Ensaladeria Holm – Padre Mariano 125. Providencia. Huge Saturday and Sunday brunches. Fresh fruit and vegetable juices and smoothies. Salads and sandwiches during the week. $$$.
Casa Zucca – Presidente Riesco 3006. El Golf. Old house with a beautiful courtyard tucked away from busy El Golf. Small menu, but large portions and high quality food. Great for a relaxing Saturday brunch, closed on Sunday. $$.
Pad Thai – Manuel Montt 231. Providencia. Solid Thai Restaurant with a cool courtyard. The Pad Thai is great, other main dishes are decent. Appetizers and desserts are a bit lacking, but main dishes are really good. $$$.
Thai House – Manuel Montt 1020. Providencia. Authentic Thai food a bit farther down Manuel Montt than Pad Thai. The décor isn’t as cool as Pad Thai. Most dishes are better here except I prefer the Pad Thai and ambiance at Pad Thai. Try the green tea cake with melted white chocolate for dessert. $$$.
Rishtedar – Holanda 160. Providencia. Real authentic Indian food. Huge menu. Many vegetarian options. One of my favorite restaurants in Santiago. Try the mushroom appetizer, the authentic naan and spicy curry. If you want it spicy like Indian food should be, you have to ask for it, as Chileans don’t tolerate spice well. Delivery for $2.000. $$$.
New Horizon – Merced 565. Bellas Artes. Authentic Indian food. Small menu, small restaurant. I love the fish curry. Cheap lunch specials. Great value. $.
El Naturista – Huerfanos 1046 & Moneda 846. Centro. Rosario Norte 532 Las Condes. Vegetarian restaurant with two locations close to Universidad de Chile metro. Great pebre (tomatoes, cilantro, onions, goes on bread) which goes really well with all of their dishes. My favorite is huevos rancheros with tons of pebre. $$.
El Huerto – Orrego Luco 54. Providencia. My favorite salads in Santiago. Their homemade whole wheat bread and their very vegetabley pebre are great. Meat eaters, try Nuevo Mexico, you’ll almost forget you’re not eating meat. $$$.
Quinoa – Luis Pasteur 5393. Vitacura. A vegetarian’s dream, reasonably priced, especially for the area, top-notch food in a cool location. They also have great brunch. $$$.
Shakti – Av Italia 1568. Barrio Italia. Vegan. Interesting food, even for meat eaters. The interpretation of ceviche but made with mushrooms instead of fish is really good. $$.
Rishtedar. See the Indian food section. Many vegetarian options.
La Gloria – Huerfanos casi esquina Amunategui, Santiago Centro and Manuel Montt 1315, Providencia. Peruvian sandwich shop. Amazing service, top quality food. Might be my favorite sandwiches in Chile. Love the fish sandwich with the spicy sauce. $.
Fuente Alemana – Pedro de Valdivia 210 and Bernardo O’Higgins 58 (near Plaza Italia). The best lomitos in Santiago. Huge sandwiches. A completo comes with lettuce, tomato, sauerkraut, avocado, mayo. Add spicy mustard for extra kick. Kind of touristy, but worth it every once in awhile. $$.
Dominó – Multiple Locations. Not to be confused with the US pizza chain, Dominó is my go to fast food restaurant. It’s how fast food should be. Good ingredients, lots of choices, not expensive. They have surprisingly good salads as well. For a change of pace: get the vegetarian sandwich (avocado, tomato, cheese) with a “paila” of eggs. $.
Donde Guido – Bellas Artes. Peruvian sandwich shop with lots of interesting sauces. Fast, good, filling. Big sandwiches…you won’t go away hungry. $.
Hogs – Los Leones 40, Providencia. Merced, Lastarria. Handmade, quality sausages and hotdogs. A bit expensive compared to to a typical low quality Chilean hotdogs, but worth it. A real hotdog is worth the extra cost. $$
La Superior – Nueva de Lyon 105. Providencia. Upscale versions of Chilean classic sandwiches. One of the best beer lists in the city with 25+ Chilean brewed beers. Packed for lunch, but easy to get a table for dinner. $$$.
Metropol – Vitacura 8927. Vitacura. Filling sandwiches named after metro stops, good beer list. Quesadillas are worth trying too. $$.
Elkika – Multiple locations in Providencia. Big, tasty sandwiches, cheap beer. Always packed. A local favorite. $$.
Tiramisu – Isidora Goyenechea 3141. El Golf. Great thin crust pizza. Reasonably priced for location, cool atmosphere and top-notch food. It’s always packed, no matter when you go. Expect to wait if you go during peak hours. Have a pisco sour while you wait at the bar. $$$.
Fabrica de Pizza – Bellavista. Lower quality, but good thin crust pizzas for US$6-9 and cheap beer. A place to sit outside on a nice sunny day or a warm night with a bunch of guys. Cheap and “interesting” people watching. $.
Caperucita – El Bosque Norte 083. El Golf. Thin crust pizza with interesting combinations. Also has delivery.
Sukine – Antonia Lopez de Bello 244. Patronato. One of my favorite restaurants in the city. Authentic Korean food with owners who barely speak Spanish. Really cheap, a great place to go with groups. Best for lunch or early dinner, as neighborhood can be sketchy at night. $$.
Vietnam Discovery – Loreto 324. Patronato. One of the only Vietnamese restaurants in Santiago. Great food, sophisticated decoration. $$$.
Barandiaran – Manuel Montt 315. Providencia. Patio Bellavista and Nuñoa. Manuel Montt is my favorite location they converted a beautiful old house into the restaurant with a large courtyard. Great food, classic Peruvian. Really strong pisco sours. Great place for a special occasion. I love the corvina with mango sauce and shrimp and the filete a lo macho, along with the ceviche. $$$$.
Las Hermanas de Trujillo – Av. Italia 1206. Barrio Italia. Small courtyard in Barrio Italia with great empanadas and Peruvian dishes. Great place for dessert and coffee. $$.
El Encuentro Peruano – Ismael Valdés de Vergara 790. Santiago Centro. A Peruvian restaurant that caters to Peruvians who are living in Chile. Affordable, big portions, strong pisco sours, good flavor, cool old building. My favorite affordable Peruvian restaurant. $$.
Astrid y Gastón – Antonio Bellet 201. Providencia. From world renown chef Gaston Acurio. Intricate, flavorful, Peruvian food. One of the most expensive restaurants in the city. Only for special occasions or if your parents are visiting (and paying!). $$$$$.
La Mar – Nueva Costanera 3922. Vitacura. Rivals Astrid y Gastón as the top Peruvian restaurant in the city. Better ambiance and outdoor seating, known for its seafood and ceviches. The only Peruvian with vegetarian menu, but you have to ask for it specially. For special occasions. $$$$$.
Shoo-gun – Enrique Foster Norte 172. El Golf. Authentic Japanese restaurant with interesting Japanese dishes, other than sushi. Good sushi, but expensive. I love the katsundun, a rice, pork, egg and onion bowl. Lunch menu is a great value. $$$$.
Kintaro – Monjitas 460. Bellas Artes. Fairly priced, great rolls, least use of cream cheese in their sushi in Santiago. Sashimi is good, but not spectacular. Try a sushi boat sample platter if you go with friends. $$$.
Senz – Cerro Plomo 5680 Las Condes and Costanera Center Tobalaba. Peruvian inspired sushi. Large sushi rolls with interesting Peruvian inspired sauces and fillings. I prefer the Las Condes location, as it’s quieter. Really busy for lunch. $$$.
Zabo – Dardignac 0191. Bellavista. A bit expensive for what you get, but really good, high quality sushi. Great sashimi. Good drink menu. $$$.
Bushido – Francisco Bilbao 399, Barrio Italia. Las Condes 9377. Las Condes. Great sushi with interesting combinations, but terrible Thai food. The contrast between the quality sushi and the garbage worthy Thai food is incredible. Go for the sushi. Don’t be tempted to try the Thai. Good delivery. $$$.
Peumayen – Constitución 136. Bellavista. Peumayen’s tagline is “ancestral food” and is the first restaurant in Chile that’s honoring Chile’s rich indigenous food tradition. I foreigners here whenever they come to visit Chile, as it’s an experience. Start with a North to South bread sampler, an appetizer platter to share and a unique main dish, all in a beautifully restored Chilean house. Expensive, but worth it for a special occasion. $$$$.
Divertimento – Pedro de Valdivia Norte at Cerro San Cristóbal. High quality Chilean food. Expensive, but a great location surrounded by trees in the park at the foot of Cerro San Cristóbal. You may need a reservation at night or during lunch. $$$$.
La Casa de Don Benito – Camino Lonquen Norte Parcela 16. Lonquen. Located about 30 minutes from downtown Santiago, Don Benito serves classic Chilean food and claims to have the best empanadas in all of Chile. The no frills food is excellent and all of his restaurants are packed on weekends. $$.
La Piojera – Aillavilú 1030. Metro Cal y Canto. Santiago Centro. La Piojera is a bit like going back in time, before tv, before radio and electricity. It’s what I image our great great grandfathers did in their spare time after a hard day’s work. It’s a divey traditional place famous for their terremotos, which are drinks made of white wine, pineapple sorbet and some light liquor. The meat on the bone and the hot sauce is great, but the place is dirty and if you think too hard, its gross. A place to go for drinks and brave the food. Although it’s getting touristy, it’s still worth going at least once for the experience. Really cheap. Half a dollar sign.
Salvador Cocina y Café – Bombero Ossa 1059. Santiago Centro. Hidden just off of Paseo Ahumada, this restaurant is about 3 blocks from the Universidad de Chile metro and has great homemade lunch. Much better quality for a similar price compared to many of the small restaurants in the center. Try the iced tea. $$.
Liguria – Three locations Pedro de Valdiva, Manuel Montt, Tobalaba. Providencia. Bar and sandwich shop that serves good Chilean food, sandwiches and decent drinks. Food is good, specials are great. Drinks can be expensive for what you get, but it’s one of the only bars that serves food after about 12am in Providencia. $$$.
Juan y Medio – Barrio Brasil, Rancagua and Vitacura. Originally a truck stop about an hour south of Santiago that served massive portions of hearty, classic Chilean food. Now Juan y Medio has up locations in Santiago. It’s hit and miss: sometimes its really tasty, other times not great. $$$.
Galindo – Dardignac 098, Bellavista. Cheap Chilean food. Good place for beers and chorrillana with friends or Sunday lunch with a group or traditional chilean food after work during the week. $$.
J Cruz – Condell 1466. Valpariaso. The original chorrillana: Artery cloggin’ french fries, grilled onions and meat. Accompanied by a beer. The location oozes history and is down a dark alley. But it’s worth it if you’ve made the trip to Valparaiso. $.
Las Cabras – Luis Thayer Ojeda 0116, Providencia. High quality Chilean classics at an updated version of a Chilean “fuente de soda” or soda fountain. Smallish portions but very high quality food. $$.
Bar Nacional. Centro, El Golf. Huge menu of Chilean classics. Good value for money. Packed at lunch, good place for after work drinks. $$.
Portofino – Bellamar 301, Cerro Esperanza, Valparaiso. Top-notch seafood on the coast. The incredible views alone are probably worth the price of the meal. Good wine list, great service. $$$$.
Punta Mai – Avenida del Mar 1366, Maitencillo. Located about two hours north of Santiago, Punta Mai has great seafood in an upscale atmosphere. A bit expensive, but if you’re already on the coast, its worth it. $$$$.
Mercado Central – Metro Cal y Canto. Mercado Central is a bit of a tourist trap, but it really does have great seafood. Don’t order the crabs, they’re insanely expensive. The best tip here might be to purchase fresh seafood and cook it at your house. It’s way cheaper and more fun to look at all the interesting fish and shellfish that you probably haven’t seen before. $$-$$$$.
See: Peruvian restaurants – They usually have great seafood.
Las Vacas Gordas – Cienfuegos 280. Barrio Brasil. A traditional Chilean parrillada and meat restaurant. Huge, open grill that you can see right as you walk in. Great pisco sours and desserts. A great place for Saturday lunch, but expect to wait a bit. $$.
Ox – Nueva Costanera 3960.Vitacura. Some of the best meat in Santiago. Expensive, good wine list, great appetizers, but worth it for a special occasion. $$$$$.
Happening – Av. Apoquindo 3090. El Golf. Rivals Ox in quality, but a little less expensive. Good value for money on the meat, but sides and wine can be expensive. $$$$.
California Cantina – Las Urbinas 56. Providencia. Gringo bar with burgers, texmex food and moderately priced drinks. Decent, not great, but if you’re craving a US atmosphere, go here. Great place to watch US or European sports on tv. $$$.
Golfo di Napoli -Dublé Almeyda 2435. Ñuñoa. The best value for money Italian restaurant in Santiago. It’s cheap, has huge portions and has the feel as if you’ve been transported right over to Europe. The gnocchi melts in your mouth. House wine in US$4 for a half liter. There will likely be a wait on weekends. $$.
Da Noi – Av. Italia 1791. Barrio Italia. Reasonably priced Italian food in Barrio Italia. Waiters bring warm bread with meatsauce when you arrive. Try the lasagna. $$$.
Varanasi – Manuel Montt 983. Providencia. An interesting mix of Indian “soul food.” A bit expensive for what you get, but interesting dishes and nice atmosphere. $$$.
Lusitano – Condell 1414. Barrio Italia. Good food, great tiramisu for dessert. One of the best outdoor terraces in Santiago. Great place for a relaxing lunch or a nice night out with friends or a date.
Étnico – Constitución 172, Bellavista. A loungy type bar/restaurant with great seafood and a top wine list. The food is a bit expensive, but the wine and drinks are fairly priced. Great place to relax with some friends or to take a date. $$$.
Ky – Peru 631. Recoleta. One of my favorite places in the city. Located in an old house filled with old furniture, this is another great place to take a date. Interesting Asian/Chilean dishes, great seafood and a drink menu that’s 3x longer than the actual menu. A rare place with character in Santiago. Make sure to make a reservation on weekends. $$$.
Casa Luz - Av. Italia 805. Barrio Italia. Beautifully restored old house with one of the best courtyards in Santiago. High quality food, but a bit expensive for what you get. $$$$.
La Burguesía – Santa Magdalena 99. Providencia. Burger restaurant with interesting mixes of meat and non-traditional toppings. Only outdoor seating. $$$.
Unlce Fletch – Dardignac 0192. Bellavista. The best burgers in Santiago. Brioche bun, high quality meat, crispy bacon, top notch beer list. $$$.
Ice Cream & Desserts
Emporio la Rosa – Parque Forestal and various locations. The best ice cream in the city. Thick, creamy, delicious. My favorite flavor is chocolate avellana (hazelnut). They also have cakes and coffee. The Parque Forestal is the classic location. Grab an ice cream and eat in the park. $$.
Freddo – Costanera Center, 5th floor, Providencia. Parque Arauco, Las Condes. Argentina’s favorite ice cream chain comes to Chile. A little piece of Argentina in Chile. $$.
Pastelería Laura R – Manuel Montt 747 and other locations, Providencia, Vitacura. Traditional Chilean cakes, cookies and pastries. Incredible cheesecake. $.
El Bombón Oriental – Merced 353. Bellas Artes. Traditional Chilean cakes, Turkish coffee. Really nice waitstaff. Has a patio where you can sit outside and enjoy your snack. $.
Le Flaubert – Orrego Luco 125 Providencia. They have delicious small sandwiches, interesting cakes and cookies. Great place for tea and a snack. $$.
Dulceria Las Palmas – El Bosque Sur 42 and various locations. Try to the bite sized cake assortment. $$$.
La Parrilla Uruguaya – Condell 566. Providencia. Second location in Ñuñoa. Amazing meat, feels like you’re in Montevideo or Buenos Aires. Cheap beer, wine and drinks. Split a parrillada that comes with a chicken breast stuff with sausage and choose, multiple types of sausage and steak. As a bonus, it’s a good place to watch a soccer game. $$.
Sandwicheria La Rambla – Tabancura 1344. Vitacura. Uruguyan sandwiches, specializing in chivitos. $$.
De la Ostia – Orrego Luco 065. Providencia. Spanish tapas bar. Solid food. Tasty sangria. Always packed, which sometimes leads to slow service. Good place for a drink with friends. $$$.
Le Bistrot – Santa Magdalena 80. Providencia. Traditional French restaurant with French owners and waiters. Loved the beef bourguignon. Most of the time you’ll need a reservation. $$$.
Normandie – Providencia 1234. Providencia. Tasty, well prepared French food. Good wine list. Serves pâté and butter with warm bread when you arrive. Cool interior that look like a Paris cafe. $$$.
Boulevard Lavaud (Peluquería Francesa) – Compañía de Jesús 2789. Barrio Brasil. Solid french menu in an old house turned into a restaurant. Still has a functioning old style barber shop in the building in the front. Good food, great place for a date. Really cool décor. $$$.