Arazá Cocina NativaUrban native Uruguay cuisine
El Prado, Montevideo
Native Uruguay cuisine in Montevideo. Special events include monthly expeditions to El Prado park to identify local plants–and after you get to taste them.
Arazá is a tiny restaurant in the Prado tells the story of Uruguay’s little-known culinary heritage through fine food.
Arazá is also a fruit native to Uruguay that you won’t find in supermarkets. While the Charrúa (the original inhabitants of Uruguay) and the first European settlers made good use of the tart fruit, it has all but disappeared from public consciousness. Arazá the bistro is on a mission to reclaim indigenous produce.
At Arazá Cocina Nativa, you have the opportunity to try arazá, alongside a host of other memorable local ingredients–from butiá (palm fruit) to hand-milled, organic polenta.
Chef Catherine Rivero has been a part of the slow food movement for years. She uses the intimate, 22-seat space to showcase native fruits and local products in stylishly prepared dishes.
Not to miss are Arazá’s tasting menu events on select Saturdays. Prior to a multi-course meal, guests are taken on a guided tour with a botanist through Prado park. Edible plants are the feature of the tour, offering the unique experience of nibbling native fruits as an appetizer course.
They also do gnocchis every 29th of the month!
What you should know
The restaurant currently offers lunch, afternoon tea and special events. Check their Facebook page for upcoming tour + tasting menu evenings.
The foraging/park tours are in Spanish, but the guide speaks some English and can provide clarification while walking between destinations. The dinner that follows starts quite late.
While the menu is adventurous in its choice of ingredients, it still aims to satisfy the Uruguayan palate, which tends to prefer more straightforward flavours. Wine is top-notch. Our tasting included a very exclusive premium wine by Los Nadies.
The Prado neighbourhood is well worth a visit on its own account–set aside time to stroll through the side streets and admire the splendid mansions, and stop by the botanical gardens and beautiful Blanes art museum. It’s also home to Montevideo’s only winery within city limits. Make Arazá your lunchtime stop in a day out in El Prado.
Weekday lunch menu 350 or 450 pesos (includes dessert and drink)
Sunday pasta festival – 450 pesos
Tasting menu + tour events 1300 pesos with wine included
Arazá Cocina Nativa
Avenida Agraciada 3789, El Prado, Montevideo.
- Restaurant service: Sat-Sun lunch noon to 4 pm. Private dinners/lunches for groups of 8+. Reservations essential.
- Delivery service: Delicious meal options include “Weekend dinner for two” and five-meal healthy packs delivered to your door in all biodegradable packaging. For updates WhatsApp Catherine on +598 99 003 265 or Instagram.
Photos: Martín Rodríguez Cabrera