Jaunting Sisters

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Cooking Class and a Classic Estancia

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Day 2 in Buenos Aires started early; I had an amazing buffet breakfast down at the restaurant Elena at the Four Seasons.

View of Avenida 9 de Julio & French Embassy from our suite

Starting at 9am, we had a full day in the Pampas -- the low fertile country outside of Buenos Aires. Our travel specialist, Maita Barrenechea, arranged for a chaffeur and an English-speaking guide named Gaston to regale us with a history lesson as we drove an hour outside the city.

Draghi Platero, or Silversmith San Antonio de Padua in San Antonio de Areco

We arrived in the town of San Antonio de Areco and had the opportunity to visit Draghi, a real silversmith workshop (referred to as a platero) and museum. We had the privilege to see decorative gaucho saddles, bridles, spurs and belts, amongst many other malleable creations. From there, we visited the local church, San Antonio de Padua.

Cooking class with Chef Paula Mendez Carreras at her home For lunch, I became a studious pupil for a cooking class with Chef Paula Mendez Carreras at her home in a small village. She instructed Joe and me on how to make chipa, a cheese bread made with Parmesan and Holland cheese. She then went in to create harrissa with marinated chicken, quinoa and a citrus salad. It was an absolutely deliciously organic meal, which paired well with white wine.

Before our last course, we cleaned our palates with a melon and rose-water sorbet. For dessert, Chef Paula made a dish called "Splendid.. Just Splendid," which was her version of a chocolate lava cake, but with a white chocolate and cream moat around the dessert.

Then we went onto Estancia La Bamba de Areco, owned by a wealthy French family and avid polo players. The grounds include luxury rooms, an infinity pool and equestrian activities, like polo and horseback riding.

Entrance to La Bamba de Areco Jenny welcomed by the staff of La Bamba de Areco

I received a grand welcome, with all the staff lined up to greet me as I arrived. Thanks to Maita, the staff had arranged a private suite for me to change and relax in whenever I wanted throughout the day. I lounged by the infinity pool for a few hours, and then Maita surprised me by showing me a horse whispering demonstration. I have never seen a man and a horse be so in sync. The horse basically did whatever Martin, the trainer, told him.

Horse Whisperer at La Bamba de Areco The horse whisperer had an unbelievable bond

At 5:30, we took a horseback tour through the Pampas. I attempted to look relaxed as I trotted through the countryside. My horse was sort of spunky and continually tried to eat grass, so I tried gain control of the situation. I finally got the hang of it about halfway through the ride. After the ride, we ended our evening as the sun was setting by passing around a Yerba Matte, a tea-like drink sipped from a silver staining straw -- a tradition of many Argentinians.

A Gaucho at La Bamba de Areco Sun setting over a polo field at La Bamba de Areco

Tomorrow, I have a massage at the Four Seasons, lunch with Maita's daughter, Sophia, and then we are heading to the Faena Hotel and Universe for the best Tango show in town. Another great day ahead of us...

© 2013 Jaunting Sisters.
Written on Friday, 11 January 2013 00:00 by Jenny Kerr

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