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Uruguay Food and Drink

For the country that introduced corned beef to the world, it's no surprise that Uruguayans love to eat meat above all else. The most common restaurants are parrilladas (grill-rooms), where huge racks of beef sizzle over hot coals.

Italian food is also popular, thanks to the many immigrants who came from Italy in the early 20th century, while seafood is excellent along the Atlantic coast. Uruguayan wine is pretty good too, though the nation's favourite spirit is whisky, and they even produce a well-rated brand of their own, Dunbar.

Specialities

Bife de chorizo: A sirloin steak.
Asado de tira: Short ribs, and other barbecued meats, predominantly beef and lamb, including offal.
Chivito: Steak sandwich with accompaniments including cheese, lettuce, tomato, bacon, ham, olives and pickles.
Morcilla: Blood sausage served either dulce (sweet, made with orange peel and walnuts), or salada (salty).
Dulce de leche: Boiled milk and caramel; typically spread on toast and used as the filling in alfajores biscuits.
Chajá: Ball-shaped sponge cake filled with cream and jam.
Wine: Uruguayan wines are of good quality, particularly reds of the tannat grape variety. Popular wine-based drinks include clericó (wine mixed with fruit juice) and medio y medio (half dry white wine and half sparkling wine).
Yerba mate: A bitter tea of a native herb that’s extremely popular with locals.
Caña: A clear liquor made from sugarcane.
Grappa: A grape based brandy with Italian origins.
Whisky: Uruguayans love their whisky and even make their own, which is called Dunbar.

Things to know

There are no set licensing hours.

Tipping

10% when no service charge is added.

Drinking age

18.

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