by The Urban Grocer in Cool Travel on Thursday 27 January 2011

Set in a hipster-laden neighborhood in Buenos Aires, Il Ballo del Mattone is a local hot spot where traditional Italian food is served up in an inspired, creative trattoria-like space. Run by the lovely and eccentric artist-owner, Adrian Francolini, this restaurant-cum-gallery offers up old school eats alongside dynamic, high-concept art.

At their Palermo location, the trendy trattoria is bookended with massive graffiti, brightly popping from the otherwise gritty walls along the street. Enter and you’ll immediately be drawn to heaps of spring green plants draping lazily over inner courtyards as the sun floods in, filling the space with an expected sense of calm. Inside, cutting edge art lines the walls where waiters — all also artists — serve happy diners noteworthy Italian specialties from house made pastas that’ll make your mouth sing to plates of artichokes, cheeses, olives, and cured meats.

A few bites of their tasty eats and it’s clear that at Il Ballo del Mattone, the food is as fresh as the art — and both are worth the experience.