I read about “Aashi, Almacen y Cocina Natural” prior to our arrival in Bariloche. Aashi was also our host’s #1 vegetarian restaurant pick in the area. There were even other vegetarian restaurants in town that recommended we check out Aashi.
Aashi, which means “smile” in Hindi, is a vegetarian restaurant located on the Circuito Chico about 18km from Bariloche’s city center. It is tucked away from the main road and has a beautiful front deck where guests can enjoy their meal while looking out onto a quiet wooded area.
The interior is warm, colorful and inviting. It is the kind of place where you could sit for hours catching up with a good friend. It’s also the kind of place where you could sit solo and just enjoy the ambiance inside or take in the sights and sounds outside on the front deck. As indicated by the rest of the restaurant’s the name, “Almacen y Cocina Natural,” Aashi also sells organic grocery items like teas, oats, grains, jams, dried fruits and numerous baked goods.
We managed to snag a table and umbrella on the front deck. Aashi offers both breakfast and lunch, though breakfast doesn’t start until 10 in the morning. Everything on the menu is vegetarian and a few of the items can be made vegan. We opted to share the black bean, roasted tomato, corn and tofu “cheese” quesadillas accompanied by guacamole and salsa.
Quesadillas may sound like a very basic and somewhat standard Mexican dish, but these quesadillas were different. The tortillas were not the typical flour or corn tortillas one might be used to eating; instead they were whole wheat and paper thin. The crunchy texture was unexpected, but it was a perfect combination with the quesadilla fillings. The tofu “cheese” was subtle but added a nice creaminess to the dish.
We also shared the pumpkin and squash crepe, topped with tomato sauce and cauliflower and served alongside fresh greens. The meals were accompanied by the traditional salt and black pepper shakers as well as a third shaker that contained “flower salt.” This simple mixture of sea salt and minced flower petals brought out the flavors of both dishes perfectly.
I look forward to returning to Aashi during the breakfast hours to try a smoothie and the homemade granola with almond milk.
Here are the details:
Address: Ruta 77 (Circuito Chico 200 mt west of Av. Bustillo), San Carlos de Bariloche, Argentina
Hours: Wednesday-Sunday, 10am-7pm