Neuquén is strong on pizza and pasta, at places like the traditional La Mamma (9 de Julio 56, tel. 0299/442-5291, lunch and dinner daily), El Sótano (Brown 162, tel. 0299/443-1122, lunch and dinner daily), and La Tartaruga (Roca 193, tel. 0299/443-6880, lunch and dinner daily). Franz y Peppone (9 de Julio and Belgrano, tel. 0299/448-2299, lunch and dinner daily) blends the Teutonic and the Mediterranean.
Pasty (Félix San Martín 246, tel. 0299/443-5860, lunch and dinner daily) serves fine, fairly priced pasta and chicken dishes, with well-intentioned but inconsistent service; the sidewalk seating is a mixed blessing, as the highway runs almost alongside it.
La Birra (Santa Fe 19, tel. 0299/443-4344, labirra_nqn [at] hotmail [dot] com) is a popular, casual pub-restaurant with an Italo-Argentine menu that includes items such pizza, pasta, and the like in the US$8 range in a congenial atmosphere with outstanding service. Oddly for its name, it has a limited beer selection.
Cuore di Panna (Brown and Belgrano, tel. 0299/443-5000) surpasses Neuquén’s other ice creameries.
© Wayne Bernhardson from Moon Argentina, 3rd edition