A cafe/bar for revolutionaries and hepcats
Blink and you’ll miss this gem of a bar, even though its façade couldn’t be louder. As you can guess from the huge black and white marquee outside, Barraca is a performance theater, although Atlas keeps hoping they’ll start showing movies too. But go up the stairs when the big front door is open and you’ll find the kind of watering hole where revolutions are born and music talents discovered. The space is large enough to accommodate several parties of conspirators or put some distance between you and whatever is happening on stage, which ranges from poetry readings to some really out-there experimental music numbers. Sometimes they charge at the door, or rather the table, sometimes they don’t, and sometimes you can just tell them you’re there for a drink and not for the show and they’ll let you in without a ticket. The drink list is sparse but sufficient for most tastes, at slightly higher than normal prices, and if you’re hungry, “just ask,” as the menu says, they’ll make you something to absorb the alcohol. They allow smoking inside, and if you need some fresh air, there’s a very nice balcony from which you can look onto the Santos crowds below heading to the discos and think: mere sheep. Some nights Barraca hosts live dancing, and if you’re into tango, they’ve been doing milongas here since 1999. Email them to ask about the next one.