Patagonian dishes, but particularly Patagonian lamb has become highly fashionable in Buenos Aires restaurants and supermarkets in the last eight months according to the Argentine press.
The growing demand, since Patagonian President Nestor Kirchner took office nine months ago has forced chic restaurants to include the dish in the menu and supermarkets to have an abundant supply.
The going retail price is between 3,5 and 4,8 US dollars the kilo and 45 US dollars for the whole 9,2 kilos lamb.
"Before having Patagonian lamb was a chef's suggestion, however lately it's the clients who are demanding it", said chef Donato de Santis who has a popular Gourment program in one of Buenos Aires main channels.
One of the most popular recipes is to make the lamb in the oven with potatoes, sweet potatoes and thyme.
"Patagonian lamb first arrived in Buenos Aires 25 years ago, but it was mainly a workers dish, not for city people. However now it's all over the place given it has lower cholesterol than beef", explains Rodríguez Pardo another well known chef.
Juan Carlos Leal president of Buenos Aires Chamber of Restaurants says lamb consumption has grown because of new ways of cooking, "before it was only barbecue, now we have different options".
"President Kirchner imposed the fashion and people picked it up and it's becoming a regular dish; it's mainly a cultural phenomenon", argues Luis Barbeira from "Las Nazarenas" a traditional restaurant just across the Sheraton in downtown Buenos Aires.