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Exotic Peruvian cuisineThere are several high class restaurants in Lima where you can enjoy the taste of this exotic Peruvian cuisine with a touch of creativity by famous chefs.

 You won’t regret if you dine in the restaurant "Astrid y Gaston". Gaston Acurio is famous throughout Peru and Latin America chef, known for its creative approach to the national cuisine. Dinner in this restaurant may cost $ 100 for two, at least, but you will enjoy every bite.  Restaurant is located one block from Parque Kennedy at 175 Calle Cantuarias.

Another exotic Peruvian cuisine restaurant: La Rosa Nautica at Espigón 4 Circuito de Playas, Miraflores. The gourmet restaurant, where he dishes are delicious, but most importantly the restaurant is known  for its location. Imagine that you are sitting on the porch, and raging waves rush through the porch posts underneath you. There you can watch skilful surfers, quickly manoeuvring between the supports or passing by towards to beach. Warm breezes will blow on your shoulders. The feeling is that you are at sea on a ship will never abandon you.

What to eat in Peruvian restaurants? Typical Peruvian exotic dishes are:

Causa - cupola of mashed potatoes with various fillings

Lomo saltado –fried beef with vegetables and French fries

Palta Reyena  - stuffed avocado,

Chicharon – Deep fried pieces of fish, chicken, seafood

 

Ahi de gallina - chicken in the typical hot sauce.

Try local fish – you won’t be disappointed with diversity and freshness.

Seafood is more challenging. Scallops, langoustines, prawns - all this leaves much to be desired, but my taste must be spoiled rotten with the superior quality of Far eastern seafood.

Try desserts and fruit - guanabana, local sweet banana called biscotti,  cherimoya, grenadiya.

Yet beware of treacherous pungent stuffed peppers - it looks like our stuffed peppers, but only the red flesh is not so meaty. In general, Peruvian cuisine is generously spicy, so if you are not sure, ask the waiter:

PICO? (Accent on the first syllable) – Hot?

Ahi? – Hot sauce?

Si- Yes

No -  No

Un pokito - A little.

Peruvians have their own ideas about the spiciness of food. My pregnant Spanish teacher came once to give me a lesson and I treated her Korean national dish - kimchi with pork. The dish was quite spicy, but she ate it all with no complaints.  What we consider spicy and exotic is Peruvians  daily food.

In Peru there are several hundred species of potatoes, and each of them has its own purpose in local cuisine , for example, Causa is a tower of mashed yellow potatoes and a variety of toppings.

Corn also grows in a myriad variety; you have never seen (also about 200 species). Common corn, which is served as a garnish - a whitish and fresh, has nothing to do with our sweet corn. In Peru, there is a shortage of sweet corn, we travelled to the United States to enjoy local and delicious sweetness.

Another try for you is ceviche (top picture), local cold appetizer. It is prepared of fresh fish and seafood, which is coated in vinegar marinade, and voila! Accompanied by sweet potatoes and corn. Very tasty and exotic, I am still drooling while writing about it.

In the highlands of Peru you are awaited by other deliciousness:  alpaca’s steak and Cui - guinea pig. The meat is scarce in this tiny animal but it is unaffordable dish for locals who would rather sell it to tourists.

Peruvians drink local wine, which is quite good. We bought Tabernero wine (wineries are located in the town of Chincha); Cabernet and Blanco de Blancos. They still have good champagne, similar in taste to the Soviet champagne and we always enjoyed this fizzy.


A local national drink is Pisco. Funny name for Russian ear and holy for Peruvians. This drink is consumed straight like vodka shots or a bartender can make fantastic Pisco Sour. Pisco Sour is served everywhere so ask and order - do not leave Peru without trying!

Beer lovers can find Cuscena  - also local and good beer, and seemingly a monopoly beer in the local market.

In general, stay away from McDonald's and KFC, try to find some shabby place where locals eat – it means the food there is tasty and inexpensive. Exotic meal in Peru can be eaten on any budget from 5 and 50 soles per person. You won’t go hungry.

 

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