Connect to Peru

Where Americans and Peruvians Living Abroad Connect to Peru

Posts Tagged ‘Cuisine

It’s Been Named the “Acurio Mania”: La Mar Photo, Reviews and Acurio’s Profile in Food & Wine Magazine

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lamar-pic2Following up from my post on Gaston Acurio’s new La Mar restaurant in San Francisco, CA, Acurio has been profiled in the November 2008 issue of Food & Wine magazine under the title “Peru’s World-Class Cuisine.”

Reviews

“Once in a blue moon, an ambitious new restaurant lives up to its buzz. The principles behind La Mar Cebicheria Peruana, an outpost of a sleek, modern cebiche place in Lima, Peru (where the dish was invented), chose a dream location by the water next to the Ferry Building to open a breezy, resonant and amazingly self-assured operation. Everything about it feels right. “

— By The San Francisco Examiner, and “San Francisco Food Lovers’ Pocket Guide”

“The first U.S. branch of a Lima-based seafooder from Peruvian celebrity chef Gastón Acurio, La Mar Cebicheria Peruana is the latest arrival on the Embarcadero’s up-and-coming Restaurant Row, where it’s serving ceviche and other midpriced Peruvian fare in a setting that includes a large patio overlooking the Bay; the separate Pisco Bar and Lounge, specializing in cocktails made with the titular alcohol, faces the Downtown skyline.”

— By ZAGAT Buzz

“I was pleasantly surprised {…] All my dishes were flavorful and satisfying and yet seemed very light […] I loved the food and the atmosphere. Freshest catch in town. It’s not cheap (I would say our tab was Bar Tartine-like, maybe because of all the small courses adding up), but all in all I think I will go back. Soon.”

— By Chowhound

Written by Catherine Castro

December 4, 2008 at 1:02 am

Peru In Search of Another Guinness Record: The Largest Ceviche in the World

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ceviche2This Sunday December 7, more than 450 chefs in Lima, Peru will convene to prepare the world’s largest ceviche in the world and look to gain its leadership back from 2004 as Peru’s largest newspaper El Comercio reports.

Ingredients will include 5 tons of fish, 3 tons of lemon, 2 1/2 tons of onion, 440 lbs. of salt and 440 lbs. of Peruvian chilli.

In 2004, Peru won the Guinness world record after preparing 9,127 lbs. of ceviche.

Ceviche is one of Peru’s cuisine flagship dishes largely known around the world — and please make sure restaurants serve you on a plate like this, not a glass (!) and with large-sized corn, and sweet potato on the side. That’s a good tip to keep in mind to make sure you are eating a real ceviche! Bon apetit.

Written by Catherine Castro

December 2, 2008 at 4:17 pm

So…How is Peruvian Food Like? Learn through this Video.

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Many of my non-Peruvian friends often ask me…so how is Peruvian food like? And I often answer “it’s got everything you can imagine”. And it is tough to explain without being able to walk them through an illustrated book.

But no need to wait or wonder anymore. Check out this video and learn through these images. Includes dishes with fresh seafood, steak, duck, potatoes, chicken, etc. and even fruits and vegetables I am sure you’ve never heard in your life, such as chirimoya or lucuma. But no worries, if you follow my blog you will learn one step at a time about each of their backgrounds so you start becoming familiar with them.

Dish names are in Spanish, so I’d recommend you take note of what you liked the most and let me know to post an easy-to-make recipe in this site.

So sit down, relax and enjoy while watching this video. But I am warning you…you might end up hungry at the end of it! Enjoy and don’t forget to take note and let me know which one you liked best!

Written by Catherine Castro

December 1, 2008 at 11:13 pm

Posted in Cuisine, Food

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Craving for a Peruvian-Style Breakfast in VA this Weekend?

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Tacu Tacu with SteakOne of my favorite spots when in the mood for a typical homemade Peruvian style breakfast is in Costa Verde Restaurant where they serve Cafe con Leche (coffee and milk), Chicharron (pork) with Sweet Potatoes, Tacu Tacu (beans) with Steak, and even Papaya juice, among other typical plates, every weekend — Saturdays from 10 am – 12 noon, and Sunday from 9:30 am to 12 noon.

Costa Verde Restaurant is located at 946 N Jackson St, Arlington, VA 22201. And there is free parking (although really few spots) at the restaurant’s entrance lot.

You can also get there via Metro — the orange line will take you to Clarendon, and the restaurant is 2 blocks away headed west towards Ballston.

YUM. Who’s in??!!??

Written by Catherine Castro

November 29, 2008 at 9:53 pm

Student Opens a Homestyle Peruvian Restaurant at MSU Named the “New Thing” in Town

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Mississippi State University’s local student newspaper The Reflector reported they finally got a Peruvian restaurant in their neighborhood and it’s considered the “new thing” in Starkville, Mississippi. With a peculiar name, “Gordo’s” (which means “Fatty’s” in Spanish but it is often used as an endearment term in Peru) just opened its door primarily to students who will be able to enjoy the typical Peruvian dishes including the Ceviche.

With a homestyle type of food, the founder is Eduardo Reyes, a young MSU graduate student pursuing a masters in accounting and has been a member of the Starkville community for two and a half years.

It doesn’t need to be a huge empire as Gaston Acurio’s as I mentioned in my earlier post, but it is great to see how young Peruvians (and their families) are getting on board of this new Peruvian cuisine boom even in a small town as Starkville. Congrats!

Written by Catherine Castro

November 29, 2008 at 8:50 pm

Lucky You, San Francisco: The Acurio Empire Has Arrived!

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gaston-acurioOne of Peru’s greatest cuisine treasures is Gaston Acurio. A native Peruvian chef, his unmatched vision and superior quality while preparing the food has just arrived this fall in San Francisco, CA (and now I am feeling SO envious to be in the East Coast!). This is his first restaurant in the U.S.

Acurio just opened this fall La Mar Cebicheria Peruana (means The Sea Peruvian Cebiche Restaurant) in the newly renovated Pier 1 1/2 – just north of the Ferry Building. It’s been said that the rear of the restaurant will open onto the marina. Similar to his La Mar restaurant in Lima, Peru, the menu includes “classic Peruvian dishes and ingredients, such as potatoes, tomatoes and chiles, as well as pastas combined with seafood and chile-infused sauces, all adapted to Northern California’s sensibility and ingredients”, as the San Francisco Chronicle reports. Other La Mar restaurants around the world are in Mexico, Costa Rica, and Chile.

This week, the Chronicle also reported chef Jose Luis de Cossío left to return to Andina, the Peruvian restaurant in Portland where he was executive chef before coming to La Mar. Taking his position will be chef Victoriano Lopez, the head chef for all of Acurio’s operations, who helped design the menu and has been at La Mar since it opened in Peru.

And if you want to get to learn more about this “next super chef “, check out his Conde Nast profile story, which states:

Acurio is the most famous chef you’ve never heard of. In the last five years, the 41-year-old has emerged as a celebrity south of the equator: He has more than a dozen high-end restaurants in Peru, with outposts in Mexico, Panama, Chile, Ecuador, Venezuela, Panama, Colombia, and even Spain, plus a comfort-food chain, two fast-food franchises, a culinary school in Lima, a luxury eco-hotel opening next year, and a hit cooking show that plays constantly on Peruvian TV. Acurio’s businesses reportedly made $65 million in 2007, and revenues are expected to nearly double to $120 million in 2008.

So I guess I will either better start planning that trip to San Fran pretty soon…or start working on pitching him the idea to get a La Mar in the Nation’s Capital. Uhhhh…can’t wait!

And thanks to Marcelo Pimentel, my dear friend and correspondent for sending us the scoop from Lima, Peru.

Written by Catherine Castro

November 29, 2008 at 7:16 am

Miami: First Peruvian School for Chefs in Latin America, Opening of Restaurant in Doral

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A sign of the popularity that Peruvian cuisine is gaining in the U.S. (and ask Boston-based chef and celebrity restauranteur Todd English predicting Peruvian food is the “next big thing”), the first Peruvian school for chefs in Latin America named “Don Ignacio” has been inaugurated in Miami, Florida, as Peruanos en USA magazine reports in its latest issue.

Founder is Raúl Diez Canseco Terry, a renowned Peruvian investor in successful franchises in Peru, who has also just opened a restaurant under the same name where 80% of the ingredients are imported directly from Peru. Among its specialty dishes is the Quinoa Risotto, and native Peruvian dishes like the Lomo Saltado, Ceviche, and Arroz con Pollo.

I will definitely plan a stop on my next trip to Miami. But for those lucky enough to live in that city, “Don Ignacio” restaurant is located in 10395 North West 41st Street Suite 125. Doral, FL 33178. If you go, let me know how it goes. Bon appetit!!!

Written by Catherine Castro

November 29, 2008 at 5:59 am

Peru: Intro to Living the Legend

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Perú, the land of the Inca Empire and located in South America, is a magical spot which involves one of the richest biodiversities of the Earth, and is a melting pot of different cultures who together are forging the promise of a better future.

Over 40,000 restaurants across the country reflect the diversity of a nation that has mixed its native traditions with the cuisines of Europe, Arabia, China, Africa and Japan. The result: unique flavours that make Peruvian cuisine one of the best and most varied in the world.

Ten thousand years of history are lived through 180 museums and historical places. While Peru inevitably evokes images of Machu Picchu and the Inca empire, the country is also riddled with archaeological sites which are a legacy of even more ancient times, when great civilizations bequeathed a legacy of their art, customs and rituals, their wisdom and skills.

Is Peru a “green” country? Of course and for many years! It is home to 84 of the 104 life zones that exist on our planet, making it a privileged destination for nature lovers. Close to 20% of the world’s birds and 10% of the world’s reptiles live in Peru. And it has converted 13% of its territory into Protected Natural Areas.

So what is this mysticism all about? Take a look at this video, and let me know what you think!

Written by Catherine Castro

November 29, 2008 at 5:23 am

Posted in General, Travel

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