With more Peruvian restaurants in New York City comes more Peruvian cocktails. With more Peruvian cocktails comes more happy hours at Peruvian restaurants. Here are my recommendations.
In 2009, after expanding his restaurant empire around the world, Peruvian chef Gastón Acurio opened two new restaurants in the provinces of Peru, his first outside of the confines of the capital of Lima. The two restaurants, both named Chi Cha, bring Acurio’s signature style to two of Peru’s largest cities: Arequipa & Cuzco. Each skews toward regional dishes and ingredients, though also serves a wider national cuisine and Acurio originals. The dining rooms are elegant, yet they’re not stuffy nor is the food over priced. As with most of Acurio’s restaurants, the bar menu is creative with a dozen or so Pisco based cocktails that go beyond a traditional Pisco Sour.
New York City is seeing a surge in new non-taco oriented inexpensive Mexican eateries. There’s La Churreria, serving churros, Pulqueria, serving pulque and other foods, and now Tortaria, a Mexican sandwich shop.
De niña yo tuve un sueño que hoy se ha hecho realidad, poder sentirme a tu lado a traves del cocinar. Hoy estoy aqui en Palermo mezclo sabor y amistad. Veni, sentite en tu casa, podes entrar sin golpear! When I was a girl I had a dream that… Read More →
One of the most beautiful aspects about living in New York is that before leaving on a trip to a foreign country, no matter how remote or exotic, I can find the food of that place being prepared in much the same way as I would find it in that country. Before heading to Trinidad and Guyana and having minimal knowledge of the food from either of those countries, I did a google search for Trinidadian or Guyanese Roti shops. Surprisingly, a half dozen popped up within a few miles of my apartment in Brooklyn. Ali’s T&T was the closest, and from what I could tell, one of the most recommended. Roti is a rather strange concept to many when thinking of the food of a Caribbean Island or South American country.
The indigenous Kiwicha farmer’s coop, Kallari, that completely runs and operates their own single origin artisanal chocolate company has had a small shop and lounge at Wilson and Juan Mera in the heart of Quito’s Mariscal for several years. Traditionally you could have a cup of coffee or pick up a few bars of chocolate, fair trade coffee, vanilla beans, or handicrafts designed in the indigenous village that the chocolate comes from. On a recent visit I noticed it was turning into a full blown Amazonian café with Wi-fi.
Last year, while enjoying chef Roland Villard’s incredible Amazônia Menu at Le Pré Catelan in Rio de Janeiro’s Sofitel hotel, I heard rumblings that the chef was working on a similar tasting menu comprising of the most common Brazilian ingredients: rice and beans. I just received word that the menu is now being served in the restaurant.
Since winning Top Chef Masters last year, Rick Bayless has been on everyone’s radar (though for many he was already). As the recognition of the American chef who travels around Mexico discovering native foods grows, so does his restaurant empire. One of his latest Chicago eateries, Xoco, sits right beside his much more expensive and now impossible to get a table at Frontera Grill and Topolabampo.
On a recent night in Rio de Janeiro I went to the restaurant Carlota without a reservation. There were people milling around outside and when I asked the waitress if there was a table, she replied with a wait time that was well beyond my hunger limit. Carlota would have to wait. I wandered around the Leblon neighborhood looking for somewhere simple. The neon light Koni store appeared before me like a mirage in the desert.
Sometimes what makes a meal is the reward after the effort it takes to get there. I didn’t take the long train ride but braved the slow moving traffic (on two consecutive days) to Far Rockaway Beach in car without A/C during 100 degree weather en route to Long Beach. I had heard about Rockaway Taco after reading numerous write ups in the New York Times, New York Magazine, TimeOut New York, Edible Queens, and every other regional magazine and have long wanted to go. To get to the summer only operation I have to cross Brooklyn from one end (my house in Greenpoint) to the other until I pop out near JFK airport. On arrival, after an hour of stoplights and slow moving traffic through not the prettiest part of town, I cross a causeway over a wide expanse of water. Life slows down. It’s like entering a tunnel into Oz.