Astrid y Gastón represents the standard of fine dining in Lima, earning a nod as one of the best restaurants in Latin America. Gastón Acurio and his wife, Astrid, often credited with the rise of Peruvian cuisine, create expansive tasting menu options and a-la-carte dishes in the incredible Casa Moreyra, an 18th century hacienda. Meals at the locale are bound to be the experience of a lifetime, with the option of a staggering 28-course menu that lasts around three hours. Instructing patrons on how to enjoy each bite, and pairing food with a collection of South American wines, Astrid y Gastón is particularly accommodating to travellers, encouraging a new appreciation of Peruvian cuisine. This could certainly be described as more of a once-in-a-lifetime experience than a meal, so is totally worth a trip.
Astrid y Gastón, 290 Avenida Paz Soldan, San Isidro, Lima, Peru, +51 1 442 2775
Another street food favorite of Lima is anticuchos, beef heart skewers marinated in garlic. Much like ceviche, vendors selling this Lima speciality have moved from push carts to linen-topped tables over the decades. After selling anticuchos for twenty years, Mario Farfán opened Tío Mario’s in the city’s bohemian Barranco neighborhood. Simple, delicious, and served relatively fast, Tío Mario’s has a following that stretches out the door on some nights, with patrons eagerly awaiting the tender beef hearts served with a side of roasted corn and potatoes. For a complete Peruvian experience, enjoy a glass a chicha morada, a purple-corn concoction reminiscent of a grape soft drink. Adventurous diners may also try the whole-roasted cuy (Peruvian guinea pig).
Tío Mario’s, Paseo Chabuca Granda, Barranco, Lima, Peru, +51 1 477 0301
This Limeño take on the sandwich is easy to overlook, but very much part of the city’s best dining. Located on the edge of Parque Kennedy in the Miraflores district, this open-air sandwich bar is incredibly popular, evident from the lines wrapped around the counter. A proper meal at La Lucha includes a sanguche (try the chicharón – crispy fried pork with potatoes), some of the best french fries in the city, and a delicious fruit-drink sourced from Peru’s array of tropical vegetation. Try the frozen pineapple or the Peruvian guanabana, a fruit that combines citrus and creamy flavors. La Lucha, perfect for a meal on a budget or a post-bar stop, is one of Lima’s best.
La Lucha Sanguchería, 3 locations throughout Lima – see website for details