Peru boasts one of the most fascinating, fresh, and flavorful cuisines in the world, and thankfully New York has caught on to the craze. These days, it’s fairly easy to satisfy a hankering for Peruvian food in the city. The following Peruvian restaurants all have different vibes and cater to different price points. Try out one, or do a tour of all five, and you will soon see what all the hype is about—you may even chose Peru as your next vacation destination!
Raymi, a trendy Chelsea restaurant with exceptional service and even more exceptional food, offers a fresh, inspired take on traditional Peruvian fare. The high ceilings and modern décor at Raymi add to its sleek, sophisticated atmosphere, while the low lighting and cozy booths will make you feel relaxed and poised to sit back and enjoy a truly fantastic dinner. Start your meal off with one of Raymi’s many cocktails or choose from a long list of tantalizing pisco infusions. Raymi serves both traditional and modern entrées; if you want the true taste of Peru, try the arroz con pato—rice with duck—which is nothing short of heavenly. The rice is perfectly cooked, the sauce flavorful and rich, the meat succulent and tender. In short, if you don’t hear a chorus of angels singing by the time you finish this dish, you should get your hearing checked. To wrap up the meal, treat yourself to one of Raymi’s gourmet desserts. The lucuma sundae is definitely worth any post-meal dessert guilt. Lucuma is a tropical fruit native to Peru, and in the sundae you’ll find chocolate terrine, caramelized banana, almonds, and crème fraiche.
Last night I checked out the Pio Pio on 10th avenue for some quality Peruvian fare. This was my first time at this location, and my lack of prior research caused me to be quite surprised by the stylish and trendy décor since the Pio Pios that I know and love are pretty dive-y. The atmosphere was young and suitable for a large group, much like the one that I went out with last night. The acoustics in the main dining room however leave much to be desired as I was practically yelling in the ear of the person next to me in order to be heard. Although it might have been the fact that I was with a group of 15 reunited sorority girls, which is slightly reminiscent of a pack of hyenas on speed.