When travelling across the world or backpacking in the outer regions of a country, most travellers want to experience something unique from their everyday life. This need to experience a culture and lifestyle so different from our own is one of the driving reasons for travel. While some individuals experience this through famous attractions and long days of ticking off box after box on their packed itinerary, with their travel pouches ready. Others prefer to share their destination's environment and local culture through food.
Peru is one of the most biologically diverse countries in the world. It's a country that hosts many ecosystems from the Amazon Rainforest, Paramo Grasslands, deciduous forests and the Andean Cloud Forest, which is reflected in the lifestyle of Peruvians. Not only does Peru host a highly diverse range of natural ecosystems, but it's filled with a vibrant culture and history which inspires one of the most exciting culinary scenes in the world.
Twenty years ago, Peruvian food wasn't a common cuisine, not even scratching close to some of the most highly rated cuisines like Japanese and French. It wasn't until the chef George Auguste Escoffier (who wrote the rules of contemporary french cooking) decided to rank the world's top cuisines; French came in first, followed by Chinese and Peruvian. While this chef George Auguste Escoffier didn't create this ranking, his own results created a sense of global recognition for Peruvian food and its food capital, Lima.
Peruvian cuisine has exploded into popularity since this. Cherished for its vast range of local ingredients, this cuisine produces meals reflective of the local lifestyle in the different parts of Peru, from the Andes, coast, desert and the plateau. As a result, the Lima gastronomy scene has evolved a lot.
Peruvian Cuisine Standouts
The flavours of the Amazon, ocean, and the Andes, mixed with Asian influences, have created the best and most authentic cuisine seen. From the ceviches, chiles, steaks, roast pork, grilled chicken, giant corn, pisco sours, and others, it's clear why Peruvian cooking has taken the heart of many travellers.
Ceviche is said to be Peru's national dish. Raw fish and other seafood are cooked in lime juice, mixed with onions, corn, chillies, and coriander, and served as a starter. Almost similar to popular Japanese sashimi, it's clear to see why this dish is Peru's national meal.
Among the most common traditional meals are Polla A La Brasa, Anticuchos and Lomo Saltado, a well-known Chinese-Peruvian fusion food.
One Place That Can’t be Missed! – Astrid & Gaston
Offering a combination of traditional dishes with new creations, Astrid & Gaston should be on your Peru list. Made with care and security, each dish is delicious, complemented by an extensive wine list with options from all around the world. With flavours that pop, one dish that can’t be over-looked is their Peruvian floss with cream and berries – perfect to finish off the delightful experience this stunning restaurant has to offer.
What to Bring
Food travellers can take a relaxed approach to experience the flavourful food scene within Lima. There isn't much else you need to take besides an empty stomach and a travel pouch to hold all your essential items securely. However, if you want to be really prepared, we'd suggest taking a fully charged power bank so you can spend all day taking gorgeous photos from the gastronomical centre of Peru to share on your socials.