Foodie Cheat Sheet: Lima

1. Where to Eat Like a Local

Juanita Bodega is a legendary two-room bar run by the same family since 1939. Located on Central Park in Lima’s Barranco neighborhood, Juanita’s Bodega Bar has been a magnet for Lima’s Bohemian residents and the Peruvian literati. Shelves of ancient liquor bottles cover the walls, creating the ambiance of a speak easy/apothecary. Try the house specialty: a roast pork sandwich, slow cooked in a secret sauce. Located at: Avenida Grau 274, Barranco.

2. Date Night

Amaz is one of the most exciting and experimental restaurants in Lima. The Amazonian jungle-inspired cuisine is the latest creation of chef Pedro Miguel Schiaffino  (Malabar), one of Peru’s most talked-about food gurus. The trendy bar and restaurant is located in Lima’s Miraflores neighborhood, boasting an adventurous menu featuring jungle-sourced food – taking the current trend of  “foraging” to the next level. The romance begins at the cocktail bar where you’ll toast your date with strange/sensational drinks made with Amazonian fruits that you’ve probably never heard of. Leap into the unknown at Avenida La Paz 1079, L18 (Miraflores)

3. The Weird and the Wonderful

Anticuchos are the Peruvian answer to the kebab. Most often they are made from “corazon,” or beef heart. Lima’s best anticuchos are grilled on a Miraflores street corner by anticuchera Grimanesa Vargas Araujo. The beef hearts are cut into chunks and marinated with vinegar, garlic, cumin and chili pepper, then skewered and grilled over an open flame. Tia Grima had been making her famous anticuchos on the same street corner for nearly 40 years (see photo below) when she finally decided to pack up and open a nearby restaurant. Anticuchos are sold daily until they run out – hint: come early. Tia Grima is now located at Jr. Ignacio Merino 466, Miraflores (at the corner of 7 de la Av. La Mar).

4. Off the Beaten Path

Los Esteros de Tumbes, located near the marketplace in Lima’s Magdalena district, is a culinary tribute to Tumbes – the northernmost region of Peru’s Pacific coastline. The restaurant oozes character – it’s an old house that’s been converted into a restaurant featuring multiple dining rooms. Diners are given a mini tour, allowing them to choose their own culinary quarters. The restaurant and cevicheria’s most famous dish is “conchas negras” or black mussels. Located at Jiron Tacna 896, Magdalena.

5. A Tour to Remember

I had a fantastic time on “The Bay Tour” from Bike Tours of Lima, mostly because we had the chance to stop and snack a few times. Riding a bicycle is one of the best ways to explore a new destination. With their Bay Tour, Bike Tours of Lima takes rides through bohemian Barranco, the fishing village of Chorrillos and the cliffs of Miraflores. It’s an easy ride with sweeping sea views, colonial mansions, beaches and bodegas. The cost of the 4-5 hour Bay Tour is US$ 30.00. Bike Tours of Lima are located at Bolivar (Weberbauer) street N°150, Miraflores.

Additional Lima Info:

Stay
When I visited Lima, I went “downscale” – in the girl’s dorm at the Kokopeli Backpackers Hostel in Miraflores for $13/night. For something upscale, both Miraflores Park Hotel by Orient Express and the Westin Lima have excellent reviews.

Drink
Pitahaya Bar – Hot! Hot! Hot! This is the place to be right now in Lima. Calle Bolognesi 498, Miraflores
La Botika – Lima’s hipster bar. Berlin 327, Miraflores.
Factoría 1075 – Restaurant/bar with the best frozen mojitos in town. Calle Gral. Mendiburu 1075, Miraflores

Churros with Chocolate at LA 73 in Barranco, Lima, Peru

All Lima food and travel expenses paid in full by Foodie International. Keeping it real for the eaters.

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  1. I wasn’t too impressed by Lima a few years ago, but that was on a last-minute, 24 hour layover for which I’d done no research. I’m considering going back now that I know just how good Peruvian food is!

  2. I was in Peru a couple years ago and the food really does stand out in my memories. I remember one place had a miniature castle for their guinea pigs. Slightly harder to detatch yourself from something that cute but they did taste nice…

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