Meanwhile I’ve been able to discover a lot of different food from around the world. And certainly after living in London for a year and a half, it has only become more. The one I wasn’t yet so familiar with is the Peruvian. Therefor I got really excited when we had planned a visit to Michelin star restaurant: LIMA in Fitzrovia London.
LIMA, brings Peru directly to a small restaurant in London center, complete with unique organic and wild products from small growers in Peru to the beautiful eye-catching presentations. Upon entering, the interior doesn’t look immediately chic (which you might expect at a restaurant with a Michelin star) but on the other hand the ambiance felt perfect in a true South American style: natural light, bright colors in the interior, modern furniture and art on the walls.
Maybe the name of the restaurant sounds familiar to you. Virgilio Martínez Véliz is the celebrated chef-owner of Central Restaurante in Lima, to whom an episode of the popular Netflix series Chef’s Table is dedicated. Since 2012 he is also the owner of restaurant LIMA in central London. Last weekend we paid a visit and let ourselves be immersed in the culinary world of Peru.
The menu is particularly presented in the form of a story in which the culinary history of Peru is central. It becomes clear that the country is a mix of cultures and kitchens that have attracted migration from many countries in recent centuries. Lima, the Peruvian capital, is now a city full of innovation and the chefs of the country discover new ingredients together with the food industry and restore old techniques.
Estimated between 6,000BC and 1438AD
Bread & Seaweed Butter and Andean Crisps
After an appetizer of mushroom soup we got home-made quinoa bread with seaweed butter and vegetables crisps made from products from the Amazon and tubers from the highlands. – Quinoa is one of the most important food products of the Andes. Originally from this region, it has been part of the local diet for thousands of years and has become relatively popular in the rest of the world.
The different cultures of the Pacific have always eaten raw fish. Japan has Sushi, Hawaii has Poké and Peru has Ceviche. – A beautifully presented dish prepared with diced raw fish, vegetables and other proteins, marinated with the traditional “Tiger’s Milk”, a mix of mainly lime juice and peppers.
The Spanish Conquistadors arrived to the Americas in 1531 during the period of the Inca Empire.
Slices of duck with creamy potato and a sauce of rocoto pepper and orange bitters. – Escabeche originally comes from Spain and involves cooking meat in a sour mixture. This recipe has become popular in the Mediterranean and in other Spanish-speaking regions around the world. This dish is extremely popular in Peru and is integrated into their traditional cuisine.
Immigrant workers from China and Japan arrive.
Chinese Peruvians, also known as tusán, have created their own mix of Chinese and Peruvian dishes, now called Chifa. Lima prepares Peruvian vegetables and tubers and cooks them in a Cantonese way. – A colorful and very tasty dish with various vegetables.
Miso Salmon with pomegranate and fermented radish
The Japanese influence on Peruvian cuisine is enormous, their techniques and knowledge are now part of the culinary heritage of the country, so also this beautiful dish inspired by Japan.
“Post-WW2 European Immigration” 1945-1955
A meat dish in the form of a cake with a sauce of corn, green rocoto and cashew nuts. – Post-war immigration in the late 1940s brought a new wave of Europeans to South America. This dish takes influences from the Spanish and Italian cuisine and is a big favorite of LIMA.
“Modern day LIMA” 1990’s – Present
Chirimoya & Strawberries with Coffee & Alfajores
A traditional dessert of fruit, pudding and ice cream. Completed with a Peruvian espresso and freshly baked cookies filled with caramel.
The Peru Experience is a great way to be guided through the culinary history of Peru. The next time we might choose for the menu including matching wines instead of unlimited prosecco. Which was delicious, but for the ultimate taste experience (and as wine lovers) it would be nice to experiment with the combination of both.
LIMA is a reflection of the gastronomic development that has taken place in Peru in recent years and has moved to the capital city. That’s why dining at LIMA is truly an experience that is definitely worthwhile to try.
For more information about the restaurant and the different menus take a look at their website.
Suitable for ages
Children (under guidance of a parent/carer), Adults
Restaurant – food and drinks – toilets – suitable for wheelchairs
Address & Contact
31 Rathbone Pl, Fitzrovia, London W1T 1JH
For more information about LIMA Fitzrovia, click here
Lunch / Mon till Sun: 12:00 till 16:00
Dinner / Mon till Sun: 17:30 till 23:00