While Miami has always been a mecca for Latin American food, Peruvian cuisine used to be something difficult and rare to find. But over the past several years, signature dishes like ceviche and lomo saltado have become the talk of the town. Folks flock to restaurants featuring papa a la huancaina and arroz chaufa, and let’s not forget how popular quinoa (a common staple in Peru) has become. These days, there are cevicherias in every strip mall, but we’ve dug around for the best of the best just for you:
1. Cvi.Che 105
You can’t talk about Peruvian food in this town without first giving a nod to the award-winning Cvi.Che 105. For nearly a decade, this spot has had a reputation for some of the most killer ceviche around. Chef and owner Juan Chipoco first took over the downtown property (then a Cuban restaurant) in 2007. He turned it into the hopping Peruvian hot spot it is today, and has since opened a second location on Lincoln Road. Chipoco also runs the adjacent Wasska Lounge as well as Pollos y Jarras, so he’s basically got y’all covered on all things Peruvian.
2. La Mar by Gaston Acurio
When you’re talking about world-class Peruvian fare, there’s one big name in Miami that comes to mind and that’s Gaston Acurio. The acclaimed chef owns multiple restaurants from Lima to Caracas to Miami and San Francisco, as well as a culinary institute in his homeland of Peru. But let’s talk about La Mar. Located in the Mandarin Oriental Hotel on Brickell Key, this gorgeous waterfront restaurant is well known for its Peruvian and fusion dishes, from tiraditos to causas, and for having one of the poshest settings around. Whether you’re there enjoying their express lunch (with a glass of wine chosen by the sommelier) or indulging in some seafood-heavy Sunday brunch, La Mar is where you go to enjoy authentic Peruvian flavor in style.
3. Mr. and Mrs. Bun
Save your jokes about dining in the ‘burbs, because Mr. and Mrs. Bun have shown that you can get a high-quality meal west of the Turnpike. This simple cafe in the heart of West Kendall has become a go-to for modern Peruvian cuisine—on a bun. Vanessa Rivera and Gian Carlo Accinelli opened the sandwich shop just a few short years ago, but the reviews have been stellar ever since. Try the aji de gallina bites for starters, then move on to one of their delectable bun-wiches, like the pollo chi jau kay con nabo encurtido (breaded chicken with Chinese Five-spice).
4. Pisco y Nazca
This popular ceviche gastrobar has locations in Kendall and Doral, and both are ideal for sipping on pisco sours, people watching, and of course, enjoying flavorful Peruvian fare. Upon entering, you’ll take notice of the stylish design, influenced by the original Nazca lines in Peru. But if the food is what you’re most concerned with, have no fear. You’re definitely getting the real deal here from Chef Miguel, a Peruvian himself, who has also worked for celeb-chef Gaston Acurio’s La Mar franchise. Pisco y Nazca is it’s own brand, though, and in recent years has carved out a strong presence in Miami’s culinary scene.
5. Dr. Limon
Those looking for something a little different might want to step into Dr. Limon’s office—er, I mean, restaurant. At this hospital-themed eatery, you’ll find the cure for what ails you in the form of fresh ceviche and other goodies. The blackboard on the wall lists the quirky names of various dishes, like the Fiebre Amarilla ceviche (Yellow Fever) to the Dr. Miyagi (with sesame oil, nikkei sauce, and hot limo pepper). If quirkiness doesn’t win you over, though, you’ll be happy to find some of the freshest ceviche in town plus other favorites like aji de gallina, and for dessert, an unforgettable flan.
6. Aromas Del Peru
Aromas del Peru is one of the oldest, most well-established Peruvian eateries in town—feeding hungry locals since 2003. Over the years, they’ve managed to open restaurants all across town, from the Gables to the Hammocks and in between. Their success is in part due to their attention to quality service and beautifully plated entrees, but mainly due to the exquisite flavors of the dishes. From the papas a la huancaina to the seafood risotto (and of course, the ceviche), Aromas continues to keep their guests full and happy.
7. Divino Ceviche
For a modern take on ceviche and other Peruvian fare, you can’t go wrong with Divino Ceviche. Another alum of Acurio’s, Executive Chef Christian Encalada has created a menu that honors the traditional, but gives the flavors of each dish a real pop. With well over a dozen types of ceviche and tiradito, plus authentic plates like tacu tacu, tallarin saltado and jalea de pescado, it’s hard to to go hungry here. Don’t forget to pop in during the all-you-can-eat ceviche lunch special, or during happy hour, for all the best deals.
8. Sabor A Peru
For affordable Peruvian cuisine in more-than-generous portions, try Sabor A Peru. While not the flashiest place for ceviche, it still holds its own with an incredibly extensive menu (for starters, they have 11 different soups and 7 different kinds of chaufa). Among the most popular dishes are the parrillada de mariscos and the anticuchos de corazon—and don’t forget to wash it all down with a tall glass of chicha morada (a purple corn-based drink). Sabor A Peru’s clientele is loyal, and has been for roughly a decade since it first began impressing locals with their home-style approach to Peruvian meals.