Virú at Astrid & Gastón - Lima, Peru

Lunch - Saturday, May 10, 2014

2014 marks the twentieth anniversary of Astrid & Gastón - the first child in what is now a globe-spanning empire. The restaurant, formerly situtated in Lima's Miraflores neighborhood, recently completed a move to the Casa Moreyra, a grand 300-year old house in the neighbouring (and equally upscale) San Isidro district.

To mark this new beginning, Virú is the theme of the restaurant's first tasting menu at Casa Moreyra - a journey through the five macroclimates of Peru in 26 courses. Gastón Acurio was overseeing the kitchen on this day - I gather this is fairly rare, and primarily due to the temporary absence of Diego Munoz.

ámaz - Lima, Peru

Dinner - Saturday, May 3, 2014

Pedro Miguel Schiaffino is a pretty big deal in Lima. Trained in the USA and Europe in the 90s, Schiaffino returned to Peru in 2002. Two years later, he opened Malabar, which has received a fair amount of acclaim in the past few years. Known as a champion of "jungle cuisine", his newest venture is ámaz, where he has gone all-in with the ingredients from the Amazon. Not since our meal at Attica 2 years ago have I encountered so many new ingredients - I can readily say that Amazonian flora are much more palatable than their Australian counterparts. (NB: as it turns out, this meal was just the beginning of a week full of new discoveries - South America has so much untapped potential).