London is suddenly awash with Peruvian restaurants including Ceviche and recently opened Coya.
But Latin America’s most gourmet cuisine, which sees unusual native ingredients – maca root, jumbo corn, aji peppers and yellow potatoes – loaded with bold flavours, as with chilli-sauce topped anticuchos (skewered meat) or cuy (guinea pig), tastes all the better on its home turf.
Since the millennium, Peru’s economy has been steadily building – no biting recession here – and with this new confidence clearly illustrated in the gentrified, vibrant cities, traditional Peruvian food has found its way out of the homestead and into the restaurants.
And it’s in the capital, Lima, where the party atmosphere is most acutely focused; brightly coloured Spanish colonial architecture sits next to the Pacific, while locals sun themselves on stretches of sandy beaches. World-renowned restaurants Astrid Y Gastón and Malabar have chefs who sparkle, creating the likes of slow-cooked tubers and breadfruit pancakes with catfish roe.
Alternatively, head to the high altitude, cobbled colonial squares of Cusco, southeast of Lima – the mountainous gateway to Machu Picchu – for hot shrimp ceviche or marinated pork in the remarkable glass cube and steel dining room of the minimalist MAP Café.
STAY: At Lima’s Miraflores Park Hotel, you can rise to sweeping views of the city and unforgettable Pacific sunsets. Rooms from £140. miraflorespark.com
MUST-EAT DISH: Astrid Y Gastón’s three ceviche sampler changes according to what’s caught that day.