If I asked you to name a national Peruvian dish, could you honestly answer? Everyone know Argentina for their steaks, and Mexico for their tacos and tequila, but Peru’s food isn’t as obvious.
It turns out it’s ceviche, the dish that the new Soho restaurant is named after, and I had my first taste of it last week. Ceviche, the restaurant, is located on Frith Street, very unassuming but with a great atmosphere. Like many London restaurants, it’s small, bookings are necessary, and there’s a bar almost as popular as the kitchen.
I was with a group of 6, and although the menu isn’t vast, there was a lot of small dishes to try so we basically ordered everything and shared the lot! But before food, we ordered Pisco Sour cocktails as recommended by basically every review I’ve read for the place so far. A mix of egg whites, amargo chuncho bitters, lime and sugar syrup, it was like smashing your face into a wave of tequila – sharp, sour and bloody tasty. I wouldn’t recommend more than one or two though, unless you don’t want to remember how you got home!
Ceviche is essentially raw fish, ‘cooked’ in lime, chili and salt. I wasn’t blown away by it, I didn’t like just how cold it was, and as it came in slices it felt almost slimy as I chewed my way through. It all looked beautiful; brightly coloured, decorated with fresh ingredients ranging from corn to satsumas.
We then went on to have a selection of the antichuchos, or grilled skewers, which were much more up my street. Tender, flavoursome, and hot (I just can’t do raw food it seems), they were easy to peel off the skewers that held them together and just as easy to wolf down and order more. The braised octopus with chorizo was absolutely incredible, and I even ate the salmon, which I’m normally not a fan of, as it practically fell off the skewer and melted in the mouth.
|Octopus & chorizo skewers, with the steak ones in the background|
If you’re looking for a lively place where you can share food at the same time as sharing conversation then Ceviche is great. I wouldn’t go for a romantic date, but that’s mainly just so I wouldn’t have to share the skewers and could have them to myself!
1st photo from www.cevicheuk.com. All photos property of Shopped and Dropped, do not re-use without permission.