La Mar is one of renowned Chef Gastón Acurio’s most well-loved establishments and one of the best places to try the one dish to try when you are in Peru; ceviche. The restaurant serves only lunch and is a strictly no appointment joint. As a top 15 restaurant in Latin America, La Mar is extremely popular with locals and tourist hunting for a good meal.
We took a Uber from the Parque central de Miraflores for 10-12 soles and was served a counter top seating in 5 mins. I gather that most of the patrons to the restaurant are in big groups and would have to wait longer for the tables since we got to our counter top seats pretty quickly. The restaurant is dressed in turquoise hues and a very relaxing holiday resort décor with palm trees and bamboo pillars.
There was a fresh catch area at the counter with different seafood varieties for the customers to choose. Most of the servers speak only Spanish with only 1 or 2 of them who could speak very basic English. They had English menus so ordering is not a problem. The only challenge comes when they try to recommend something or discourage you from ordering a particular dish as they think we would not be able to finish it. ( they sure do not know how much Asians are capable of eating )
We started our meal with the 2 National drink of Peru, Pisco Sour and Chicha Morada. Pisco Sour is a cocktail made with Pisco as a base, lime juice, syrup, egg white and bitters as mixers. The alcohol content is pretty high and the taste is very tangy and sour at the same time. The Chicha Morada is made from purple corn juice which dates to as far as Inca times. The drink is made by boiling purple corn with pineapple skin, sugar, cinnamon and cloves. The drink is not very sweet for my taste but definitely better tasting than the pisco sour in my opinion.
We initially wanted to order 2 starters and 2 mains but only 3 dishes came as the servers tried to tell us in Spanish that we over ordered. After struggling with our communication in 2 different language paired with body language, we reduced 1 of the item. This dish came out wrong as we don’t remember ordering it but we still ate it in the end. There are fresh raw fish fillets wrapped around octopus and dressed with avocado cubes, cilantro and diced onions and chilli. The sauce tasted like a creamy light avocado puree which was very delightful on the taste buds. The seafood was very fresh and sweet to taste.
Next we had the classic testers which had 3 of the best ceviche. (dished might change according to the catch that day) There was raw tuna with onions in soy based sauce topped with dry seaweed, semi raw salmon with garlic in tomato based sauce topped with fresh seaweed and lastly snapper with onions and chilli in lime based sauce. All 3 ceviche were very refreshing and light and were great appetisers. My personal favourite was the soy based one as the blend of the flavours were very well complimented while the lime based one was quite ordinary. There was no doubt all the seafood used was very fresh.
Our last dish was the hot plate squid with potatoes. By this time, we were pretty full ( the servers were right.) This dish has a slight Cajun flavour to it and a light spicy kick to it. The grilled potatoes was well flavoured and the texture of the squid was smooth and cooked to perfection. As I squid lover, I understand how squid can be rubbery when overcooked. This was so well done, we had to risk bursting our tummies.
Remember to arrive early to avoid queuing for too long to get a table or if you have a smaller party, you can take the counter seats to avoid waiting for too long.
La Mar Cebichería Peruana
Address: Av. La Mar 770, Miraflores, Lima
Tel: +51 1 421 33 65
Email : firstname.lastname@example.org
Operation hours :
Monday – Thursday 12:00 – 5:00 pm
Friday – Sunday 12:00 – 5:30 pm