Monday, September 17, 2012

London Guide: Ceviche

Last week, I met up with a couple friends for dinner at Ceviche in Soho,
which has been on my restaurant to-do list for a while.
Ceviche bills itself as a Peruvian Kitchen and Pisco bar, and did not disappoint.

Located on Soho's busy Frith Street, there was an atmosphere as soon as we arrived,
with after-work crowds on the street even on a Wednesday.

I arrived with another friend who had never been to Ceviche before,
so when we ordered drinks to wait for our third diner, I had a Soho 
(Limo ají chilli infused pisco, elderflower liqueur, cucumber, lime, egg white 
and cracked black pepper)
and K had a Pisco Punch (Pisco Italia, homemade pineapple syrup (secret recipe), 
lime juice and grapefruit bitters).

It turns out, we had missed the traditional drink - the Pisco Sour - 
and were quickly corrected by the bar staff.  
All of the drinks were great but I see why the Pisco Sour is so revered.

The Pisco Sour consists of:

Pisco Quebranta
Egg white
Amargo Chuncho bitters

Here are Martin and Miguel from the restaurant teaching you 
how to make the perfect Pisco Sour:

The food is in a tapas style, so between the three of us, we ordered the following:
Cancha - this crunchy Peruvian corn was amazing
Don ceviche - seabass ceviche in amarillo chilli tiger’s milk, limo chilli and red onions
Barranco I love you - tiradito of thinly sliced seabass in amarillo chilli
tiger’s milk, green mango, basil and limo chilli
Sakura Maru - tiradito of thinly sliced salmon in Nikkei tiger’s milk made 
with satsumas, mirin, soy  sauce and limo chilli
Ensalata de quinoa - white quinoa, tomatoes, avocado, butter  beans and coriander
with rocoto chilli vinaigrette
Solterón - palm hearts, spinach, alfalfa, feta, Peruvian Botija olives 
and a light lime dressing
Corazón - tender beef heart marinated in panca chilli anticucho sauce with choclo corn
Pulpo - braised octopus marinated  in panca chilli with chorizo chunks 
and a coriander potato cake

And, of course, more Pisco Sours.
The menu recommends 3-4 savoury dishes per person but we found that
for three decently hungry ladies, this was the perfect amount.
Everything was fantastic!  I would recommend all of the dishes we tried,
and in particular the three ceviche dishes and the beef heart.
This was the first time I tried heart - normally put off by the thought of eating any organ -
but it was surprisingly very yummy.  I thought the texture would be spongey,
but it wasn't - just really tasty beef.

Overall, I will definitely be going back.

(All images and video courtesy of Ceviche)

Ratings: (numbers out of 10, £ out of 4)
Food: 8
Atmosphere: 8
Service: 7
Price: ££
Overall experience: 8

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