powered by cebiche

Sunday, January 24, 2010

While everyone else was indoors watching football this afternoon, I was outside powering through a 12-mile run.

And it felt damn good -- probably one of the most relaxing long runs I've had in awhile.

Clearly this is entirely because I finally made it to La Mar. (Although it was a close call -- Jenn ended up going to Tahoe at the last minute, and I almost cancelled the reservation, but then Todd quite literally stepped up to the plate.)

Had a late lunch there yesterday, and it was fantastic -- easy-going atmosphere, killer food and great service. And instead of bread, they bring you a basket of fried potato chips, plantain chips and yam chips with three dipping sauces. Chips are one of my most favorite foods (perhaps second only to French fries), so this pretty much sealed the deal for me.

We split the cebiche tasting, which included four cebiches: Mixto (Mahi Mahi, calamari and octopus in ají amarillo leche de tigre sauce with cilantro, red onion, habanero, Peruvian corn and yam), Chifa (Mahi Mahi with peanuts, scallions, ginger, pickled carrots and daikon, mango, habanero, wonton strips and cilantro in a pineapple leche de tigre), Nikei (Ahi Tuna, red onion, Japanese cucumber and avocado in tamarind leche de tigre) and Clásico (California Halibut in a classic leche de tigre, red onions, habanero, Peruvian corn and yam). Every single cebiche was delicious and completely unique. I was, however, quite partial to the Mixto. Octopus -- yum. (By the way, in case you are wondering, leche de tigre does not have anything to do with sports nutrition bars. Rather, it's the name for the marinade used to make the cebiche.)

Then we had anticuchos de corazón -- grilled beef heart skewers. I'd never had beef heart before and wasn't sure what to expect. These were delicious -- nice lean meat (which makes sense considering the heart is a muscle), nothing strange about the texture. We also had empanadas de choclo, which I absolutely loved -- the corn filling had a slight sweetness to it, and the dough was just so crisp and flaky. I think I could easily eat a million of these.

And of course, we had to have Peruvian drinks to go with the Peruvian food -- first, Pisco sours and then Peruvian beer, which brought back memories for me. I hadn't had a Cristal since college!


Michelle Panik said...

The table chips are an awesome idea. I can't believe more restaurants don't do this.

My parents like a restaurant that puts popcorn on the table. Also a nice change.

Michaela said...

Popcorn is a great idea, especially since you can season it so many different ways.

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