Gastón Acurio (pictured) with Juan David Ocampo
“The little arepa that thinks it’s a mixed sandwich”
Av. Paz Soldán 290, San Isidro, Lima 27
+51 1 442 2777
Reason to visit: Astrid y Gastón has been at the forefront of Peru’s ever-vibrant gastronomic scene since its opening 20 years ago. No stranger to awards, the restaurant was the first ever No.1 in the inaugural Latin America’s 50 Best Restaurants list in 2013 and this year adds the Art of Hospitality Award to its trophy cabinet, a testament to the unparalleled dining experience created by its talented front-of-house team.
A brief history: Founded by Gastón Acurio and his German-born wife Astrid Gutsche, who herself won Latin America’s Best Pastry Chef Award in 2015, the restaurant relocated to its current home at the palatial Casa Moreyra in 2014. Chef Diego Muñoz was at the helm until founding father Acurio returned to the kitchen in 2015 after many years flying the flag for his country's cuisine. The kitchen is now run by rising star Juan David Ocampo as head chef.
Peru on a plate: Acurio’s extensive tasting menu offers an exploration of the region’s ingredients, traditions and culinary techniques. After a series of menus based on themed narratives, the latest manifestation, called Región Lima, is designed as a more permanent, though evolving, structure. There is a short and long version of the tasting menu, with most ingredients coming from the wider Lima area (and many grown in the restaurant’s garden).
What’s the space like? Elegant high-ceilinged grandeur with minimalist décor. The restaurant is set within a brilliant-white 17th century former plantation house, which also houses a bar, private rooms, development kitchen, patio and kitchen garden.
What else: The chef has a new restaurant in the works in Barcelona, which will be called Yakumanka, led by former head chef César Bellido. It will focus on Peruvian cuisine inspired by Spain’s finest sea produce.