Lima, Peru

Influential chef explores the diverse culinary heritage of Peru


On the Pass

Rafael Osterling

Chief reason to visit: Rafael Osterling's eponymous restaurant – housed in a beautiful Art Deco townhouse in the chic Miraflores area – celebrates Peru's eclectic and historic food culture.

What to eat: The menu draws on Peru's diverse culinary heritage, fusing traditional native ingredients with Italian, Asian and Nikkei influences. Think everything from ceviche and tiraditos to pizza and sashimi. Stand-outs include grilled octopus with pimento chimichurri, Kalamata olives and garlic confit, and veal gizzards with truffle and sweet peas.

About the chef: Osterling used to be a lawyer and was considering a career in international diplomacy before he decided to follow his true calling, studying at Le Cordon Bleu and working in restaurants in Paris and London. He opened Rafael in 2000.

Other ventures: Osterling operates another Rafael in Bogotá, Colombia. In late 2016, he opened Félix Brasserie in Lima, where he also owns a ceviche restaurant, El Mercado, which has been lauded for its modern take on Peruvian cuisine.

What else? Osterling was the first Peruvian to receive a Gourmand World Cookbook Award for his book Rafael, El Chef. In 2016, his book El Mercado: Homenaje a La Cocina Peruana won the Prestige Gourmand Award.