Bold And Powerful Peruvian Flavours At Pachamama, Marylebone

6th July 2018

Pachamama in Peru can be translated to “Mother Earth” and the interior designers for the restaurant has certainly gone to town with the theme; there is greenery in all shelves, corners, and tables of the room, the distressed walls give off a relaxed, casual vibe and the dangling light bulbs from the ceiling belong more to a rustic outdoor terrace than a basement restaurant in Marylebone.

If people ask me to recommend a Peruvian restaurant, Pachamama is one of the first that comes to mind; having set its stall out before a rash of Peruvian restaurant openings in the last few years. The first thing you might order here might be a Pisco sour, but their cocktail menu has been cleverly devised to cater for all tastes with their Papa's and Mama's sections. You can enjoy their very pink house drink, Diva which is made of Russian standard vodka, Amaretto di Saronno, strawberry and camu-camu cordial or a more robust, Gastón Acurio, which is a homage to the father of Peruvian gastronomy and contains Pisco, vodka, rocoto chilli, lime and ginger beer.

The sharing-style menu is highly enjoyable and conveniently divided into snacks, sea, land, soil, and sweets. You can really tell how fresh a restaurant's ingredients are by ordering their seafood dishes and Pachamama absolutely delivers on this front. Their sea bass ceviche was a prime example, with the mouthwatering raw fish marinated in tiger's milk, which is packed with flavoursome spices and citrus juice. Seabass is quite often used in ceviche because it is the type of fish that retains most of its flavours and textures even when bathed in a pool of acidic juices. Sweet potato and plantain added extra substance and textural variation to the dish.

With articles about a shrinking population of gamba roja, this might not be a dish for everyone, but the red prawns were undeniably plump and juicy and the finely diced granny smith apples really helped to bring out the flavours even more.

Carnivores will not be disappointed here with a dazzling array of meat dishes on offer. Pork belly chicharrones is a classic Peruvian dish which is a must-order, although how it appears on the “snacks” section is beyond my comprehension. I've tried plenty of fried chicken from different nationalities over the years and the Peruvian version here is one of the least greasy ones you will come across in London and what makes the dish stand out is the kick you get from the accompanying Atacama hot sauce.

With an alluring, enchanting vibe and an exotic, varied menu, I can only foresee Pachamama going from strength to strength in the coming years.
For more information on Pachamama see here.
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