Peruvian Restaurants in Astoria and LIC
The traditional tastes and flavors of Peruvian cuisine are now being introduced to a whole new generation of foodies by some very talented, young chefs who are based out of Astoria and Long Island City. Inside this article: Warique Peruvian Kitchen, Jora Restaurant and Bar and Nazca Astoria.
Peruvian food has many things to recommend it, including a wide array of vegetarian options as well as some scrumptious sauces and, of course, their classic, generations-old method of preparing rotisserie chicken. All that you have to do is reserve a table, relax and enjoy. You don't have to be Indiana Jones to have a sense of adventure, especially if you are a foodie. When you discover just how good Peruvian cuisine can be, you will become a fan for life.
Warique Peruvian Kitchen - Astoria
The first thing that catches your eye when entering Warique is their sleek, uber-modern bar. The design is stylish and colorful. The bar stools, complete with backrests, are very comfortable and inviting. Before having your lunch or dinner, why not grab a seat at the bar and whet your appetite with a Pisco Sour, the national drink of Peru? This cocktail so good, you just might order another round.
In the Peruvian native language, Quechua, the word Warique refers to a restaurant or meal that is appreciated by gastronomists. This tradition goes all the way back to culinary temples in the ancient Inca culture. The Incas would meat for conversation and social interaction over a good meal.
One of the dishes that the modern Peruvian's Inca forebearers would have raved about is the Lomo Saltado, which is tender slices of beef, sauteed with onions, tomatoes and soy sauce over rice and French fries. The pescado Warique would come in a very close second. This dish consists of a grilled fish fillet with salsa criolla accompanied by lettuce, fried yucca and yellow rice. The ceviche Warique will delight your taste buds. There are a rainbow of flavors on your plate, all working together in perfect harmony. Fresh chunks of succulent fish, including calamari and shrimp, are marinated in aji Amarillo, leche de tigre. Your feast is topped off with fried calamari and red onions, along with a side of sweet potatoes and Peruvian corn.
Their chicken soup is like none other that you have ever eaten. It is a meal in itself with potatoes, peas, carrots, Peruvian corn and rice. The cilantro, though, is what makes the difference. There is a strong Chinese influence in Peruvian cuisine. That Asian touch is reflected in Warique's arroz chaufa carne o pollo. Peruvian Chinese-style fried rice is mixed with eggs, onions and soy sauce. You may choose either chicken or beef as your protein.
Warique has a couple of interesting lunch specials you will want to look into. The $9.25 special is served from 12:30 to 4 PM, Monday through Friday. You can choose from among 12 entrees (the best of their menu) along with an appetizer, soup of the day or a small house salad. The equally tasty $7.95 lunch special gives you a 1/4 chicken with French fries and salad or a huge portion of rice and beans. You can't go wrong with either special. Good food at a great price.
Location and Hours
40-17 30th Avenue
Astoria, NY 11103
Sunday to Thursday 11:30 AM to 10 PM
Friday and Saturday 11:30 AM to 11 PM
Jora Restaurant and Bar - LIC
Jora gives you a truly authentic taste of traditional Peruvian dishes, using locally sourced ingredients as well as family recipes. A family-owned restaurant, Jora takes great pride in their service and hospitality. Be assured that you will always feel welcome and appreciated here.
The restaurant has two dining areas and each one is a pleasure to look at. The decor is sophisticated and contemporary with traditional touches everywhere Ancient Inca motifs and designs decorate the walls, and they have quite a colorful collection of crafts and pottery from Native Peruvian tribes. The lighting is just right, not too bright but not so dark that you can't read the menu.
Jora is named after a variety of Indian corn that is used to make a traditional, fermented beverage called chicha. While we are on the subject of beverages, please take note that Jora has an extensive cocktail list. Cocktails are mixed just right and are very reasonably priced for the neighborhood. Their signature drink is the Jora Sour, a concoction of Chicha de Jora, Pisco, sugar, fresh lime juice, raw egg whites and Angostura bitters.
Very refreshing and satisfying is their Chicha Punch, a blend of Pisco, Chicha morada reduction, fresh lime juice, pineapple juice and a sprinkle of sugar. One of their most popular cocktails, though, is the Passion fruit Chilcano. Pisco, mint, sugar, lime juice and ginger ale is blended with luscious passion fruit, making for an unforgettable drink.
The kitchen pays a great deal of attention to everything that is on the menu, not just a few signature dishes here and there. A great vegetarian option is the Solterito, a salad made up of onions, tomatoes, Queso Blanco, Peruvian corn, olives and lima beans. Another dish you will adore is the traditional Papas Rellenas, which are mashed potatoes stuffed with ground beef, eggs and raisins. The potatoes are topped with Huancaina sauce and salsa criolla. Absolutely delicious.
Entrees range from shredded chicken breast stew with white rice and grilled salmon in Rocoto cream sauce to a savory grilled Angus rib-eye and spaghetti with Peruvian-style pesto. In a neighborhood that is filled with many fine restaurants, Jora gives you something really different in terms of both food and drink. Conveniently located, the restaurant is only a few blocks from the Vernon-Jackson #7 train station.
Location and Hours
47-46 11th Street
Long Island City, NY 11101
Monday to Thursday 5 PM to 11 PM
Friday-Saturday 12:30 PM to 11 PM
Sunday 12:30 PM to 10:30 PM
Nazca - Astoria
The owners of Nazca named the restaurant, not only after their hometown in Peru, but as a tribute to the famous Nazca Lines that are located not too far away. Created by an ancient preColumbian civilization, the Nazca Lines are various designs and motifs etched into the earth and sand. These striking designs, which include various animals, plants and birds, can only be seen from the air or on nearby hilltops.
The restaurant itself is extremely interesting as far as design and architecture goes. Outside Nazca, lining the top of the restaurant's facade, are replicas of the motifs from the Nazca Lines in Peru. The decor is romantic and intimate. This is the perfect place for a date. Just sit at one of the booths, order a couple of Pisco-inspired cocktails and you are good to go. At Nazca, the decor sets the mood. The intimate banquettes even have flowing curtains around them.
The owner's mission is to make his customers feel at home and bring the many facets of Peruvian culture to your attention. Music and celebration is an important part of the Peruvian lifestyle. At Nazca, you can catch Larry Luger performing his music every Monday and Thursday evening. On Sundays, Yuri Juarez takes the spotlight. The chef at Nazca has introduced a delicious brunch menu which is worth checking out. Brunch selections include many popular items from their regular dinner menu, as well as some Peruvian brunch items.
Their 34/20 brunch sandwich consists of chicken, cheese, tomatoes egg and hash browns. The huevos a La Rabona is a plate filled with ham, eggs, beans and criolla sauce along with house-baked bread.
Delicious bar bites include fish with yellow sauce and white corn and Jalea, which is deep-fried fish, shrimp and squid with cassava and criolla sauce. Nazca's arroz con pollo features a delicious quarter of rotisserie chicken along with green rice, potatoes and huancaina sauce.
Location and Hours
Astoria, NY 11106
Monday through Thursday 4 PM to 11 PM
Friday 12 PM to 12 AM
Saturday open 24 hours
Sunday 12 PM to 12 AM
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