Best Peruvian Cuisine - 2011
It's a long way, both figuratively and literally, from Trujillo, Peru, to a nondescript strip mall across the street from the Lantana post office, but that's the journey of Victoria's chef-owner Julio Leon. The cheery, family-run eatery is a welcome breath of different and refreshing air in an otherwise mostly unexciting-restaurant town, one that's been embraced by a surprisingly diverse clientele that ranges from seniors looking for a good, inexpensive meal to people hungry for something other than pizza, caesar salad, and fried calamari. All the staples of the Peruvian kitchen are on the menu, from beef heart antichuchos and Peruvian-style tamales to a lusty rendition of lomo saltado and traditional tiraditos. There's also sopa a la minuta, a savory beef broth enriched with chopped beef, angel hair pasta, and diced potatoes that rivals "Jewish penicillin" for its miraculous restorative powers.