Lima ★ // Fitzrovia // London

Lima is a restaurant that has given London something completely new. With its Peruvian flavours and ingredients, it’s playful bright plating, its enthused and charming service – it all comes together to create an exceptional dining experience that you won’t have been expecting.

While you kick-off with a passion fruit pisco sour, you’ll need some time to digest the inventive flavour combinations on the menu. Each plate is a flamboyant piece of art, with staples of corn, quinoa and peppers taking leading roles. Though this might not sound appetising, these ingredients will come in forms and be used in ways that you’ve never seen before – and you’ll love it.

The braised octopus is a great example. Meltingly soft morsels are given a last-minute crisp coating in a pan before being placed on an architectural plinth of quinoa. The octopus is surprisingly deep in flavour and delivers a punch with the lemony freshness of the quinoa below. Saltiness comes from a briny olive purée, which is dobbed about the plate in pretty mauve polka dots. Exotic micro herbs that decorate the dish add a freshness that pulls these satisfying components together wonderfully.

The super soft artichokes are another fresh, vibrant surprise – coated in a magnificent yellow, citrus sauce, and a shocking pink decoration (made from Peruvian molle pepper). This flourish adds a warm glow to the dish, while radish slices give some piquant crunch. All together it is both beautiful and clean in flavour.

Mains wise, the off-menu slow-roasted goat is an absolute, mouth-watering triumph. Served with a crispy exterior, coated with a lightly spiced sauce, this meat is so tender that it’s hard to imagine how it got onto the plate without falling apart. The accompanying sweet potato purée cakes are topped with tangy melted goat’s cheese to complete the dish’s balance, while slithers of red onion and herbs once again give some zing and zip.

Lima’s concept is an exotic, yet earthy in its pleasure. How wonderful that these ingredients and flavours have finally come to London to liven our palates. Given the relaxed warmth of the service and the fiesta style of the food, Lima is great for both friends to enjoy and for romantic surprises. Thank you Peru.

Square Meal
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