Eating Raw, Vegan, Vegetarian or Organic in Peru: Lima (Part 1) : Exclusive Renegade Health Article

Tuesday May 31 | BY |
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fresh-lucuma-lima-peru
Fresh lumuca is so much better when it’s not a powder in a bag…

Everywhere we travel we have an eating plan.

It’s a healthy neurosis (if this is at all possible.)

I’ve been known to make charts, graphs, maps, scribble notes on hotel pads – anything to make sure that I don’t end up at some crappy restaurant with sub-par quality food.

Ask Annmarie, she thinks I’m a little nuts about it.

She’s probably right.

But anyway, today, I want to share my scribbled notes with you, since if you ever come down to Lima (Part 1) and Cusco (Part 2), you’ll have some great options mapped out for you already.

First off for today, let’s start with Lima… (I’ll cover Cusco tomorrow)

Top Dog in Lima: El Almazen

Just a few blocks off of Kennedy Park in the Miraflores neighborhood of Lima, this restaurant serves some of the best, most creatively prepared vegetarian food I’ve ever seen.

It doesn’t matter what type of eater you are, you’ll see the love that goes into this food when it’s served to you.

Every time we’ve been to Almazen, there has been a vegan option and I’m sure if you don’t see one, they will be able to whip one up for you.

Everything bought is fresh. The menus are even handwritten every night.

The owner, Henry, is always there and he is a part of the slow food and organic movement in the city. If he stops by your table be sure to strike up a conversation with him, he speaks English well.

When we were there last year he gave Annmarie and I some very old dried beans.

He said they were found at archeological site and were likely thousands of years old.

I’ve had them in the RV and now in Berkeley, and I’m somewhat afraid of planting them, just in case one happens to grow a stalk straight up into the sky.

(Which of course, I’d have to climb.)

Things to try here:

Jugo de Maracuya – Fresh passion fruit juice that is sweet and sour and 100% awesome.

Organic Vino Tinto – They only serve one type of red wine here and Annmarie says it’s the best she’s tried. (Yes, she has a glass now and again.)

Quinotto – This is a risotto with quinoa. Annmarie had this and when I tried it, I wish we had ordered two.

Anything with the olive tapenade – You know Peru is famous for its olives!

(NOTE: Like I said before, everything on the menu is fresh, so there’s a chance they’ll have everything I mentioned here, or none of it. Be adventurous and try it, you’ll be pleased!)

Price: It’s pricey for Peru, but still cheaper than any upscale healthy place in many other countries.

Location:

Recavarren 298 (at Berlin), Lima 18, Peru
+51 1 2430474

Runner Up: Madre Natura

This place reminds me of a speak easy. (Not that I’ve ever been to one…)

The store front is pretty unassuming – it must only be about 200 square feet. They have a nice selection of herbs, foods and supplements, but it doesn’t get good until you walk through the little doorway in the back.

On the other side is a well kept courtyard with a bakery, gift shop and cafe.

At the cafe, you can get fresh juices, smoothies, salads and baked goods.

We’ve spent hours here – they have Internet – working and drinking smoothie after smoothie.

If you’re not sensitive to wheat, soy or a little dairy, you can try their soy empanadas as well – they’re really good.

This place is a little bit of a walk from the center of Miraflores, but from what I’ve seen and heard it is safe during the day. (We’ve done it about a dozen times.)

Things to try here:

Lucuma and Mango Jugo Mixto – Yep, fresh lucuma is amazing and mixed with a little fresh Peruvian mango, you’re in for a real treat. Just be sure to ask “sin azucar.” (Without sugar.)

Any Salad – You can eat salads in Peru, you just need to know where to get them. Here you’ll have no problem and you can get your greens before you go off to your next destination.

Madre Natura Granola – Be sure to get a bag of their granola on the way out at the store. You can mix it with their farm fresh yogurt, if you eat dairy.

Price: It’s less expensive than Almazen, so if you’re on a budget, this is the place to hang around.

Location:

807 Chiclayo, Lima, Peru
+51 1 3442236 ?

Other options in Lima…

If you’re vegan, I’d almost stick with Almazen and Madre Natura. These two places will provide you with your basic needs.

If you’re raw, these places, while they won’t provide many calories for you, will be sufficient.

If you’re neither, then there are some other places that I hear are fantastic from personal recommendations as well as other travelers.

Astrid y Gaston

Traditional Peruvian food in an upscale setting. (I sound like Zagats… LOL!) Gaston Acurio is a celebrity chef in Peru, but also a leader in the movement to make sure GMO foods don’t make it to the Peruvian dinner table. Traditional Peruvian food is not vegan or vegetarian, so if you are, you may want to look at the menu first. If you’re not either of those, then this place will suit your need to farm fresh meats and produce.

Pescados Capitales

If you’re into raw fish, this comes highly recommended by Dr. Williams. Lima is known for it’s ceviche, so if that’s your bag, this is your restaurant. Just keep in mind the cebicherias close in the afternoon.

La Trattoria di Mambrino

Real Italian food also recommended by Dr. Williams.

Price: You will pay a lot more for food in Lima than you will anywhere else in Peru. This is a city that is renowned for its food.

I want to know your thoughts: What’s the best restaurant you’ve eaten at?

Live Awesome!
Kev

Kevin Gianni

Kevin Gianni is a health author, activist and blogger. He started seriously researching personal and preventative natural health therapies in 2002 when he was struck with the reality that cancer ran deep in his family and if he didn’t change the way he was living — he might go down that same path. Since then, he’s written and edited 6 books on the subject of natural health, diet and fitness. During this time, he’s constantly been humbled by what experts claim they know and what actually is true. This has led him to experiment with many diets and protocols — including vegan, raw food, fasting, medical treatments and more — to find out what is myth and what really works in the real world.

Kevin has also traveled around the world searching for the best protocols, foods, medicines and clinics around and bringing them to the readers of his blog RenegadeHealth.com — which is one of the most widely read natural health blogs in the world with hundreds of thousands of visitors a month from over 150 countries around the world.

5 COMMENTS ON THIS POST

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  1. Mary says:

    Hi Kev, Thanks for all the great info. I’m sure you meant Lucuma under picture of the fruit. Wondering where we might find seeds here in the states, & how big the tree gets? Quinotto sounds really yummy! Also sounds like a raw foodie would do very well there. I have made an acquaintance from Cusco, so look forward to tomorrow’s info. oxox Mary:)

  2. Dianne says:

    “I’m sure you meant Lucuma under picture of the fruit.”

    LOL!

    Sometimes typos can be a hoot. 🙂

    Thanks for this one Kevin.

  3. Barb says:

    Think Annmarie can cobble up a recipe for that Quinotto. It sounds pretty good.

  4. Cathi says:

    Hi! I am moving to Peru for at least a year in a couple of months and am looking for people interested in healthy lifestyles such as raw, vegan,…you name it! If you know someone, a community, maybe even a retreat, I would really appreciate any suggestions.
    Thank you for all the wonderful posts!
    Cathi

  5. Nadine says:

    Hi Kevin,
    Thanks for info on where to eat in Peru.
    I will be there for 4 days not a lot of time and wanted to load up on some organic raw superfoods to bring back with me to the states. Where would you suggest I go and what should I buy ?
    Thanks for you time and effort to keep us healthy and informed.
    With peace and harmony to you.
    Nadine

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