Tapestry of flavors

If Cusco was the capital of the Inca Empire, Lima is the capital of Peruvian cuisine. It all started with the fusion of Andean and Spanish, and was further shaped and perfected through immigration waves: African, Middle Eastern, Chinese, Japanese and Italian being the most important.

We will start off in Lima´s historic downtown, looking at masterpieces of colonial architecture such as the Santo Domingo Convent, the Cathedral and the Casa de Aliaga. 

Our gastronomic adventure officially starts at Lima´s Barrio Chino (Chinatown). Lunch will be in a chifa, a term used in Peru to refer to a style of Chinese cooking in which the ingredients originally used from China were substituted by those available in Peru.

In the afternoon we will enjoy the permanent exhibition of renowned Peruvian photographer Mario Testino at the MATE, located in the bohemian quarter of Barranco. Our day will end with a sampling of piscos, accompanied by a variety of Peruvian tapas.

This mornng we will enjoy a traditional Peruvian breakfast.
Touring the halls of the Larco Herrera museum, hosted by its curator, we will learn about pre-Inca Peru – the museum houses one of the finest collection of gold and silver pieces, as well as a sampling of erotic huacos (earthen vessels).
Lunch will be an imaginary trip to the Amazon region. At Amaz, chef Pedro Miguel Schiaffino uses ingredients from the Peruvian
Amazon to show the cultural and culinary richness of the region.
The exclusive Cala restaurant will be our meeting point for dinner: here, Peru´s ample seafood variety is prepared using a masterful blend of Peruvian and Mediterranean styles.
Upon our return from Cusco, we will discover the best of northern coastal cuisine. Fiesta restaurant embodies the best of Chiclayo flavor and seasoning.

A culinary adventure through the Urubamba Sacred Valley is literally traveling back in time. Today´s Andeans still maintain many traditions that date back to Inca times, and food is no exception.
In Chinchero we will meet with Nilda Callañaupa, heir to a centuries-old weaving technique she proudly preserves through the
Nat Geo – sponsored Cusco Center for Traditional Textiles.

Lunch at Wayra ranch will provide an opportunity not only to sample a variety of Andean dishes, but also to see another icon of Peruvian
identity: the Peruvian Paso Horse. Lamay is a small agricultural community where we’ll partake in the daily activities of inhabitants, learning about ancient agricultural techniques that for many reasons are still used in the area. Lunch will be at the 300 year-old Huayocari Hacienda estate, and prepared using exclusively local products.
During our visit to Ollantaytambo, the only town to maintain the Inca system of urban planning, we will stop by a chicheria and try chicha, corn beer still made the same way it has done for centuries.
We will have dinner at EL HUACATAY, a small, cozy restaurant with a unique fusion menu. On our way back to Cusco we will stop in the quaint colonial town of Pisac and visit its unique arts and crafts market, and also in Awanakancha, where we will appreciate the four types of camelids that inhabit the Andes, one of them, alpaca, being a staple.

A bit over century ago Hiram Bingham made the scientific discovery of Machu Picchu, a site he though was the lost city of the Incas.
Accompanied by an expert guide, we will learn about its meaning and place within the Inca Empire.
The beauty and complexity of the architecture, the spectacular natural landscapes, and the energy contained within its structures will for sure take your breath away.

Cusco, which means “navel of the world” in Quechua, is still considered the center of andean life. During our city tour we will visit the Main Square and its amazing Cathedral as well as Sacsayhuaman, an amazing Stone construction the meaning of which is still uncertain.
However, the main focus will be put on the San Pedro market – here we will see and smell (those adventurous enough can even try) every single ingredient used by everyday Cusqueno, including many that come from the Amazon region.
One of our lunches will be at Quinta Eulalia, a traditional local eatery that has been serving authentic Cusqueno cuisine since 1941 – the oldest of its kind in the city.
And for a hands-on finale to our journey, we will participate in a cooking class, under the guidance of a professional chef.

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