Piura Restaurants and Dining
The cuisine along Peru's northerly coastline is very distinctive, with local restaurants offering dishes with definite flavours of Spain and other strong influences of both native Indians and the Hindustani gypsies. Being so close to the Pacific Ocean, dining venues throughout Piura always take full advantage of the constant availability of fresh seafood, as well as goat, mutton and the 'camotes' (sweet potatoes).
Popular northern-style dishes served at traditional Peruvian restaurants include ceviche, which is basically a seafood salad marinated with citrus flavours and strong onion. Many of the better dining establishments and eateries in Piura offer various different takes on ceviche, with 'Ceviche de Conchas Negras' (ceviche with black clams) being a particular speciality at a number of restaurants.
What to Eat, and Where
There are a plethora of dining opportunities in and around the Plaza de Armas and the Plaza Pizarro in Piura city centre, and as you ply the streets looking for lunch (almuerzo), you will likely be greeted by mouth-watering cooking smells wafting out the doors of the restaurants.
This is particularly so if you walk along streets such as the Apurimac, Arequipa, Ayacucho, Huancavelica, Libertad, Moquegua and the Tacna. Popular dishes in and around Piura are as follows:
- Chinguirito - dried salty fish
- Cuy - guinea pig cooked in various ways, such as roasted
- Pez Guitarra - dried guitar fish
- Seco de Cabrito - stew made with chunks of goat or other meat
- Seco de Chavelo - stewed dried-meat with banana and yuca
- Shambar - a bean soup with various meats
However, don't limit your search for restaurants to just Piura, since the neighbouring towns of Catacaos
are simply a must when it comes to dining.
Catacaos can be reached in just 20 minutes from Piura and is brimming with literally dozens of local Peruvian restaurants (picanterias), often serving rather adventurous dishes, such as:
- Copus - dried goat's head, often cooked in an underground furnace or similar
- Seco de Cabrito - kid goat
- Seco de Chabelo - beef and plantain stew
- Tamales Verdes - dumplings made with green corn