Restaurant Mayta in Lima has been named one of world’s top 50 restaurants. Showcasing contemporary Peruvian cuisine inspired by the country’s heritage and traditional flavors, Mayta is also the location of a grand welcome dinner on the first night of our Treasures of the Incas tour.
We couldn’t be more delighted to celebrate Mayta.
About the honor
The list of the world’s top 50 restaurants is developed from the votes of The World’s 50 Best Restaurants Academy which is made up of 1,080 international restaurant industry experts. The experts are spread across 27 regions around the world. Some regions contain more than one country and are designed to represent the global restaurant scene at the time. Each region has its own voting panel of 40 members. Members of the panel include food writers and critics, chefs, restaurateurs and gourmets and each member is allotted 10 votes. Now that we’ve seen how his esteemed honor is granted, let’s take a look at this top restaurant in Lima.
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Meaning ‘Noble Land’ in the native Andean Aymara language, Mayta earned a spot on Latin America’s 50 Best Restaurants 2019 list for its unique use of local ingredients and flavors. In 2020 it won the Highest Climber Award. Now one of the best restaurants in Lima, Mayta offers a 12-course Yachay tasting menu focusing on Peruvian ingredients plated and presented as their own distinct, colorful works of art. Mayta also offers a sophisticated à la carte menu with choices from Amazonian ceviche to matcha tart with passionfruit ice cream. In short, Mayta’s chef Jaime Pesaque describes it as “a personal and contemporary expression of the Peruvian cuisine and territory.”
The man behind Mayta
Pesaque is the founder of Jaime Pesaque Restaurants and has had a rich culinary career. Pesaque was born and raised in Peru. He then trained in Europe, graduating from Cordon Bleu with a Master in Cooking from the Italian Culinary Institute (ICIF). He apprenticed in Michelin-starred Restaurants in Italy and Spain, including El Celler de Can Roca, twice The World’s Best Restaurant and now in the Best of the Best hall of fame.
When he returned to Peru, Pesaque directed his first kitchen and honed his style at Al Grano. Pesaque opened Mayta in 2008 with the aim to celebrate traceable native products combined with contemporary culinary techniques. In addition to his restaurant family, Pesaque also exports Peruvian cuisine abroad.
The main dishes
Within the warm interior of Mayta, you can expect to be delighted by any number of dishes. Pesaque is famous for his smoked duck breast with fried duck egg and foie gras but your options are plenty. Enjoy his Amazonian ceviche with ginger, cilantro, charapita chile, and sweet plantains. Or, be impressed by the stunning presentation and flavors of thinly sliced ‘ham’ from the paiche fish shaped into an intricate rose. Pesaque use of this Amazonian fish that needs to be eaten to prevent the destruction of other species also supports his close ties to sustainability. Pesaque’s innovative twists on classics including osso buco, scallops and quinoa will also tempt your palate.
The Yachay tasting menu
Pesaque launched his Yachay tasting menu in 2020 to focus on local vegetables and seafood. This menu offers both alcoholic and non-alcoholic pairings. Yachay is not only the name of this menu but Pesaque’s space for culinary learning, “that awakens the spirit of curiosity and exploration for the land and sea of Peru.” In Yachay’s site in the “fertile desert” region of Ica two hours south of Lima, Pesaque capitalizes on biodiversity and takes advantage of the bounty from the land and sea.
Yachay’s philosophy of exploration, learning and fresh products translates to the tasting menu’s grilled eggplant dish with eggplant and onion jus and a smoked eggplant shake. In short, Yachay is both an experimental space as well as a tasting menu that encapsulates Pesaque’s culinary identity.
Pair your inventive dishes with a glass from the diverse wine list or lemonade. Matya also includes a notable pisco bar serving inventive takes on the national drink offering more than 120 seasonal piscos macerated with a rotating list of fruits, herbs, vegetables, dried fruits and nuts. Or, try their chilcano, a Peruvian cocktail made of pisco, ginger ale and lemon.
On the sweeter side, Pasque works with Pastry Chef Jeisson Felipe Garzon to create innovative desserts. Finish your meal with a chocolate mousse with cocoa powder and coca nibs or white chocolate torte covered with powdered muña, a local mint-like herb. Or, embrace local fruits sampling the crispy pineapple and tumbo passion fruit dessert.
In addition to Mayta in Lima Pesaque has several other restaurants including Mad Burger, 500 Grados and Sapiens, showcasing open-flame techniques with vegetables, seafood, meat and grains. He has also expanded his passion for Peruvian cuisine abroad with SuViche in the U.S. in Miami, Pacifico in Italy and Callao in The Hague, Netherlands. Pesaque’s mission to connect diners with Peruvian territory, tradition and culture seems to know no bounds. We hope you’ll join us at Mayta in Lima.
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