Lima London’s first restaurant has been a huge success in London. It is only one of a handful of Peruvian restaurants in London, which is growing in popularity here. My first experience at Lima London, which has gained a Michelin star, was breathtaking. The flavours, the presentation, the polite and helpful staff – everything was perfect! So when they announced the opening of their second restaurant: Lima Floral, I had to give it a try!
I took my family, so I managed to taste more dishes on the menu:
For starters, I had the Tuna Causa: tuna tartare, yellow potato with crudo vegetable roots. The presentation was outstanding, especially with the bright, fun colours. The tuna tartare was well prepared and tasted very fresh, the potato mash was seasoned with tiger’s milk (a lime dressing used in ceviche), so it had a refreshing and unique sour taste, which complemented the fish well. However, the raw vegetables only added aesthetics. The crunchy texture juxtaposed the soft textures of the dish, and did not enhance the flavours.
Tiradito: sea bream, green tiger’s milk, giant crushed corn. The sea bream was tender, smooth and easy to eat. The tiger’s milk was very sour, personally, too sour. But overall, the taste and colours of this dish were refreshing.
Crudo Mar: salmon, rocoto chilli pepper, blue potato. Have you ever seen a potato with such a vibrant colour? Amazing! It tastes like the average potato, but its subtle flavour combined with the punchy, sour rocoto chilli pepper tiger’s milk and soft, creamy salmon was delicious. The tiger’s milk was not spicy, just slightly sweet and very sour.
Organic Lamb: lamb rump, eco dry potato, queso fresco, black quinoa, crispy blue potato. This was the star dish of the meal. Amazing presentation, and the lamb was cooked to perfection! It was juicy, tender, with just the right amount of fat to lean meat ratio. The mashed potatoes was creamy and queso fresco was tangy, and the blue potatoes added a crisp texture. This dish had everything. My only complaint was the quinoa, which was very oily, but the sesame oil flavour was delightful. Surprisingly, the portion size was generous and made this dish worthwhile in every respect.
Chicken Chalaca: chicken breast, Andean corn, raw asparagus, wood sorrel. This was a very generous portion of chicken, which was dressed in a sweet pepper and mildly sour sauce. It was accompanied with giant corn, which is not your usual sweetcorn. It has a denser, softer texture, similar to potato, and tastes more like rice or a similar grain. The corn mash, which has a heavier and grainier texture than potato mash, made this dish very substantial. The raw asparagus, again, only provided aesthetics and a refreshing crunch but didn’t complement the rest of dish well.
Hot Ceviche a la Piedra: Sea bream, hot tiger’s milk, sweet potato, Yuyo seaweed. The sea bream was very well prepared – the skin was crispy, and the flesh was tender and juicy. The sweet potato went well with the sour tiger’s milk, and the overall dish was very refreshing. The flavour of the seaweed was subtle with the fish, so my only criticism is that more seaweed would have highlighted its flavour better. And maybe better presentation.
Grilled Monkfish: monkfish, yellow chilli pepper, courgette, green and red tiger’s milk. The monkfish was tender and juicy, and was presented in a warm tiger’s milk broth, which was sour. The combination of lime and fish reminded me of south east Asian cuisine, but it may not suit everyone’s taste. Again, the vegetables in this dish did not enhance the flavour or textures.
Cafe Peruano: coffee ice cream, blue potato, red kiwicha. The blue potato reminded me of malt powder. It had a similiar powdery texture and was laced with sweetness. It had a very subtle earthy flavour, which complemented the coffee ice cream, but it was very dry in the mouth, and there was too much of it compared to the ice cream. The red kiwicha is a small grain, but it did not have a strong flavour so was unnecessary.
Chirimoya: chirimoya mousse, maca root, purple potato. This was not my favourite dessert, but the ingredients sounded intriguing. Chirimoya is a native Andes fruit, which added a subtly sweet, almost banana, tropical flavour to the mousse. The mousse was slightly lumpy, the maca root was a similar powder to the purple potato powder in the above dessert, and added a sweet and contrasting texture to the mousse. The purple potato seemed baked so it had a soft, rubbery texture, which did not enhance the flavour or texture of this dessert.
Overall, Lima Floral is a great place to try unique Peruvian ingredients, which are well prepared. Their dishes are flavourful, although some ingredients only have aesthetic purposes (their use of fresh vegetables could be improved). The portion sizes are very generous for a London restaurant, and it is one of more worthwhile Peruvian places to try. Next time, I’ll order from their piqueos menu (tapas style), which is quite extensive and would be a great way to try a few more of their unique dishes.
Lima Floral: 14 Garrick St, London, WC2E 9BJ