Santiago, Chile surprised me in a lot of ways. I’m not exactly sure what I expected, but it wasn’t the gleaming, modern city I found high in the mountains. One of the most pleasant surprises was the city’s vibrant food culture, featuring everything from traditional classics to modern fusion. The best meal I enjoyed, one of the best meals I’ve ever had, was at a new restaurant that is quickly turning the Santiago food scene on its head.
Peumayen Restaurant is only a few months old, but already claims the top spot in town. The name means “place dreamed” in Mapudungun, the language of the indigenous Mapuche people. The name is appropriate as it fuses foods that have been eaten in Chile for centuries, but which most of us have never seen before. Taking recipes and traditions from the original people of the region, the chefs have created food that is interesting, different and delicious. Here’s a look at the multi-course meal I enjoyed, a remarkable feat for someone as picky as I am. But it’s an experience you just have to try to believe, so make sure to stop by if and when you ever find yourself in the Chilean capital.
Breadbox with 6 different types of bread
Entrada para Dos
Tasting starter with:
– Rolled beef with a Chilean hazelnut crust and spinach paste.
– Salmon rested in ashes with dried mushrooms and crispy seaweed.
– Lamb Tongue with green pepper pebre.
– Quinoa salad with beans, peas, berries and purple potatoes from Chiloé.
– Rabbit roll with marinated nut accompanied with onion puree
– Poe with tuna and breaded octopus in cornstarch.
Plato de Fondo
– horse steak with vegetables and mashed corn.
– lamb shank with PURN Murke (similar to gnocchi, but made of toasted
– Southern hake with coriander and Chilean hazelnut crust accompanied by a
bed of soft shell crab meat and roasted vegetables.
– Chochoca (grated roast potato, filled with braised oxtail)
Postre para Dos
– An Algarobina cookie with banana mousse.
– Bon bon stuffed with quinoa
– Chapalele (A chapalele is a Chilean dumpling made from boiled potatoes
and wheat flour) with chamomile ice
– Chilean hazelnut semifreddo
– Pancakes torta (cake)
– Chañar ice cream and banana breaded in quinoa