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July 9, 2017

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Colca serves up trendy Peruvian fare in Shanghai

FROM Lima through to Buenos Aires, Los Angeles, New York and London, Peruvian fare has been so trendy over the past years that long-time restaurateur Eduardo Vargas confirmed his country cuisine’s tremendous potential by opening Colca in Shanghai.

Originally from Peru’s capital Lima, Vargas knows how to create authentic, high-quality Peruvian menu with the right level of experimental spirit.

The venue occupies a big space on the second level of Yongping Lane on Hengshan Road, a new complex by the same developer behind Ferguson Lane. A relaxed vibe has been created here dividing the space into outdoor terrace for eating and drinking, a bar area dedicated to some of the delicious Latin American cocktails and indoor dining area that can accommodate 160 diners.

“I have been close to creating a little bit of Peru in Shanghai in the last seven years. I started at Shanghai Expo 2010 with a Peruvian restaurant called the Peruvian Kitchen at the Peru Pavilion. So I’ve been always wanted a trendy Peruvian place that will be long lasting in Shanghai and now we found the space with Colca,” he said.

“It’s focused on what is now the food trend in Peru and the best restaurants in Peru are serving: fresh, delicious, seafood-centric, authentic yet with a modern twist.”

Colca is a fun restaurant bar with mostly Peruvian and touches of Spain. Vargas created this restaurant to reflect what Peru offers to the world with his own style: trendy and full of flavors with a very accessible price point.

“With about 250 to 300 yuan per person, one can enjoy fresh seafood, some of the best grilled meat from Uruguay, and other Peruvian delicacies. I would like my customers come back again and again instead of trying it out once and finding it overpriced,” he said.

The menu provides varied options showcasing the staples of Peruvian cuisine and its abundant flavors and culinary techniques due to the country’s long multicultural history.

One must try out the Peruvian national dish — a classic ceviche from the starters. A pride of all Peruvians, the dish is like no other one reflecting the coastal cuisine and its influences. The bite-size seabass pieces marinated and “cooked” in tiger’s milk (a Peruvian term for the citrus-based marinade that cures the seafood in a ceviche) were simply delicious together with sweet potato and corn. Scallop-Chia Tiradito (98 yuan) was also worth to try, especially for those who prefer less acidic taste. The ultra fresh scallop was marinated in light soy sauce mixed with chia seeds, red chili, crispy nuts and avocado.

Regarding the seafood, Jalea (98 yuan) is a must-try as it’s another Peruvian delight — a mixture of assorted deep fried seafood accompanied with yucca and Peruvian dips. Octopus Brasa (88 yuan) was deliciously creamy with the potato causa (seasoned mashed potato) layered with exotic tastes of black olive aioli and piquillo chimichurri. It stood out as one of my favorite dishes at Colca.

Seafood and fish courses are the main attractions here but do not miss the premium Uruguay Wagyu rib eye (500 gm) (788 yuan) cooking in their Josper oven at 400 degrees and served with a hot Stone to “finishing” of the meat on your table. It’s rare to have high-quality Uruguay meat in Shanghai restaurants and it is the main reason I’ll be back to Colca, soon.


Opening hours: 5:30pm-1am (Tuesday to Sunday); 11:30am-4pm (weekend brunch)
Tel: 5401-5366
Address: Rm 2201, 2/F, 199 Hengshan Rd
Average price: 300 yuan


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