During my years of traipsing around Latin America, I have always regarded Lima as one of the underrated gastronomic capitals of the hemisphere. There's nothing like unwinding at a seaside eatery in one of he Peruvian capital's outlying suburbs with a frothy Pisco sour cocktail and a plate of seviche marinated in lime juice and ají peppers. Thanks to the efforts of a couple of enterprising Peruvian businesswomen, visitors can now sample the city's diverse fare. Culinary Tour Peru offers a one-day crash course.
For serious foodies, Wendy Alperstein launched her Taste of Peru tour four years ago to promote the indigenous Spanish and Asian culinary influences. An eight-day, seven-night package features multiple course fusion dinners at the top drawer Lima restaurant Astrid & Gaston and Malabar, and a class led by chefs who demonstrate Pachamanca, a native cooking technique that uses a pit covered with hot stones and firewoods to bake meats wrapped in banana leaves. The itinerary includes an excursion to an open –air food market and side trips to Machu Picchu and Cuzco, where the guests are treated to Coca leaf tea and a dinner of indigenous dishes like capchi de setas, a casserole made with oyster mushrooms and sieva beans (about $2700 per person : www.magicalcuzcotours.com) "There is so much to taste, and we want you to taste it all", says Alperstein. Your palate will never be the same