Cevichería with influences spanning the North and South of Peru
La Picante is a cevichería that is the favorite of many Peruvian food lovers. Located conveniently in the neighborhood next to ours, we decided to visit for ourselves.
The highlight of the meal:
La Picante is located in a largely residential area of Jesus María. It’s two blocks from the market which is small but worth checking out.
La Picante’s decor shares some similarities with the typical decor of modern, casual cevicherías though La Picante’s version is a bit more understated. The dining area is an open space that leads to a view of the kitchen, or at least part of it. You can see your ceviche being made, but the open kitchen is not the focus.
There’s a large chalkboard that depicts their recipe for ceviche.
The menu fits on a single page front and back. The front had appetizers and cold plates while the back had entrees.
There was no printed beverage menu but they had the usual—passionfruit juice, chicha morada, sodas, and beer.
What We Ordered
To start, we ordered a Ronda Marina to share. The ronda included three types of ceviche which are also available a la carte on the menu:
Ceviche La Picante-the house ceviche which consists of fish ceviche with leche de tigre which incorporates blended sea urchin (left)
Ceviche de Pescado-classic fish ceviche with rocoto pepper (right)
Ceviche Mi Cole-pota ceviche (top)
All of the ceviche features the fish of the day which was perico when we went.
In addition, the ronda featured shrimp causa (center) and fried pota (bottom)
We then ordered their house special, the Arroz Chupado, soup over a bed of rice, which was finished tableside (see video above).
We ordered a pitcher of chicha de mora to drink.
Overall, the Ronda felt a bit small for 80 soles (~21 dollars). It was quite a bit smaller than the Ronda at El Pez On in Miraflores for example. Usually, Rondas are quite filling. The ronda also featured cheap seafood (pota and perico) which makes the price a little more surprising.
At 55 soles (~14 dollars), the Arroz Chupado was slightly high but in line with what you expect for a signature dish.
I was excited to try multiple ceviches featured in the Ronda Marina, but the three of us all ended up agreeing that the causa was the highlight.
The two fish ceviches (Ceviche La Picante and ceviche de pescado) in the Ronda were similar to each other and did not really stand out from many other ceviches we’ve had. Both ceviches featured the same fish, Perico. I did not really taste much erizo in the house ceviche so the two ceviches taste similar to each other. The house ceviche had a little more ají. The pota in the third ceviche (ceviche de mi cole) didn’t seem to be at the peak of freshness.
The shrimp causa at the center of the platter was spectacular. All of the ingredients were of prime quality and shined, from the golf sauce to the yellow potato and shrimp. It was one of the best causas I’ve had anywhere.
The final element of the platter, the fried pota, was good but nothing especially noteworthy.
The Arroz Chupado came with quite a bit of fanfare for a rice dish. The rice was served in a sizzling skillet, and the chupe was poured over the rice after it was set on the table.
The chupe rice was deeply flavored with hucatay and ají. The ingredients like the habas (beans) were those that were typical of chupe Arequipeño from the south of Peru. The filet of fish featured Perico, the same fish from the ceviche, in a completely different way. I’m a ceviche lover, but I preferred their seared version of this fish. The egg was beautifully cooked and large enough to share between the three of us.
Av. Húsares de Junín 651, Jesús María
Everyday, 11:30 am-5 pm
It was not crowded when we went for weekday lunch, but I hear that it can get crowded during peak times.
I heard that the La Picante in Ica is worth checking out.
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