Cusco is undoubtedly one of our favorite cities in South America – an expanding UNESCO site with beautiful architecture, squares, hills of perfect postcards but most importantly the selection of local and international food. It was so difficult to select our favorite restaurant having spent almost 3 weeks in this city as volunteers, but here is a selection of some not so expensive jewelry that we found.
You can not miss this lovely French creperie in the bohemian neighborhood of San Blas. The crepe station is in the middle of the restaurant and all are made to order. Stuffed crepes are well thought out, but if none of your combinations suits your palate why not create it yourself! Be careful, you can get lost in the multitude of options: soft bechamel, crunchy walnuts, traditional Peruvian chicken Aji and juicy pears, just to name a few. The price is undoubtedly in the range of a backpacker between only 8 to 15 soles per crepe.
A small Mexican restaurant with large portions of tasty food and nachos menu options or a four-step to create your own taco, enchilada or chimichanga. Our favorite was the crispy and spicy chicken chimichanga. Here again the prices are very affordable, around 20 soles per plate.
Do not let the funny name discourage you! A curry from home to the “English Style” located next to Tacomanía and apparently with the same owner. The naan of garlic, hot curry (price of about 25 soles), cold beers, low lighting and comfortable seats, what more could you want?
Open all day, but famous for its huge pancake breakfasts, bacon and egg sandwiches or huevos rancheros. The fresh ingredients, a varied menu and very often a dish is enough for two with prices from 15 to 25 soles per plate. The only problem is that if you visit this delicious place in the peak hours of eating you could wait between 15 to 30 minutes just to get a table.
Sunday at the San Francisco Plaza Market for the Cuy
Are you brave enough to try cuy? Generally speaking, you should be careful where you order this delicious dish as it needs special preparation and cooking. It should take approximately 40 minutes to cook from the moment you order it, unless you have pre-ordered it early in the day which is allowed by some restaurants. It can also be expensive since many Peruvian restaurants know that it is a popular dish among tourists, and as a result it is the price. Here is the good news, however if you go to the Plaza San Francisco on Sunday you can eat a plate of Cuy with delicious accompaniments at only 12 soles. OKAY! Technically this is not a restaurant, but this is a great option to try the guinea pig or ‘Cuy’ (so called because of the sound the little creature makes). Negotiate!
As if to give a small recommendation as a bonus number 6, Green Point is an excellent vegan option (this comes from a couple of devoted carnivores). With a menu in the 3-course lunch from 12 soles and the dinner menu from 15 soles, you can not go wrong here! The menus change daily depending on how fresh are the ingredients that come to your hands in the kitchen.
Many will tell you that you will have to go to Lima to try decent food, but Cusco has a lot of options to eat, once you know where to look. Enjoy exploring its narrow streets, and most importantly, eat well!