Found in one of Lima’s most creative districts, Barranco – Central Restaurant is Peru’s most famous foodie destination. The flagship restaurant of Head Chef Virgilio Martínez, Central Restaurant Peru, is an ode to the country’s diverse geography, rich history and deep traditions.
Central celebrates the incredible diversity of Peru’s homegrown ingredients. Spanning from the freshwater fish of the Amazon rainforest to the land animals of the Sacred Valley, to the high-altitude sea vegetation found only in the lakes of the Andes mountains, the tasting menu masterminded at Central Restaurant offers the ultimate journey through the tastes of Peru.
Since many of our food tours begin in Lima, Aracari clients can take the opportunity to include dining reservations at Central Restaurant during their stay. Whether you have 48 hours in Lima, or have the luxury of longer in the coastal capital, our travel experts will curate a bespoke itinerary for the perfect afternoon or evening at Central Restaurant.
Central Restaurant, Lima: Ranked World’s Best Restaurant
In 2023, the World’s 50 Best Restaurants list ranked Central Restaurant Peru, as the world’s number one. A milestone for both Peru and our continent, Central Restaurant is the first South American name to hold the coveted first-place title.
The award will no doubt create an influx in food tours to Peru. Aracari can assist travelers in reserving tables at all of the best restaurants. For almost three decades, we have delighted in bringing our guests to the very heart of Peruvian cuisine via our luxury foodie itineraries.
Mil Centro: Virgilio Martínez in the Sacred Valley
Mil Centro is the Sacred Valley outpost of Virgilio Martínez. Found 3,568m above sea level in the majestic Andes, Mil is not only an award-winning restaurant but also serves as a research center for the maverick Martínez. Virgilio Martinez has been experimenting with cooking at this altitude for many years, working closely with three nearby indigenous communities to explore their techniques of farming, growing, and cooking in this remote region.
With its simple and clean architecture, the Mil is built right above the circular Inca terraces of Moray, carved out of the earth like a vast quarry. Thought to have been used for agricultural experimentation, the ancient site of Moray serves as the perfect setting for Mil – its modern-day equivalent.
During our itinerary Travel with Taste: Peru’s Spellbinding South, we recommend opting for the one-of-a-kind tasting menu served at Mil Centro. Each of the 8 courses within this exquisite menu reflects the 8 different ecosystems found at the restaurant’s high altitude.
Mil Centro Foodie Tour: Immersion Experience
During a visit to Mil Centro, Aracari guests can choose the Mil Immersion Experience. Alongside a foodie tour of the on-site food research labs, you’ll venture out into the wild Andean landscape surrounding the restaurant. Accompanied by the expertise of Mil’s chief botanist and barman, and local farmer from the nearby community of Kaccllaraccay – you’ll forage for many of the raw ingredients that will eventually make it onto the menu at both Central Restaurant Peru and Mil Centro.
Food tours: More Exclusive Foodie Experiences
Away from – the world’s number one restaurant, Central – we offer many other exclusive experiences that offer our guests a chance to get closer to authentic Peru food tours. Our deep-rooted connections, built over more than two decades in luxury travel – present Aracari with the ungoogleable, and Peru’s most unique experiences. Here is a selection of two of our favorites:
The Potato Pioneer of Huatata
An unmissable foodie tour high in the Andes, spend a few hours in the company of a man putting Peruvian potatoes on the map. A man whose meticulous and inventive farming methods have produced over 380 varieties of native potatoes and put them on the menus of Central Restaurant Peru – ranked the best restaurant in the world 2023.
Through his innovative methods, he achieves tubers with bright, intensified colors such as blue, purple, and red while enhancing the nutritional properties, textures, and flavors too. Such agricultural prowess caught the eye of Virgilio Martinez – who sought out this unrivalled knowledge of potatoes and tubers.
Explora Valle Sagrado
Built on an ancient corn plantation in one of the Sacred Valley’s most secluded haciendas, Explora Valle Sagrado overlooks the stately mountains and verdant pastures that once belonged to the Inca Empire. Comprising just fifty spacious rooms, the property blends seamlessly with its impressive natural surroundings.
A stay here is also accompanied by an exclusive menu put together by Virgilio Martínez himself. Inspired by the area’s local ingredients and the ancient farming methods still used by neighboring communities, a stay at Explora Valle Sagrado is another chance to taste the food of Virgilio Martínez away from Central Restaurant Peru and Mil Centro.