As we have mentioned in previous posts, the Arequipa city is overflown by history and culture at every corner, and when it comes to food, this is one of the best places to go. The city itself offers the perfect setting for those looking to get immersed in our culture and history, which can be also told with food.
As you may know, Peru is recognized as the Gastronomic Capital of Latin America, thanks to its authentic flavors and for comprehending over 2,500 typical dishes. Arequipa is one of those cities with such a culinary expression that will make you wish to know how to prepare at least one dish of this region.
The Arequipeñan cuisine is praised among Peruvians for its splendid creativity and how they managed to implement Andean and Spanish techniques in their preparations. Arequipa itself holds about 194 typical dishes, which is why many tourists come here to experience the best of our gastronomic expression.
For that reason, we want you to know which are the best places to eat in Arequipa. Ranging from traditional Peruvian cuisine to International gastronomy, here are our top 10 picks:
1. La Nueva Palomino Picanteria
For those looking to experience the Arequipeñan gastronomic experience at its fullest, you must visit La Nueva Palomino Picanteria. Here you’ll be able to sample the best of Arequipa’s cuisine surrounded by a rustic environment with very enjoyable music.
They offer a lunch menu with a daily budget special and the a la càrte dishes are as delicious as you can imagine. The restaurant certainly represents Arequipa at its full expression, which is why you can’t leave it behind during your visit.
Address: Leoncio Prado 122, Yanahuara, Arequipa.
2. Zig Zag Arequipa
Delight your palate with an authentic culinary fusion where Andean and Alpine cuisine techniques harmonize in each dish. Zig Zag is an upscale restaurant situated in a 2-story colonial mansion made out of sillar stone, overlooking the beautiful Plaza San Francisco in the historic center. The floors are connected with an antique iron spiral staircase made by the Gustave Eiffel architect.
The restaurant offers the best of the Peruvian highlands with modern culinary techniques influenced by European styles. Zig Zag restaurant specializes in lamb, beed and alpaca, using only the freshest local ingredients of the region.
Address: Zela 210, Arequipa.
3. Chicha by Gastón Acurio - Arequipa
If you’re familiar with Peru’s renowned restaurants, then you surely must know about Chef Gaston Acurio, owner of many worldwide restaurants. Chicha is located in the heart of the Historic Center of Arequipa, right in front of the so-acclaimed Santa Catalina Monastery.
The restaurant offers the best of Peruvian cuisine with a modern twist and European touches. Chicha complements the experience with its upscale facilities, where Spanish-Peruvian décor gives the place a classy yet casual atmosphere. If you haven’t tried the most popular Peruvian dishes, this is the way to start!
Address: Santa Catalina 210, Arequipa.
Be spellbound by the authentic flavors in Zingaro, a restaurant that looks to find a balance between traditional arequipeñan and NovoAndino cuisine with an infusion of Mediterranean flavors. Zingaro is located in an old colonial mansion with illuminated domed ceilings, offering the perfect atmosphere for a romantic evening.
The restaurant also holds an extensive wine collection with over 250 varieties. Zingaro has an innovative menu selection including alpaca ribs, ceviche and even cuy. If you’re looking for a fine dining experience, then you must try this restaurant.
Address: San Francisco 309, Arequipa.
5. Sol de Mayo
Experience the real Arequipeñan gastronomic expression in this 100 year-old restaurant. Sol de Mayo is one of the oldest restaurants in Peru and one of the most popular in the White City of Arequipa, which is why it is best to make a reservation well in advance.
Sol de Mayo is a pioneer when it comes to Arequipeñan food, its recipes have been perfected over generations, which is why it is considered the best Picanteria in the city. Delight your taste buds with the Chupe de Camarones or give Cuy (guinea pig) a try for the first time.
Address: Jerusalén 207, Yanahuara, Arequipa.
6. El Buda Profano
In case you’d like to try international cuisine in Arequipa, El Buda Profano offers the best sushi outside of Japan with a 100% vegan menu. The restaurant adds a great value to the cuisine varieties in the city since not many restaurants have vegan options or are entirely committed to that.
However, El Buda Profano does offer the best of the famous Japanese culinary art with Peruvian infused rolls as well. The restaurant is located in the historic center and offers a castle-like structure with local art and wood accents.
Address: Calle Bolívar 425, Arequipa.
7. La Plaza Bar & Grill
This renowned restaurant is conveniently located near the Plaza de Armas de Arequipa, in the Casa Andina Hotel to be exact. La Plaza Bar & Grill is one of the most popular restaurants in the area since they serve breakfast, lunch and dinner all days of the week.
They specialize in traditional and modern Peruvian cuisine, offering international dishes as well. The restaurant has the perfect setting for a friends night out and hearty dishes that will surely make your palate delight.
Address: Portal de Flores 116, Arequipa.
8. Tradición Arequipeña
It is a family-run restaurant with over 45 years of experience. Tradición Arequipeña looks to promote the actual culinary expression of the region, focusing on the tradition carried out by generations throughout all these years.
The place is certainly one of the best places to sample Comida Arequipeña, with typical hearty dishes with rice, pasta and plenty of potatoes. The famous Picanteria does represent the seasoning of the region at its fullest.
Tradición Arequipeña has maintained their family secrets alive in their flavors for centuries, which is why you can’t leave this restaurant behind during your trip to Arequipa.
Address: Av. Dolores 111, Arequipa.
9. Casta Fior
Fine dining has been redefined in the Casta Fior restaurant, with a sophisticated atmosphere and beautiful setting in the Yanahuara district.
The restaurant offers a combination of Peruvian and International menu, with artfully presented dishes and exotic flavors.
Address: Av. Fancisco Bolognesi 106, Yanahuara, Arequipa.
10. Dimas Restaurant
Hidden in one of the courtyards along Santa Catalina lies another fine restaurant called Dimas. They specialized in Peruvian and International cuisine with bold traditional combinations with vegetarian options. The restaurant has an elegant decoration though the vibe is very casual.
Address: Santa Catalina 302, Arequipa.
This list includes almost all the best places to eat in Arequipa. If you’re looking to make a reservation in advance, make sure to contact them as soon as possible since most of them tend to book out very quickly.
For those looking for the best itinerary through Peru including the White City of Arequipa, we have the perfect travel packages for you! Make sure to know everything about our travel experiences while you’re here.