Colombian Sundays @ Piqueos

Gastrology bloggers dined courtesy of Piqueos.
A restaurant inspired by travels to Peru and Argentina, Piqueos delights with a menu of regional and street dishes that best represent these two countries.
Recently, Colombian dishes have started making their debut at Piqueos on Sundays. While the rest of the week the restaurant focuses on Peruvian and Argentinean cuisine, Sundays are an opportunity for passionate Colombian head chef Juanito Berbeo (Juan) to cook the food he was brought up with. 
Our poison on this occasion were Pisco Sour cocktails, a typical of South American drink made with pisco (the base liquor) lemon juice, syrup, ice, egg white, and bitters. We adored this heady, frothy mixture of sweet and sour.
Our lunch started with a selection of delicious Colombian piqueos, small appetizers which made up a light first course for our meal.
Colombian empanadas

These delicious fritters were beautiful. They were each filled with an amalgamation of tender beef, rice, smashed peas and egg. The outer crust which was made with masarepa, the precooked cornmeal that is used to make arepas were perfectly crisp. We enjoyed paring each bite of the empanada with the various dipping sauces. 
Cebiche - chargrilled octopus, scallop, leche de Tigre

The cebiche was beautifully presented and tasted even better than it looked. It was a wonderful mélange of different textures, natural sweetness and acidity. Tidbits of fresh cured scallops were embellished with juicy chargrilled octopus and corn; pockets of herbs added the final touch to an enlivening combination of ingredients. 
Lechona - 10 hour slow roasted pig filled with pork, rice and spice

The lechona was addictively good. In South America and in Colombia, Sundays are all about families and this often means sitting down and sharing a Lechona - much like the one we indulged in pictured above. A pork dish, made from a whole pig stuffed with pork meat, rice, split peas and spice which is then roasted for 12+ hours, this dish is comfort food at its best. It’s got it all - crackling, tender meat and amazing flavour.
Yuca frita Hand cut yuca chips

Piqeuos’ cassava chips were a welcome deviation from the potato chip norm.
Manjar blanco

A Peruvian and Argentinian influenced dessert of mocha and pisco mousse, maqui berry and peanut crumble was a delightfully sweet end to our visit. 
Sundays at Piqeous are an opportunity to taste Juan’s delicious Colombian heritage amongst other delicious Piqueos staples. 

Location: 298 Rathdowne St  Carlton North,
Phone: 03 9349 2777
Cuisine: Peruvian, Argentinian, Colombian, Wine Bar, Latin American, Barbecue

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