Virgilio Martinez well-known on the global restaurant scene, has just made history with his London restaurant ‘Lima’.
Lima, which serves Peruvian cuisine cooked up by head chef Robert Ortiz, has been awarded one of gastronomy’s most coveted prizes: a Michelin star. The Michelin star system, begun in 1926 in France, awards one to three stars to restaurants of the utmost quality.
Gabriel Gonzalez, one of the co-owners of Lima, told the Evening Standard that the Michelin star indicated a bright future for Peruvian cuisine abroad: “It’s just incredible, it definitely sets a precedent for Peruvian food and gives it a stamp of credibility and a lot of promise, it’s just amazing.”
According to Gonzalez, the team at Lima didn’t think they would receive this accolade: “It was definitely not expected. I thought we might be included in some way, in the Bib Gourmand [awarded for value dining], but not to get a Michelin star.”
Lima opened only a year ago, and has received high praise from foodies. Matthew Norman, restaurant review for London newspaper The Telegraph, said “Roberto Ortiz’s cooking, as overseen by the celebrated Peruvian chef Virgilio Martinez, this is a ridiculously perfect amalgam of taste and aesthetics, every dish marrying dramatic colour combinations to clear, precise and equally vibrant flavours.”
According to El Comercio, Virgilio Martinez (head chef at Central restaurant in Lima, Peru) tweeted his satisfaction with the recognition from Michelin, saying “Well done, a Michelin star, one for the Lima team and one for Peru.”This is the first time a Peruvian restaurant has been awarded a Michelin star.