Just like our last visit, we sat at the open terrace, which is a popular place for executives, tourists, and passer-by who, just like us, came to enjoy the sunset. As soon we arrived at our table, servers brought a plate filled with small breads and crackers, along with plain butter, a delicate and savory blue-cheese, pepper and white wine butter, and a fantastic chili cream dip that we could not get our hands off. On first glance at the menu, we noticed quite a few interesting dishes like the ‘Alpaca carpaccio’, the Fettucini with quinoa and chuño, the Rice and quinoa pasta with black garlic pesto, or the green mote pepian. What these dishes all had in common was their originality and the use of native Peruvian products. This is why I was so eager to start our experience at Social.
The menu’s first page presents a range of ceviche options. We opted for the Ceviche Social (s./49), a ceviche made with fresh charela fish, avocado cubes, cushuru (Andean caviar), corn kernels, radish, seaweed, and chili. The dish is served with a jar of white tiger’s milk which is meant to be poured into your ceviche. This dish was nice, but because of the white creamy sauce, it did not wow me, however, my colleagues did enjoy it.
We then tried the Quinoa Garden (s./29), a beautifully presented dish with hummus as the base, a mix of grilled garden-vegetables, red quinoa, toasted almonds, creamy olive-mayo sauce, and crunchy chicha morada chips. This dish was an explosion of flavors and textures, and it was immediately one of our favorites.
Our third starter was the Octopus and Avocado (s./48) consisting of a generous piece of grilled octopus lying in a bed of eggplant and goat cheese puree, and scattered avocado, asparagus, carrots, and cushuru (Andean caviar). This succulent octopus was cooked to perfection. We enjoyed every bit of this well-accomplished starter, especially the puree.
Since we were told that the Arroz con pato (s./68) was the house star dish, we decided to try this first. Like all the dishes, it was generously served and it looked quite attractive to the eye. While we experienced some problems with the duck meat (a bit chewy), the sauce was succulent and the green rice was moist and savory. We did not stop until we’d eaten every piece of rice from the plate. The flavors of the dish were enhanced by the huancaina sauce and a sarza criolla (onion, lime and chili salad) that are served alongside it. The rice and duck sauce were so tasty that it needed nothing more.
Our next dish was the Pachamanca (s./65). This traditional Andean barbecue dish was impressive from the moment that it arrived at our table, as it required several waiters to carry the many dishes and accompaniments. The pachamanca is served in a large ceramic tray covered with large banana leaves; on the inside are lamb chops, guinea pig, chicken, humitas (corn-based tamale), fava beans, and a mix of Andean potatoes and herbs lying in a bed of hot black stones. One by one we tasted everything, and it was all fantastic. Even though I don’t usually like animal meat, I was surprised to find myself enjoying the guinea pig. It was so succulent that I couldn’t help but eat it all. For those who are squeamish about animal parts, don’t worry: the head and corpse are nowhere to be seen, so I suggest you go for it. The chicken and lamb were also both very tasty. The potatoes, especially the soft mashua, were heaven on earth, and the ocopa sauce was delicious too. This dish is big enough to share between two people, and you will surely enjoy it.
With memories of the spectacularly fancy chocolate dishes from our last visit, I was looking so much forward to dessert. With this in mind, the good news is that Victor Buleje, the dessert master, is still working with Social, and he did it again. The Chocolate Obelisk (s./28), a dark chocolate cake with mango cubes, pistachio, almonds, praline, and a mango coulis, was heaven on earth. They use chocolate consisting of 65% cacao which comes from Piura, and Victor clearly knows how to play with it. You cannot come to Social without tasting this incredibly tasty dessert.
We also tried the Almond and Apple Tarte (s./26) with a crunchy and delicious orange layer on top, some chocolate, and goldenberry sauce. It’s served with a gorgonzola cheese ice-cream, and a golden crispy caramel ornament ball that covers the entire dish. You have to crack open the ball so that you can proceed to delight yourself with the flavors of the tart. With the very first spoon of the ice cream, you can truly feel the flavors of the gorgonzola cheese.
I also noticed other interesting ice-cream options such as coca or squash and sweet potato flavors, all of which I am ready to try on my next visit. Another option is the ‘Social Sample (s./42) which offers samples of several desserts from the range of Social’s fabulous dessert options.
The bar at Social is always busy with customers no matter the time of the day it is, and its attractive setting and great drinks made by Everson and his team are the reason why. We tried a couple of mocktails that we enjoyed very much. We first had the Rojito (s./18). With a name such as this, you can immediately guess it tastes and looks very much like a mojito, except for its red color that comes from the red berries used in its preparation. It was quite refreshing and savory. We also tried the Citric Basil (s./18), a mix of orange juice, passion fruit, mandarin, and basil leaves. This drink was refreshing, citric, and delicious.
We then passed onto the cocktails by trying the house cocktail, Social Punch (s./30), a nice mix of pisco, chamomile vermouth, and ginger beer. You can order this drink individually or in a large version for sharing amongst four people. The large version was impressive and fun, and the drink was quite pleasant without being too strong. We also had a Lemon Berry (s./33) that we enjoyed very much. This pinkish drink had limoncello, lime juice, a mix of fruits, cava, and ginger ale. It was refreshing and a joy to drink. Our last cocktail was the Hendrix Experience (s./36), a gin-based cocktail with a mix of apple syrup, citric oils, tonic water, and St Germain, the French elderberry liqueur. This was another pleasant cocktail that we all enjoyed.
Social also offers a range of weekly and daily specials to take advantage of. From Monday to Friday, there is a 2 x1 Breakfast Buffet (s./74) which comes served to your table (valid till June 28). The Executive Lunch (s./48) runs from Monday to Friday. This special includes choice of a starter, a main dish, and a beverage from a range of highly appealing options. What’s more is that adding a dessert will only cost you 10 soles more. Tea Time (s./65) runs from Monday to Saturday between 4 to 7, offering a range of tapas and warm dishes, as well as unlimited beverages, including mocktails. Finally, there is the Sunday Buffet (s./89) from 12.30 to 4 with ceviche, pasta, criollo food, BBQ, all of which is prepared at stations inside of the dining room, so that customers can watch. It includes a cocktail of the day and unlimited beverages. With so many options, I am sure you will find one that best suits you. You will not regret it.
Av. La Paz 1099 Miraflores
Tel. 200 8070
Opening hours Monday to Sunday 6.30 – 1.00
Appetizers – s./ 32 -65
Starters – s./28 – 42
Main dishes – s./ 42 -66
Desserts – s./ 25- 38
Mocktails – s./18
Cocktails – s./ 28 – 78
Beers – s./16 – 29