Ceviche, and More Raw Data

I am spoiled. Most culinary adventurers would be happy to find one Peruvian restaurant in a town this size, but Denver has several, with more coming all the time. Early this year, Cebiche opened in the space once occupied by El Chalan, a Peruvian restaurant that pioneered this neighborhood more than a decade ago.I stopped in the dim, cool room, listened to the fish tank burbling away near the short bar and the hidden speakers dripping Spanish-language pop music, salsa, the occasional folk arrangement of drum and shepherd’s pipe, and looked at the menu. I saw lomo saltado. I saw empanadas, chupe, ceviche and papas a la huancaina and I actually caught myself thinking, “Oh, no. Not this again…”

Like I said: spoiled.

And that was before I got to the pumpkin donuts in sugar cane sauce.

This week, Cafe is all about booze, blood and Peru -- starting with the review of Cebiche excerpted above and continuing right on through a fight over names, menus and lomo saltado at Limon. And that's just for starters. For the full meal, grab the paper that hits the streets on Wednesday -- or simply come back to this web address. -- Jason Sheehan