Martin Morales, founder of the Ceviche batch of Peruvian restaurants, looks to have conquered smart west London with this latest outpost of Andina. Picanteria is a lively, colourful spot incorporating an authentic Peruvian bakery (Panaderia) next door. Inside you’ll find a busy open kitchen, flexible seating on banquettes, at counters or on regular tables, and large windows looking on to the street.
The irresistible cooking ranges from dainty small plates of plant-based ingredients to gutsy meat and fish dishes. Snack on carrot fritters with a complex herb-based sauce, fresh bread from the bakery or cassava crisps with a broad bean dip. Braised aubergine laden with feta is teamed with a quinoa patty while sea bass ceviche arrives zinging with Morales’ signature tiger-milk marinade, punchy and unforgettable. Larger dishes include a fine piece of hake with seaweed in a fragrant broth, a typical Andean vegetarian stew featuring potato and roast pumpkin, and a lovely braised adobe pork leg.
Pisco Sours head a spot-on drinks list of wines, beers, cocktails and mocktails. To finish, banish any dietary plans by ordering chocolate tart with dulce de leche ice cream. Notting Hill will love this newcomer.