Memorial weekend kicked off the start of summer, which for Miamians doesn't really mean all that much -- we practically have summer all year long. Still, there are some benefits to the season moving in, one of which is a spate of new menus to celebrate the hottest months of the year.
Take MPP Brickell, which is sticking true to their Peruvian roots and following trends in their native country with their new menu items.
In Peru, while ceviche and tiraditos are wildly popular it's mostly during the summer time -- especially the beach -- that they are eaten. Dinner reserves a spot for something of warmer temperatures to warm the soul, like soup or the traditional Peruvian staple, lomo saltado.
Although we may not notice the difference of seasons here, we can see the difference in seasonal ingredients, specifically with Peruvian delicacies. Because it's hot all year long, ceviche is always an option, day or night, summer or winter. Still, MPP's owners Henry and Hector Malpartida along with business partner Coco Mendoza have brought over the dining concept to the Magic City after a decade feeding locals in Lima.
"Peruvian cuisine is perfect for Miami's steamy summer weather," says owner Henry Malpartida. "Traditional ceviches and tiraditos are light and fresh seafood paired with lime juice makes a refreshing meal for beach-goers and those looking for shelter from the heat."
New tapas style cold plates include papita a la huancaina: boiled potatoes with a choice of huancaina, ocopa, or rocoto pepper sauce ($12); conchitas a la parmesana: succulent scallops in the shell topped with parmesan ($20); langostinos pacific con kiwicha: jumbo prawns wrapped in bacon and kiwicha ($16); and Nikkei ceviche: tuna with ponzu sauce, sesame seeds and lime juice ($20).
A hearty Peruvian dinner would be nothing without some rice and chicken. The healthy variety arroz chaufa -- Peruvian's take on fried race -- with options including seafood, beef, and chicken or chiclayana rice with a cilantro and duck reduction sauce, served with a choice of seafood or chicken will do the trick. Both dishes range from $16-18 depending on your choice of animal. Still thinking about the saltado? There's chicken saltado now too, sautéed chicken with onions and tomatoes served with French fries for $22.
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Looking for an inexpensive route to Peru? Beginning at noon Tuesday through Friday diners can find a two-course executive lunch special. Priced at just a penny shy of $13 per person, executives and residents of Brickell and downtown can choose from five featured appetizers and entrees. Selections will change weekly, with a good chance of the new items on the menu making their way on there. It is summer, after all.
Follow Carla on Twitter @ohcarlucha.