You can’t go far in Lima without passing a Chifa restaurant. In Barrio Chino and parts of Lince, you will see roasted ducks hanging in storefront windows. The best ones are in Lima’s Chinatown (featured in the Downtown Lima Walking Tour). If you like Chinese food, you should try the Peruvian fusion.
Chaufa is fried rice. So Chaufa de Chancho (Pork Fried Rice), Chaufa de Pollo (Chicken Fried Rice) and so on are mainstays. Some places will serve a Chaufa Especial which have any combination of chicken, pork, beef, shrimp or all of the above.
One of my favorites is Chancho con Tamarindo (pineapple pork, pictured above).
This is Pollo Tipakay (sweet and sour chicken), another sweet staple at Chifa restaurants.
Pollo Enrollado is a battered and fried tube of chicken breast served with veggies and rice which, along with Pollo Chijuakai (sesame chicken), are recommended for those who don’t like sweet sauces.
Where (and when) to eat Chifa
Like Chinese restaurants around the world, some are fast and cheap while others are fine dining. The cheap ones are ubiquitous and open late. But if you want something world class, try Chifa San Joy Lao with locations downtown and in Surco or Restaurante Royal in San Isidro.
In Latin America, lunch is the most important meal, as opposed to the United States and Northern Europe where dinner is considered more important. So most typical Peruvian foods are not served at night, unless of course you’re in the tourist districts where restaurants cater to people from the United States and northern Europe.
Outside of Miraflores, however, the dining options narrow significantly after 4 p.m. Chifa is one of the cuisines open for dinner, usually until late. Another typical dinner is Anticuchos. Save those two for dinner.