Los Portales: Restaurant Turistico

This was an interesting set of circumstances. Today in school, my photography class went on a field trip to a plaza with a fountain to examine how different shutter speeds affect photos of water. It was pretty interesting, but another point that is interesting is the fact that this plaza is connected to the Plaza de Armas and I had never seen it before! I may have stumbled across it early on, but maybe I was too out of it to notice…

Anyway, I decided to return after class for lunch. I went back to the hotel and dropped off my school stuff and picked up my book (the Hobbit). By this point, I was pretty hot, so I forgot my jacket. I got to the plaza and looked around a little. It is very pretty with the fountain and it seems a little less busy with fewer shops and tourists. I decided on one of the more noticeable restaurants. It was a restaurant that had most (if not all) of the tables outside on a stone step that was about five feet tall. There were musicians playing and it seemed like a lovely meal.





(I hope the video comes through alright. This is my first time putting a video on my blog…)

I sat down and enjoyed the view for awhile. I had ordered one of the Andean dishes offered, trout with quinoa. I finally got my tea and tried to drink it slowly, despite the fact that I was starting to get really cold. I eventually finished my tea, but I couldn’t get a waiter’sattention to get another one.

One other bad side to this eating arrangement is the fact that people trying to sell jewelry or paintings would come up and try to talk you into buying something. It made me a little uncomfortable because these sellers are generally very forward and this wasn’t a situation where you can keep walking. Luckily, they weren’t as forward as usual. Maybe they didn’t want to risk getting banned from the area or something. I haven’t really figured out the rules for these street sellers yet.

I finally got my food after a very long wait and asked for another hot tea, thinking that I could drink that before I left to warm up. By this point it wasn’t really a late lunch anymore, it was an early dinner. I just about inhaled my food. This was one very good point about the restaurant. The food was stellar. It turned out that my dish was trout coated with a quinoa crust, like a US breaded dish. It had some very buttery and flavorful potatoes and some nice vegetables. I may come here again just for this dish. I’ll just need to remember my heavier jacket!


I finished eating before my tea came, so I just asked for the bill. I really shouldn’t have eaten so much, but between the hunger, the cold, and the great flavors I had trouble slowing down.

On my way back, I found the ChocoMuseo in the same plaza and stopped by to map it out. First, I found the gift shop. Then, I found a workshop. Last, I found the actual ChocoMuseo through a different doorway and upstairs. This was very nice. Despite the good food, I was in a somewhat bad mood after my meal. I got into the store, and I was almost immediately greeted by a employee. She was very friendly and cheerful, and she gave me a free sample of the cocoa tea (which was very good – I plan to return and buy some before coming home…).

She also was only as tall as halfway up my bicep. It was interesting talking to someone that tall in such a confined space (the room was very busy and Peruvians have a much smaller bubble of personal space). In Missouri, I’m used to most people being within a couple inches of my height or taller. This encounter made me really realize how short the peruvian people generally are, both men and women.

Despite the problems with the service, I may return. The meal was fantastic, and the lovely experience at the ChocoMuseo (which I will return to – both to make chocolate and buy tea) made me feel much better about my evening.

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