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Las Quenas Peruvian -- holy ceviche, Batman!

Das Ubergeek | Jun 17, 200504:22 PM

So I was on my way home today and was driving along Sherman Way. We went off the diet today since we're headed out on vacation, and I was going to stop at Swan Thai and bring some of their food home for me and Mrs. Ubergeek to try, but as I pulled into the lot I saw a sign for Peruvian food, which appealed to me much more.

I ordered yuca a la huancaina, ceviche mixto "Las Quenas", lomo saltado, and aji de gallina -- we will be having Peruvian food for dinner, too.

Yuca a la huancaina is exactly what you expect -- slices of boiled yuca in a cheese sauce with sliced hard-boiled egg and a few olives. It's not meant to taste like much.

The lomo saltado was good, though I would have preferred the potatoes to be fried a little crispier. The seasoning was good -- it's hard to screw this up, it's a stir-fry of beef, onions, tomatoes and French fries, served with rice. It was even better with some aji (spicy green sauce).

The aji de gallina -- chicken in potato sauce, basically, with some chiles thrown in for spice -- was really, really good. The chicken was cooked just right, it was dark meat (my request, white meat would have been too boring), the sauce was the right consistency and had an amazing amount of taste for being potato sauce. It came with a little cup of soup and a little salad.

Then there was the ceviche. You can specify which proteins you'd like to get in your ceviche -- fish, shrimp, octopus, squid -- and whether you want it spicy or not. I got half a mixed ceviche, spicy. My wife doesn't like ceviche so much but I love it. It was fabulous, especially the octopus. It was so good that I gave up on the fork -- it wasn't delivering ceviche to my mouth quickly enough. (Can I admit that here without fear of someone channeling my grandmother and taking me to task?)

The value is incredible -- the ceviche alone was enough to be a good-sized meal, particularly since you get half a gigantic potato, half a gigantic yam, and half an ear of corn with it. There are two lunch menus, one for $5.95 and one for $7.95, each with a set of dishes you can choose from -- the $7.95 ("Menú Ejecutivo") gets you two appetisers instead of one, and a dessert.

1/2 ceviche mixto "Las Quenas": $7.50
Lomo saltado: $9.50
"Menú Especial" lunch, with yuca a la huancaina, soup, salad and aji de gallina: $5.95

I intend to be eating a lot of ceviche from that place when I get back from my vacation.

Las Quenas
12708 Sherman Way
(SW corner of Bellaire, 4 blocks from the 170)
North Hollywood, CA 91605
(818) 764-3962

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