Why Tanta Chicago: I strongly believe one of the best ways to get to know a culture is through its food. If you want to experience Peruvian food, I have just the spot for you in Chicago’s River North neighborhood where Tanta restaurant takes guests on a culinary tour of this culturally and geographically diverse South American country. The food is inventive, flavorful, and delicious offering a lot of variety for the diner. There is really something for everyone including incredible cocktails pairing back perfectly to this fabulous cuisine!
What does Tanta mean: Tanta, which means “bread” in Quechua, makes Peruvian cuisine approachable with knowledgeable, genuine, and attentive service to complement a menu of shareable plates. These plates go from bright, citrusy cebiche (ceviche) to skewered grilled meat and fish to seasonal cocktails anchored by Peru’s national spirit, pisco. The restaurant, which opened in August 2013, is a collaboration between Chef Gastón Acurio and VBD Group, LLC. (Veronica Beckman, Vincent Beckman, JP Bitting, and Brian DeNicolo). Tanta Chicago is the only location within the United States.
Executive Chef, Jesus Delgado. Not only does he have the best smile, but he’s super nice, talented, and approachable.
Another dish I experienced and loved was the Lomo Saltado, a traditional beef tenderloin stir-fry dish with red onions, tomatoes, cilantro, garlic-soy sauce, rustic potatoes, and rice. This was a perfect entree following the seafood starters. The beef paired with the red onions and cilantro was incredible. It was hearty yet it tasted light with the perfect balance of flavors.
Pulpo Anticucho: octopus, chimichurri, crispy garlic, olive sauce. This octopus dish was a nice starter. I loved the chimuchurri flavors paired with garlic and onion.
Cremosa Tiradito: salmon, creamy scallop leche de tigre, avocado chalaca, olive oil. This was the most inventive of the dishes. I loved the mixture of the scallop broth (that was a first for me and I loved it) paired with the fish and calamari. Extremely light and flavorful. I recommend starting with this as an appetizer.
Chaufa Aeropuerto: pork fried rice, shrimp tortilla, spicy garlic. This was probably one of my favorite dishes. It compares to my other favorite fried rice at San Francisco’s incredible State Bird Provisions
The delicious choclo (Peruvian corn) flavored ice cream. I also love the bright colored art decoration in the restaurant – it fits perfectly with the flavorful, fresh, and inventive Tanta cuisine!
An assortment of the delicious desserts.
Thanks again Chef Jesus for the incredible visit. Your food is amazing; so flavorful, fresh and combines various styles of cuisine in an incredibly fun, lively setting. I can’t wait to return in the summer and experience your rooftop next!
DISCLOSURE: Emily, The JetSetting Fashionista enjoyed a complimentary meal during this visit. However, Emily only writes about restaurants and destinations that she personally enjoys and proudly endorses and wants to share with her readers. All opinions expressed are her own.