Peruvian-Chinese cooking and Lima’s multicultural charm come to the fore in a brand-new dining space.
Recent years have seen a profusion of Nikkei (Japanese-Peruvian) eateries sprouting up across Southeast Asia, from Bangkok to Bali. But there’s another genre of South American cross-cultural cooking that deserves just as much exposure. Now, Singapore’s Resorts World Sentosa (RWS) has added Chifa! — a convivial Peruvian-Chinese restaurant — to its culinary lineup. The venue is named after the cuisine it showcases, whose own moniker is derived from the transliteration of the phrase “chi fan” (to eat). Chifa gastronomy has its roots in the 1800s, when the first wave of Chinese immigrants to Peru fused predominantly Cantonese flavors and local ingredients, a combination that evolved in new ways with each passing generation.
Taking its cues from traditional Chinese courtyard architecture and the streets of Lima’s Barrio Chino (Chinatown), the restaurant comes adorned with brick walls, artisanal textiles, stone floor tiles, neon lights, and glazed roof tiles. Patrons are seated in four dining areas, including three private rooms and a lively bar area.
The menu, meanwhile, comprises Chifa classics as well as new creations that harness spices and other ingredients from Peru, alongside fresh herbs and vegetables grown in RWS’s on-site garden. Must-try specialties include the yellowfin tuna tamarind ceviche featuring citrusy-sweet leche de tigre and daikon and kyuri (Japanese cucumber). Also noteworthy is the bijao wrapped fish and sudado: whole fish roasted in banana leaf served with tomato chalaca salsa and a zesty sudado sauce made of aji chili and fermented corn juice. The wok-fried seafood XO aeropuerto features quinoa and jasmine rice topped with seafood and seasonal vegetables sautéed in a flavorful XO sauce.
These dishes can be washed down with Peruvian cocktails like Chicano de Chifa, a refreshing blend of Macchu Pisco, maracuya (passion fruit), agave nectar, and ginger ale. Named after a beautiful turquoise lake located near the high-altitude Andean city of Huaraz, Laguna 69 mixes three-year-old Havana Club rum and blue Curaçao with pineapple, fresh lime juice, and agave nectar.
Chifa! is located at RWS’s Ave 8, and is open for dinner from 5–11 p.m. daily, except Tuesdays and Wednesdays.