Monday, January 30, 2012

Connecticut Wander: A Little Bit of Peru in Hartford

Last night Lori suggested La Kerencya for dinner.  I was a bit leery about what to expect.  I browsed the online menu, and I noticed many of the dishes were served with rice and french fries.  She assured me the food was excellent.  I decided what the heck, it was a good night for a culinary adventure.

The restaurant was warm and inviting - the owners attentive, gracious and delightful. Willie the chef and his wife Mona, our the hostess and server. She guided us through the many menu choices. Mona translated La Kerncya for us, which means "passionate knowing" in Peruvian. I like that.  

I was delightfully surprised by the quality and quantity of food.  There were five in our party.  We all ordered something different and we all shared.  My first course, the Saltado de Vegetables, a classic Peruvian dish, stir fry sautéed with tomatoes, red onions, peppers, peas, corn, carrots, and seasoned with “Kerencya’s” style sauce served and white rice.  It was large enough for an entire meal.  My second course was the Pescado Al Ajo, a pan fried sole fillet over a butter-garlic La Kerencya sauce.  Both were very tasty.  Although the fish was pan fried, it didn't seem heavy.  The breading was light and the fish tender and flakey.

My friends ordered an assortment of the Ceviche, diced fresh fish/seafood dishes marinated in lime juice seasoned in a variety of ways.  Someone ordered the Arroz con Mariscos, a Peruvian Paella, another ordered Anticuchos Skewered, grilled chicken kabobs served over grilled sliced potatoes and Peruvian corn, the last dish was Lomo Saltado a classic Peruvian dish, Stir fried beef tenderloin strips sautéed with tomatoes, red onions, and seasoned with “ Kerencya’s” style sauce served with white rice and French fries .  Oh lets not forget dessert, flan. 

There is something for everyone on the menu. Every dish was fresh and well prepared.  Needless to say our eyes were bigger than our stomach, and we  were happy to take the extras home to enjoy later.  La Kerencya is on Franklin Avenue in Hartford. They have Peruvian or Latin based music some Sunday afternoons, Thursday and Friday evenings starting at 8pm.  I will definitely be back. 

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