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SF 2nd Annual Festival de Comida Peruana, coming soon: Sunday, July 18, 2010 fm 10-6p

hhc Jul 7, 2010 11:48 PM

Sfoodie mentioned it on their blog. 2nd Annual Festival de Comida Peruana, Sunday, July 18, 2010. Did anyone go last yr?

SF restaurants Fresca and El Perol will be there. Other restaurants and caterers from the South Bay and East Bay ― 20 food vendors in all, offering a smorgasbord of traditional dishes like lomo saltado, ceviche, anticuchos, aji de gallina, tamales, papa a la huancaina, rocoto relleno, causa, picarones, lucuma ice cream, Drinks: Inca Kola, chicha morada, Peruvian pisco, and Cerveza Cusqueña.

Festival de Comida Peruana
When: Sun., July 18, 10 a.m.-6 p.m.
Where: Civic Center Plaza
Cost: Free

Blog post:

Fresca Restaurant
2114 Fillmore St, San Francisco, CA 94115

El Perol
2590 Mission St, San Francisco, CA 94110

  1. Melanie Wong Jul 28, 2010 06:22 PM

    Since today is Peruvian Independence Day, I’m posting a few comments and photo links as reference for future events.

    The lines were still very long when I got there in the afternoon. Since it was impossible to get close enough to most of the booths to read the menus or see what the food looks like, I went behind the food tents to see what people were cooking. I’ve done this at a few of these popular food festivals now and it helps a lot to decide where to invest time standing in line. Here’s a look behind the scenes -

    One of the shortest lines was in front of Doña Lucha. Luckily, humitas were on offer, something that I wanted to try. These were offered in sweet or savory versions, $3 each or 2/$5. The folks here said they would be opening a restaurant of the same name in Concord. Neither had the fresh corn in the masa that I was expecting, but I still liked them very much. The soft, strained style of masa was well-seasoned and very smooth. The sweet one had raisins and the salted one had tender shreds of pulled chicken in a red sauce.

    By the time I got in line for ice cream, the scooping inventory was sold out and only pints were available from Tocumbo Fresca Ice Cream. So, I got an agua fresca instead, a creamy lúcuma, which was very nice. I duly noted the phone number and website on the vendor’s banners. Then I discovered that Tocumbo used to have a storefront in Redwood City but had closed. Tocumbo is the name of the town in Michoacán that spun off the Mexican paletas and ice creams that we enjoy so much. I’m sorry that we missed out on this spot. However, according to the festival’s site, the ice creams are available wholesale or on a catering basis by calling the proprietor’s cell phone.

    I was intrigued by the offering of Pepián de pavo, said to be a Criolla specialty of Peru’s northern regions, rather than Andean or Coastal. For $10 I got a braised turkey thigh perched on a sea of porridge. The taste seemed more like rice, but there was a toastiness that I associate with corn and I wondered if this was more akin to polenta. Looking it up, I learned that Peru’s pepian is made with grains of toasted rice. The turkey juices and stock that flavored the rice were quite concentrated, but I couldn’t help but think of this as an expensive, albeit tasty turkey jook. The soft strips of ají amarillo on top gave this quite a kick.

    Two of the vendors were from restaurants I’d not run across before, Las Americas in San Mateo and Miraflores in San Carlos. If anyone has tried either, please let us know.

    Festival de Comida Peruana 2010 -

    El Hueco
    593 Woodside Rd, Redwood City, CA 94061

    1065 Holly St, San Carlos, CA 94070

    Tocumbo Fresca Ice Cream
    Redwood City, Redwood City, CA

    Dona Lucha
    Concord, Concord, CA

    Las Americas
    254 S B St, San Mateo, CA 94401

    1. DezzerSF Jul 19, 2010 08:16 AM

      I was there around noon and tried El Perol's escabeche de pescado. The fish is fried and served with a sauce, but It was lukewarm so I only had a few bites. I'd imagine it would have been good if it was hot.

      Then I waited at the Inca Grill line for over maybe 45 minutes only to find out one line was for Jalea and the other for Papas Rellena. Unfortunately I was in the Jalea line and they weren't being fried as quickly as the Papas. Luckily I made friends with someone in the Papas line and he bought one for me. It was pretty good and spicy, stuffed with ground meat and a hardboiled egg.

      Fresca seemed to have the longest line, I wonder how their food was?

      Fresca Restaurant
      2114 Fillmore St, San Francisco, CA 94115

      El Perol
      2590 Mission St, San Francisco, CA 94110

      1. hhc Jul 18, 2010 07:41 PM

        I went to the 2nd annual Festival de Comida Peruana (Peruvian Festival) in SF Civic Center Plaza held outdoors in front of SF City Hall.

        Nice warm day w/ a breeze. There was a stage set up. Didn't watch any acts.

        Went for some food.

        Tried El Perol Restaurant. Got a Peruvian tamale $5 w/ pork inside. It was nice and a bit spicy. Needed some sauce.

        Cau Cau $10 - stew made of honey comb tripe, chile, potatoes & seasoning. Just ok.

        Dessert $3 huge heart shape alforajore. Just ok.

        Kimberly Comida Andina. Wanted to try Cuy (guinea pig) but none left, sold out I guess, anyone get to try it?
        Got Pachamanca (beef). Looked like a lot of beef, but mostly bone & fat. Little bit of meat. Ok taste. Baked potato. Tamale w/ raisin - boring.

        Tocumbo Fresca ice cream booth. Didn't get the ice cream cuz sold in pint size. Got a small Lucuma drink $3. It was nice & refreshing.

        Jess's Place - had a corn w/ sauce & cheese. Looked good, someone said it didn't taste good.

        Miraflores Restaurant, San Carlos. Looked like chicken w/ potato salad. Didn't get.

        La Furia Chalaca, Oakland was there. didn't try anything.

        El Toro Loco, Pacifica. Saw sign said Papa a la huancaina $8, didn't get. Mussels-sold out.

        Fresca had Picarones $8 & Butifaras $8. Didn't try them, anyone?

        I probably won't be going next yr.

        Fresca Restaurant
        2114 Fillmore St, San Francisco, CA 94115

        La Furia Chalaca
        310 Broadway, Oakland, CA 94607

        El Perol
        2590 Mission St, San Francisco, CA 94110

        El Toro Loco
        1624 Francisco Blvd, Pacifica, CA 94044

        Jess's Place
        3088 Monterey Hwy, San Jose, CA 95111

        1 Reply
        1. re: hhc
          Cynsa Jul 18, 2010 08:23 PM

          the ice cream booth sold ice cream cones, also... and gave free tastes of all three flavors - we had the cherimoya ice cream on a sugar cone - excellent - rich and creamy -
          We were too early at 11 am - booths were still setting-up and not ready to serve. Lines were short and moving quickly... I looked for cuy at Kimberly's but didn't find it her booth. Too early?
          I'll go back next year! As we wandered through the crowds, I looked at everyone's plates... many families had take-out boxed for home - People weren't shy and I overheard the quest 'Where did you get that?' often. It was a friendly crowd.

        2. Melanie Wong Jul 18, 2010 03:43 PM

          Cuy is sold out.

          2 Replies
          1. re: Melanie Wong
            Cynsa Jul 18, 2010 04:29 PM

            Was the cuy at Kimberly's Comida Andina? I couldn't find it at 11:00 am -
            We had Dona Irma's mollejitas/plate of chicken gizzards, yucca, and pickled onions with aji - the chirimoya ice cream with a refreshing lucuma drink - I wanted to taste everything!
            The Civic Center crowd was swelling at noon when we left for the Jewish Contemporary Museum.

            1. re: Cynsa
              Melanie Wong Jul 22, 2010 12:40 AM

              Yes, Kimberly's is the booth that was offering cuy. It reopened again around 4:30pm with fresh supply, but I was leaving and didn't feel like standing in another line. I did look at a plate. A half guinea pig braised served with potatoes was $10.

          2. Melanie Wong Jul 18, 2010 02:52 PM

            I got here 20 mins ago, food lines still long. Shorter on southside at less well known food purveyors. Humitas, sweet or salty, $3, from Dona Lucha are very good. Hoping to open resto in Concord.

            El Hueco is here too.

            1. rworange Jul 15, 2010 09:29 PM

              A reminder it is this weekend. Official website

              The website sort of sucks. Here's a bit from going com

              "The Peruvian Food Festival is all about the Food. With over 40 unique dishes from every region of Perú ... prepared by 20 Restaurants/Chefs. "

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