Due to its Incan origins, Spanish colonization, and Chinese and African enslavement, Peru is home to a culturally diverse cuisine.
With its inclusive menu, Se Llama Peru has been a successful representation of this cuisine in the heart of Provo.
Ten years ago, with a constantly growing Peruvian population and a growing interest in Peruvian culture, a small group decided Utah County would be the perfect location for this new style of food. Contrary to many establishments surrounding it, Se Llama Peru has maintained a successful reputation and constant clientele.
The small yet classy restaurant offers an excellent exposure to this beautiful country. From Peruvian music to Hispanic television channels and a large hanging flag, Se Llama Peru transforms the place into a very authentic experience. Luis Penson, the current manager and cook, passionately talks about the Machu Picchu, Peru paintings included in each booth, representing the homey feel they hope to accomplish. Still, comfort and charm are not forgotten in this restaurant’s decoration. Including booths and tables with a wooden-themed design, Se Llama Peru pulls off a very cozy feeling. From the very entrance, Se Llama Peru enticingly captivates its customers into its exceptional atmosphere.
Though only the cooks are required to be Peruvian, all workers at Se Llama Peru are bilingual, allowing satisfactory service for both English and Spanish speakers. Penson, specifically, is a Peruvian who studied in the culinary arts program at Utah Valley University. With his ethnic background and formal training, he is able to accomplish beautifully designed, yet culturally accurate, dishes—using 50-60% imported ingredients. In regards to his cooking he said, “I love cooking more than anything. I cook more for love than I do for money, and I try to please both taste and portion.”
Containing more than 40 menu items, Se Llama Peru has a wide range of food and prices—averaging at $9.00/plate, with $6.00 daily specials. Penson explains that the three most popular plates are Pollo a la Brasa, Lomo Saltado and Ceviche; with Inca Cola, a Peruvian soda, as a favorite drink.
The Lomo Saltado consists of fried beef strips, tomatoes, onions, and French fries; topped with a rich sauce and accompanied by a large scoop of rice. The mixture of flavors achieves a delicious blend, resulting in a mouthwatering party for the taste buds. Furthermore, the Inca Cola was the perfect accompaniment for this rich meal. A dish of high recommendation.
Se Llama Peru radiates artistic talent in both the cultural and culinary aspects. Ten years of successful business has earned them a deserving reputation and consequent respect. With their affordable prices, mouthwatering food, excellent customer service and option for pick-up, it would seem foolish not to stop by.
Se Llama Peru
368 West Center St, Provo, UT 84601
By Stephanie Oliveira