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Lima | Tomo Cocina Nikkei: omakase and fun

Ceviche: fortuno belly, limo, sea urchin, cushuro, fried camarones, yellow chili, lime

Probably due to the size of the Cathedral cocktail we had at the Hotel Bolivar a few minutes before; or because we kept drinking pisco, cerveza and michelada; or most likely because we sat at the counter enjoying a salivating nikkei omakase experience, the meal at Tomo was one of the most exciting (and fun) of our trip to Lima.

Tomo means 'Friend' in Japanese. Like friends are Francisco Sime and Jeremy Lopez, who met for the first time working at Edo and kept working together since 2012, in both Lima (including the parethesis at Maido, best restaurant in South America for the 50best) and Santiago del Chile.

Ramen: pork head and feet stock, cow bones, hen, vegetables... going on for more than 30 hours

Tomo like friends and like the guests who come in for a few times and become immediately part of an enlarged family.

Tomo equally means 'I take' in Spanish. 'I take' like I can just have a drink, a cerveza or a pisco. 'I take' like I can go grabbing a snack, a few bites, or a full omakase menu of nikkei cuisine (highly recommended choice).

Tuna belly, foie gras, shiso

Tomo is a relatively small restaurant located in Surco, a neighboorhood that is approx 20-30 minutes drive from Miraflores, and in an area not particularly rich of attractions - unless you have a thing going on for gas stations and apartment complexes.

In Italy we say that ‘the dress does not make the priest’ and the same is valid for this restaurant that does not sit in the trendier Miraflores and Barranco neighborhoods, but offers one of the best Nikkei tables of the capital.

And in line with the Nikkei tradition, the idolatry for fresh fish is at the center of the project: the sweetest sea urchin, the most buttery tuna, the finest fortuno and pejerrey... all combined with ingredients borrowed, only in their origin, around the world - foie gras, chimichurri, shiso, ponzu sauce - or sourced from the Peruvian biodiversity, like aji, lime and cocona.

The human factor

Please note: nikkei in this country is culture. It’s about hosting the second largest Japanese population in South America. It’s about sourcing the best ingredients. It’s about honouring the way cultures naturally blend in.

It’s not just the ‘fusion’ fashion we are often accustomed in some European ‘sushi’ restaurants.

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