Every year Toronto sees a new cuisine trend take over the city. Tapas, tacos, sushi burritos, poke, you name it, and we’ve seen it. This year it seems as though Peruvian fare is taking the spotlight. We had the distinct pleasure of sitting down for a tasting at ICONINK’s newest addition Mira Restaurant. The name Mira is inspired by the Miraflores district in the Lima province in Peru. It’s known as an upscale shopping district and one of the most affluent areas of the city. At the helm of Mira is Chef Stuart Cameron from Byblos and Patria, who has brought his unique take on Peru’s bold and eclectic culinary scene.
You would never believe that this space was once a club. Mira has taken over the spot that was once known as F-Stop. But they have infused every corner with artfully designed furniture and bold colourful murals. There is an intimate feel to the space with the use of dark woods, a rich and saturated colour scheme and dim lighting.
The kitchen is built as an open concept with the bar acting as a focal point in the dining room. It creates the perfect spot to watch the bartenders mix their specialty cocktails and pisco sours.
Chef Cameron did not take the challenge of bringing Peruvian cuisine to Toronto lightly. He thoughtfully explored the traditions and conducted meticulous research through his travels to Peru and Latin America. He has sourced many of the ingredients directly from Peru. Including lucuma, aji peppers, lulu fruit and huacatay – a Peruvian herb known as black mint.
The menu is meant to be shared. With a selection of small plates and creative takes on traditional ceviche. Entrées include a variety of meat and seafood prepared with house-made marinades and a variety of sides to choose from.
The Tostado Morado ($17) is a personal favourite. It’s a great share dish featuring spicy tuna, cilantro crema, and avocado on a purple corn chip.
The Altamar Ceviche ($19) is one of their 6 different ceviche options. This particular concoction is made up of buttery grouper, aji amarillo, kumquat, passionfruit, and sweet potato all swimming in tiger’s milk.
Their Concha ($17) which on presentation alone was a beautiful sight, is made up of bay scallops baked in atomic butter and lime. Perfect for sharing or keeping all to yourself.
And now on to the sweeter side of things. We first tried the Amor Con Coco ($12), and yes, that translates to ‘I’m in love with the cocoa’. This artful dish is made up of three different kinds of Peruvian chocolate, vanilla ice cream, candied stevia and amaranth crunch.
Finally, the dish that you have seen floating all over your social media feed, the El Huevo Malo ($14). It’s a chocolate shell lined with creamy mousse that gets cracked at your table and opens up like a beautiful jewellery box. Inside it reveals a decadent flourless chocolate cake, coffee ice cream, and pieces of honeycomb drizzled with yuzu marmalade and raspberry.
All of Mira’s cocktails are $15 and feature a variety of piscos and specialty house cocktails. Piscos are their signature drink. They even make their own varieties in-house using different fruits which you can see proudly displayed at the bar.
The Villa Maria is a great way to start with a blend of strawberry pisco, vanilla liqueur, lime, sugar and Peruvian bitters.
Or if you’re feeling a little daring, you could opt for the Victoria. It’s made up of pisco, lime, pineapple, spiced pineapple infused honey, aji amarillo and red peppercorns. Perfect for summer nights on their patio.
Mira proves itself to be the perfect spot for a group dinner celebrating a special occasion or an intimate night out sharing a few cocktails and share plates. No matter why you find yourself at Mira, you will surely not be disappointed in your experience.
For more information and to make reservations visit their website.