Known in the upper echelons of haute gastronomy for his Lima restaurant Central, which has held the title of Latin America’s best restaurant three times, chef Virgilio Martinez opened Ichu Peru this week inside H Queen’s, a 24-storey building billed as a vertical art space.

(Related: Peruvian – The next “It” cuisine?)

Named after a hearty plant native to the Peruvian Andes, Ichu Peru aims to evoke Peruvian cevicherias, with a relaxed, bistro-style environment.

“Our intention is to replicate the atmosphere of Lima’s local cevicherias,” said Martinez in a statement.

“We want to honor Peru’s no-fuss dining culture where the atmosphere is relaxed, the dishes are shared and the recipes highlight fresh ingredients and traditional flavours.”

Signature menu items include Palta Quemada made with charred avocado, aji limo, tomato and cassava, and Tartar de Lomo con Maiz, featuring wagyu beef, corn, carob molasses and scallions.

Overseeing the restaurant will be Korean-born chef Sang Jeong, who worked under Martinez at Central in Lima for three years and collaborated on many of the restaurant’s signature dishes.

During Ichu’s soft opening, the restaurant will be open for dinner hours only, 6 to 10:30 pm.

(Related: Daniel Chavez on Peruvian cuisine)

Photos: Ichu Peru