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Have you ever been so excited about food that its all you can think about?
I mean actually waking up in the morning and thinking I can’t believe how delicious  that em panda was last night at dinner.
I am often excited about food, am I a foodie? Well I guess so, because food plays a major role in  my life and based on all
the weight loss and  exercise programs out there I have a feeling I am not the only one.   

I was awakened by the thought of the taste of mozzarella, not your average pizza topping mozzarella but the taste of a
smoky blend of spices that almost rendered this obviously high quality mozzarella unrecognizable. At first I thought what
kind of cheese is this as i sampled this perfectly cooked flaky empanda, which the menu lists as small dishes. Believe me there
was nothing small about this savory treat.  I remember food and I associate so many memories with the dishes of my youth.
Yes they call it comfort food and the reason is it actually comforts you.

Watching your favorite movie, do you have one of those? Do you eat your favorite dish when you watch this movie in the
comfort of your home? I do it all the time it soothes me brings me to a place that makes everything thats not a happy
thought or anything uncomfortable  disappear.   So I try to find that same feeling when i am out on the town.

The ambiance the atmosphere, the staff all these things add to the experience but of course all these things can be overlooked
if the food is top quality and delicious.  Delicious is just one word to describe Raymi Peruvian Kitchen and Pisco Bar.
After several glasses of Merlot at
The Hotel Elysee I was thrilled to have a 7:30 appointment to meet Santina, Manager of
Raymi.  Feeling a little sluggish and out of energy a friend and I took a taxi down Park Avenue and she who had not had
anything to eat all day like myself was starving and in need of  some energy and sustenance.    
Walking in to the cavernous loft  / warehouse interior of Raymi began the beginning of my second wind.
Then like an angel appearing from heaven Santina the lovely manager of Raymi  joined us and led us to the promised land
with a choice of seating at the ceviche bar or a private table.
Of course I chose a private table so that my guest and I could have some privacy as we began our rise into the living.

I will list a selection of foods so sumptuous that anyone who reads this article will find it impossible not to make a note in
their schedule book for a reservation at this gem located right  on 24th Street Between 5th and 6th Avenue.
But before I do so, I must relay this to you as almost a week later a voice continues to remind me  - hey' John if your ever in
need of an energy boost you must go to Raymi and eat Ceviche!!!
CEVICHE let me repeat this !!!     I have never had this wonderful dish before in my life, my guest who is from Panama knew
about the magic power for this amazing food and was as excited as I was to try it.

We tried these Ceviche dishes in order
aji rocoto / shrimp / squid / octopus /
sweet potato
corvina / lime / red onion / sweet potato /
habanero / cilantro
and afterwards, and I kid you not I was completely rejuvenated!
I have never had a vitamin, drug, ginseng, B12, you name the list of possible energy infused things to bring that spring back
into your step like this amazing dish, its the Latin version of sushi but so much more!!
If you go for no other reason (and believe me there are a very long list of excellent reasons to eat at this restaurant) you must
go for the Ceviche!      
But wait here is a list of other reasons to eat here.

Small Plates:
CORN EMPANADA  - Favorite you have to have this.
aji amarillo / mozzarella / cilantro / chimichurri

Peruvian corn cake / roasted mushrooms / mushroom jus / watercress

Large Plates:
ARROZ CON POLLO -  Chicken is slow roasted and prepared a day in advance extremely special!
Roasted chicken / aji amarillo jasmine rice / fried banana / salsa criolla / aji verde

hanger steak / soy sauce / tomato / red onion / crispy fries / jasmine rice

roasted pork belly / andean style potatoes / roasted peanuts / salsa criolla

brown butter ice cream / toffee / raisins / almonds

By the time we finished desert we were both so deliriously happy there was nothing left to do but go back to the Hotel Elysee
and contemplate the awesomeness of this amazing experience.
There are many restaurants in Manhattan that you absolutely have to go to and this is #1 on my list

Thank you Santina, and Raymi for bringing a new food and joy to my life ;-)