If you’re a fan of Peruvian food, you’ll absolutely love Tanta. It’s located in the River North neighborhood of Chicago, super close to where I work. To put it lightly, I was blown away by this restaurant. Everything from the food to the service to the drinks was outstanding! Our waiter had great suggestions for us first timers, and the food came out quickly for a packed house on a Wednesday night over the Holiday season. All the food was super fresh and had the right amount of spices and flavors, without over doing it. The menu is a little overwhelming, but it was nice to have our waiter talk us through it. My friend and I went all out, so check out what we ordered and my suggestions for a night at Tanta:
We started with the Cremoso – chef’s selection fish, creamy scallop leche de tigre, avocado chalaca, and olive oil. What drew me to this Japanese Sashimi is the Peruvian twist they put on it (and I love avocados and immediately order anything with it).
Next item we ordered was a skewer of steak – just like the traditional street skewers! It was a New York strip with potatoes, corn, huacatay. I didn’t know what huacatay was, but it must be good because this was some of the best bites of steak I ever had!
The waiter and my friend had to do a little pushing for me to agree to this dish. It was called the Anticuchera – octopus, avocado, quail egg, piquillo pepper, olive cream. The octopus threw me off a bit, but it was still tasty! This is my more adventurous friends’ favorite.
Small, but mighty! Criollo consisted of bay scallops, smoky sesame beef (hidden underneath and a little on top) and that huacatay cream again! Only $9, and a perfect appetizer for two.
This may have been my favorite thing on the menu. PACKED with flavor! Under the same section as the Criollo ( Niguiris Nikei), this was called the Pobre. It consisted of skirt steak, quail egg, chalaca and ponzu.
Did I mention it was my birthday? We HAD to get dessert! This was seasonal (apologies for forgetting the name) but it was some sort of cinnamon, nut, icecream brownie deliciousness!
This place is just excellent. I recommend Tanta to anyone visiting Chicago that wants to get away from the typical deep dish pizza spots and steak joints. I can’t wait to come back when it gets warm again to checkout their rooftop!