Peruvian eatery Coya brings its famous ceviches and tiraditos to Abu Dhabi

The contemporary Peruvian restaurant will open its doors at The Galleria in Abu Dhabi, serving up much-loved signature dishes.

Amberjack tiradito at Coya. Courtesy Coya
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If there's one dish on the Coya menu that everybody should try, it's the Chilean sea bass cazuela, says Roland Puse, head chef at the contemporary Peruvian eatery. "It combines two different cooking styles: the Chilean sea bass cooked in the brassa, our open charcoal grill, and the arroz, or rice, cooked in a European style, like risotto, in an iron pot. Putting these two styles and methods into one dish has made this among Coya's highest-selling signature dishes and one of my personal favourites."

Diners have flocked to Coya since the restaurant opened its doors in Dubai in 2014, and it was named by CNN as one of the 10 best new restaurants in the world in 2016. The company is now hoping to replicate this success in the capital, with Coya Abu Dhabi scheduled to open on February 21.

Set over two levels in The Galleria on Al Maryah Island, with a capacity of 120, including an outdoor terrace and private dining room, Coya Abu Dhabi will stay true to the formula that has proven so popular not just in Dubai, but in the brand’s London flagship and sister restaurant in Miami. Diners can expect the same rustic flair, Inca-inspired interiors, custom-crafted furniture, trademark Pisco Lounge, resident DJs and multifaceted menu.

Contemporary Peruvian cuisine, which has been one of the defining gastronomical trends of recent years, has been shaped by a range of rich influences, including the Spanish, Basque, African, Japanese, Chinese, French, Italian and British cuisines brought over to Peru by immigrants over the years.

“During my travels to Peru, I discovered that it had an abundance of fresh produce – it has over 3,000 varieties of potatoes and more than 300 varieties of chillies,” says the French-born Puse. “Peruvian cuisine is influenced by the mountains, the jungle and the coast. It is fresh, rich, spicy and international, and stands distinct in Latin America as well as the rest of the world.”

Coya signature dishes include classic ceviches crafted from diced seafood, tiraditos (sliced raw fish) and the more hearty anticuchos (grilled skewers of fish, meat and vegetables).

“To start with, we will be going ahead with the same menu as Dubai; why change the recipe of success? Having said that, we would have to see the demands and requests of our guests in Abu Dhabi, just as we did in Dubai,” says Puse. “Coya is a restaurant that evolves with time and adapts to its guests’ demands.”

Read this and more stories in Luxury magazine, out with The National on Thursday, February 2.