New York City will soon have a second Nikkei restaurant, featuring the lesser-seen mash-up cuisine created by Japanese immigrants in Peru: Llama San will open in the West Village from the chef-owner of the acclaimed Llama Inn.
Located in the former Tertulia space at 359 Sixth Ave. near Washington Place in the West Village, chef-owner Erik Ramirez and partner Juan Correa will show off another side of Peruvian cuisine to New Yorkers. Ramirez is Peruvian with a Japanese grandmother, and will reach into his heritage to cook dishes like quinoa-infused tofu served with quinoa furikake, wild sturgeon caviar, and chancaca, a Peruvian syrup made from sugarcane. He likens the concept to a Peruvian izakaya, with casual, a la carte dining.
As such, drinks from Llama Inn beverage director Lynnette Marrero will pull from both Japanese and Peruvian spirits and ingredients. Wines will be coastal, with a focus on salinity and minerality. In the about 65-seat space — plus an outdoor patio — Ramirez is going for a bit of Japanese minimalist aesthetic with light wood.
Ramirez is a bona-fide empire builder these days; Llama San will be his third restaurant following petite sandwich shop Llamita and hit Williamsburg restaurant Llama Inn. Nikkei, meanwhile, is most notably available at the ambitious Sen Sakana in Midtown, but has otherwise so far been an under-the-radar cuisine in NYC. Stay tuned for an end-of-year opening.