Tupay, the Quechua word for meeting is the name of this restaurant nestled in the heart of the renowned Belmond Hotel Monasterio. Located in the ancient refectory of this beautifully restored monastery, monks used to gather here to share their meals. To arrive, you will cross the hotel entrance and a beautifully lit, majestic courtyard that will take you back several centuries. The previous tenants would most likely be very tempted by dining here today as everything about Tupay is designed to create an exquisite culinary experience.
Vaults and original paintings lend an elegant, old-fashioned feel to the room, while soft candle light creates a hushed and confidential atmosphere. Jorge Baqua, Chef of Tupay, is an interesting character. Destined to be a history and geography teacher he fell in love with cooking after his first experience in a restaurant. Unlike many chefs, his twenty one years in the industry have not dulled his interest in food and haute cuisine in any way as proved by the dishes placed before us throughout our meal.
We had the Sacred Valley sauteed mushrooms to start. Served with fresh, porcini and Paris mushrooms mixed with crunchy asparagus, fava beans and sun dried tomato, this dish left a subtle earthy flavour on the palate and was perfectly matched with a glass of Intipalka, a beautiful Peruvian Chardonnay proposed by the restaurants’ sommelier. If you’ve never had the chance to try cuisine from the south west of France, ask for the foie gras escalopes. The escalopes melt in the mouth and are served with candied pears for a touch of sweetness. A classic taste of France high in the Andes.
Tupay offers an international menu. Some typical Italian dishes are offered like the mushroom risotto and vegetable fettucine, as well as a handful of traditional French dishes like confit duck and chateaubriand. The homemade foie-gras terrine with fig compote brought me back to France and melted in the mouth like honey washed down with a delicious glass of Intikallpa cosecha tardia sweet wine.
This menu is tailor-made for customers of the hotel and reflects this with a more traditional and classical approach to food. The chateaubriand, another traditional French dish, was a tender thick cut of beef tenderloin served with a creamy potato gratin and accompanied with a bearnaise sauce and was a filling, tasty main.
The traditional Peruvian shrimp chowder was delicious. This is not a visually appealing dish, but the combination of shrimp, sea bass, fava beans, Andean corn, cheese and milk made for a tasty, light yet filling soup with a slight kick.
Service is excellent as you would expect from this Belmond owned property and staff go out of their way to ensure you have a great experience. Chef Bagua comes out to speak to diners and desserts are made ‘live’ at a table in the corner. The deconstructed fruit crumble with caramelized apples and pears was delicious. The cape gooseberry and pistachio ice cream was one of the best we have tasted in Peru – creamy, tasty and full of texture.
Tupay offers a delightful, high-end, gourmet dining experience influenced by the imposing grandeur of the monastery itself. Ideal for those looking for a classical culinary experience in a baroque-style environment right in the heart of Cusco.
Best of Peru Travel Recommends:
- Don’t miss the Tupay Restaurant Opera Nights on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturdays. Enjoy great food and classical music with the excellent acoustics of the room.
- Tupay proposes almost 120 mostly South American wines to pair with your meal and have one of the most extensive wine menus in Cusco. The Intipallka winery is a nice option if you want to try a local Peruvian wine.