The NEW Mo-chica!

Mo Chica on 7thRicardo Zarate, one of my favorite chefs (Picca Peru) officially opens his new Mo-chica restaurant in downtown L.A. tomorrow, May 30th. Peter and I were invited to check out the new space and menu at a “friends and family” preview dinner, where we both tried ALPACA (photos below) for the first time!

The official grand opening includes a street artist, ribbon cutting and Peruvian dancers.

Schedule of Events at Mo-chica 5/30/12:

9AM: Local street artist Robert Vargas tags the windows

11AM: Official ribbon cutting with Ricardo, local artists, city officials (open to the public)

11:30a-3:30p Open for Lunch

5:00p Step-and-repeat photos (open to the public)

5:30-10:30p Open for Dinner

6PM: Dancers and musicians begin their night-long performances

Address is 514 W. 7th Street (@ Grand), Los Angeles, CA 90014

My photos from the preview dinner:

Ceviche Mixto
Ceviche Mixto: Halibut, prawns, scallops, squid, red onion, rocoto, leche de tigre, camote. (Zarate is a ceviche master. Our first dish in the new location HAD to be this.)

Choritos a la Chalaca
Choritos a la Chalaca: Grilled chopped mussels, prawns, squid, tomato choclo salsa.

Carapulcra (Pork Belly!)
Carapulcra: Peruvian sun dried potato stew, crispy pork belly, chimichurri.

Estofado de Alpaca
Estofado de Alpaca: Alpaca stew, tagliatelle, aji amarillo sauce, fried organic fertile egg. (I thought for sure the alpaca would be strong and gamey, but it was exactly the opposite! Very light, reminded me of veal.)

Haburgesa at Mo Chica
Hamburgesa: Alpaca & lamb patty, pickled cucumbers, aji amarillo yogurt dressing. (I am NOT a fan of lamb, but I would order this burger again. As of this week, I AM a fan of alpaca!)

Mo Chica on 7th
The new Mo-chica has a full bar.

Cocktails at Mo Chica
Dogfather (front) aka Pisco Sour: Pisco, egg white, fresh lime & lemon juice, cane syrup sugar, angostura bitter. Papa Don’t Peach: Banks Rum, Fresh Peaches infused w Calvados, Peach Bitters, Simple Syrup, fresh lemon juice.

Kabocha Pumpkin Beignets w Chancaca Sauce
Dessert: Kabocha Pumpkin Beignets w Chancaca Sauce (sweet sauce made of raw unrefined sugar crystallized with honey).

The MAN! Chef Ricardo ZarateAbout Mo-chica (via official press release)

Mo-chica is a vibrant, urban restaurant serving Chef Ricardo Zarate’s modern interpretations on traditional Peruvian comfort food.

Originally built in an unassuming food court in downtown Los Angeles, the restaurant’s humble setting proved a stark contrast for the innovative cuisine served. Chef Ricardo Zarate, a good-humored Lima native who trained at some of London’s most celebrated restaurants for 12 years, opened Mo-chica in the summer of 2009 as his first solo endeavor. The restaurant immediately received recognition from both local and national audiences, including Jonathan Gold and the head honchos at Food & Wine. After opening Picca in 2011 and fueled by the unprecedented momentum of the restaurants’ successes, Zarate resurfaced his dream for Mo-chica—one he wasn’t able to fully materialize with the original location due to limited resources. The chef found a larger space downtown on 7th and Grand that could embody his original vision; the open, industrial-esque restaurant features concrete floors, vibrant-hued walls tagged with graffiti (thanks to local artist Kozem), whimsical touches—including Peruvian figurines customized by some of the city’s culinary tastemakers such as Ludo Lefebvre, Nancy Silverton, and Evan Kleiman—and sneakers suspended from the ceiling.

All my photos of Chef Ricardo Zarate on Flickr

Mo-chica on 7thMo-chica website
514 W. 7th Street (@ Grand)
Los Angeles, CA 90014
213. 622.3744

Dining Date: 5/27/12 Friends & Family Dinner (gratis).

Many thanks and CONGRATS to Ricardo, Stephane, Jorge, Team Mo-chica, Shawna & all!

Hours
Open for lunch and dinner 7 days a week. Valet parking available after 7 p.m.
Sun.-Sat. 11:30a-3:30p (lunch)
5:30-11p (dinner)

Follow Chef Ricardo Zarate on Twitter

Follow Mo-Chica on Twitter

Mo-chica on FaceBook

Mo-chica by Jonathan Gold, L.A. Weekly

Read “Ricardo Zarate Wants To Introduce You To Alpaca Meat” by Grub Street L.A.

Artist Robert Vargas

Also by Ricardo Zarate: Picca Restaurant

More about Alpaca Meat

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1 Comment

Filed under Eating Out

One response to “The NEW Mo-chica!

  1. The mussels and pork belly looks so good, you made hungry early this morning

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