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Best Restaurants in Cuzco: Review of Cicciolina Restaurant

Updated on April 28, 2013
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Vespa's recipes have appeared in "Midwest Living" and "Taste of Home." She belongs to Cook's Recipe Testers for "Cook's Illustrated."

5 out of 5 stars from 5 ratings of Cicciolina Restaurant
Homemade Taglioni Pasta at Cicciolina
Homemade Taglioni Pasta at Cicciolina | Source

Restaurant Review for Cicciolina of Cusco, Peru

If you are looking for upscale dining in Cusco then Cicciolina is your restaurant of choice. Boasting Italian-Andean cuisine in a hip atmosphere, the service is as exceptional as the chef's daily pasta specials. Although pricey for the Cusco area and portions are a bit scanty, you can expect creative dishes prepared with high quality ingredients from the Sacred Valley.

Centrally located just a few blocks from the Plaza de Armas, Cicciolina is housed on the second story of a charming Colonial house. Modern red walls and local artwork warmly embrace you after a long day of shopping or hiking. Enjoy wine and tapas in the bar area or, if you'd like a formal dining experience, make reservations for dinner in the small dining room.

What to Order

Start with beetroot soup, sweet and comforting. Salads are fresh, organic and large enough to share. For the main course sample homemade pasta, both intensely flavored and filling.

I enjoyed the pasta bowl of the day which was chock full of sauteed mushrooms, roasted garlic and red peppers, grilled chicken, fresh basil, carmelized onions and ground pepper bathed in light cream sauce: earthy, slightly sweet and silky.

Beetroot ravioli is another excellent choice with mushrooms, parmesan shavings and balsamic reduction. Risotto is a delicious option. Cicciolini is the perfect place for those adventurous enough to sample guinea pig or cuy, which is roasted until crispy and flavorful.

If you have a hankering for beef tenderloin, expect chewy texture. Portions are very small, more the size of an appetizer, so this wouldn't be a good option for diners with big appetites.

For travelers seeking a lighter meal, try tapas and wine in the bar area. The tapas are unusual and creative; the list of South American wines is extensive.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Beetroot Ravioli with Mushrooms & Balsamic ReductionBeef TenderloinHomemade Tagliolini Pasta with Chicken & Mushrooms
Beetroot Ravioli with Mushrooms & Balsamic Reduction
Beetroot Ravioli with Mushrooms & Balsamic Reduction | Source
Beef Tenderloin
Beef Tenderloin | Source
Homemade Tagliolini Pasta with Chicken & Mushrooms
Homemade Tagliolini Pasta with Chicken & Mushrooms | Source


ATMOSPHERE: Hip, modern, charming

CUISINE: Italian/Andean

SOUND LEVEL: Quiet and intimate in the dining room

RECOMMENDED DISHES: Homemade tagliolini pasta specials, ravioli, salads, soups, risotto and guinea pig are all delicious choices.

BEVERAGES: A good selection of South American wines, beers and cocktails such as Pisco sour.

PRICE RANGE: Expect to spend about 150 Nuevo Soles or $50 US per couple.

HOURS: Open for lunch and dinner

RESERVATIONS: Highly recommended for dinner as seating in the dining area is limited. For a great view reserve the table for four in the dining room window alcove, or try the table for two on the bar area's balcony.


For Reservations call (084) 239510 or write at

Value: 4 stars

Atmosphere: 4.5 stars

Service: 5 stars

Food: 5 stars

Portions: 3 stars

Cicciolina Restaurant

Homemade Pasta Hanging in Bar/Kitchen Area
Homemade Pasta Hanging in Bar/Kitchen Area | Source
Try Tapas in the Bar
Try Tapas in the Bar | Source
Intimate Dining Room
Intimate Dining Room | Source

General Information

Breakfast: 8 a.m. - 11 a.m. (last order)

Lunch: 12 p.m. - 3 p.m. (last order)

Dinner: 6 p.m. - 10 p.m. (last order)

No Smoking


How to Get There

Calle Triunfo 393 (2nd Floor) Cusco, Peru:
Triunfo, Cusco, Peru

get directions

Baco, Cicciolina's Sister Restaurant

After an outstanding lunch experience at Cicciolina we returned the following evening without a reservation and, to our dismay, found the dining room full. When we decided we didn't want to be accommodated at the bar, the hostess offered us a table at the sister restaurant, Baco.

One of the restaurant staff accompanied us to Baco, about a five minute walk from Cicciolina. A larger restaurant, Baco offers more seating. Service was decent, food was tasty and d├ęcor was slightly rustic and beautifully comfortable.

I highly recommend the homemade pasta dishes and gourmet pizzas. The chicken is melt-in-the-mouth tender. Try alpaca or cuy (guinea pig) and fig cake or mojito ice cream for dessert.

Insider's tip: Right across the street you'll find the best picarones (Peruvian donuts) in town. Instead of ordering a pricey dessert at Baco, opt for deep-fried Peruvian donuts drizzled with fig syrup. You won't regret it!

What to Order at Baco

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Melt-in-the-mouth ChickenHomemade Spinach Ravioli & Beef TenderloinAndean AppetizerDelicious Andean Sauces
Melt-in-the-mouth Chicken
Melt-in-the-mouth Chicken | Source
Homemade Spinach Ravioli & Beef Tenderloin
Homemade Spinach Ravioli & Beef Tenderloin | Source
Andean Appetizer
Andean Appetizer | Source
Delicious Andean Sauces
Delicious Andean Sauces | Source


If you have yet to discover the unique cuisine of Peru, you're in for a treat! For an intimate dinner in upscale ambience, reserve space in the dining room at Cicciolina.

Baco is a better option for dinner without a reservation. Either restaurant offers delicious, creative dishes made with fresh ingredients. Set aside funds for at least one special meal while visiting Cusco. You won't be disappointed!


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