La Mar by Gastón Acurio at InterContinental Doha brings vibrant Peruvian flavours and exotic dishes to Doha’s gastronomy scene. FACT’s Marisela Paesano discovered the new dining hotspot, one plate at a time…



Offering a mix of indoor and outdoor seating, La Mar boasts spectacular sea views, along with a distinguished al fresco dining experience, set in an upscale casual atmosphere combining Peruvian elements with modern luxe décor.

You can eat inside the contemporary, design-driven restaurant, with an open kitchen and lively ceviche bar or bask in the expansive terrace overlooking the Arabian Gulf and Doha’s skyline. We started our Peruvian culinary journey with Ceviche Clásico. Ceviche is a favourite dish of many in Peruvian cuisine, and is often the meal of choice for many locals in Peru. The coastal sensation is made with freshly caught seafood steeped in onion, chilli, and most importantly, lemon or lime juice, resulting in the fish appearing as “cooked”. As I was spooning up the Ceviche Clásico – bathed in a marinade that delivered chilli heat and citrus acidity in precisely calibrated doses – I knew why Chef Acurio is a rock star in Lima, and how he has managed to build a 31-restaurant empire in 12 countries.

La Mar’s ceviche is indeed compelling. Gleaming tiles of fish bask in liquids so vivid and potent. I was persuaded, too, by a Tiradito Laqueado, sliced ahi tuna tataki in a small lake of passion fruit, leche de tigre and sesame oil sauce; it starts out Japanese before a sour nudge of passion fruit takes it in an unexpected, delicious direction.



We also tried the causa limeña, a classic Peruvian of whipped potatoes and ají peppers, topped with king crab meat, avocado mousse, ikura and huancaina sauce. This is not a sophisticated dish but it sure tasted like home, bringing back so many memories of my beloved Latin-American region. My favourite main dish was a well-executed arroz con mariscos, rice with seafood. The rice had a
pleasant texture and the dish combines rich flavors with plenty of fresh seafood. The portion is big enough for one person but I have to confess it was so dreamy I was tempted to order more.

The Pescado a la Brasa was a grilled boneless whole fish, wrapped in banana leaves, the fish was also a hit, simply delicious and succulent – just perfect!

The desserts were exceptionally good, we tried the suspiro loco, dulce de leche foam, crisp merengues and vanilla ice cream, this luscious delight was exquisite. If you give it a try, you won´t regret it. It´s quite an unforgettable treat! Peruvians are passionate about their national cocktail the pisco sour, made with egg whites, ice, lime and sugar. They have an amazing selection of pisco sours on the cocktail list here. I encourage you to have at least two while there. They are delicious!

Peruvian cuisine is one of the world’s most precious and vibrant cultural fusions. Celebrity-chef Gastón Acurio’s food reflects an innate historical fusion with an acquired modern and diverse refined style. I declare myself a big fan of Chef Acurio’s food and I am sure I’ll be a regular in no time! ✤