by Steven Doyle
There was a bit of fervor in the office when we heard there was a second Nazca Kitchen in Dallas. The new location in Uptown is a much larger and fanciful version of its original on Walnut Hill and 75.
South American cuisine can mean so much, especially with its European influences. This allows for a broad and interesting menu. The beautiful interior was designed by Hatsumi Kuzuu who also designed FT33.
The menu strikes bold flavors using interesting chiles as well as colorful grains and sauces. The most recent trip did not disappoint.
Nazca Kitchen is owned by the same fellows that operate Red Hot and Blues locally, and do so very well. Their intent is to create amazing atmosphere coupled with delicious dining and superior service. How this rang true on the visit. We were especially excited to see Shawn Horne was at the helm managing the restaurant (we saw him weeks earlier during the Red Hot and Blue review). A fantastic manager both in front and back of any house, and he has this amazing talent for design and worked well with Hatsumi Kuzuu who is responsible for many of North Texas’ better restaurants.
Start your Nazca journey, which is heavily inspired with South American flavors, with the salmon ceviche. This is a perfect example of how we enjoy our ceviche and this dish made it to our recent list of Dallas favorites for a huge reason.
Most any visit you might wish to sample the roasted chicken that is marinated for a day then flame-kissed before being glazed with fairly mild aji pepper sauce. A true Nazca classic. Don’t forget the Brazillian cheese bread (Pão de Queijo), a house favorite that takes up to 15 minutes to arrive once ordered since these beauties are made form scratch. These are made with tapioca flour, so gluten be gone and are filled with an inordinate amount of fresh cheese.
We might stop and load up on the cheese bread, seriously, but there are so many other flavors to enjoy at Nazca – it is a true adventure. From the Seafood Stuffed Avocado (Panko encrusted beauty) to the grilled skirt steak that chews like your favorite haunch of beef and has a delightful marinade for good measure.
Enjoy other Nazca favorites such as the many taco options served with butter leaf lettuce or freshly made tortillas, the skirt steak sandwich served on an Amazon crunch bun, a delightful Cuban – possibly one of the city’s best – and a char-grilled burger that competes well with any burger you might find in the area.
We need to try the brunch menu but it looks inviting as well. We spotted sangrias, pupusas, chorizo laden everything and so much more. This has us excited for brunch again. Nothing better than a Latin brunch.
Cocktails are a major player at Nazca so taste the many house favorites loaded with fresh juices and obvious choices that will brighten any glass such as pisco and rum.