From the restaurant group that brought Lolita and Yvonnes, I was expecting big things and Ruka delivered; beginning with their 15 page cocktail book! Don't let it overwhelm you though, it's one cocktail per page and very inspired. And although I chose the least exciting presentation wise (above), I can assure you that comprehensive little book and the drinks that follow are seriously fun.
Ruka is an astonishing exploration in Peruvian-Asian culture, highlighting the Nikkei (Japanese-Peruvian) and Chifa (Chinese-Peruvian) cuisines. These cuisines were brought to Peru by large immigrant populations, combining elegant Japanese cooking techniques like sashimi and makimono, as well the traditional Chinese recipes like fried rice and stir fry with native Peruvian ingredients - Amazonian fish, yucca, corn, aji peppers and nuevo latino seasonings such as chili powder, chimichuri and cilantro.
The space is designed to embody Peru's dramatic landscapes and vibrant cities - live edge wood tables, concrete columns with Inca symbols, a vivid wall to wall street art mural, suspended ropes inspired by Peruvian fabrics - guests will surely feel transported to another world and a stunning one at that.
I was dazzled by Ruka's vibrant, creative cuisine - the octopus lomo soltado in particular was a standout dish. In order of appearance:
Crunchy Salmon Tacos ($18) salmon ceviche, avocado, roasted tomatillo salsa, pickled radish
Hamachi Amarillo ($17) baby corn + avocado roll, hamachi, tomatillo salsa, jalapeno-corn sauce
Old Hill ($14) Knob Creek 9 year, carribean rums, Nikka Japanese Whiskey, black sugar, bitters, coffee oil
Crispy Rock Shrimp ($18) asian pear + avocado roll, soy paper, aji amarillo mayo, florida rock shrimp
Junmai Gingo, Tensei ($7) song of the sea: coastal, seaweed, lemon zest, crinshaw melon
Octopus Lomo Soltado ($17) peppers, onions, ginger-soy, black rice, shoe string fries
White Nest While Ale ($9) Hitachino, Japan
505 Washington Street
Boston, MA 02111