Fortunately for everyone reading this blog, the food adventures in South America does not end with the previous post! In this second post, I’ll be writing about my experiences at a Chilean restaurant called Ambrosia.
Named as one of the top 50 restaurants in Latin America, Ambrosia is located at the edge of Santiago in a fairly suburban area. The space itself comprises of various rooms that are pieced together to create an intimate and homey feel.
We started off with a drink each to prepare ourselves for the meal. Armed with our drinks in hand, we began to decipher the Spanish menu with the help of Google Translate.
First were the appetizers. We knew we wanted something different, and the sweetbread and foie gras on the menu simply did not impress us. The entire process of picking an appetizer was harder than we thought. We really struggled to figure out what some of dishes were. So, when we stumbled upon what seemed like a tart of “hedgehog”, we thought it was too intriguing to pass up even though we weren’t exactly sure of what we were signing ourselves up for. Either way, we had already tried beef heart and alpaca on this trip, how could it get any weirder?
This is what we ended up actually getting.
It doesn’t look like what you imagine a “Tart of Hedgehog” looks like right?
Turns out, when Google says “hedgehog”, they really meant sea urchin! For the first few bites, the saltiness and sliminess of the sea urchin caught us completely off guard. Guinea pigs are known for its chew. We expected a similar chew from a hedgehog as well! It took a few more bites for us to confidently pronounce it as sea urchin (and also realize that when Google Translate said “hedgehog”, they probably meant “sea urchin” who is similarly spiky). The crust of the tart was buttery; the sweet crumble on the side balanced out the saltiness of the urchin. I will not attempt to describe the mysterious green sauce on the plate since I think it will just be one of those mysteries in life that I will never figure out.
Following that, we each ordered an entree. First, there was a seared Chilean white fish on top of a beet risotto paired with a pea puree. The red from the beets contrasted beautifully with the vibrant green from the puree on the simple white plate. Overall, the risotto was the star of the dish (if not the meal) in terms of colors and taste.
Then, there was the Wagyu beef served with a Gorgonzola mashed potato “clouds”, eggplant puree, and leeks. The Gorgonzola “clouds” were the best mashed potatoes I have ever had (if you can even call them mashed potatoes). The fluffiness and the creaminess of the cheese “clouds” made me wonder why not all mashed potatoes were created the same way.
Last but not least, a giant bowl of chocolate mousse to top it all off! We were originally going to order the dessert sampler in addition to the mousse, because we figured we were only here once and everything was so cheap anyways! However, when we were ordering, our waiter warned us that the mousse is gigantic and we should only stick with one or the other (which was a really good call from him since we were basically rolling out of the restaurant when we finished).