One of Portland's favorite dining institutions is preparing to reopen indoor service, but the experience should be a true departure from what you've come to expect from Andina over the last several years.
And that's a good thing.
The 17-year-old Peruvian restaurant in the Pearl District used its furlough to completely refresh its image by changing everything from the dishes to the interior décor. Yup, they've even ditched the white tablecloths in favor of a more modern, streamlined look.
Perhaps the most invigorating news is the return of former chef Jose Luis de Cossio in a consulting role for the restaurant's new iteration. De Cossio left Andina in the late aughts during the height of the restaurant's admiration in the city. For him, it had gotten too big and became the type of establishment he didn't want to helm.
De Cossio, who has mastered the flavors of Peruvian cuisine after learning under two of the country's greatest chefs—Coque Ossio and Gastón Acurio—eventually went on to launch Paiche in 2015. The intimate restaurant in Southwest Portland's Corbett neighborhood became known for its deeply flavorful ceviche and filling causas and was named WW's 2016 Restaurant of the Year.
Somewhat surprisingly, Paiche went vegan and axed dinner service. It closed in 2018.
Now back at Andina, de Cossio plans to infuse the menu with a bit of what he did at Paiche in the form of plant-based food inspired by pre-colonial cooking. The kitchen will be run by executive chef Cliff Denny, who has been there since 2018 after cooking at restaurants across the globe.
Andina will continue its relationship with Corvallis' Peace Seedling Farm, which cultivates unique Andean plants like a slightly sweet tuber known as yacon.
Dining room seating will be through reservations only, Tuesday through Saturday. A limited number of nightly walk-ins can find seats at Tupai, the upstairs bar. Two new air systems have been installed to provide improved filtration and ionization during the pandemic.
Indoor dining returns Tuesday, Oct. 27.
After getting some in-house services under its belt following a months-long closure, Andina plans to spin off a take-out and delivery operation called Chicha. In November, you'll be able to start ordering from a lineup of dishes inspired by the street food of Peru, including salads, empanadas and sweets.