LOVES

The Weekend Australian - Travel - - TRAVEL & INDULGENCE -

First-time food-lov­ing visi­tors to Chile should book a seat at Mote­mei, a gas­tro­nomic “work­shop” in the fancy Vi­tacura neigh­bour­hood of San­ti­ago. Chefs Pa­tri­cio Cac­eres Perez and Jen­nifer Crew cre­ate staunchly pa­tri­otic menus of all-lo­cal in­gre­di­ents and wines. Guests en­ter through a lounge space of vin­tage adorn­ments — gilded mir­ror, fruit­wood dresser, framed photos — and take a seat around an island bench in a com­mer­cial kitchen to watch their meals be­ing made. The menu, seven cour­ses paired with na­tional wines, might start with plump, black­bor­dered oys­ters from Chiloe Island. Then Cac­eres adds an io­dine-rich dust­ing of dried pi­ure (a very ugly sea squirt) that to­tally trans­forms the oys­ters. There’s a mush­room and sea urchin dish, and a mini chori­pan — the spicy sausage-in-bread snack loved by Chilenos — served with a clas­sic beer chaser. Desserts fea­ture the same em­pha­sis on pure, en­demic flavours which in­cludes choco­late. “It’s a small culinary jour­ney,” Cac­eres says. “We are proud to be Chilean.” The Mote­mei Ex­pe­ri­ence costs about 70,000 Chilean peso ($142) a per­son with drinks matched to each course. More: mote­mei.cl.

KEN­DALL HILL

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