Chef Ricardo Zarate and Culinary Lab partners made the most of lagtime leading up to Rosaliné’s long-awaited opening in West Hollywood. Zarate had been using a fourth-floor space in Hollywood & Highland as a test kitchen and got inspired to open fast casual Mamacita Peruvian Cantina on-site. A colorful space with patio seats now overlooks the touristy mall and serves bowls of Peruvian comfort food, plus fun non-alcoholic beverages.
Mamacita crafts four house-made drinks, aka aguas frescas, each costing $4.96 for 16 ounces. The line-up includes a pair of Peruvian classics: chicha morada made with purple corn, and maracuya, a passion fruit drink accented with chia seeds and mint. I enjoyed strawberry horchata, a soaked rice milk with cinnamon that in this case contained almond milk and came bobbing with chopped strawberries. Cebada was my favorite option, featuring nutty barley water seasoned with lemongrass and flaxseed, garnished with lime and mint.
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