Mouthful - Ceviche
SALSA CON SABOR: This Puerto Rican and Peruvian gem may not be much to look at, but the menu holds some Peruvian specialties worth your consideration — the “cebiche” in particular. The “cebiche mixto” arrives in a whimsical fish-shaped bowl, surrounded by slices of fried potato and yucca. The chunks of white fish, crunchy calamari, shrimp, mussels on the half-shell and shaved red onion swim in lime juice and are spiced to your specification; a dollop of the accompanying bright green Peruvian aji salsa adds even more heat if you like it fiery. 5567 Peachtree Industrial Blvd., Chamblee. 770-455-6727.
PURA VIDA: No Atlanta chef does more interesting things with ceviche than chef Hector Santiago at his lauded pan-Latin tapas restaurant. The chef normally serves a few types full of interesting textures and unexpected ingredients. One such creation is the Georgia trout ceviche marinated in lemon and lime juice, drenched in milk and topped with aji pepper jelly and crunch pieces of canchita (toasted) corn. Santiago even has a tofu-based version on the current menu if fish isn’t your thing. 656 N. Highland Ave. 404-870-9797. www.puravidatapas.com.
RINCON LATINO: In Mexico, some versions of ceviche are dosed with a touch of ketchup and referred to as “coctels” (or cocktails), which you normally eat with saltine crackers or freshly fried tortilla chips. Although Rincon is best known for its pupusas, the small restaurants serves one of the best Mexican-style coctels on Buford Highway. Each is laced with loads of grassy cilantro, lime juice, ketchup, creamy avocado and your choice of seafood — such as shrimp, squid, and scallops — and then packed into a towering glass goblet. 5055 Buford Highway, Doraville. 770-936-8181.