The Highly Remote Peruvian Restaurant With Altitude-Themed Courses

If food anthropology is your jam, you're likely familiar with Moray. But, if you're not, this Peruvian wonder is certain to pique your interest. Surrounded by the Andes Mountains within Peru's Sacred Valley, the Incan ruins of Moray are composed of three groups of circular terraces. The ruins are believed to be remnants of an experimental farm that taught agricultural practices within different altitudes and climates over 500 years ago, according to Peru for Less. But, because the Incans left no written records, according to Britannica, certain legends often are surmised to be more mythical in nature. In the case of Moray, you can decipher its meaning for yourself.

Named as part of The World's 50 Best 2022, Virgilio Martínez founded his now famous restaurant just above Cusco, Mil, as a way to explore the teachings of Moray. And, by sourcing many of his menu ingredients from the surrounding rainforest and nearby farms, Martínez has created a treasure trove for the curious palate. A bit of a trek — a 70-minute flight from Peru followed by a 90-minute drive, Food & Wine recently named Mil as one of 10 remote restaurants around the world worthy of your bucket list experiences for the year.

Mil's two experiences

Inspired by the different climates and altitudes illustrated by Moray, Martínez created an eight-course menu for Mil. The courses listed are Preservation, Plateau, Extreme Altitude, Corn, Central Andes, Andean Rainforest, Frozen Cordillera, and Sweet Huatia.

It reads much like a hidden treasure map, while the indigenous ingredients serve as the map's key. Some of them you probably are familiar with — lamb, potatoes, quinoa, corn, and duck. But you might need a legend for Martínez's map to discern more region-specific components. Take the nostoc sphaericum used in the Plateau course, for example. Known as the caviar of the Andes, per Lima Easy, the wild plant grows in wetlands and has been part of the Andean diet for centuries. After savoring each course, you might feel like an Andean explorer. But, to dig even deeper, opt for The Mundo Thousand Immersion.

As listed on Mil's website, the immersion gives you the opportunity to connect with the surrounding communities to gain a better understanding of their lives and ancient traditions while savoring the cuisine of the region and climates around Moray.

An entire day's adventure, it takes you from the farmlands of the Mullaka's Misminay and Kacllaraccay communities, the botanical route surrounding Mil, where you'll collect plants used for food and medicinal purposes, and onto the "Mater projects" stop featuring local artists, makers, and seed collectors. There's also a "distillates and ferments" stop as the ultimate cocktail hour before Martínez's aforementioned gastronomic experience — the tasting menu.