If you’re looking for a place to eat in the mountain town of Huaraz, Peru, Yurak Jirka is the locals’ little known secret. This little restaurant is located just down the street from the Plaza de las Armas, and when I saw the sign outside advertising a $5 lunch menu, it didn’t take much to persuade my travel buddies to check it out.
Yurak Jirka is a restaurant, cafe, and bar all rolled into one. Outside, you’ll see a simple painted mural of the sun setting over the picturesque mountains so characteristic of Huaraz. If the bright orange wall doesn’t catch your attention, the smell of french fries wafting through the air will surely lure you inside.
The restaurant claims to serve authentic regional food for breakfast, lunch, dinner. They had about five different meat dishes for their lunch menu, and we all chose the classic pollo broaster, which is a typical Peruvian meal consisting of white rice, french fries, and roasted chicken. The server was very polite and patiently explained each dish for us as he placed a warm jug of apple juice on the table.
The menu consisted of a hearty bowl of noodle soup with small pieces of chorizo sausage and a little oregano. We added the house aji sauce to spice it up a little. We were then served the main dish, and although the fries were a little soggy, the chicken was perfectly golden brown. The chicken also came with a small side salad with lettuce and cucumber, although I didn’t eat it, because I get nervous about veggies washed in tap water here.
I was impressed when the server. He brought more napkins when he saw that we used all of them. Also, when we asked for more juice, he brought it with no problems and didn’t even charge us extra. We liked Yurak Jirka so much, we asked how late they were open so we could try it for dinner next time we’re in town. They’re open until 10pm, or until people leave, he said with a laugh.
If you’re passing through Huaraz, Peru on your next mountain climbing adventure, or if you just want to check out a cool place, Yurak Jirka is located on Jr. Julian de Morales N 860, only a few blocks from the Plaza de las Armas.