Where to Find the Best Ceviche in Boston

By Eric Twardzik
05/24/2022
Barra

Ceviche is a South American staple that uses citrus juice to “cook” fresh fish. Further enlivened with chilis and herbs and often served with crispy chips for scooping, it’s healthy, low-carb, and cooling on hot summer days. Locally prepared ceviches also benefit from Boston’s access to super-fresh fish. The next time you get a red-hot craving for chilled seafood, check out the restaurants in this guide for the best ceviche in Boston.

The fresh ceviches prepared by Celeste have cemented it as a must-try Peruvian restaurant around Boston. The Union Square spot offers a trio of seafood ceviches, including the classic Ceviche de Blue Cod; a Mixed version with blue cod, shrimp and squid; and shrimp with mango and a passion fruit infusion. Thoughtfully, this restaurant also offers a vegan ceviche made with palm and artichoke hearts. The couple behind Celeste recently expanded to Cambridge with La Royal, where they serve a beautiful dish inspired by ceviche: tart and refreshing Leche de Tigre.

Interior of Row 34 | The 10 Best Seafood Restaurants In Boston
Row 34

As you may expect from a restaurant named after a local oyster variety, Row 34 is all about the bivalves. But that doesn’t mean the raw bar overlooks other seafood preparations—including ceviche. It features two iterations: Cherrystone clam ceviche seasoned with aji amarillo peppers, orange, cucumber, and jalapeño; and a redfish ceviche enhanced with pineapple, rhubarb, crispy sunchokes, and leche de tigre, a particularly citrusy-spicy marinade.

Select Oyster Bar

This acclaimed Back Bay seafood restaurant from chef Michael Serpa eschews the predictable clam bakes and lobster rolls to put an emphasis on raw preparations including oysters, crudo, and ceviche. That last category is represented by a daily changing seasonal ceviche, which comes accented by red onion, cilantro, and citrus. Consider matching its acidic kick to something juicy from Select Oyster Bar’s extensive wine list

FIELD AND VINE INTERIOR

Unlike many of the other restaurants on this list, Somerville’s Field & Vine is not focused on Peruvian fare or even seafood. Rather, the Union Square restaurant puts a premium on fresh, in-season ingredients sourced from local farmers and purveyors, which is how a Fluke Ceviche ended up on the menu. The dish can change with ingredients on-hand, but a memorable take is complemented by fermented habanero hot sauce, coconut milk, sweet potato, herbs, and served with house-made cumin crackers. 

Tambo 22

The 7 Best Peruvian Restaurants in Boston - Tambo 22

A jaunt to Chelsea is worth it for the fresh flavors of Tambo 22, a gem of a Peruvian restaurant that delivers across the board but particularly when it comes to ceviche. The preparation changes daily, but what doesn’t change is Ceviche de Tarwi, which dispenses with fish in favor of Andean lupini beans and acidic leche de tigre. Whether you pick a classic or the vegan alternative, either one is tops to pair with Tambo’s justly praised Pisco Sour or Red Sangria made with chicha morada.    

Ruka

Credit: Richard Cadan

Glitzy hotel bar Ruka breaks the mold by centering on Nikkei cuisine, which was pioneered by Peru’s Japanese population and blends Peruvian ingredients and Japanese techniques. As such, the Hamachi Ceviche here combines charred jalapeño, coconut, leche de tigre, and avocado with Okinawan chips and sushi rice. The Downtown Crossing restaurant’s cocktail menu charts a similar course, as it features both a traditionally prepared Pisco Sour and an Aki Sour made with Japanese whisky, applejack, and lemon.

Barra

Barra strives to import the experience of a contemporary Mexico City bar to Union Square. Thus it serves aguachile, a close Mexican cousin to ceviche which translates literally to “chile water.” It describes a preparation that starts with fresh chilis, pulverized with a splash of water. Raw fish or shrimp is tossed with this mix and gets a generous squeeze of lime, then is served immediately. Barra’s seasonal rendition this summer is Aguachile Rojo, which adds jalapeño to a cool mix of tuna, watermelon and white soy.

The Jamaica Plain bookstore/record shop/tapas restaurant is Spanish in name and theme, but Tres Gatos in fact takes influence from around the world. The summer menu often includes ceviche, which features flavor combinations like halibut with shoyu, mint, husk cherries, and peanut salsa macha. Match it with a bubbly Spanish cava or a refreshing cocktail like High & Tight, made with Aperol, gin, elderflower, and lemon.

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