While Jenkins and I were waiting in Cusco to start the Inca Trail portion of our trip, we had the opportunity to try quite a few restaurants. One restaurant that definitely wasn’t Peruvian in its cuisine but was consistently recommended was Jack’s Cafe. According to the guidebooks we read, it was quite popular with expats staying in Peru for its American-style breakfast and lunch options. Note that the picture below wasn’t taken during my visit. I had forgotten to take a picture after brunch so we circled back later that day so I could snap a picture.
Cusco’s elevation is very high at 3310 metres (almost 11,000 feet) and was definitely one of the highest elevation places Jenkins and I had ever been to. As a result, we were experiencing a bit of altitude sickness. The local cure for altitude sickness is coca tea, which all the local people we met assured us would solve our altitude headaches as long as we kept on drinking the tea. Call it psychological but it seemed to work for us so it was our de facto drink of choice during our entire stay in Peru. Taste-wise, it has quite a strong herbal flavour that is slightly similar to green tea but not exactly so. How is that for vague?
I decided to go for a traditional brunch option and had the toast with eggs, bacon, and mushrooms. The toast used is similar to most of the bread we had in Peru, which was a little dry yet chewy and a bit dense. The eggs were nice and fluffy and the bacon was crispy. I would have liked for there to be more mushrooms but overall, this was a pretty standard dish.
Jenkins was in the mood for a sandwich and chose the grilled chicken and avocado sandwich. I felt that his choice was better than mine. The chicken was a bit dry but offset by the creamy and copious amounts of avocado. There was a bit of mayo to tie everything together but not too much. In this case, the drier bread made the sandwich quite good because it added a nice crunch and helped the sandwich maintain its shape.
The service at Jack’s Cafe is very friendly and they are quite prompt. The portions are quite generous as you can see in the pictures and you’ll definitely walk away being quite full. If you’re in Cusco and are missing a bit of home but still want to enjoy a touch of Peruvian atmosphere, Jack’s Cafe is a good place to go. As with many places in Peru, dishes are very reasonable ranging between $3-8 for most main courses.
Choquechaca 509, Cusco, Peru (located in San Blas neighborhood)