DINER: Lolita’s Chef Opening New Modern Peruvian-Themed “Chicha” Eatery On Main

by Andrew Morrison | Veteran chef Shelome Bouvette (interview) of Davie’s popular Lolita’s South of the Border Cantina has paired up with her old sous chef Allison Flook and friend Kumiko Umeno to open a new modern Peruvian-themed restaurant off Main and Broadway (the old Dhaba spot at 136 East Broadway across the street from Chutney Villa).

The all girl affair will be called “Chicha”, a term used all over South America for a home-made fermented (or non-fermented) drink. In Peru, the term also refers to things that are informal, popular, and cheap, which sounds pretty bang on for the concept. It’s a small space, just 40-50 seats with a large and long bar offering some 15 +/- stools. The drinks list is being designed by Mamie Taylor’s co-owner Ron Oliver. Chicha takes over a liquor license that allows good times until 2am on weekends.

Peruvian cuisine is really hot right now, with restaurants representing its flavours opening up in the world’s cuisine capitals. It’s multi-cultural — anchored by Spanish, Japanese, Chinese, and indigenous flavours, methods and traditions — so it sounds right up Vancouver’s alley. Bouvette and Flook are going to plate all starters (no entrees), and we can anticipate a lot of ceviches, yucca relleno, stews, quinoa, potato, paella, fried rice, and more.

They get the keys on April 1st and hope to have it open at some point in May.


  • http://sfiestacrazyhour@yahoo.ca Silvana

    Peruvian themed?
    Is there a peruvian chef onsite?
    also there are a couple of real Peruvian restaurants in the city owned and operated by peruvians if somebody like to visit them

  • Art

    On Main? It’s actually about 300 feet west of Main on Broadway. Not to nitpick of course.

  • Sylvia

    Awesome. 4 weeks to heavenly food.

  • Xtina

    Open yet?

  • jess

    ‘the old Dhaba spot’…yeah, that ol’ spot..the one you never once wrote about or visited, because it wasn’t cool enough to be part of your little food clique, or didn’t have the $ to pay for your scout membership (and therefore the glowing write-up). For the record, I’m just a local Dhaba customer without any affiliation to the place, and want to say that that place was great and could have used more support. Their na’an wraps were amazing and the owners were there and always super friendly. And also for the record, I’m only wishing the best for this new place, and think it’ll be a cool spot, too. :)

  • Lynn

    Lookin’ forward to enjoying some cool drinks and some hot eats at Chicha!!

  • Mike

    The fact they are affiliated with Havana Cafe does not give me much confidence. There’s a dead horse if there ever was one.