Yesterday afternoon, with Latin music blaring throughout the La Cosecha market in Northeast, Giuseppe Lanzone turned to his brother, Mario, and asked for more sour. “It’s too sweet,” Giuseppe said to the chef, referring to the frozen mix of organic pisco, lime, and bitters that had just come out of the machine.
The Peruvian Brothers, the sibling-run business that has grown into three food trucks and a catering operation over the past seven years, are holding an all-day opening party for their first building location — inside the Latin American market — on Saturday. The Lanzones want everything to be perfect, so they’re still making last-minute tweaks. There will be an alpaca petting zoo at 11 a.m. and music from cajon drummers to ring in the occasion.
The party follows about four weeks of testing inside the much-hyped space that opened with one full-time vendor, pan-Latin bar Serenata, while others slog through construction delays. The Peruvian Brothers were one of the first vendors to run a pop-up inside the market, selling their signature Pan con Chicharrón sandwich, baked empanadas, and alfajores.
At their food trucks, the Lanzones have leaned on sandwiches, leaving Peruvian chicken to coal-fired carryouts that have become a ubiquitous feature of the food scene surrounding D.C. Giuseppe, the former U.S. Olympic team rower and CEO of the company, never wanted to be beholden to employees who may or may not show up to shovel coal. Now that he’s finally selling the specialty, it comes from an electric rotisserie. Mario’s marinade includes a panca chile paste that adds a smoky flavor as well as cumin, soy sauce, and lemon.
“Chickens are flying,” Giuseppe says with a big smile, happy with the response he’s seen from early customers.
Two new sauces, an aji limo aioli and a rocoto pepper and cilantro blend, stand in for the yellow and green condiments found at every Peruvian chicken place. In addition to chicken, the brothers will now serve pisco sour slushies made with lime, bitters, and Macchu Pisco. Yuca fries are another new item. All sides, including a quinoa and avocado salad, sweet plantains, and sauteed vegetables, are priced a la carte.
The next vendors expected to open in La Cosecha are targeting spring arrivals. That includes rare Panamanian coffee from Cafe Unido, Venezuelan street food from the Arepa Zone group at Mosaico, and Latin American Wines from Grand Cata.