Fusion cuisine is a product that is greater than the sum of its parts, much like a handcrafted pocket watch, a puzzle, or a 1990's boy band. Indulge in harmonious flavors with today's Groupon: for $17, you get $35 worth of Latin fusion cuisine at Selva in Sarasota.
The flavorsmiths at Selva infuse Peruvian-inspired dishes with subtle American and Asian influences, crafting a menu of innovative fusion fare. The signature ceviches include such invigorating delights as the Selva wild ceviche, which storms the palate's ramparts with a horde of fresh seasonal whitefish accompanied by fresh lime, cilantro, and roasted camotes ($15). Chefs plate wok-fried sirloin amid rice, crispy yucca, and an aji soy sauce to create the lomo saltado ($24), and the grill's signature skirt steak reclines atop a semisoft bed of sweet plantains ($26). On the liquid end, Selva's wine list boasts an extensive selection of enological sippables, allowing diners to raise a toast in honor of their favorite rumor heard through the grapevine ($8+ / glass).
Selva's dining room keeps guests stimulated with colored lighting, swirled wall art, and hanging flora imported directly from the gardens of Babylon. Outdoor seating also allows patrons to keep an eye on trending constellations while devouring the kitchen's gustatory delights until 11 p.m. on weekdays and 1 a.m. on weekends.
At Selva, Latin America meets the United States atop plates splashed with "Peruvian cooking reinterpreted with polish and sophistication," according to the Herald-Tribune. Dubbed Nuevo Latino cuisine, the menu's signature ceviches and seafood entrees hint at eastern origins due to Peru's influx of Asian immigrants. The Maya Shrimp Ceviche is made with an orange marinade that includes fresh avocado, red onion, Peruvian corn, and cherry tomato. Joined by more familiar dishes such as the Chilean Salmon topped with blue crab and manchego accompanied by a mango buerre monte; and a macadamia nut encrusted rack of lamb with chive and truffle risotto. The wine list contains exotic offerings from Argentina and Italy.
The dining room vibrates around an aesthetic centerpiece, a glass wall glazed with chunks of color that conjure imagines of a swirling mosaic. With auburn walls and plush couches, the lounge area facilitates chatter and nickel-filled pillow fights as live DJs spin tracks until 1 a.m. on weekends. Outside, water spills over a wall beside the patio seating.
Main Street Merchants
1345 Main St.
Sarasota, Florida 34236