Santiago Queirolo

August 2nd, 2008

One of Peru’s many Italian immigrants, Santiago Queirolo Raggio arrived in Magdalena Vieja, now Pueblo Libre, in 1880s. In this time Magdalena Vieja was surrounded by an expanse of countryside and the city of Lima was some distance away by horse.

Santiago Queirolo sold octopus and sea food on the corner of one of the town’s streets before he also started selling Pisco and wine from his land in Cañete. His business was a success and his small shop became restaurant and he greatly expanded his sales of Pisco to locals. As time went on, Santiago Queirolo became a brand name for wines and spirits and the restaurant became a side business.

Today the old restaurant/tavern still occupies the same corner and next door the Santiago Queirolo warehouse does brisk business – cases are piled high and wholesalers and restaurant/bar owners walk in to place their bulk orders.

One of the dozen great places to eat in Pueblo Libre, the Antigua Taberna Queirolo is certainly the oldest restaurant in the area. As Peruvian chef Gastón Acurio stated about the place – it shows good restaurants never go out of style.

Comida Criolla, Creole Food, occupies most of the old chalkboard menu in this rustic and busy location. You can also try the famous Santiago Queirolo pisco.

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