Restaurant of the Week: Nayu’s

CLOSED

Nayu’s Peruvian Restaurant, 4380 Holt Ave. (at Ramona), Montclair.

A few of us from work had lunch at Nayu’s last week after a recommendation from our colleague Elaine Lehman. It turns out to be located in the slightly seedy, if hilariously named, Larry’s Plaza, which I visited in May, to my horror.

Nayu’s currently has no sign but it’s in Suite K and is, well, the place without the sign. Inside the place is reasonably comfortable and the service was friendly. There’s an A in the window too. This was looking up.

I had the lomo saltado (sirloin, peppers, onions, tomatoes and fries, with rice, $9.99) and an Inca Cola. Two others had pollo saltado (the same but with chicken), another had lomo chow mein and a fifth had a ceviche.

We all liked our food quite a bit, and the portions were so large we each took some home. The ceviche may have had too many onions but was loaded with good-sized shrimp and had sides of sweet potato and corn.

I’d say Nayu’s is comparable to Kikiryki in Claremont, except Nayu’s has table service.

As we ate, a TV played soccer in Spanish, then switched to the studio, where a man was wearing a crown and an ermine cape, carrying a scepter and carrying on to the amusement of the other soccer commentators. Meanwhile, in the restaurant, a customer entered wearing a T-shirt with this message: “I got out of bed for this?” I hope he found his meal worth the trouble.

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  • Robert Bunch

    David I don’t know if you know this but Larry’s Plaza was all started with a burger shop. When JR Const. was still in business this was our meeting place. We would work out deals and set up lumber yards to deal with close to jobs. Breakfast at the time was $2.25, two eggs, bacon or sausage and hash browns with coffee. I believe work on the plaza was started in 1980 when the plans were drawn but I can’t swear to it.

    Did you ever think of running a story on old eating places that are no longer there? Such as the lunch counter that was on Foothiil right before Vineyard, when the city tore it down it turned out to be an old bus made into a diner. Or the diner that was in the old Sears mall at Holt and Indian Hill. It had one long counter and stools but a hot beef dip was $1.25 with coke.

    Like truck drivers, anyone who works in construction and has to drive to the job knows all the places to eat.

    [I've done various columns over the years about long-gone restaurants. The "Eateries Past" category on this blog has a few such entries as well. That said, the two you mentioned are unfamiliar to me. They both sound picturesque. -- DA]