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Dinner at Citrico South American inspired restaurant

Located in North Fitzroy, Citrico (meaning "citrus") is a South American inspired bar and restaurant serving up predominantly made-to-share dishes in a lively atmosphere. The World Loves Melbourne was invited along to experience Citrico on charming Queens Parade, the brainchild of Nan Kroll (who delightfully hosted us on the night). Citrico takes its inspiration from the cuisines of Argentina, Peru and Chile and is highly recommended for a fun, unique Melbourne dining experience.

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But first a Pisco Sour.

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The extensive menu at Citrico includes ceviche (in line with the name Citrico), house made empanadas (several versions), and larger dishes cooked over the charcoal and wood grill such as market fish and Black Angus grain-fed steak. We love this casual made to share style of dining. There are also several Chilean inspired vegetarian and vegan options available.

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Conchitas scallops were a highlight with delightful caramelisation of plump scallops and a cacophony of flavour with Pisco-yellow chilli butter, lomo saltado sauce and puffed rice. I found myself spooning the sauce and mopping up every morsel.

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Empanadas deserve a special note; house made and a unique shape with compelling delicious filling. Empanada Cerdo featuring pork shoulder braised in orange was rewarding as was the vegetarian option of Empanada Maiz with sweet corn, capsicum, feta cheese and basil.

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Joyous times in North Fitzroy. Stunning textures, big flavours and vibrant colours; epitomising the celebratory cultures of South America.

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Pisco sours and empanadas are a match made in heaven. Not one to stray from its South American roots, cocktails such as pisco sour are a feature on the drinks menu not to mention an extensive wine list featuring labels from Chile, Argentina, Spain and even a few Victorian names. We indulged in an Argentinian chardonnay (non buttery or oaky and refreshing) and an Argentinian Malbec (signature South American wine).

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A great example of ceviche in Melbourne. Ceviche Clasico featuring catch of the day, sweet potato, corn, chulpi, leche de tigre was a sexy dish and we enjoyed the slight sweetness of the soft corn as well as the hard corn. The sauce is a killer and once again I found myself spooning and mopping it up.

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Argentinian Chardonnay perfect with the ceviche.

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Asado (charcoal and wood) grill dishes are a must order. O'Connor premium Black Angas pasture fed Sirloin from Gippsland Victoria. Melt in your mouth premium beef with welcome zesty chimichurri.

We love food grilled on a parilla and Citrico does not disappoint. Chef Daniel Salcedo excels, formerly from Harley House and Piqueous, and is from Lima (we have previously experienced his cooking).

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Side of Wood fired Broccolini, baby carrots, almond salsa, miso vinaigrette was a fabulous dish in itself.

Nan and her team have created a joyous vibe with the lively menu and the renovation to a heritage terrace property, with intimate vibe including comfortable wicker chairs, large front window overlooking iconic Queens Parade, and attractive mood lighting. If you're a fan of Pisco this is the place for you as there's plenty of pisco options to choose from.

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Delicious South American flavours and fun dining.

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Washed down with organic Argentinian Malbec.

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Dessert is a highlight with Picarones sweet potato and pumpkin doughnuts, fig sugar syrup, chocolate sauce a smash hit.

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Not to mention a Chocolate and honey parfait, aerated white chocolate, Pisco grape jam.

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View before diners arrived (became full after not too long on a summers' night), Citrico exudes a charm and is popular with locals and also part of the OpenTable Top 50 Australian Restaurants 2019.

If you've travelled to South America, as we have, you will love it at Citrico for its authenticity and flavours of the region. As Nan says, Melbourne needs more South American restaurants. And we say "like this!" Passion and soul, excellence of food and drink, engaging service and well executed. Highly recommended.