Dining: Salar Restaurant and Lounge

 Dining: Salar Restaurant and Lounge

Salar offers dynamic Peruvian flavors in an elegant setting.

When Chef Margot Blondet opened the doors to her restaurant, Salar Restaurant and Lounge, last year, she wanted to provide an escape for her guests.

“I wanted people to come in and eat [and] have the whole experience with energy and music… I wanted to make them feel like they weren’t in Dayton anymore,” she says.

Her chic leather-seated lounge, granite-cut bar top surrounded by tall swivel stools and seven-foot glass water wall, generate a cosmopolitan ambiance laced with Latin influence in the heart of the Oregon District.

Peru’s varied topography and location along the Pacific coast yield a dynamic mix of bold flavors: Potatoes from the Andes Mountains and spices from the rainforest fused with Spanish, French, Italian and Chinese influences.

For Peruvian starters, try Margot’s empanadas. The juicy beef tenderloins are stir-fried in spices and wrapped in turnovers, before sprinkled with powdered sugar.

The Beef Huancaina Lasagna includes grass-fed beef, yellow Peruvian pepper béchamel and is topped with mozzarella and aged Parmesan cheese. The Red Quinoa Encrusted Chilean Sea Bass is seared and baked, then served over Peruvian yellow pepper cream sauce on a bed of cilantro rice.

Accompany your meal with a handcrafted drink from Blondet’s four-page list of drinks and cocktails. Created by a world-renowned mixologist from New York City and piloted by staff well-versed in liquor, Salar’s offers Latin classics like La Pasion—Bulleit bourbon stirred with fresh lime juice, cane sugar and a dab of chili powder. 400 E 5th St, Dayton, 937-203-3999, salarrestaurant.com. M-Th 5-11 p.m., F-Sat 5 p.m.-1 a.m. Closed Sunday.