Where we've featured it
It’s hard to tell whether the space that houses Celeste in Union Square is an actual building or just an RV that was abandoned by the side of the road and then decorated by an underground art collective with mod sensibilities. Either way, just about everything here is great, from the stews, to the ceviche, to the ceviche that doesn’t even have any fish. It’s tiny and hard to get in here, but it makes for a fun night out.
You can’t take the T to get to Celeste, but there are still plenty of opportunities to experience some unintentional shoulder-rubbing here since it’s only about the size of a train car. That said, we still really like this place (rule number one of date night really applies here). You’ll feel like you’re having an intimate date in the living room of a questionably legal pop-up restaurant, though government regulations will be the furthest thing from your mind as you enjoy some pisco sours, ceviche, and lamb stew.
Is ceviche still ceviche if it isn’t made with fish? That prompt would work pretty well as one of those unanswerable philosophy questions that supposedly promotes mindfulness. But if you’re more interested in eating great Peruvian food than achieving a higher state of mental being, head to this tiny, colorful spot in Union Square. The fishless ceviche (it’s made with artichokes and hearts of palm) is excellent, but so is just about everything else here - definitely get one of the stews.
If you want to come off as cool during a date, you could steal some pithy tweets you read at lunch and pass them off as your own jokes. Or you could pick a new restaurant with a great menu and a space that feels like an art school party where no one’s trying too hard. Celeste in Union Square has a really interesting menu of ceviche and Peruvian stew, and it’s in a tiny little space that’ll keep things intimate but casual.
One of our favorite Peruvian restaurants in the city is now offering different “menu del dia” options like lomo saltado for curbside pickup or free delivery through Toast.