Beyond the Empanada: Dolly’s menu and the Art of Peruvian Fusion

Sure, they serve supreme sippables, but stumble into the Dolly's kitchen for a menu that will drive your tastebuds crazy if you let it.

Surrounded by pink fun fur and dazzling chandeliers, Chef Josh Nhan still stands out at Dolly’s Cocktails. His menu is a beacon of innovation and tradition, blending his Peruvian and Asian heritage seamlessly with his experience working at local hotspots like Bistro Praha. Nhan’s culinary journey is a testament to the power of cultural fusion and personal narrative in crafting a menu that resonates with soulful authenticity and contemporary flair.

Chef Nhan’s style, a vibrant blend of tradition and innovation, pays homage to his heritage while inviting diners into a world of unique Peruvian flavours and textures. “The influence for culinary and food, is I think primarily from my relatives, the women in my family,” says Nhan. “My biggest influence would be my mother.”

Chicken Lollipops – a Peruvian diner classic!

Raised in a family where food served as a bridge between cultures, Nhan’s early exposure to the intricate flavours of Peruvian cuisine from his mother’s side, intertwined with Chinese and Vietnamese influences from his father’s side, has shaped his approach to the culinary arts. The empanadas, a signature dish at Dolly’s, epitomize this fusion, evolving from his mother’s classic recipe into a modern rendition captivating enough to stand up next to the flashy, flavourful cocktails.

Chef Nhan’s culinary education and experience strike a fine balance between traditional methods passed down from his family and contemporary culinary techniques, allowing him to craft dishes that are both familiar and novel, embodying the essence of Peruvian cuisine with a global twist. “[Cooking] very quickly turned into an avenue to express myself and to learn about myself and my culture and heritage,” he says.

Josh Nhan – from dishwasher to head chef.

Nhan’s process of defining his culinary voice is marked by experimentation, learning and a deep connection to his cultural heritage. His advice to aspiring chefs is to embrace their roots and let their personal story infuse into their cooking—it resonates as a fierce reminder of the transformative power of food in connecting cultures and communities.

As Dolly’s prepares to dazzle diners during Edmonton Downtown Dining Week, Chef Josh Nhan stands at the forefront of a culinary movement that celebrates the richness of cultural diversity and the art of storytelling through food.

Diners are invited to explore a menu that reflects Nhan’s culinary identity—a fusion of his Peruvian roots and the diverse flavours that have influenced his journey—offers a unique blend of heritage and innovation that you won’t want to miss.

To see what Chef Josh Nhan is cooking up at Dolly’s this week, visit