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What's the skinny on Coco Roco these days?

  • p

I used to go a lot, but I haven't been there in a while. I was planning a dinner there in a couple of weeks with friends before a show at Barbes, but recent reviews on Citysearch (the last year or so) are uniformly negative. Has the place gone downhill?

Link: http://petercherches.blogspot.com

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  1. Do not, I repeat do not go to Coco Roco if you have to be somewhere at a specific time.
    That being said, the last time that I went, the food was awful, the service worse- do a search and see the report of the experience.

    1 Reply
    1. re: carfreeinla

      I had a decent dinner at the Smith Street one, a little pricey for what it was. But I'm telling you, it is an amazing brunch spot. Great deal (includes a yummy cockail) and the choices are all interesting and well executed.

    2. I second the comment about slow service. Also, don't go if you have your heart set on a specific dish- even after you order, your chances of getting it are slim sometimes.
      Bottom line- don't go.

      1. I have gone to the Coco Roco on Smith Street a few times, and I will NEVER go again. The service is extremely slow. The food is substandard. It smells pretty bad and the floors are always greasy. The clincher: tonight I ordered a baked sweet potato to go. I noticed that there was some hubbub in the kitchen when the manager went to check on my order, but when it was finally "ready" he put the container in the bag and handed it to me. When I got home and opened it, there was a lump of what I assume were mashed sweet potato leftovers, and, get this, THEY WERE SCULPTED INTO THE SHAPE OF A SWEET POTATO. Without the skin. I mean, COME ON!

        1. It used to be good (if my memory serves me right--they used to have this cerviche that I loved), but I went early their year and the food was practically inedible. Everything was super starchy, at the wrong temp, over/undercooked. Music was too loud, service was slow. Just bad overall.

          1. I too have had a subpar experience eating at Coco Roco (Park Slope.) However, what I find funny is that I have had their food at street fairs several times and always found it good, especially the ceviche. maybe they should just stick to catering!

            1. They used to be great when they first opened, but obviously somebody left and they are terrible. Go to Punto Fijo or Pio Pio in Jackson Heights if you want Peruvian food.

              1. Has anybody tried the one on Smith Street?

                2 Replies
                1. re: Peter Cherches

                  We've been there several times. It's pretty much the same as the place they operated there before (Cholita) but the food there declined a bit before they closed and it hasnt picked up. I havent had a bad meal there but nothing to recommend either. I think that its a nicer space with better drinks than Mancora, but Mancora's food is a bit better.

                  1. re: Peter Cherches

                    I was there about a month ago. My vegetarian friend had rice, beans and a mix of carrots and something green, either string beans or broccoli. She wasn't thrilled with it, but thought the beans were okay. I had a terrific, and enormous, dish of fried mixed seafood with a corn meal crust. It was enough for two or three people, fresh, and perfectly cooked, and it came with a yummy salsa. On the negative side, we had to ask them to turn down the music, and then it was still too loud, and I recall the same experience as another poster with regard to a subtle but unpleasant smell. Overall, despite the good seafood, we left feeling that we wouldn't be returning any time soon. I don't recall bad service, but it was awhile ago...

                  2. Well, we haven't been in the restaurant proper for some time, so I would yield to the other posters on that score. But we continue to order their amazing broiled chicken dinners for delivery and we have yet to be disappointed. Our favorite is the whole chicken dinner with black beans and white rice, and they throw in a small salad. It easily feeds three or four (depending on how hungry the four are) at a great price. Generally delivery takes about half an hour.

                    I'm sorry to hear of the decline in the restaurant itself. I have a lot of fond memories of really good meals there a few years ago...

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: BrookBoy

                      that's just about exactly what I was going to say...
                      great takeout chicken, with sauces exactly the same as they've always been (one pink, one green)
                      black beans and rice perfectly nice

                      Last time I ate there was a stellar paella special, but it was two or three years ago. I think I had the best dish at the table tho -- wonder if they do better with specials than the regular menu?

                    2. I went back to the Smith Street one a few months ago after having a great brunch there. Ended up having the worst brunch I've ever had there. After delivering the wrong dish twice, they finally just gave up on one of our dishes, and the owners didn't seem to care at all. We just threw some money on the table and left. And the food that did come wasn't good at all. Something's really amiss there.