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Anything like El Pollo Loco?

I've been craving food from a fast food restaurant I used to frequent in Los Angeles - El Pollo Loco. It's chicken seasoned so well and they have great potato salad and cole slaw and spanish rice for sides, with tortillas and salsa and little corn cobs. It's so good - does anyone know something like that anywhere in new york??

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  1. There is a very similar restaurant all over Central America called Pollo Campero ( www.pollocampero.com ) which has opened some locations in the states over the past couple of years. None in Manhattan, but the Queens destination isn't too far away. And the chicken and sides are really good.

    103-16 Roosevelt Ave.
    Corona, NY 11368
    Ph: (718) 205-6842

    1665 Fifth Ave.
    Bayshore, NY 11706
    Ph: (631) 435-7426

    1. Oh my God...I miss El Pollo Loco! Now I'm craving it. Damn!

      1. That's all I ever ate when I lived in Culver City - I can taste it now!

        1. Weren't they in SOHO for about 6 months? we went and it was odd.. pricy for what it was.. didn't know it was from elsewhere .. How about the new Peruvian on on corner of Christopher and Bedford? forget the name...

          1. Nope. El Pollo is one of a kind. One the things that makes LA unique.

            3 Replies
            1. re: Uptownflavor

              Except that it is not unique to LA. There are at least two franchises in our area, one in Reno and one in Sparks. I do admit to eating there fairly often (actually, its a favorite take-out spot when we are too tired to cook and want something quick and easy....)

              1. re: janetofreno

                However no matter where you go in LA there is a Pollo Loco. I'm from the West Coast so I know how tiny Reno and Sparks are and it doesn't compare :-)

              2. re: Uptownflavor

                I've seen as many in Phoenix (which is where I first discovered El Pollo Loco) as in LA...

              3. I have thought: there's a little Mexican place on 8th St. (east of 6th Ave.) called Pio Maya. They make good rotisserie chicken and fresh tortillas. They also have a really good salsa verde they serve with their tacos. Perhaps order chicken and tortillas and get a side of rice & beans and ask for that salsa. It's not gonna be El Pollo Loco exactly, but could be somewhat reminiscent. I don't think they have corn though...d'oh!
                Damn I never thought I'd miss El Pollo Loco but you've got me drooling just thinking about it!

                1. You can get much better rotissrie chicken than El Pollo Loco's (I realize that EPL's is grilled) at the Brazilian Pio Pio (in Queens and 1st Ave. in Manhattan) and at Flor de Mayo (two on the upper west side). The sides are not American, though, at either place.

                  3 Replies
                  1. re: Dave Feldman

                    I concluded years ago that the pollo a la brasa was better at El Malecon (Amsterdam between 97th and 98th Sts.) than at Flor de Mayo. Do you disagree?

                    1. re: Pan

                      I've never eaten at Malecon, despite intentions to do so. To be honest, I haven't eaten the pollo a la brasa at FdM in a couple of years, as I'm a devotee of the Peruvian specials at the 84th St. branch. Friends of mine live on the same block as Malecon, and they don't like it at all, but I've seen several positive notes about it on Chowhound.

                      1. re: Dave Feldman

                        I've never been to the 84th St. branch of Flor de Mayo, and based my conclusions on a comparison of the 101st St. branch with the 97th St. branch of El Malecon.

                  2. Pio-Pio 1746 First Avenue 212.426.5800, they also have branches in Queens. Fantastic Peruvian chicken, dirt cheap.

                    1. You think you got problems finding El Pollo Loco? I live in No. California and the nearest place is across the bay in San Pablo which is almost 50 miles away. They are all over Sacramento, Oakland and other parts of the East Bay but none on the coastal towns or near the Wine Country. What a pain!

                      I remember the fact that the American Heart Assn. approved their food! What a recommendation!

                      1. I realize my reply isn't very timely, but maybe someone is still trying to capture that ELP flavor. Try the recipe for Pollo a las Brasas, Estilo Sinaloense by Rick Bayless. I'm from So Cal so I'm familiar with the taste of ELP and this recipe comes dang close. Use Valencia oranges, marinate overnight, then grill over Mesquite and I think this will put a big smile on your face. I've heard that a lot of Mexicans use Sunny D instead of orange juice so I plan on trying that as well.