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JP chow crawl, part deux

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In the true spirit of Chowhound, I did my jog/lunch over to the same crawl space from last Saturday's chow crawl (Centre Street) and tried a couple of the places that we missed: Yely's Coffee Shop and Cristal Restaurant. I view the running and chowing together as a sort of conservation of mass and energy to balance the calories. I'm afraid to say that Cristal was just OK. I had a fried chicken thigh and a couple of meatballs with rice and beans ($5). All were fine but not the revelation I had hoped while running there. Yely's, on the other hand, was very good. It was lined up with locals at lunch which was a good sign. Since, I'd had lunch, I only got a serving of chicharones ($2), sliced in pieces of porky goodness. Think a side of bacon with bones, dusted with adobo powder and deep fried to crisp the rind. A heart attack in a snack! I managed only a couple of pieces with enough left over for lunch tomorrow. Everything else looked good and it's clearly a local favorite.

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  1. Where is Cristal again? I don't remember ever seeing that. Next stop, Amory Restaurant.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Joanie

      IIRC, it's a storefront on Centre Street, between Alex's Chimi's and Miami restaurant, a little closer to Miami and on the same side of the street.

    2. That's awesome, I have to get down there to try Yely's and also the chicken at Alex's.

      1 Reply
      1. re: limster

        Alex's is definitely my in-a-pinch go-to spot when pizza or pupusas just won't do.
        I highly recommend their delicious, flavorful (though maybe not the juiciest) rotisserie chicken. They typically want to cut it up for you, but I prefer it whole personally...
        I'm not wild about their sides- kinda greasy, you're better off to grab a bird and throw together your own sides. If you were feeling really lazy, maybe head across to Food Wall and order some garlic green beans!

      2. You're a man on a mission. Nice one!

        1. mmm, yely's sounds good. where are the pictures? jk :)

          1. I'm sad that I missed the original JP crawl. But, I need to point out that it is about time more chowhounders start going to Yely's. I have been a fan of this place for ages. Every time I go, I ask them to pile up a container with a couple pieces of each of the following: chicken, pork, chicharones, plantains, and sausages. The price always ends up being about $10 (give or take a little each time), and it feeds at least three to four people.

            1. Oh yeah, Yely's Coffee Shop!!! I lived near there for a year, and had lunch at Yely's as often as I could (until it started to make me feel... unhealthy). For anyone curious, it's right across from the Jackson Square stop on the Orange line... thier pork (which is whacked with a cleaver before being put onto a mound of rice, served with lime wedges) is, to my tastes, one of the best lunches in the city. Get it with a side of yucca and you'll be ready for a nice, long nap afterwards..... aahhh...

              Also, I don't think they actually sell any coffee.