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Apr 7, 2008 04:55 PM

Richmond: Grand re-opening Taqueria Las Americas - Pollo campero

I never noticed they closed. I did notice the new sign for the fried chicken.

Same owner. Different staff. Slightly spiffed up. They no longer use lard.

The pollo campero (country chicken) is your choice of grilled or fried.

I got the fried which had an excellent soft spicy coating covering juicy chicken.There are three pieces of chicken. This order had a breast and two drumsticks. It came with casamiento (mixed rice & beans) topped with sour cream, cole slaw, french fries, pickled carrots and jalapenos, chips, salsa and two rolls ($5.99)

The casamiento was qute tasty. The coleslaw was good and creamy. The fries just ok and a bit limp. The chips are decent and there were two nice soft, yeasty rolls. House-made tortillas can be subbed for the rolls.

I asked if this was like the version of the Guatamalan chicken chain - El Pollo Campero. He said it was a similar style but the chain has special ovens to steam the chicken. I thought it was a lot better than the chain chicken I tried. It actually is one of the better fried chicken dinners in the area.

They have some soups and beef birria now that I didn't remember from my last visit. There was also a sign that they had Salvadoran tamales. They still sell pupusas.

Taqueria Las Americas
12929 San Pablo Ave, Richmond, CA 94805

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  1. hi rworange!

    Did you catch if they offer fried platanos? some of the pc in the la area offer this. Did you try the house made tortillas?

    1 Reply
    1. re: kare_raisu

      No plantanos. They just want to duplicate the chicken, not the chain. Next time I'll try the tortillas and the grilled version of the chicken. It is a really small place that is mostly Mexican. One of the cooks is Guatamalan and one is Nicaruguan. So he said the chicken is sort of a combo of those two ways of making chicken.

      He was going on about how even though the food in the many Latin coutries is very similar, so many dishes have some little something that makes them different. He said that was really true of menudo. He said he couldn't make everyone happy.

    2. Yeah, what you said and I thought for SURE I saw the plantanos on the menu. How could they not have it?

      I couldn't wait any longer and since I've been home this week looking after a sick boy, decided to head out and try the Pollo Campero.

      It's good! I did notice they cook it off earlier in the day, the chicken the cook dropped in to the oil was already browned. So, I figure it's going to be a bit on the greasy side.

      On the way home the smells I was getting reminded me of my mother's pan fried chicken (really good, caramelly brown smells). Ya know, the chicken was 'juicy' but in a good way, the flavors were excellent and definately had more going for it than the boxed faire. It was pully aparty and I was down to bone in a few bites. Would I drive across cities to have it? I dunno, but I will be going back without question.


      4 Replies
      1. re: DrBiggles

        Yuuuuum! Caramelly brown fried food smells! Good to have you posting again, Dr.B!

        1. re: Ruth Lafler

          Thank you! I come and go in waves.

          I nearly went back to Pit Boss today, maybe soon.

          Did you catch the photo of the chicken? Very cool stuff.


        2. re: DrBiggles

          Have I finally beaten you down about chips being the measure stick of whether a restaurant is good?

          Did you try the tortillas? With my S/O the only way I know if he likes something is if he leaves it or eats it ... and given some recent circumstances ... anyway the only thing he left was the roll.

          Thanks for the report. I'm looking forward to the grilled version ... and maybe trying a pupusa under the revised place.

          1. re: rworange

            Washoo talkin' 'bout Willis? I been using The Chip Method since ... 1984. It's my standard of whether the place is going to be worth a pinch of, you know what.

            They were very good, thin corn chips, but cold. The lard or oil congealed in my mowf. I'm going to mention it, he asked me to.

            I haven't tried the tortillas, yet. Man, the burritos I received from those people early last year were world class rigs. Not only were the ingredients perfectly done, but the cool parts were cool, the hot were hot. And, the flour tortilla was put on the grill, NOT the steamer. No steamer was used, it was like Burrito Pr0n.

            But as with many establishments, the product was different each time. i got about 70% satisfaction and it was GREAT. I have no idea what they're up to now. It's a tough market in this area.