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Peruvian chicken in Chicago?

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I am moving to Chicago from DC and am trying to find a replacement for my favorite spot in DC, El Pollo Rico in Arlington. It's a Peruvian chicken spot, the menu only has three choices 1/4, 1/2, or whole. If you don't know what it is, it's basically deliciously seasoned rotisserie chicken served with a couple different types of sauces/salsas. Does this sound like anything anyone has heard of in Chicago?

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  1. Chicago has had Peruvian restaurants for many years (although I've never heard of one that only serves a single dish). You'll find some recommendations in the topic at www.chowhound.com/topics/438919 You can also find a listing of Peruvian restaurants in the area at http://chicago.metromix.com/facets/re...

    1. I lived in DC and am very familiar w/El Pollo Rico. Yum! I've never found anything here like it. I've been to a Peruvian spot I like though called "Taste of Peru" on Clark in Rogers Park.

      1. The Flying Chicken in Lakeview on Lincoln Avenue just north of Grace serves similar mesquite roasted Colombian rotisserie chicken. It's best right out of the oven. The empanadas, arepas, tostones, maduros, yucca, are tops too! There are many Colombian restaurants in the city that serve the rotisserie chicken but none as good as the Flying Chicken.

        Also try Las Tablas Colombian Steakhouse on Lincoln Avenue in west Lincoln Park. The pounded nicely spiced chicken or steak Churrasco is excellent. Many other notable items too.
        I hear that Papi's Chicken on Division is quite good as well...Puerto Rican I think.

        1. D'Candela specializes in Peruvian roast chicken. Last year it replaced La Granja, which was a mix of Peruvian roast chicken and Mexican. There is a thread with pictures on D'Candela on LTH Forum: http://lthforum.com/bb/viewtopic.php?...

          I am not certain whether Mr. Pollo is Columbian or Ecuadoran roast chicken, but they have two locations that are primarily carryout along with a few tables.

          Metromix doesn't know D'Candela or the Montrose location of Mr. Pollo exist.

          D'Candela
          4053 North Kedzie
          773-478-0819

          Mr. Pollo
          3000 West Belmont Ave.
          773-509-1208
          2937 West Montrose
          773-509-1222

          3 Replies
          1. re: Eldon Kreider

            Actually, Metromix knows that Mr. Pollo exists (at least, the Belmont location); it just doesn't have the word "Peruvian" in the listing, so it doesn't come up on a search using that criterion (it would if you searched on "South American"). http://chicago.metromix.com/restauran...

            1. re: nsxtasy

              I know that Metromix lists the Belmont location of Mr. Pollo, which is why I specifically said that Metromix doesn't know that the Montrose location exists. In any case Mr. Pollo is not Peruvian.

            2. re: Eldon Kreider

              Mr.Pollo is Ecuadorian and it's nothing special. The black beans and corn side dishes taste and look like they came from a can. The least they could do is rinse the gooey starch from the beans before serving them.

              The Brasa Roja on Montrose at Kedzie, Gloria's on Fullerton at Kimball, and The Flying Chicken on Lincoln Avenue (all are Colombian) at Grace are far better...although Brasa Roja and Glorias can be inconsistent.

            3. I have not been, but you might want to try: Ay Ay Picante on the NW side.
              http://ayaypicante.com/peruvian-cuisi...
              I heard this place may be good also. Taste of Peru
              http://tasteofperu.com/
              Not sure they will have what you are looking for though..
              Also, it's not Peruvian, but Guatemalan, I think, but I like their chicken.
              Pollo Campero
              http://www.campero.com/index_eng_flas...

              1. Apparently this place, Pollo Salvaje, JUST opened at 2015 N Western Ave. It's on my way home, so I think I might stop tonight.

                No website yet, but there is a review on a competing website if you search that name.

                7 Replies
                1. re: rubinow

                  Ok, this is exactly what I was looking for. I went to a few different chicken places before finally trying Pollo Salvaje. The places I went to in my search for awesome rotiserrie chicken were:

                  Flying Chicken (on Lincoln Av near Grace)
                  D'Candela (4053 N. Kedzie)
                  Mr. Pollo (Belmont & California)
                  Pollo Salvaje (Western and Armitage)

                  Pollo Salvaje is the hands down winner. It is just like the Peruvian chicken I've had back in DC. A couple notes:

                  1) The place is near impossible to find. It's at 2015 N. Western Av, just north of Armitage. It's hard to find b/c there is no sign for it and the big vertical sign on the building says something like "Cancun Restaurant". I asked the waitress about it and she said they are working on getting a sign.

                  2) The place was completely empty except for me and my friend. I am a little worried that this place might not make it, which would be nothing short of a tragedy. The waitress said that part of the problem is that there aren't a lot of Peruvians in the area. Hopefully it will pick up; you don't need to be Peruvian to enjoy the best chicken you've ever had.

                  3) They actually have a pretty extensive menu, so if you like other Peruvian stuff, there are probably lots of other good things. I stuck with the chicken and fried yucca (delicious as well). The price is right too, about $5 for a quarter chicken and 2 sides (yucca, rice, plaintains, french frieds, etc).

                  4) They have mexican coke. I couldn't tell for sure if it was sweetened with sucrose/cane sugar though. It was in a tall glass bottle but the ingredients listed "high fructose corn syrup and/or sucrose."

                  Anyway, I'm trying to spread the word about this place b/c I really don't want to see it close down.

                  1. re: Big T

                    I KNOW !!!

                    It's AMAZING chicken, but the 4 or 5 times I've been there, the place is empty. It's cheap, too.

                    I don't think you need to be Peruvian to like this chicken.

                    1. re: Big T

                      Pollo Salvaje is pretty much around the corner from my office, so I have a feeling that it's going to be a regular stop.
                      I've not had much Peruvian cuisine, but I am intrigued! What are the authentic standouts at Pollo Salvaje anyone?

                      1. re: amoncada

                        The roasted chicken. In Peru there are TONS of places to get a quarter roasted chicken with fries and a coke. That would probably run you about $3 (maybe) in Peru.

                        The sauce, though, is what really makes it. It's a spicy green pepper sauce.

                        I'm sure there are other things on the menu that are great, but I can't bring myself to order anything else right now.

                        1. re: rubinow

                          Yep, the roast chicken is the standout...I've turned a number of people onto Pollo Salvaje! Love the green sauce!! The chicken tamale is pretty darn good as well. The pork tamale is far too greasy. I was not impressed with the cilantro rice dish, although it could have been an off day.

                          1. re: amoncada

                            They've changed the name to Rosa de Lima. It's confusing.

                      2. re: Big T

                        Thank you so much for this! We moved here from DC over two years ago and soooo miss our chicken fix at El Pollo Rico (the Wheaton branch). My little girl was raised on it. After reading this, we drove down to Flor De Lima from the northern burbs, and yes, the chicken has the same spice rub! Mmmmm! I missed the smell of the oven, and it wasn't quite as fresh and succulent as the chicken pulled right off the spit, but the sides were much better than what we were used to (we had fries and maduros, the same sides we used to get in DC), there were actual plates, and you could get alcohol! We'll be back, and hope that the place stays there.

                        Can you elaborate a bit on why the other three restaurants you mentioned didn't measure up? D'Candela is much closer to us. We were used to getting takeout from El Pollo Rico probably at least every two weeks, and this place is a bit of a hike from Evanston.