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Best Colombian in JH?

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esteban Jul 18, 2008 12:30 PM

just wondering...opinions?

  1. JH Jill Jul 18, 2008 02:42 PM

    This is a difficult question since there are probably over 30 Colombian restaurants in this area, it mostly depends on what you want to eat, if you have some regional preference, and whether you want atmosphere or not. There are places that emphasize meat more, such as La Boina Roja and Café La Nueva and others that specialize in rotisserie chicken, such as the Pollos a la Brasa Mario. Most of them are very general and all have mostly the same stuff. They all have soup specials that vary by day, as well as the typical platters. I go to different ones depending on what I feel like eating. People used to say that Tierras Colombianas was the best, but I don't think it's as good as others now. I most often go to La Pequeña Colombia or Pollos a la Brasa Mario, but that may be because they're close by. My Colombian painter's favorite was Seba Seba. Others like Cositas Ricas, partly because of the atmosphere and the long hours. My Argentine friend prefers Café la Nueva because of all the fresh juice combinations.

    If you say more specifically what you're looking for, we might be able to help more.

    6 Replies
    1. re: JH Jill
      Brian S Jul 19, 2008 10:08 AM

      I've never found a restaurant that showcased a single region of Colombia, though I think many of the places are run by people from Medellin. Actually, there used to be a Colombian seafood restaurant that I believe had the food of the coastal region around Cartagena, though I don't remember whether they had the coconut rice typical of the coast. They went out of business within a year. Oh, I forgot, I saw one place that had ajiaco, so maybe they are from Bogota.

      My favorite is Pequena Colombia. They have hundreds of dishes and I always seem to order the plato montanero See http://www.chowhound.com/topics/42781...

      1. re: JH Jill
        m
        maria_nyc Jul 20, 2008 06:06 PM

        On my recent JH stroll it seemed like there were less Colombian restaurants than I remember seeing only a year or so ago. Having said that, there is a Colombian little place in the corner of 76th and Roosevelt Avenue called Los Arrieros which has decent food, and the best (by this read the crispiest, and thinnest) tostones in nyc. IME their specials are finished early in the day so I haven't been able to have the oxtails or any other of their specials for quite a while. However, regular menu dishes (bandeja, sobrebarriga, etc.) are generally good.

        By the way I saw that Tierras Colombianas? is going through some contruction/remodeling work. I don't care much for the cavernous atmosphere of this place, so I didn't stop....how is the food lately?

        I could never in good conscience recommend La Boina Roja. I have never eaten at the restaurant but I have been to several parties that were catered by them; their food was plain inedible.

        I would also be curious to hear what place people think is the best Colombian in JH right now.

        1. re: maria_nyc
          Brian S Jul 20, 2008 07:15 PM

          I've never tried Los Arrieros but I've always meant to after seeing it featured in the film Maria Full of Grace.
          http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage...

          In my opinion Tierras Colombianas is good but Pequena Colombia, which is also remodeling, is better. The non-chicken dishes at Pollos Mario are pretty good there too.

          1. re: Brian S
            m
            maria_nyc Jul 21, 2008 10:57 AM

            I saw the movie on HBO but I don't remember seeing any of the food-related cameos the NYT mentions.

            1. re: Brian S
              e
              esteban Jul 21, 2008 11:19 AM

              went to pequena colombia--the renovation is done, but they have not yet had the official grand opening. i'm going to blame that for one of the really negative (not bad, really, but negative) experiences i've had recently. we got to the restaurant at about 7:15 on sunday, and waited about 5-10 minutes for a table--no big deal. they immediately put a plate of mixed fried stuff (lots) on the table--plantains, chicharrones, yuca, potatoes, chorizo--nice. i should note that we had three kids under 10 with us. then the wait began. we did not get our food until about 9:15. they were not very apologetic until the end of the night--when our food finally arrived (and we had at least begged them to bring the kid's food asap--this arrived at about 9), they comped us some drinks (soft for the underage, sangria for the aged...). this was nice, but i'd have preferred my meal. it was also very hot out side, and VERY hot inside--there were fans everywhere, but the newly installed a/c clearly could not keep up. that said, the food was all very good (even my son's kid's meal was a cut above the norm) and i'll go back--but earlier in the evening, and after they have gotten a handle on the additional burden placed by the renovation...

              1. re: esteban
                Brian S Jul 21, 2008 04:19 PM

                I'm sorry about that bad delay. I have gone there at least 50 times and have never had to wait more than 15 minutes for my main course. I'm glad the food was good... what did you have?

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