Pollolandia: New Peruvian Chicken Place in Gaithersburg
Anyone try this place yet? It's in a small strip shopping center north of New Fortune on Frederick Road in Gaithersburg.
I had lunch there a few weeks ago, and yes, it did replace El Tapatio (that's where I was intending to go, but got a bit of a surprise!)...
Gaithersburg really has become a haven for Peruvian restaurants, hasn't it? I can think of at least a half-dozen offhand…
Anyway, of the Peruvian "chicken joints" in G’Burg, this is my second-favorite behind Crisp & Juicy, but Pollolandia is certainly good enough to recommend on its own. The chick is different than Crisp & Juicy in that Pollolandia seems to use a moderate to heavy spice rub, perhaps in addition to a marinade. I just happen to prefer the flavor of Crisp & Juicy’s marinade, but you might prefer Pollolandia (as an aside, I put JR’s Chicken in OldTowne a ways back in third place). The yucca at Pollolandia was nice and crisp, and the salad was fine (my buddy got black beans and rice that he like as one of his sides).
This seems to be a family-run operation, as son (maybe 10-12 years old?) took our drink order and brought our drinks (I had delicious passion fruit juice), while the guy I’m guessing was father took our meal order, brought the food, and generally checked up on us (quite friendly by the way). I hope I didn’t just narc this place out on child labor laws BTW, heh!
I should also mention that it is a little of a misnomer to rate this against just the other Peruvian chicken joints in that Pollolandia has a pretty full Peruvian menu, including ceviche, lomo saltado, and cau cau (tripe stew, which I tried once at another place and didn’t care much for). I’d put this place in the category of The Nibbler for its menu, prices (cheaper than Crisp & Juicy for chicken BTW), and quality of food.
My favorite overall Peruvian in G’Burg still has to be La Flor De La Canela though. Man, I can taste that ceviche mixto right now, yum…