But I’m partially forgiven because Tuesday was the first time I had actually eaten inside the restaurant. Prior to that night, I’d get take-out or delivery a bunch. Don introduced me to this place waaayy back in 2008. He got delivery one night and I pounced on his order of fried plantains. Fate must have been telling me something when, six months later, I moved in right around the corner from Senor Pollo. It’s literally AROUND the corner. Like 28 steps away. It’s cheap, and really REALLY tasty.
I had dinner with Greg there the other night. Our initial plan was to meet for ramen at Minca on 5th Street. But in the summer heat, having to venture anywhere further than three blocks for dinner (when you’re surrounded by tons of great options) is silly. So I suggested Senor Pollo.
Greg arrived first. (Isn’t funny how, the closer you live to a place, the later you’re bound to arrive?) When I got there, he was standing in front of Senor Pollo, eyeing the commerical looking neon signs warily.
It looked as if he, gasp, doubted my dinner suggestion, “let’s go to Setagaya for ramen. It’s close, on 9th Street.”
“Nooo. We gotta eat chicken! And we’re already here.”
“But we can get their cold noodles! Mmmm. Cold noodles.” (It was SUPER hot that day).
“Nooo. But chicken! Only $6.50!” I pointed to the awesome deal they had posted in the window.
And really it is an awesome deal. $6.50 buys a quarter of a Peruvian rotisserie chicken with two sides of your choice. And there are a lot of choices. It took a bit of prodding, but I managed to convince Greg that Senor Pollo was gonna be awesome.
And it was! (Wasn’t it, Greg? ;)
Not knowing the protocol for “dining-in” at Senor Pollo, we thought to order at the counter and then take our food to the table, a la Panda Express. We dilly-dallyed for a bit before a woman came and asked, are you eating in?
Holy cow, Senor Pollo was a full-service restaurant! That was totally unexpected. And you can still get the same $6.50 deal when dining-in. I was in love with this place.
…Spanish potato salad. I’m not exactly sure what makes the potato salad “Spanish”, but the salad was a cross between potato salad and egg salad, topped with a single strip of red bell pepper. The salad was pretty darn mayonnaise-y and I couldn’t stop eating it.
And don’t forget about the condiments. You get two. One is a parsley oil (beautiful isn’t it?), and the other is a slightly spicy green mayonnaise-esque sauce. They are both equally awesome, and I’d gladly squirt/pour bucketfuls of both over hot white rice, and call it dinner.
For his sides, Greg opted for spinach mashed potatoes and mixed rice and beans. The potatoes might look gross and somewhat akin to cafeteria food, but this is case in which looks are indeed deceiving. Potatoes are super buttery, though you can’t really discern any spinach (aside from the colour, haha).
These are the rice and beans. They give you a lot. You can’t choose which quarter of the chicken you get, but you can be sure the skin is always going to be hot, a little crisp and savoury just so. Meat consistently moist, no complaints there. By luck of the draw, Greg got the drumstick and all the dark meat that comes with it. I got the breast and white meat. I’ll have to cross my fingers for dark meat next time!
1. Everyone who works there is over the top nice.
2. Soursop, mango, and papaya milkshakes are on the menu.
3. So is Peruvian fried rice (chifan), I’ll be sure to try that soon.
221 1st Avenue
New York, NY 10003