To kick off the evening, the birthday girl ordered a sangria pitcher and crispy calamari for everyone. Meanwhile I checked the menu at Pio Pio Restaurant to figure out what Peruvian food really was.
I love birthday celebrations! This time was my roommate’s bday and she decided to have dinner at a Peruvian restaurant in the Upper West Side. She always talked about Pio Pio, but I never had the chance to visit the place.
Actually, I was dreaming of it because of all the good things she and her friends kept telling me. I knew in advance Pio Pio had the best Salchipapas in town. Or, sausage with fries, and I was ready to try it out!
We were in a big group of friends so we made a reservation. I do recommend it, if you are with a big party, as well.
Strategically located on a street corner with a green façade and red signs with their name, the restaurant definitely surprised me! The venue was infinitely more beautiful and elegant than I had imagined.
I saw people from all around the world enjoying great Peruvian food and the place was so charming!
We sat right across a gorgeous brick wall with countless colorful paintings. Every art work was truly spectacular. They portrayed a Peruvian kids in the country side and really called my attention! And, amongst the kids, was a huge vertical painting of Our Lady, Mary.
So, to kick off the evening, the birthday girl ordered sangria pitchers and crispy calamari for everyone. Meanwhile, I checked the menu to figure out what Peruvian food actually looked like. Well, I found plenty of dishes made out of pollo – chicken and seafood.
After chatting a lot while drinking sangria, it was time to eat. Yayyy, my favorite time!! I shared a dish named Matador combo (Killer combo) with a friend, and it really was to die for. It was a preparation of rotisserie chicken served with yellow rice, avocado salad, red beans, tostones and the highly anticipated, salchipapas.
OMG, I loved it! I actually felt at home, since it was like comfort food to me. Other people ordered seafood dishes which all looked and smelled terrific!
For dessert we had tres leches – a traditional Latin sweet, flan – like a caramel custard, and Piononos – a roll cake filled with dulce de leche. I’m craving it all over again…
The experience I had at Pio Pio was really fantastic. And you can experience it too! Oh! And you can find at least one Pio Pio in each NYC borough.
Hours: Each location has different operating hours, so please check online.
702 Amsterdam Avenue, Upper West Side, Manhattan
84-02 Northern Boulevard, Jackson Heights, Queens
282 Kings Highway, Gravesend, Brooklyn
264 Cypress Avenue, Mot Haven, Bronx
Text by our Contributor: Rafaela Azevedo
Photo Credit: Courtesy of Pio Pio Restaurant