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Sunday, April 12, 2015

Pardo's Chicken Restaurant Review - Lima, Peru ~ Jorge Chavez International Airport

Can we start off this post by acknowledging how exciting it is that I finally have a post about our trip to Chile that get us out of the United States! Granted, this doesn't get us to Chile but we are only one country away in Peru.

When we purchased our tickets to Chile we booked two segments separately. We went with Delta from Boston to Lima. And then we booked LAN for Lima to Santiago. In order to make it work for our way there, we needed to have a pretty long lay-over in Lima (like almost7 hours). While we would attempt to sleep on the benches for part of it, there was definitely going to be some time we needed to kill.

We spent quite awhile going to Immigration and Customs (at least it felt that way). We stood on the sidewalk outside of the airport for a good 10 minutes so we could claim that we had been to Lima (it counts...I swear! I have a stamp in my passport and everything). We checked into our LAN flight and got rid of our big bags again. Then there was nothing to do.

During my hours (also days, weeks, and months) of research for the trip I had looked up restaurants in the Lima airport (I may have also resorted to going onto you tube to watch videos of the airport....when I research a place, I go all in). I had posted a question on the Trip Advisor Forum under Lima and heard back about Pardo's Chicken.For the most part in the airport it was regular US food chains in the food court (think McDonald's and Dunkin Donuts). Pardo's seemed to be the exception to this.

We found a table and I left behind my Mom and Gabrian with all our bags (other than what we checked in) and I walked over to their counter. I spent what seemed like forever deciding what to order. Since they are called Pardo's Chicken I knew that I was going with chicken. Plus, I was pretty sure I had translated Cow's Heart on the menu and knew I wasn't going near that. Once I decided on the Pardos Parrillero and worked my nerve to try out my rusty Spanish to order this, I went up to the overly dressed for fast food worker (not her fault...I think it looked like a uniform....but really, she needed to wear heels?). 

I had my carefully crafted sentence to order that I had practice maybe a 1,000 times in my head to make sure I pronounced it correctly. Like any other time in a Foreign Country I have English Speaker stamped on my forehead and turns out she speaks English. In fact she seemed bored with my feeble attempt at Spanish. It was very nerve wracking (exactly the way I love to start out a meal).

Once I placed my order, my wait officially began. I was fortunate to order dinner when I did because they started switching over to the breakfast menu. I waited FOREVER for my food to come out. The crew was preoccupied with cleaning (I am assuming the end of their shift was coming up soon). After waiting for an hour (just kidding it was probably closer to 15 minutes, it just seemed forever), my food finally arrived.

It was a marinated chicken served with french fries and a random assortment of vegetables on the side (beets, green beans, carrots, and avocado). The fries were greasy and soggy and just in general not very good. I am going to give them a pass on this because it was so late at night and they were switching over to breakfast. The chicken was flavorful with spices, juicy, and really delicious. This was the thing we were fighting over on the plate. The vegetables were just strange and I only ate the avocado. My Mom wasn't very hungry or I think she would have eaten the beets.

We were served with several interesting packets to go with the meal. I really liked the aji (which was a continued trend in Chile). It was fun dipping our food in the different sauces to see what they taste like.

We also tried Inca Kola which is made for Peru. It was interesting and while I probably wouldn't order it again, I wouldn't turn down a cup of it. It reminded me of a banana flavored soda. Not my favorite but definitely interesting.

Pardo's Chicken was a fun place to try during our long lay-over. I wouldn't go out of my way to eat there again but if I was there around dinner time when they were busier, I would definitely give them another try.

How about you, have you eaten at the Lima Airport? Tell me about your experience in the comments.