Wednesday, August 24, 2011

K-Rico Peruvian Grill

Address: 250 W 2100 S, Ste B, Salt Lake City, UT 84115. 801.484.0140.

Review: I've had more than a bit of South American food thusfar in my life, but not much if any Peruvian. This is why my culinary adventure friend and I popped over to K-Rico Peruvian Grill to get our grub on.

The first thing you notice upon entering K-Rico is the multiple screens streaming the Peruvian equivalent of CNN. The second thing you notice is, well, the tables, I guess. Honestly, there ain't much going on at this joint other than the food.

Meals begin with this:

It's called cancha. The nut looking stuff is actually a dried, then fried, corn kernel. At K-Rico, the cancha was served with a spicy peanut sauce and a mellow mayonnaise and herb sauce. I'm pretty sure this is beer food more than anything else, but it was interesting and new.

For my appetizer, I ordered the beef heart, which came skewered and served with hominy and a potato.

I quite enjoy most offal, but not heart. Usually, it's dry as a bone, grisly, and just not good eats. This heart, however, was juicy and full of flavor thanks to the spice mixture slathered upon it. (A note of the spice mixture: very cuminy, quite salty. I was actually cool with the level of salt because I use copious amounts, but I would imagine for the less salt inclined, it might be a little much.) That slightly metallic, sort of coppery taste of good offal was present. Every bite brought on the thought, "This big muscle with no fat is absolutely tender. Good work guys." The hominy and potato are nice, if not independently flavorful accompaniments. Ultimately, this was the most enjoyable beef heart experienced I've ever had.

And for the main course, I tried the pollo a la brasa (rotisserie chicken).

This chicken, like he heart, is all about the spice rub. And there are a lot of similarities between the two rubs: lots of cumin, garlic, and salt. In fact, the pollo, like the heart, was heavily salted, which, again, I dug. I could have used some more variation between the two meats, but both meats worked well. The chicken was tender and juicy and permeated with the rub. Very enjoyable. The salad and potatoes: a little less so. The salad was a typical iceberg thing with some salad dressing. Meh. The potatoes were, far as I could tell, prototypical South American potatoes. They were thick-cut and once fried. Amazingly though, there was absolutely no salt on them. Not one granule. This cooking and serving method ensured (1) the potato would be somewhat soggy (frying a fresh potato once almost invariably produces a dense, soggy fried potato; think In-N-Out), and (2) the potato would have no flavor of its own. Not a fan am I.

So, K-Rico was a mixed bag. The meats were perfectly cooked and tasty, if of a somewhat homogeneous taste. The items that surrounded the meats, not so great.

Rating: 6/10 (5/10 is average).

K-Rico Peruvian Grill on Urbanspoon

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