Thursday, August 13, 2015

Chimborazo – Minneapolis, MN

D.Rough has gone here a number of times and raved about this place, so I knew I needed to get there. She was busy one night, so I decided to go by myself. I will tell you this thing – people are really weird about customers eating by themselves. They always assume someone else is joining you, which also means the servers take a really long time to come over to help you. For example I waited at least 15 minutes before my server came to take my order. Thankfully, I’m patient, and based on what I saw at the restaurant, NOT a regular occurrence. They were simply waiting for my dining partner to arrive. And I had a great spot outside on the patio to watch all of the delicious dishes come out of the kitchen.

But, waiting that long really helped me hone in on what I was going to order. I had some advice from D.Rough for appetizers, but I was on my own for the entrée. I was told to get the Yuca Frita and one of the soups with peanut broth – there are multiple, so I got the one with meat in it. Then I finally decided on the Saltado – sort of a stir fried beef with onions, peppers, some rice, and an avocado.

The appetizers came out very quickly, which was nice, since I was starving. The Yuca fries were some of the best I’ve had. They were covered in a sort of garlic citrus pico (onions and tomatoes) and served with a dish of aji crillo (Ecuadorian green hot sauce). The fries were perfectly cooked with a super crusty outside and soft chewy inside and the flavors of the topping, the juice from the topping, and the green sauce was pretty magical. There’s a reason D.Rough told me to order this. It was fantastic.

The Caldo de Bolas de Verde soup was equally amazing. It’s a green plantain dumpling with meat sitting in a peanut broth with other vegetables in it. The broth itself was not like a Thai peanut flavor, but more thin and mild than that, and very seasoned. Brilliant flavor! The ball of meat in the center broke apart nicely with the soup spoon and had a great flavor. There was a slice of corn on the cob in the broth that I’ve seen in photos, but I’ve always wondered how to eat it. Do you pick it up like a full sized corn on the cob or eat the whole thing or eat the kernels off? I opted for the later, so I hope I did that right.

I was already starting to feel full when the entrée came out – the Saltado stir-fry is a hearty entrée. A generous helping of beef chunks in a brown broth stew with red bell peppers and onions, and served with fries (the potato kind) and rice topped with an avocado. The meat isn’t fork tender or anything, but this isn’t brisket, after all. It’s probably how Ecuadorians cook beef, so deal with it. The flavor of the meat is really quite good, especially when combined with the peppers and avocado. The fries were a weird addition, but they were pretty good when they got soggy. I wish they had been yucca frites, but I guess next time, I can ask to order them that way. I suppose I was jaded because I was already in Yuca heaven from the appetizer. Delicious and generous meal that I would highly recommend.

I am pretty pleased to have gone here (even by myself) and gotten way more food than I should have eaten by myself. It was totally worth it, though. I will be back here very soon.

Top 5 things about Chimborazo
1. Yuca Frita
2. Caldo de Bolas de Verde
3. Saltado
4. There’s nothing on the menu I wouldn’t eat
5. They do serve beer and wine – cha-ching!

Bottom 5 things
1. I wish the regular fries had been yucca frites
2. Long wait time if you go by yourself
3. Small parking lot, but there’s a small seating area, so it balances out
4. I JUST NOW found the brunch menu on their website! AGGHHHHH
5. You won’t stop eating your food until everything on the table is gone and you will be painfully full because it is amazing

1 comment:

Ruby James Vita said...

The first Chimborazo blog I've seen that didn't rave 100 times about the green sauce (for the record: mine did.) Glad you liked it, and always nice to read your blog. :-)