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Orinoco, Brookline

I’ve knocked another off of my list of places to try; 7 down, 5 to go. I convinced Alice and Chucky to try Orinoco with us on Friday. The original location is in the South End, but the Brookline location is closer to us and parking was nice and easy. We walked in (due to their “snug, intimate space” they don’t take reservations) at 6:30 and there was no wait. They seated us at one end of a large wooden table that comfortably seats 12. Orinoco’s menu focuses primarily on Venezuelan cuisine and incorporates other Latin and Caribbean flavors.

 

We shared a brunch of appetizers:

-         Trio de Empanadas: Cod, black bean and shredded beef. I thought these were very tasty, with nice crispy, flaky crust. The cod was my favorite.

-         Guayanesa Arepas: Grilled corn pocket filled with Venezuelan creamy guayanés cheese.

-         Pernil Arepas: Grilled corn pocket filled with slow cooked pork leg. The Arepas were both tasty, but I liked the cheese one better.

-         Datiles: bacon wrapped, almond-filled dates. For whatever reason, there have been a whole lot of bacon wrapped dates in my life and this was my favorite of all the ones in recent memory.

-         Asado Negro: onion slow-cooked beef and sauce with rice and sweet plantains. This was my entrée. The meat was dry, but the plantains and rice were good.

-         Pollo Adobo: adobo criollo marinated-halved chicken. Chucky’s habit of always ordering chicken resulted in him getting the best entrée of the night. It was moist and delicious

-         Polvorosa de Pollo: chicken guiso in a flaky “polvorosa” dough served with mixed greens. It was like a mini chicken pot pie. It was okay. Alice really liked her salad.

-         Adobo Smoked Sirloin Churrasco: Smoked adobo churrasco. It was heavily seasoned, and a little on the chewy side, but R really liked it.

 

There are only two desserts on the menu: flan and molten chocolate cake, so we got both. The flan was mediocre and the “cake” was liquid chocolate in an aluminum muffin tin. Both were disappointing.

 

I really enjoyed our meal. The prices are quite reasonable (entrées are $14-$19). I would definitely go again, order lots of appetizers and skip the desserts.

 

http://www.orinocokitchen.com/

 

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