Piolin Restaurant in Hartford, CT boasts an impressive array of Peruvian food at great prices. The restaurant serves anything from beef heart (anticuchos) to Peruvian-style seafood with rice (arroz con mariscos). Along with its friendly atmosphere and lively Hispanic music that sometimes plays on the television sets, Piolin is known for its large portions. Each main dish can easily feed two people for around $10. The whole chicken, which is placed on top of a large plate of large fries, costs about $13.20 and can easily feed 3-4 people. The restaurant also sells a large dish of fried seafood. This dish, like all others, is easily sharable between two people. Whenever a dish comes out of the kitchen, it is always a surprise how large the portions are.
In addition to the inexpensive prices and large portions, Piolin also serves for free an appetizer of bread and dried corn with a tasty semi-hot sauce. The sauce is especially good and tastes great in combination with any of the dishes, including the fried rice and chicken.
Piolin is located conveniently close to Trinity College and is a good alternative to dining hall food for the students. The restaurant also has a to-go service that is excellent. People can call in their order(s) and come pick it up directly from the restaurant.
Just a heads-up. The restaurant will charge for water if they serve you the bottled water. However, if you go often enough, they will serve you unbottled water for free in return for being a frequent customer.
The staff at Piolin are friendly and helpful at giving recommendations to those who have never heard of the food on the menu. Though some staff members may not speak that much English, they are still able to communicate to their customers. Because of this, the restaurant attracts customers of all ethnicities.
Another heads-up. Only orders of at least $10 can be paid for by credit card, and they may check your I.D. However, if you ever find yourself ordering something less than $10 and have nothing on you other than a credit card, you can purchase one of their fine desserts. The sweets vary by day, but generally they have in stock cakes and flan, which is extremely delicious. You can also order some Inca cola or any other beverage to help you reach that $10 minimum. If you go frequently enough, they may not ask for your I.D.
A tip for when you first walk in. Find yourself a seat and sit down. A waiter or waitress will come to you with the menu. This is different from other restaurants in that other restaurants will find you a seat. Hopefully you will not be confused when you go now that you have read this.
In summary, Piolin Restaurant is an affordable, friendly restaurant that will satisfy your hunger with their hearty portions. Next time you find yourself in Hartford, CT, make a trip to Piolin Restaurant on 417 New Britain Avenue. You will find the place easily. Just look out for a large Tweety bird. I challenge you to complete an entire fried rice order on your own. If you can master that, try taking on the whole chicken. Buen provecho!