Sherman's Food Adventures: Chicha


Sometimes, I believe we go through certain themes when it comes to our food adventures after Monday night softball.  We went through the dumpling phase one year and then moved onto hot pot (not sure why since it was Summer...).  This year, we've only played a handful of games, but for the second time, we hit up a Latin restaurant in Chicha.  Mind you, if this trend continues, I'm not sure if there are enough Latin restaurants to go around.  As I've said before, Vancouver has a diverse food scene - in Asian food that is...

Seated at the long narrow table at the front, it was a great place to hang out, but not so much when it came to plate management. Thankfully, they expedited our dishes in a timed and orderly fashion.  For starters, we had the Plantain Chips and Papas Fritas.  Light and crunchy, the plantain chips were not greasy to the touch.  The accompanying trio of aji sauces was a nice combination of heat (aji pepper), herbs (cilantro) and creaminess. Well-executed, the Kennebec potato fries were crispy with rocoto chili. On the side, the Peruvian tartar sauce was chunky and creamy with a touch of spice.

Onto some daily features, we dug into the Baby Back Ribs with orange aji panca glaze with green beans and maple bacon potato salad.  Sweet, sticky and a bit spicy, the ribs were fall-off-the bone tender.  Underneath, there was a cold potato salad that exhibited a sweet tang to go along with the firm crunch of the green beans. We also had the Chicken & Waffles featuring fried chicken breast, yuca waffle, bacon jam and maple syrup.  We found the waffle to be dense, yet not heavy.  It was almost like a bread pudding when combined with the sweet gravy.  Essentially chicken strips, the fried chicken was moist with a super light breading.

Strangely resembling a poutine, the Lomo Saltado consisted of Pemberton Meadows beef, kennebec fries, red onion, peppers and tomato.  Although the slices of beef were on point in terms of doneness as well as being succulent, there was very little of it.  With the listed ingredients, the flavours reflected their presence with tangy sweetness.  The fries remained crunchy due to the limited amount of "sauce". Our one vegetarian item was the Tacu Tacu de Locra de Zapallo which was crispy lima bean cakes, butternut squash stew, Parmesan and fried quail egg. I found the lima bean cakes to be firm and chewy.  As much as I enjoyed the sweet squash, this plate was missing something (oh yeah...  meat!).

Ending off the savoury items, we had the Arroz con Pato featuring Yarrow Meadows duck confit, coriander and dark beer rice. Fork tender and well-seasoned with a nicely rendered skin, the duck was well-executed. As for the rice, it was firm, yet saucy with a mild background hoppiness.  To fulfill the dessert quota (because Bear was in the house), we had the Picarone or sweet potato and pumpkin Peruvian donuts with spiced honey and raspberry sauce.  Part fritter and part cruller, these donuts were super crispy with a light fluffy interior.  There was just enough honey for sweetness while the raspberry sauce added the necessary tartness.  In the end, we were pretty satisfied with the food at Chicha.  Yah, it's not really Peruvian food, but they do admit to being "Peruvian-inspired".  On that note, they do succeed.

The Good:
- Decent eats
- Okay pricing
- Hip

The Bad:
- Smallish portions
- Not Peruvian, for those food snobs

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