Dining Out: Lima’s Chicken brings flavors from Peru

For The Capital

My husband and I decided to brave a wet, soggy evening and take a trip to Annapolis to explore the flavors of Peru. As we drove on West Street, we saw new apartment buildings and noticed how developed the area has become. Lima’s Chicken has a great location on the first floor of the Bell Annapolis apartment complex.

Once you open the door to Lima’s Chicken, the smell of smoky roasted chicken permeates throughout the restaurant. The red, orange and yellow walls and bright images of Peru warmed us as we stepped in from the dreary outside.

Looking past the counter into the kitchen, we were mesmerized by the rotating chickens on the rotisserie machine roasting over the hot coals of an open fire. The fat dripping off each chicken helped to cook them by crisping the skin on the outside and keeping the moisture and tenderness on the inside. This sight brought upon the anticipation of the meal.

The menu displayed above the counter features other Peruvian specialties, such as ceviche, pollo saltado, and bistec a lo pobre. My husband ordered the whole chicken dinner with two sides ($19.49); I opted for the Lima’s bowl ($9.95) since I wanted a lighter option, but I told my husband I would help out with his platter.

Behind the counter, they had a chicken ready in a warmer, and we were impressed by the employee quartering the chicken with a sharp cleaver, as it gave an even sampling of each part of the chicken.

I told my husband to make sure to get the “green and yellow sauces.” These house-made special sauces added another depth of flavor to the chicken: the green sauce was spicy and cool, while the yellow sauce was creamy and garlicky. His plate of hot chicken with crispy charred skin and juicy meat was easy to pull off the bone since it was cooked just right. The chicken was not overly done and not overly salty; it had a pleasant smokiness to it.

For his sides, my husband chose the cilantro rice and black beans. (Other options include Peruvian fried rice, plantains, Yucca fries, and fresh vegetables.) They were hot and tasted fresh.

I was very happy with my Lima’s bowl, which was filling and enjoyable. It had smaller chopped-up pieces of chicken, pico de gallo, black beans, lettuce, cheese, and Lima’s tasty yellow sauce.

On a separate visit to the Hanover location, I had one of their Peruvian specialties, the pollo saltado ($13.95), which was a plate with chicken, grilled onions and tomatoes, served over french fries and rice. It was another great meal, this time for lunch, and both places were very consistent with their quality of food and service.

Overall, we enjoyed Lima’s Chicken and would go back. The small fast-casual restaurant was self-explanatory; there’s no frills, no show, and it was just a friendly restaurant for yourself or your family. The counter was kept clean and the employees did a great job of keeping the sides warm. The dining room was lightly populated for dinner, but it was clear that Lima’s Chicken has a bustling carryout business.

We appreciated the simplicity of the restaurant since the main reason to go is for the chicken, and anything more would take away from the main attraction. I highly recommend trying a taste of Peru: It’s worth the trip without having to buy an expensive plane ticket.

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Lima's Chicken

WHERE: 1901 West St., #102, Annapolis, MD 21401 (Four other locations in Maryland: Baltimore, Bowie, Catonsville, and Hanover)

PHONE: 410-267-5491

WEBSITE: limaschicken.com

HOURS: Monday to Saturday  11 a.m. to 10 p.m.; Sunday 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.

OWNER: Brian Hovermale

PRICE: $8.95 to $41.95

RESERVATIONS: Not recommended

CREDIT CARDS: All Major Cards

ACCESSIBILITY: Yes


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