A Taste in Venezuela
Located in the historic South End, Orinoco is a Venezuelan restaurant I stumbled upon while walking around one summer evening after work. The rustic decor invites you to have an appreciation for Latin culture. Outside, their patio set up is perfect for taking in all the scenery the South End has to offer.
“First thing's first, get an arepa!”
My first time here was the first time I had an arepa. It turned out to be such a pleasure; the arepa was delicious! An arepa is a traditional Venezuelan grilled corn flour, pocket sandwich. I had the Pelua which had shredded beef and Edam cheese. I practically melted in my seat from the burst of warm flavors!
There are a couple of vegetarian options if you are one. Aside from the arepas that contain solely cheese, the Jardinera is another arepa with a little bit more flare. It's composed of Guayanés cheese, sweet plantains, and guasacaca.
The Mechadais is a fresh green salad tossed in a sherry vinaigrette accompanied by Venezuelan-style stewed, shredded beef empanadas.
One of my favorite dishes is the Pabellón Criollois. It's a Venezuelan dish composed of shredded beef, white rice, black beans, and plantains. You ever had rice so amazing by itself that you didn't even need to add sauce? Well, that's what it was like the first time I dined here. Well-marinated beef and sweet plantains had me feeling right at home. It was pure love.
The Mahi Mahi is composed of a plantain-crusted Mahi-Mahi with “Rabo Encendido” and tomato escabeche (contains meat).
For my vegetarian eaters, there is the Atun which I have not tried yet, but I would assume it's just as flavorful as everything else. It's an adobo-rubbed high-grade yell-fin tuna seared and served with an arugula sun-dried tomato vinaigrette salad and toasted pepitas (from Orinoco menu).
Orinoco's spot in my favorites list is well-deserved between flavorful food and an overall great experience. Parking can be a hassle in the South End, but there are 2 other locations if you feel traveling elsewhere.
Visit Orinoco South End located on:
477 Shawmut Avenue
Boston, MA 02118