|Chicken, yucca and rice & beans at Grille Chick N' Pollo|
Grille Chick N' Pollo was one of the new restaurants for 2013, replacing a similarly-named restaurant that had occupied the space before.
This is casual, counter service. They serve roasted chicken, and it's moist and cooked through. Bones make such a difference. Even the Chick N' Pollo white meat is a world better-tasting than the boneless, skinless breasts that I keep in the freezer.
To me, the stars are the side dishes. Plain yellow rice, but they work when you mix in the black beans. They're rich and earthy. Then you add the green sauce. That's fiery and fresh. Chick N' Pollo charges extra for extra sauces, and they're worth every quarter. I added sauce to the chicken, the rice, and then used the rest for dipping the fried yucca.
If you like french fries, then you'll love fried yucca. Chunks of starchy vegetable fried crisp. They're one of my favorite foods if you can get them hot and spice them up with sauce. Chick N' Pollo has those fresh sauces, and they fry yucca so that it comes out light and tender.
Grille Chick N' Pollo wants to be more than fast food. They have some cool fusion ideas like a Thai burrito made with their chicken and salsas. They serve desserts like flan and alfajores, the cookies that I had enjoyed at the prior iteration of this restaurant. Next time, I will try the grilled beef heart. Again, I had enjoyed the antichucos under the prior management, and I hope the current folks make the chewy, beefy cut as deliciously.
Hickory Ridge can be an overlooked food option in Columbia. They have several other good restaurants, including Hickory Ridge Grill and Luna Bella Ristorante. They also have Meadows Custard for dessert if you want to eat chicken, then enjoy a sweet as you sit on the plaza.
Grille Chick N' Pollo
6470 Freetown Road
Columbia MD 21044
NEAR: This is on the back side of the Hickory Ridge village center. That's Cedar Lane between Rte 32 and Howard Hospital. There is a Giant on the front side of the shopping center, and Chick N' Pollo is on the opposite side. Park in back to be closest.