"It's all about the rotisserie," claims Bob Van Diest, a broker associate married to a Peruvian woman who, along with their sons, Ryan and Jason, will soon open La Polleria, a Peruvian-style chicken shop at 7422 South University, in Centennial.
The rotisserie, which was built in -- and shipped from -- Peru, is the magical piece of equipment, says Van Diest, that will set his chicken apart from all others. "Rotisserie chicken is a dime a dozen," he admits, "but ours is done Peruvian-style, in a brick-lined oven fired by mesquite lump charcoal, which creates amazingly crisp skin, while keeping the meat incredibly juicy." The chickens -- known in Peru as "pollo a la brasa" -- he adds, are "marinated just like they are in Peru, but we've tweaked ours a bit so that they're not as sweet."
Pollerias, he notes, are as common in Peru as burger joints are in the States. "In Peru, pollerias are like Burger King and McDonald's, expect that instead of everyone eating hamburgers, the Peruvians eat chicken. It's their culture."
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The no-frills joint, which will open early next week, uses all-natural Red Bird Farms chicken, and hustles everything from chicken empanadas and chicken wraps to a chicken breast salad and chicken combination plates, all of which come with one or two side dishes: fresh-cut Yukon gold French fries; baked Yukon Gold potatoes macaroni and cheese; yellow rice; or a tossed salad.
"I'm a real estate broker, but business isn't great right now, so I wanted something else to keep me busy," says Van Diest, "and all of us -- the whole family -- has spent a lot of time in Peru, apprenticing in restaurants in Lima, and we wanted to bring Peru's culinary specialty to Denver."
For more information, call 720-583-1051.