Caracas Arepas - Restaurant review

>> Wednesday, August 20, 2008


Let me preface this by saying you know something is good when you go for lunch then go back for dinner. Yeah, that's happened with Caracas Arepas. Jef and I had seen Caracas on an episode of Throwdown with Bobby Flay and immediately knew that this was someplace that we would have to try.




Now for those that don't know (and I didn't till I saw this episode), arepas are flat cornmeal patties which can either be grilled, baked, or fried (yum!) and basically they stuff the arepas with all different kinds of meat and cheeses.



Located on the corner of 7th and 1st ave, Caracas fits into the delightful urban mix that is the East Village. Ethnic food is everywhere and the streets are lined with tiny eateries that are sure to be someone's favorite and Caracas is now mine.



I'll just start with dinner, because while Jef and I did go for lunch, it was a warm up, we did dinner the right way.



So to start off the night right we decided to get the Venezuelan interpretation of Sangria, a light wine and fruity mixture and get some appetizers:


  • Yoyos - deep fried balls of sweet plantain stuffed with white cheese with a deliciously sweet honey dipping sauce

  • Guasacaca & Chips - Venezuelan style guacamole with chips

The yoyos were so sweet Jef and I both stated that it could probably be a mild dessert but delicious none the less and who doesn't love guac and plantain chips? Everyone, duh!


Now we made the mistake at lunch by ordering only one arepas. As it turns out that will not fill you up, unless you don't like to eat and we do. Arepas are smaller, almost like a tiny pita, so basically you need to order two if that is all you're getting. Since we got two appetizers, I ordered one and Jef ordered two:



  • De Pabello - shredded beef, black beans, sweet plantains and aged cheese (pictured right)

  • La de Pernil - roasted pork shoulder with tomato slices and a spicy mango sauce
Basically what I am trying to communicate is arepas are a little piece of Venezuelan heaven in your mouth. The arepas itself is bread that is sweet, crunchy and yet soft. I don't know how it works and I don't care its beyond ridiculously good.


If you are interesting in trying a new cusine, I would highly suggest venturing into Venezuelan, its not a far departure from Mexican, but completely different techniques and flavor profiles.


I should also mention this place is a great value for all you're getting. For the two of us to eat it was $47 with drinks, 3 arepas, and 2 appetizers! Yeah, for us thats the cheapest dinner we've had...

In case you don't think I loved it, check out the pure bliss stretched across my face as I try and devour the arepas...amazing. Thanks to Jef and his amazing photo skills :)





Caracas Arepas Bar
93 1/2 East 7th
New York, NY 10009
http://www.caracasarepabar.com/


Check for hours of operations, the restaurant is open at 5, but they do have a smaller to-go place next door open all hours.






3 comments:

elizabeth August 20, 2008 at 12:47 PM  

I must say this is the first I have heard of a Arepas. But they sound delicious! I am pretty jealous of this dining experience!

Marcy August 21, 2008 at 11:20 AM  

I went last night and had the De Pabello arepa, and it was awesome. It was so crowded though. Expect a wait. We sat at the bar which was actually kind of cool because we talked to the bartender and he was able to explain some stuff to us about what things were made of...like the molasses with the fried plantains stuffed with cheese. MMMM!

Ilovetoeat August 25, 2008 at 5:52 AM  

you are stuffing your face there girl! If I was Jef I would of stepped a few feet back, i don't think anything edible was going to come between you and your Arepas!

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