Pollo is the Spanish word for chicken. It also makes me realize that we’ve yet to sample chicken at a Mexican restaurant on this chicken-chowing tour. Well, we’re going to fix that muy rápido!
While doing chicken searches on Google (yes, this is how I spend my time) I found that Jalapenos Mexican Grill here in the Metro Centre has a whole section of the menu devoted to pollo entrees, so I thought this would be the perfect place to sample some Mexican styled chicken for this sixth motherclucking week of chicken! When you walk inside there’s a bar straight ahead, but it’s a little early for that to be open, so we’ll head into the main dining room.
As I walked into the dining room I noticed the food and drink specials of the day and then I ran into Jose, who owns Jalapenos with his wife, Nora. Jose told me that Nora was out shopping because she’s getting ready for a trip to Mexico. I told him to tell her to watch out for those Mexican spiders! We have a special guest star today, but as usual, I’m early, so we’ll take some photos of Jalapenos on this fine afternoon!
As I took a shot of the main dining room, I saw a couple of familiar faces at the front round table. Off to the right of this circle is Bob Gordon, owner of Acme Comics and frequent guest star here on MBIP and to his left is Graeme Brown from Advanced Audio and Lighting. The rest of the table are all Advanced Audio employees and they gather here at Jalapenos for a monthly AAA (Acme Advanced Audio) Brain Trust Meeting of the Minds to overthrow Peoria and beyond! Great to see all of them and best of luck with your mission!
Booths line both sides of the wall in here and at the end of the far row of booths is the Guacamole Cart used in making the table-side guacamole in here. Jalapenos is the only restaurant in town offering this unique service and you can see it in action in this post from 2016.
There’s another dining room beyond the stoned archway with tables and booths. I love the stained glass chandeliers hanging over the booths.
This room is for larger and private parties and there was a private party going on inside of here so I took one quick photo and then vamoosed!
The walls have nice Mexican inspired art and check out the Jose Cuervo piñata. I wonder if it’s filled with miniature tequila bottles?
I went back to the main dining room and our special guest star was seated at a booth. That’s Jonathan Wright, who’s the Editor-In-Chief at Peoria Magazines and he does editing and writing duty for iBI (check out the Local Legends issue that just came out), Art & Society and Peoria Progress. As if that wasn’t enough, Jon’s also finishing up a book about Peoria’s underground music scene from 1984 to 2000 and that should be out sometime in 2019. I’m looking forward to that and now it’s time for lunch!
And poof, just like magic our pretty waitress Diana appeared and suddenly fresh tortilla chips and salsa have arrived at our table. Then Jose sent over a complimentary dish of their newest dip offering, Chili con Carne. The dip was fantastic, it’s got a chili base with melted cheese and seasoned ground beef and it was a wonderful start to our lunch. Thanks for sending it over, Jose!
Okay, time for the motherclucking main course featuring a pollo entree. As you can see, there’s quite a nice pollo selection to choose from at Jalapenos. Both Jon and I chose a dish and by the magic of these here interwebs...
Our pollo lunch is served up segundos más tarde! Jon got the Chori Pollo, which is grilled chicken and chorizo with cheese served on warm tortillas. Jon said it was a tasty dish and he enjoyed his pollo entree once I quit taking photos of him!
For this week’s featured chicken entree I went with the newest pollo dish on the menu, Pollo Feliz. This dish has chunks of grilled chicken served over a bed of rice and covered with warm queso cheese dip. Melted cheese, chicken and rice, that is a winning combination! ¡Suena tan bien, es hora de probarlo!
This was absolutely delicious! The grilled chicken was juicy and blended so well with the fluffy rice and the rich queso cheese sauce, it’s downright decadent! Plus there’s a variety of ways to eat this entree, you can eat it straight from the plate, wrap a tortilla around it or scoop it up with a chip. It did it all three ways and this was a fabulous Mexican pollo lunch!
Alerta de placa vacía! Cluck, cluck ... ¡ya no está! Thanks to Jonathan Wright for joining me for this south of the border pollo lunch! Adios amigos!
Three and a half Dixie Chickens—This was a unique, rich and satisfying way to serve chicken with a Mexican twist. ¡Fabuloso!
4700 N. University Street (In The Metro Centre)