Review: La Casa de Pedro

I've been out a lot (for me) in the last couple of weeks, and although Picco was transcendent, as usual, La Casa de Pedro was only OK.  Although I'd been anxious to try it, and the company was great, the food was, unfortunately, a disappointment.

La Casa de Pedro has been around for a long time (first in Watertown Square, now on Arsenal Street, also in Watertown), and gets mixed reviews.  I was there on a beautiful night, and there were 5 of us.  We sat outside, which was pleasant.  You're far enough away from the street so you don't feel like you're sucking back exhaust from the main drag while you eat and drink.

The highlights here were the starters.   La Verde salad, with Romaine lettuce, tomatoes, arugula, roasted peppers, etc. was served with a great cilantro dressing and was a standout for me - the lettuce and veggies were all fresh, and the dressing was delicious, if a bit salty.  We asked, and learned that the dressing is made with pureed cilantro, a little bit of garlic, olive oil and salt.  It was bright green and earthy, and everyone agreed it was fantastic.

We also ordered a plate of the calamari - fried and served with a poblano and jalapeno sauce.  I am usually very mixed on calamari, and I rarely order it for myself or a table - I have issues with its sometimes very chewy texture.  But this calamari was tender and cooked perfectly, and the sauce was zesty and tasty.   

I should've quit while I was ahead - the salad and the calamari would've made a great dinner.  Instead, I ordered the Quesadilla con Chorizo.  This is a tortilla filled with sliced chorizo and melted cheese . . . I mean, what could be better than sausage and cheese?  Well, to start, it came out cold.  The cheese wasn't completely solid yet, but it was getting there, and the tortilla was stiff as a board.  There were some plantains on the side that would've been OK if they'd been warmed up, and some simply awful rice that tasted as if it hadn't been cooked long enough.  Lackluster at best.  So . . . maybe this was partly my fault.  CdP is a Venezuelan restaurant, not a Mexican restaurant, and I ordered a Mexican entree.  But really folks, a quesadilla is really hard to screw up, and I feel like they succeeded. 

The service was good, and Pedro did graciously greet us when we arrived, so they get good marks for hospitality, but I won't go back here on my own - it's one of those places - if friends are dying to go, I won't refuse and dig in my heels, but I will probably order that salad and the calamari again and cross my fingers.  Know what I mean?

And a quick postscript about CdP's website - there is LOUD music that plays when you view the homepage . . . scroll down to pause.  I could write a whole post on how much I hate webpages with music, but I'll save that for another day.

 La Casa de Pedro on Urbanspoon