"You have to live life to its full chorizo." Mario Batali
Today we traveled to Valencia Luncheria (www.valencialuncheria.com) in Norwalk, CT, 06850 (203-846-8009), to sample some authentic Venezuelan Beach Food.
When we arrived, we noticed the hordes of people entering and exiting the restaurant. Valencia Luncheria was bustling!!!! After we were seated, we were immediately greeted by a very business-like waitress who showed us to our table. The restaurant was very bright and had a very fun and colorful atmosphere.
For my drink order, I slurped a berry Batido (a sweet smoothie, with cool milk and ice).To start our meals, we got Freshly Smashed Guacamole that was extremely creamy and spiced to perfection. Along with the Guacamole they brought us homemade salty tortilla chips to dip with.
In addition we ordered starchy, crunchy Yucca Fries (a little bit like very fat french fries). These were quite bland, but satisfying. They were best right out of the fryer. As they sat, they got tough.
For our main meal we tasted many things. We ordered a combination plate called "The Works".
The Works included a Cubano Empanada. It was a warm crisp Empanada filled with succulent ham over juicy shredded pork and smothered in smooth delicious Swiss cheese. There was a Arepa filled with tender juice filled pork, crisp fried plantains, a small taste of moist Ceviche and a mound of delicious Black Beans and Rice.
We enjoyed an El Lado Sur (an Arepa erupting with gooey Manchego cheese, spinach and a silky, fried egg on top), with a side of home fries and more Black Beans and Rice.
The Real Deal Arepa (over-flowing with tender, spicy Chorizo and a flaccid, floppy piece of mozzarella beneath) as well as another Cubano Empanada was my choice.
I did not love The Real Deal Arepa very much because of the horribly soggy piece of cheese, but the Empanada was wonderful.
The last Arepa was the Zach (crunchy skinned fried chicken, covered in sweet, rich honey). It was tasty.
The atmosphere of Valencia Luncheria was very bright and inviting and the value was just the same. It only cost a small amount of money for the huge amount of food we ordered. The waitress was not too enthusiastic or bubbly, but she was helpful.
Overall the restaurant was quite good besides the floppy piece of cheese and the unfriendly service. I would rate it ZZZZ= 4 Z's= Good.