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Since its grand opening May 30, Calabash’s newest eatery, Mmm Que Rico at 1533 Thomasboro Road, has been dishing up its flavorful rotisserie chicken meals as well as other Peruvian specialties.
Located at the former site of Turtle Crossing Cupcakes, which has relocated to Calabash Garden Tearoom, the new restaurant is owned by Peru native Walter Argote and his Argentine wife, Susana, who know some stuff about the South American cuisine on their menu.
During a recent lunchtime, Walter’s brother Luis Argote led an informal tour showing whole chickens, marinated in Mmm Que Rico’s secret sauce, roasting on the rotisserie back in the kitchen.
Main pollo a la brasa entrees, served with a choice of sauces, include a choice of quarter or half chicken plates with a choice of two sides, priced from $7.55 to $11.25. A whole chicken meal with three sides is $19.95, and there’s also a family special consisting of two whole chickens, five sides and four 20-ounce drinks for $46.95.
Also on the menu are chicken, grilled sirloin carne asada, and choripan hot-dog-style sandwiches with a choice of toppings and served with fries and ranging from $6.55 to $8.95; and chicken and beef empanadas for $1.99 each.
Side choices in addition to fries include coleslaw, fried yucca, rice, beans, plantains and boiled potatoes ranging from $2.75 to $3.75.
Desserts include Susana’s homemade flan with caramel sauce, bread pudding, alfajor havanna and recoleta cookies, and chocolate sublime.
In addition to traditional soft drinks, water and tea, Mmm Que Rico also offers specialty Inka Cola as well as chicha morada and maracuya fruit drinks.
Mmm Que Rico also has a kids’ menu.
The eatery got its name from the Argotes’ 2-and-a-half-year-old grandson, Walter said, who would exclaim “mmm que rico,” meaning “delicious,” whenever he indulged in his grandpa’s chicken.
“They wouldn’t let me open the restaurant if I didn’t use that name,” Walter said.
The restaurant is open 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Mondays through Saturdays. Mmm Que Rico also has a call-ahead pickup window. The phone number there is (910) 579-5900.
Dishing up “Tammy” specials
With the July 2 debut of the movie “Tammy,” which was filmed in Shallotte, just a couple weeks away, local chef Sal Rubio is getting ready.
Segments of the comedy starring Melissa McCarthy were filmed last June at The Grille, Rubio’s restaurant in downtown Shallotte.
That’s when The Grille underwent temporary transformation as Topper Jack’s, a fictitious fast-food eatery.
Now, in celebration of the movie’s approaching release a year later, Rubio says he will be whipping up and serving “Topper Jack’s Backyard Burger Combo” and other “Tammy”-infused menu specials starting this week.
Diners can check it out for themselves at the restaurant at 4736 Main St. in downtown Shallotte.
Laura Lewis is a staff writer for the Beacon. Reach her at 754-6890 or email email@example.com.