Restaurant Week: Pacifico

For our second restaurant week trip we chose Pacifico, a “nuevo-Latino” restaurant known for its exceptional seafood options. I’ve been to Pacifico for dinner and tried some seafood and meat dishes, both of which were fantastic, so I expected the restaurant week menu to be just as good.

Unfortunately, Pacifico failed to deliver this time. Besides slow service at an uncrowded venue, our waitress ignored us and the food was sub-par.

Appetizers

The first disappointment came when I saw the menu, which had fewer options than were promised online (I thought I would get the shredded duck quesadilla, which I’d had before and loved). We got  vegetarian croquetas and Argentinean Empanadas. The croquetas were made of quinoa, which made for a nice light filling inside a crispy shell. We all agreed that they were delicious and that we’d order them again.

The Argentinean Empanadas (actually just one empanada) was too doughy for my taste and didn’t compare to the authentic cuisine it tried to imitate.

Croquetas Vegetarianas, with quinoa inside

Croquetas Vegetarianas

Argentinean Empanada

Argentinean Empanada

Entrees

Three of us ordered salads which ranged from pretty disappointing to pretty good.

We got one Cobb salad with steak and one with salmon. Although the salmon was tasty and fresh, there was so little of it in the salad. We all agreed that ordering the steak salad was the better move – the juicy skirt steak strips came in a bigger portion. However, they still could have used more flavor.

sad salad

sad salad

Cobb salad with steak

Cobb salad with steak

The chicken chopped salad tasted fine, but we could have made this simple salad ourselves. Low point was the flavorless chicken, high point was the roasted corn and fresh avocado. 

Chicken chopped salad

Chicken chopped salad

 The best dish was the camarones BLT (shrimp BLT). The seven-grain bread had a hearty flavor that I loved, and they didn’t skimp on the shrimp. The patatas bravas that came on the side were also great and came in a cute little cast-iron pan with a chipotle-mayo sauce on top.

Camarones BLT (BLT with shrimp and garlic-pimiento aioli)

Camarones BLT (BLT with shrimp and garlic-pimiento aioli)

Dessert

The dessert on the restaurant week menu was “sorbet of the day”, but our waitress dropped off the dishes without a word so we didn’t know what flavor it was. We guessed correctly- it was coconut sorbet, with fried cinnamon sticks and a sliver of strawberry. It was pretty good but again, nothing special.

"Sorbet of the Day": Coconut sorbet

“Sorbet of the Day”: Coconut sorbet

Overall, this Restaurant Week lunch at Pacifico was disappointing. I’m reluctant to write off Pacifico as a whole since I’ve had some great meals there with good service and much better presentation than we saw today. Lesson learned: not all Restaurant Week menus are created equal.

Pacifico normally offers a lunch prix-fixe menu that has more options than their Restaurant Week  menu and is only $14.95. Better yet, Yale students get 15% off on Thursdays when you show your ID, so there’s reason to give lunch at Pacifico another chance.

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