Monday, April 20, 2015

Arepas El Cacao in Orlando, FL

Arepas El Cacao is a Venezuelan restaurant located on Kirkman Road in Orlando. They have a couple other locations as well, either as brick and mortar restaurants or food trucks. As the name implies, they specialize in arepas, which are corn flatbreads stuffed with various fillings. The El Cacao part of the restaurant's name is a little more confusing since there isn't any chocolate to be found anywhere on the menu. It was explained by a restaurant employee that Venezuela produces the best cacao in the world. Because of this, calling something el cacao in Venezuela is equivalent to saying something is the best. So Arepas El Cacao basically means The Best Arepas. With a claim like that, it must mean their arepas should be delicious.
Being that I've visited Arepas El Cacao several times now, their name certainly has been living up to their claim with my very limited experiences with arepas in the past.
My favorite arepa here is the Arepa El Cacao #1. This is filled with an insane amount of meats, salads, and toppings. This includes beef, pork, shrimp, chicken, and chicken salad. There's potato salad and beans in there as well. There's also lots of shredded cheese. I think I'm most likely missing stuff. All the fillings in this arepa are overwhelming, but this monstrosity is delicious. It's a huge amount of food for a good value.
One of their weekend specials is the option to have a quail egg arepa. I gave this a try on another visit, getting the arepa filled with pork, black beans, cheese, and the hard boiled quail eggs. I don't think I've ever had quail eggs in the past. The taste wasn't all too different from chicken eggs, but they were much smaller in size. This arepa wasn't nearly as overstuffed as the Arepa El Cacao #1 mentioned above, but still was a good amount of food.
They also make fresh juice, smoothies, and milkshakes at the restaurant with tropical fruits. Here's a cup of Passionfruit Juice:
I also tried their soursop or guanabana milkshake. This was my first time tasting this fruit in anything and it was a very interesting flavor. The milkshake tasted familiar, but I couldn't place where else I've tried guanabana.
Other than Arepas El Cacao, my other arepa experience is with what is often served at farmers markets and street fairs. That version of an arepa is basically a corn bread grilled cheese. Comparing those to what is served at this restaurant, Arepas El Cacao is the definite winner!

Arepas El Cacao on Urbanspoon

1 comment:

Kelly Green said...

I've not tried guanabana. Sounds intriguing. Thanks for the review.


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