When people think of Puerto Rico, they usually think of raucous impromptu parades or New York Undercover's Michael DeLorenzo, which's sad, cuz that dude's like 50, and Italian. Giving you a taste of real Puerto Rico, El Pilon.
EP's an authentic sofrito-heavy grubbery by a woman everyone calls "Mamma", who's decked the tiny family-run joint w/ Caribbean/African art (the owner just likes it) & two rows of banquets covered in old-school vinyl that's shiny and red, instead of faded and (James) brown. The menu starts w/ Mofongo (fried mashed plantains) served in a wooden vessel w/ either Carne Frita, Pollo Frito, or Caldo de Pollo (chicken broth); mains include Bistek Encebollado (steak w/ sauteed onions), Chuletas Fritas (grilled pork chops), Bacalao (cod fish), and fricassee'd chicken, all of which come with rice & either beans or "No-Eyed Peas", fronted by the ever-pessimistic Will.I.Can't. They've also got apps ranging from fired plantain cups filled w/ sofrito sauteed shrimp, to Bacalaitos (cod fritters), to meat or cheese filled Empanadillas and Turnovers, which usually follow dinner/Hasselback victory predictions.
EP also offers daily lunch specials and, because they're not yet permitted to serve alcohol, a bunch of fruits (mango, guanabana, tamarindo, guava) turned into Rican-style Juice, with that Italian fraud Michael DeLorenzo super eager to read for the role of Bishop.