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La Tropicale Cafe 54/55 Durham

thessalian | Mar 18, 201509:21 AM

Ok, so I usually like to try to support new restaurants in this zipcode, and I frequently eat lunch across the street at William's, so I decided to give this place a try despite its garish exterior.

I'm really not sure what I just ate (although I didn't eat most of it). My experience with 'tropical'/carribean cuisine is mostly by way of South Florida (so a fairly heavy Cuban influence--Pollo Tropical was the fast food of my youth), and more recently some of the Peruvian chicken joints around here. (I know it's not the same, but still: the basic roasted chicken +rice/beans/plantains combo.)

I got the jerk chicken at La Tropicale. This included three little pieces of chicken that were mostly bone. I guess I'm not 100% sure what jerk seasoning should taste like. I'm not sure this was it. I didn't expect it to be the same seasoning mix as Pollo Tropical or Peruvian chicken. Mostly got a strong sense of old, dried thyme. It was okay-ish, what little meat I was able to scavenge. The rest of the plate was piled with dry white rice that had about 10 sad, dry black beans scattered in it, and some kind of fried cabbage thing that I didn't try to interact with. Also two small plantain pieces, which were the best part of the meal.

And while this shouldn't make or break a place, the iced tea was so vile I couldn't gag it down. I guess from some kind of mix, and had possibly been sitting around a while.

I'm currently recovering with a pecan bar and an actual brewed iced tea from Dulce.

(Not happy about starting a thread just to trash a place, but there are a lot of RTP workers who hit this intersection for lunch, so wanted to give a heads up. First time I can remember walking away from that much food/beverage left behind.)

William's Gourmet Kitchen,
Dulce Cafe & Gelato
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