This fritanga is not gonna win any interior design awards. It looks like your abuelita's kitchen. But you're not coming here for a fancy sit-down dinner. This is 24-hour Nicaraguan take-out at its most epic. You get it and go. The first indication Pinolandia is way better than the rest: a never-ending, always-growing line of 30-plus Nicaraguan locals and wandering foodies that winds and twists out the door, spilling into the tiny, street-facing parking lot. The second indication: your Styrofoam container packed with three pounds of carne asada, sweet plantains, deep-fried cheese, salad, and gallo pinto. The third indication: a huge selection of second options, including carne desmenusada, stewed beef tongue, whole fried fish, gooey grilled ribs, and rolled tacos stuffed with shredded meat. And remember to hit the little bodega at the back. It has everything from powdered bleach to Nicaragua's national soda, Milca, to bootleg DVDs of boxing legend Alexis Arguello's greatest fights. The essential buys, though, are a 32-ouncer of milky cacao and a hot, fresh batch of deliciously fat Nicaraguan tortillas. So go, loco.
- Price: $, $$
- Hours: Daily 24 hours
- Outdoor seating: Open-air patio
- Reservations: Not necessary
- Parking: On-street