Fogo's Peri Peri | Skokie | Tapas/Spanish | Restaurant
click to enlarge Fogo's Peri Peri

Fogo's Peri Peri

Mike Sula

Chicken joint in Skokie specializing in Portuguese-style peri peri chicken

Our Review

Peri peri—or pili pili or piri piri—refers to the red African bird's eye chile peppers the chicken at this Skokie spot is marinated and sauced in. Maybe you've heard of Nando's, which is a South African chain that is the worldwide piri piri chicken king. Like Nando's, Fogo's also sells wings, wraps, and salads, and seems to have adopted that model. At Fogo's they claim to marinate the chicken in a piri piri sauce for 24 hours. From there it's precooked and deposited in a holding oven until ordered, then given just the briefest of kisses on a gas grill, before being slathered in piri piri sauce, which can be ordered to your preference. The chicken itself is OK. It could use more time on the grill to crisp up. It could definitely use more time on a charcoal grill, which how a proper Portuguese chicken joint like Montreal's Rotisserie Romados does it. Instead it has a sort of braised, fall-off-the bone quality to it. The sauce at Fogo's is quite good, if simple. It's fruity, with a bit less vinegar than your typical Louisiana hot sauce. It has a vivid almost disturbingly orange-red color, and the "hot" option leaves a nice sustaining afterburn on the lips. The problem is, the sauce is slathered on liberally, and not reduced in any way, and it fairly disintegrates the tissue paper lining the baskets it's served in. Finally, the chicken is served half butchered—thigh connected to drumstick, breast connected to wing—which means you really have to get in there. The owners should consider installing a shower.

Mike Sula

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Price: $
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