Tierra Colombiana

Tierra Colombiana is a large Cuban and Colombian restaurant in North Philadelphia, on 5th street, just east of 1. It’s not in the loveliest of neighborhoods. But it does offer plenty of parking. And despite its unfortunate location, the restaurant itself is pretty cute, and certainly the cutest structure for blocks around.
The restaurant itself is quite large, with plenty of tables. They bring out some free bread, and it’s yummy. It’s warm and grilled. The menu is extensive, with both Cuban and Colombian dishes. They also have a large selection of fresh fruit smoothies. I got a passion fruit smoothie made with milk. It was delicious and had an extremely strong passion fruit flavor. R got a soursop smoothie, and I got a trigo smoothie.
We started with a number of appetizers. The aranitas is shredded plantain fritters served with garlic sauce. It was basically shredded plantain fries served with a garlic sauce, which tasted a bit like ranch dressing. We got two different empanadas, one with cheese and one with chicken. They were both good but the cheese one wasn’t too exciting. I enjoyed the chicken one much more. Lastly, we got the maduro frito con queso, which was a whole sweet plantain with a strip of cheese. Although rather unattractive looking and phallic, the dish was good, and the cheese is nice and mild.
For our entrees, L got the ceviche de camarones, from the Colombian menu. It is shrimp in lemon sauce with onions and cilantro. When you order most entrees, you also get to select a side and your choice of rice. For his entree, I got the arroz con camarones, also from the Colombian menu. It is a shrimp and rice casserole, and I was lucky enough to taste this, and loved it. I could totally get this myself next time.

R and I both ordered from the cuban side of the menu. Essentially, we ordered the same dish, only hers was sliced pork, and mine was big hunks of pork. They both came with black rice, which was actually white rice with black beans, steamed cassava, which was basically like a steamed potato, cuban tamale, which was a cuban style tamale, and plantains. This was tons of food. Their portions are more than generous. I was actually getting full from the bread, the smoothie, and the appetizers. By the time we got to the entrees, I barely made a dent in it. Regardless, it was delicious, all of it. The leftovers were delicious.

Service is adequate and frienly. Prices are reasonable for the giant portions you get. But best of all, the food is great. So if you’re up for the drive to the hood, it’s a nice outing.
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