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April 21, 2022

Jose Garces to host Peruvian pop-up dinner at Distrito Taqueria in University City

Tickets for the event cost $80 and include three courses and one alcoholic beverage

Food & Drink Peru
Rustika Chicken Garces Courtesy of/Cashman & Associates

Reality TV chef Jose Garces will try out Rustika, his Peruvian rotisserie chicken ghost kitchen concept, as a traditional sit-down dinner next week.

Chef Jose Garces will try out his Peruvian ghost kitchen as a traditional sit-down dinner at one of his brick-and-mortar locations next week.

The Rustika Pop-Up Dinner is taking place at Distrito Taqueria at 3945 Chestnut St. in University City on Tuesday, April 26 from 6 to 9 p.m. Tickets cost $80 per person and include appetizers, a main course, dessert and one alcoholic beverage.

Garces started the rotisserie chicken concept during the COVID-19 pandemic in early 2021, but it's currently only available for take-out and delivery. 

Diners at next week's pop-up can decide between a Pacifico lager, a glass of wine or a margarita. To start off the meal, appetizers include yucca cheese bread, avocado salad and chicken empanadas.

For the main course, Rustika's signature rotisserie chicken is being served – which takes a full 72 hours to brine, marinate, dry out and roast – with a side of roasted potatoes and grilled asparagus.

"Pollo a la brasa," as the chicken is known in Peru, can be traced back to Roger Schuler, a Swiss man who owned a chicken farm near Lima in the 1950s. He created the earliest recipe and pioneered the spit-roasting technique with the help of a friend.

For dessert, diners can choose between a tres leches cake or caramel-stuffed churros.

Garces is the mind behind the Garces Group, a hospitality company that runs a number of ghost kitchens across the nation. The firm has opened a Buena Onda ghost kitchen in Washington D.C. and plans to open more in markets like Florida, New York and Massachusetts.

Garces won the second season of Food Network's "The Next Iron Chef" in 2009 and currently runs six restaurants in Philadelphia, including Amada in Old City and Buena Onda in Fairmount.

Rustika Peruvian Chicken Pop-Up

Tuesday, April 26
6 to 9 p.m. | $80
Distrito Taqueria
3495 Chestnut St., Philadelphia, PA 19104