#BriannaAbroad – My New Food Obsession in Chile

By: Brianna Huff 

¡Hola! My name is Brianna, but friends call me Brie, like the French cheese.  I am currently studying abroad in Chile. My program is International Public Relations, History and Spanish.

A month into my journey in Chile and I have quickly become obsessed with their french fries or in the Spanish language, las papas fritas. I have made it my personal duty to become the “ultimate french fry evaluator”. So far my favorite resturante or restaurant is this small mom and pop shop located in Viña del Mar, which is about a 20 minute walk from where I stay with a Chilean family. Their lunch menu is what Chileans would call “mas barato” or very cheap, for example a medium sized bag (yes bag) of the fried goodness is less than a dollar in USD.

Why am I obsessively talking about las papas fritas?

Because in America I am not nearly as obsessed with fries as I am in Chile. Why? For one, in Chile they make their fries from scratch. Yes, scratch (or at least the places I have eaten). They boil the potatoes and from there they strip it of its flesh, cut them up, and then season them to perfection

papas fritas

There is a well-known french fry dish in Chile called, Chorrillana. The Chorrilana in Chilean Spanish means “The Chilean”. And yes, the Chileans have conjured their own type of Spanish, as in it is unique only to them. These fries are fried to perfection and smothered with meat (beef or steak), sautéed onions, then topped off with a fried egg. Yes, grease heaven.

My friends and I decided to try out this popular restaurant in Valparaiso, Chile called J Cruz. It is most notable for its Chorrillanas. According to its web page it is the father of the dish, as it’s the only dish they serve (so don’t expect a menu!). From the moment we arrive the restaurant had such homey feel, so I could already tell this was going to be a meal to remember. As we sat down an antique dish with five pieces of home cooked breads and some type of picante or spicy salsa was laid on the table…. 20 minutes later perfection (aka – Chorrillanas) was laid on the table!

Because it is Chile and the price of meat is not cheap, expect the price of the Chorrillana to be between 9 and 15 pesos or in USD $20-$30.

New experiences like this are what make studying abroad special. It gives the opportunity to find new interests, like a delicious new food.

Until next time,


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