Processing Your Payment

Please do not leave this page until complete. This can take a few moments.

December 5, 2018

El Pollo Guapo debuts in Hartford's Front Street District

HBJ Photo | Joe Cooper Patrons waiting in line during El Pollo Guapo 's Hartford debut on Wednesday.

A new lunch and dinner eatery known for its rotisserie chicken bowls debuts Wednesday in downtown Hartford’s Front Street entertainment district.

Wethersfield-based El Pollo Guapo opened its doors Wednesday in 2,600 square feet formerly housed by Qdoba Mexican Grill, the restaurant told Hartford Business Journal.

The 54-seat restaurant, next to Infinity Music Hall, is owned by Heather and Roy Riedl. It held a soft opening for guests on Tuesday night, according to promotional platform We Hartford.

El Pollo Guapo’s Hartford menu mirrors its first restaurant’s offerings at 1866 Berlin Turnpike, which opened in June 2007. Menu items include rotisserie chicken, tacos, rice bowls, chicken quesadillas, plantains, wraps, roasted vegetables, and beer and wine.

El Pollo Guapo is translated as "The Handsome Chicken” in English.

The Riedls said they eyed the Hartford dining space because it was larger and could accommodate alcohol sales. They made minor renovations at the site throughout the fall.

Their signature rotisserie chicken is familiar for many Hartford natives and workers. Mercado, the couple’s food truck, has been a frequent visitor at Hartford’s Bushnell Park and at other local venues in recent years. The food-truck business was founded as a catering business in spring 2015.

El Pollo Guapo will employ about 25 people in Hartford.

Front Street is also expected to house another new tenant in 2019.

According to Front Street’s leasing map, New Haven seafood restaurant Boiling SOHO is shown occupying 3,650 square feet on Prospect Street next to Barnes & Noble.

Charter Realty is the leasing agent for Front Street landlord and developer HB Nitkin Group.

Sign up for Enews

Related Content


Order a PDF