62 S. Washington Ave., Bergenfield NJ
Web Site: https://www.facebook.com/EmpanadaMania
Finally, the empanada craze has reached Northeast Bergen county: Bergenfield.
- A World of Tastes in Empanadas (Elisa Ung, NorthJersey.com)
- Bergenfield Restaurant Features Empanadas (NorthJersey.com)
Empanada Mania is a small shop owned by Galo Grijalva, a long-time resident of Bergenfield. The store makes every single empanada from scratch, deep fried to order from fresh ingredients. The menu is specialized to the empanadas, plus ceviches and chili which are served only on Fridays.
Empanada Mania storefront on Washington Avenue in Bergenfield.
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Here’s the empanada menu. There are currently seven specialty empanada flavors which Galo intends to rotate seasonally, and also plans to introduce new flavors this summer.
Empanadas, fried nice and golden.
We opted for an empanada “degustation” of all the flavors, to check them out. As you can see each flavor is identified by its unique pinching on the crust.
The classic, traditional beef picadillo empanada, served with a hot Ecuadoran aji pepper sauce. This was one of my top two favorites.
Buffalo Chicken empanada. This is shredded white meat chicken mixed with a Frank’s Hot Sauce and blue cheese filling. I really liked this one, but I happen to enjoy hot wing flavors. The blue cheese and hot sauce flavor is very prominent.
Pizza empanada. Tasty, however it was my least favorite, and Galo kind of admits he designed it for the kids.
Chicken Quesadilla. By far my favorite of all the flavors, had a nice smoky chipotle flavor with the black beans and colby cheese. Definitely get this one along with the beef picadillo. The Teriyaki Chicken looked similar on the inside, and I would say it was tied in 3rd place with the Buffalo Chicken one in terms of what I liked the best.
Spinach empanada. Very spinachy and garlicky, with a small amount of feta cheese. This is his current vegetarian option in the store, although he can make other vegetarian flavors for catering.