“We specialize in chicken – like (that well-known chicken) Market but with flavor. Peruvian Flavor.”
That’s how Jose Elera describes Peruchos’ signature dish, one of the many tasty Peruvian dishes on the menu at his family-business restaurant on Rt. 40 in Bear, De.
Peruchos came about because of popular demand. Years ago, Jose and his wife, Mildred Barbaran, prepared delicious chickens in their backyard for their friends. It was so good that the friends soon started asking if they could buy a chicken… or two… or more. Then the friends started suggesting that he open a restaurant selling Peruvian chicken, and Jose thought that sounded like a good idea.
So, in 2013, the first Peruchos opened in a small space on Kirkwood Hwy. Needing more space, the business was moved to its current location across from Governors Square shopping center in 2017. The full-service restaurant was well received, and grew to need six employees.
And then the COVID-19 shutdown changed everything.
Jose had been in the restaurant industry for more than 14 years, and he holds a Bachelor’s degree in business administration achieved in Peru. Mildred has a Bachelor’s degree in accounting and administration, also from university in Peru, and nine years’ experience in the restaurant industry. Their combined experience and knowledge give Jose and Mildred a strong foundation from which to contemplate the restaurant’s future.
“We decided we would not close,” said Jose. “We thought that if we closed, we would never reopen.”
And so the focus changed to take-out and delivery, prompting the reduction of staff to just two, Jose and Mildred . Sales plunged by as much as 70%, and Peruchos turned to True Access Capital for a small loan for working capital to cover rent and anti-COVID protective adaptations to the restaurant interior.