A Night Out With The Lads: Nando’s Peri-Peri

A review of the legendary South African restaurant

Hunter Wolff and Andrew Ryder



You may be saying, “Hold on. Where are the girls for ‘Date Night’ this month?” Well for October the lads have decided to take over for “A Night Out With The Lads.” So when you’re out with the lads and feeling extra cheeky, where do you go for a quick dinner? The answer is always Nando’s Peri-Peri on Randolph Street in Chicago. With an easy train ride down to Chicago, fast and friendly service, and a lively atmosphere, Nando’s is the ultimate restaurant for a lad’s night out on the town.


From the moment you step into Nando’s you can feel a sense of belonging. You just feel like you belong there at that moment, the smells captivate the nasal passages and immediately strike the brain. A host or hostess then greeted us warmly and enthusiastically. In our case a nice guy by the name of “Tony” greeted us and struck up conversation. Needless to say Tony was an absolute legend. As soon as you are seated the cheeky banter insinuates from the lads as some witty smack talk is exchanged across the table.


Tony there to give us a warm welcome to Nando’s.


Hunter diving into his first side, chips.


Nando’s is a fine South African and Portuguese fusion chicken spot that has franchises all across the globe. Nando’s is world famous for its “Flame-Grilled Chicken Breast,” cooked with the skin still attached, char coats the juicy breast indicating the “flame-grilled” title. A major component of the flavor, however, is the wide range of sauces to gloss atop your chicken dish. From “Lemon-Herb” to “Extra Extra Hot Peri-Peri,” the eatery offers nine rich sauces that really make the chicken as good as it is. We both tasted many of the sauces, such as, “Lemon-Herb,” “Medium,” “Wild Herb,” and “Hot Peri-Peri.” After our thorough testing our burnt tongues made the unanimous decision that the “Medium Peri-Peri” flavor best supplemented the chicken. While the “Flame-Grilled Chicken” is the classic go-to entrée at Nando’s, there are still plenty of appetizers and other options for alternative meal choices.


An up-close shot of the savory “Flame-Grilled Chicken” with Hot Peri-Peri.


Capturing the exciting and up-beat atmosphere of the South African eatery.


For starters, garlic bread sticks and pita with hummus lead the way for us. The garlic bread is warm, soft, and rich in flavor without having the garlic being overpowering to the taste buds. The hummus and pita cleanses and cools the palate, making for a great snack to enjoy throughout the meal and in between bites of chicken. A few other highlights delve into the side dishes at Nando’s. “The Flame-grilled Corn on the Cob” is a must order, so rich in flavor from the grill. “Portuguese Rice,” “Peri Chips” (aka fries), and “Red Skin Mashed Potatoes” are other great sides to compliment the meal. For vegetarians, the salad section of the menu offers nine delicious options. For us, the “Caesar Salad” was our favorite from that section.


The delicious hummus and pita appetizer.

Overall, Nando’s is an experience you just can’t beat. The unbeatable atmosphere and mouthwatering food make for a memorable night out with the lads. Just remember that if you’re in Chicago, looking for a cheeky casual meal, Nando’s should be at the top of your list!