August 6, By Christian Murray
It took more than 18 months but it has finally arrived.
Jora, which offers traditional Peruvian food, opened two weeks ago on the corner of 48th Avenue and 11th .
The restaurant is owned and operated by 26-year-old Alejandro Rojas, who comes to the neighborhood with pedigree.
Rojas’s father owns one of the oldest Peruvian restaurants in New York, which was established in Jackson Heights in 1976. That restaurant was initially called Inti raymi, but the name was later changed to Urubama.
Roja said he learned to cook working alongside his father and has also been to cooking school. This is his first restaurant.
Roja said the delay in opening was largely the result of some personal issues as opposed to city bureaucracy.
“We spent too much time at our other [Jackson Heights] place and then some other issues came up,” he said.
The restaurant is currently open from 5:30 pm through 11 pm and is serving entrees such as grilled skirt steak, Peruvian style seafood paella, braised lamb shank and pan roasted chicken breast.
In two weeks, Roja said that the restaurant will open at about 12:00pm to cater to the lunch crowd. In time, it will serve brunch on weekends.
Roja said that business has been good so far. “People have seen our [Jora] sign up for a long time and then when they saw the lights on they realized we had opened and came on it.”
The restaurant has a liquor license and has room for about 90 diners.
The restaurant replaces the long-vacant Crossroads Diner.