Wednesday, 18 March 2009

HOT: Wahaca, 66 Chandos Place, Covent Garden WC2N 4HG

I was in dire straits - my last day in London was rapidly slipping away from me, the National Dining Rooms didn't serve afternoon tea until 3pm and I needed to be in Kensington Church Street for my haircut at 3:30. Circling around Trafalgar Square aimlessly, I suddenly had an inspired idea.

Tranzie and Huy had both raved about Wahaca to me before, but I had developed a hatred for their no reservations policy which had meant that I'd been thwarted from eating there twice before. However, no queues at 2pm on a Wednesday!

Given the number of times I'd been turned away after encountering long queues, I was really surprised by the size of the underground dining room. 'They must be doing something really right' I thought to myself, as I settled into a simple wooden table backed onto a brightly coloured wall.

The menu placemat contained a wide choice of slightly unfamiliar takes on familiar Mexican dishes. In the interests of research, I chose three street food dishes (ranging from 3.50-4.00 each) which my waiter assured me would be 'more than enough' with a disbelieving glance. The pork pibil fillings wrapped in small soft corn tacos were nice, but only became really special when slathered with hot chipotle salsa. Same with the slightly bland chicken quesadillas. The really outstanding dish were the nopalitos tostadas - fresh, light and tangy ingredients contained in crisp corn shells. Next time I would definitely just have variations of the tostadas and nothing else.

No comments: