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“Great and Authentic Mexican Food” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Wahaca

Wahaca
66 Chandos Place | Covent Garden, London WC2N 4HG, England (Mayfair / St James's / Piccadilly / Green Park )
+44 (0) 207 240 1883
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Ranked #263 of 16,892 restaurants in London
Cuisines: Mexican
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Dining options: Breakfast/Brunch, Lunch, Dinner, Reservations, Takeout, Late Night
Neighborhood: Mayfair / St James's / Piccadilly / Green Park 
Montreal, Canada
Senior Contributor
21 reviews 21 reviews
12 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
“Great and Authentic Mexican Food”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 20, 2013

The food was very good and authentic.

We had the pleasure of enjoying:

- the Fresh Tomato Salsa and Chips:
As expected from any good Mexican restaurant, the salsa was fresh and spicy, with the tomatoes blending expertly with the onions and chilies. For those not used to Mexican levels of spice, this might be a little bit over-the-top, but the authenticity and balance of flavours is still evident. The nacho chips are good, they leave nothing to complain about.

- the Pork Pibil Tacos:
Pibil is a slow-roasting method of preparing pork originating from the Yucatan Peninsula, where pig is normally roasted for hours in highly acidic sauces and special fruits. This delicious method of cooking creates a melt-in-your-mouth tender pork, and these tacos lived up to our expectations. They are topped with spicy onions that can subdue the pibil and it is worth taking some of them out. Just be careful of the juices as you bite into the taco, they can create a mean stain on your clothes when they drip out and splatter!

- the Chicken Tinga Tacos:
These are spicier that the other tacos, but for those who love a little fiery bite from their Mexican food, it delivers that kick that hits the spot. However, I expected a little more smokiness when the menu promised a "smoky tomato sauce", and I feel like the spiciness drowned some possibly delicious nuances. Don't get me wrong, they're still delicious and I will order them every time I find myself at Wahaca.

- the Grilled British Steak Tacos:
These can be had with Chipotle Salsa or with Grilled Cheese and Salsa. We opted for the Chipotle Salsa option, because grilled cheese didn't seem to belong on a taco. While they weren't bad, and in any other company the Grilled British Steak tacos would have held their own, they felt a little flat when compared to the Pork Pibil and Chicken Tinga. They also left the spice buds alone, making this a good choice for those with adverse reactions to chillies.

- the Chicken Guajillo Tostadas:
If food is poetry, then tasting any single ingredient separately from a dish is like quoting one line of a sonnet, out of context. When the plate of Chicken Guajillo arrived, I happened to get a bit of the sauce on my hand. Naturally, I tasted it and I was very disappointed; it was flat and missing any interesting character. I resigned myself to the fact that I would probably not enjoy this plate. But, taking a proper bite consisting of every layer; chipotle-marinated chicken, salad, avocado, and whatever else was in that wondrous sonnet, I stood corrected. The Chicken Guajillo at Wahaca should be a case study in balancing flavours and textures in the kitchen. If you eat at Wahaca (and why wouldn't you after reading all this), get this tostada. If you, or anyone you know, wants to understand the poetry of cooking, eat this tostada.

- the Chipotle Chicken Quesadillas:
This is perhaps the one weak link in the menu, but one can blame the British as much as one can blame Wahaca. Lancashire cheese simply does not work in a Quesadilla. Well, it isn't bad per se, but it simply misses the mark; it is like going to bed with a supermodel and finding out that she just wants to lie down and talk about cars. Yes, thats great; but not what we came for. I'd give these a pass, and order more tacos or tostadas instead.

- the Churros y Chocolate:
Alright, if you still have room for dessert, it is hard to pass up the Churros Y Chocolate. And yes, they are as good as you might imagine. The Churros tasted fresh, warm, and crispy on the outside. The chocolate was okay … but the Churros are definitely the star of the dish.

- the Chocolate Tres Leches Cake:
Soak chocolate cake in a mixture of three milks; evaporated milk, condensed milk, and whole milk, and you end up with a lovely, moist sponge cake. The beauty of it is that it isn't overly buttery or rich, unlike many other restaurant desserts. I personally didn't care much for the peanut butter ice-cream that was served with it, being a fan of vanilla ice-cream myself. The next time, I might try something else.

The Smokey Chipotle Chilli sauce they put on the table is really good and authentic.

Our waiter was friendly.

Even though the restaurant was crowded, they don't push you to eat fast and get out. We stayed about two hours on a Saturday night.

The atmosphere of the restaurant is so-so.

The very disappointing and annoying thing is the fact that the waiting area/bar is next to the tables, so people waiting keep piling up next your table.

The wait for a table might be long as there is no booking.

  • Visited May 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
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London
Top Contributor
70 reviews 70 reviews
47 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 21 cities Reviews in 21 cities
35 helpful votes 35 helpful votes
“Great with kids. Go early to avoid queues.”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 19, 2013

Fun atmosphere, very reasonably priced menu. Interesting choices. Good childrens menu. Excellent service. All of us will be going back.

  • Visited April 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
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Bristol, England, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
69 reviews 69 reviews
34 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 33 cities Reviews in 33 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
“Outstanding”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 19, 2013

Enjoyed a nice meal here today with a friend. We tried a variety of dishes, and all were good. Huge range of flavours, some spicy, some less so. Puddings were nice too.

The meal was slightly spoiled by a family at the next table with badly behaved kids, but can't really blame the restaurant for that! only other slight issue is the service as a bit slow, otherwise it would have been five stars!

They don't accept reservations. Also worth noting that there is very little mobile signal at the tables (might be an issue if meeting friends?)

  • Visited May 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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Leamington Spa, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
61 reviews 61 reviews
34 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 27 cities Reviews in 27 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
“Never disappoints”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 19, 2013 via mobile

This restaurant of past Master Chef winner, Thomasina Miers always delivers; on atmosphere, on food, on service and on price. Be prepared for a wait as no booking is permitted but Mexican drinks and dips help pass the time. Market food is the way to go.

Visited May 2013
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hitchin
Contributor
19 reviews 19 reviews
17 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
“An experience worth trying”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 19, 2013 via mobile

Amazing food. The street food is a great idea and every dish we tried was full of flavour. Didn't all taste the same as can be the case with Mexican food in other restaurants. Highly recommended. Only downside is you can't book a table

  • Visited May 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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