Tuesday 30 December 2008

Wahaca, White City


Highly enjoyable lunch with daughter. I don't really care about the authenticity of this place I thoroughly enjoy the food here.

Guacamole and Tortilla Chips

Pork Pibil Tacos

Citrus Fizz

Char-grilled steak Burrito plus extra addition of Baja Cheese

Devon Crab Taquitos

Churros y chocolate

The service, although erratic, was friendly and genuine. Three cheers for Wahaca!


A place that bloggers detest, but not me!
Wonderful Wahaca!

There’s an unhealthy perversion in myself that wishes to bring a certain type of restaurant down by penning a dire review. There is a kind of restaurant that has been overhyped beyond belief, more often than not for the wrong reasons. Wahaca is one such outfit, it demanded an immediate appraisal from yours truly.

After two disappointing experiences at both Benito's Hat and Chilango, I’d all
but given up on the Mexican taquería way of eating in London. Wahaca thrives on feeding people quickly, affordably and with well-sourced ingredients; a sound approach, but not one that’s enough to convince me. Besides the idea of basement dining and the constant queues at the Covent Garden branch were off-putting enough, period.

Westfield Centre is a place I don’t go gaga over (I’m no shopper you see) but the draw of the fifty or so eateries offering dishes from duck burgers to beef noodle soups is enough to validate any visit. Wahaca is where I had my first Westfield meal, the default came about as they had a table available for my solo supper that involved no arduous queuing.

Wahaca described their site on The Southern Terrace as beautiful, I beg to differ as this sort of architecture adopts a very dated look in no time.
The ambience is not too unlike the restaurant that’s attached to a random airport, its raison d'être being purely to kill time. The service I’m glad to say didn’t mimic the synthetically overbearing one found at Covent Garden as reported by other bloggers. Despite the smiles and cutely looks from the waitresses, the efficiency is woeful (doubly so considering that Wahaca has been opened here for two months).

A quick pointer before I talk about the food, this sort of cuisine demands that you turn up with a group of friends so that the huge varie
ty of dishes offered on the menu can be shared, savoured, tried and enjoyed.

The first order of chicken Taquitos turned up pretty quickly (my word, they don’t mince what they say about feeding people quickly!)-

Of what little chicken there were in the tortillas, they were extremely tender and gorgeous, obviously aided by the wonderful combination of the Lancashire cheese and tomato salsa filling.

The second street dish that followed soon after was the tacos filled with pork-

This Yucatecan recipe was an absolute triumph; subtly spicy, the delicious pork shreds were more ‘pulled’ than the inferior one found at Bodean’s.

Alas the pudding of Churros y Chocolate was less successful- the doughnuts, although cooked to order were greasy and didn’t taste of much; likewise the accompanying chocolate lacked kick and intensity.

Judging by the wonderful Tacos and Taquitos I had this evening, I can’t wait to try out the Quesadillas, Tostadas, Enchiladas and the mother of them all, the Burrito. I’ve taken my hat off to a few food heroes this year, of what’s left of 2008 I would more than gladly take my sombrero off to Thomasina Miers. Thank you.

1074 Westfield Shopping Centre,
Ariel Way,
London W12 7GB



Hollow Legs said...

You can see in your picture above the waitress doing my pet hate - crouching down next to the tables so that have have to talk down to them. For some reason it makes me rather uncomfortable.

sue said...

I agree about the churros - had them at the Covent Garden branch and they were way too greasy and tasteless.

bellaphon said...

Lizzie- I'm out like a shot as soon as 'Hiiiiiii Guys!!!' is uttered.

Sue- In any case like Chinese restaurants, Wahaca is a bit thin on puddings, the only other choices were sorbets or ice creams.

Anonymous said...

I was there just before New Year's (thought I'd give them another shot). Everything was bland, with a bit of heat. Never going back. Nothing wrong with our waitress this time but the host sat us down after a stupidly long wait while we stared at many empty tables...

bellaphon said...

Su-Lin- Made to stare at empty tables is taking the proverbial, I can see now see that the opinions regarding the Wahaca chain as dissentious to say the least. Incidentally I did withhold my visit as I was originally put off by your Covent Garden experience.

Dazy said...

It has good size portions. We go dine-in there often since it is close to our home, you get filled up and usually have leftovers to take home.

bellaphon said...

Dazy- Thanks for stopping and thank you for reminding me to go back there.

Gastro1 said...

I have not tried the Chocolate con Churros always go for them in Spain either as a late breakfast or late afternoon - love em !

bellaphon said...

Hey Gastro1- to be honest the dessert list at Wacks is purely perfunctory; ice creams, sorbets, more ice creams and the Spanish doughnuts. The churros here is average at best. The best churros I've had was 15 years ago at Chocolatería San Ginés in Madrid.

Anonymous said...

Much better churros at the stall outside Protobello Electric cinema on Saturdays.