gbsteve (gbsteve) wrote,


We had lunch today in the restaurant I mentioned a few entries ago. It's downstairs and looks a bit like Wagamama although the tables are slightly further apart, although perhaps not quite enough for the waiting staff. It seats 140 in various configurations so would be fine for 2 as it would for 12.

The waitress we had was attentive and chatty, but not too much. When we got there around 12 there were only 2 other tables occupied but by 1 the place was three quarters full and the staff were finding it hard to cope. Some of them clearly hadn't much experience of a busy restaurant so some people took a while to be served, but not us.

There are four chefs in the kitchen which is on open view, as is the trend these days. They seemed to be working well togther with no hint of tension or too much rushing. Performance seems to be important in these days of TV chefs.

For drinks, chilledchimp had hibiscus, a cranberry like deep red drink with ice that she enjoyed. I had spring water with mint, lime and a touch of sugar. Very refreshing.

I don't know about the hibiscus and limes but prety much all the ingredients are grown in the UK. The chiles come from Devon including the habanero sauce on the table. I asked about the source of the tomatillos, I haven't been able to get any and although the waitress said she would ask, she got a bit rushed off her feet and forgot.

The menu recommened three dishes each but we were only having lunch so went for two each. chilledchimp had three little soft corn tacos with black bean and spicy pork and I had a chicken quesedilla. As sides we had a green salad with dressing and pumpkin seeds and some black beans with cheese - these were really good, very creamy with perhaps a slight hint of chocolate.

The portions are about the size of a large tapas dish, the ingredients fresh, the dishes well presented and tasty. There was no heat to them but we had a couple of salsas to spice things up. The red was chipotle, hardly any heat but a great smoky flavour. The green was tomatillo with a nice chile zing, very fresh and zesty. For anyone who wanted hotter, the habanero sauce was great, although to be used in moderation except by showoffs and masochists.

We still had a bit of space left so we had one portion of churros with chocolate sauce. We got three small churro loops and a cup of dark, bitter and sweet sauce for dipping. This was fun as well as sweet and crispy.

All in all, a great lunch that came in under £20 for the two of us.

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