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Mexico’s top chefs take Wahaca Covent Garden on a culinary road-trip

We’re hugely excited to announce that throughout 2015, we’ll be inviting some of Mexico’s most gifted and inspirational chefs over to London to cook with Tommi in our original Covent Garden home in a series of 1-night-only, blow-your-mind, supper clubs. The yearlong series will take you on a culinary road-trip, of our favourite regions of Mexico, from the mountains to the coast, taking in food from the likes of Enrique Olvera whose restaurant currently features in the top 20 in the world, and lifelong friends who’ve helped and inspired us along the way.

Kicking things off at the beginning of February with an exclusive night of Oaxacan dishes, Tommi will be joining forces with Alejandro Ruiz, head chef of the critically acclaimed Casa Oaxaca, voted the 34th best restaurant in the whole of Latin America and one of our favourite places to eat in the entire world.

Alejandro Ruiz

Alejandro is famed across the globe for his seasonal dishes incorporating local delicacies from Oaxaca State such as crickets, Yerba Santa, Huitlacoche and chillies stuffed with ceviches or slow-braised meats. To have such a world renowned chef from the state that initially inspired us is a dream come true for everyone at Wahaca and will be sure to prove a night not to be missed for any fans of Mexican food.

Only 100 tickets will be available for Alejandro and Tommi’s supper club and will be put on sale via wahaca.co.uk  in the coming weeks at £40 per person.  If you’d like to pre-register your interest drop an email to ola@wahaca.co.uk (Pop Alejandro Ruiz in the subject line), so you can be first to hear about how to get your seat in Wahaca Covent Garden for this ultimate celebration of Oaxacan cuisine.

Following on from Alejandro’s visit, our Covent Garden kitchens will be continuing the road-trip, welcoming Mexico City’s most acclaimed super chef Enrique Olvera, whose restaurant Pujol is currently voted the 20th best in the world, to cook with Tommi for 1 night only in April. Later in the summer, Roberto Solis will be taking the helm for a night taking inspiration from his restaurant Nectar, and stints working at the Fat Duck and Noma with Rene Redzepi.

For any unable to attend Alejandro and Tommi’s supper club, the following day we will be launching the first in a series of regional specials menus, running exclusively at Wahaca Covent Garden for 8 weeks to give you a taste of what the incredibly diverse Oaxacan region has to offer. Taking Alejandro’s menu and the Oaxaca region as its inspiration, expect to see dishes such as slow braised, mole glazed beef short rib and Chile Relleno. Think of it as an experiment in something a little extra special for our Covent Garden customers, taking us back to where it all began.

Where it all began, back in Wahaca Covent Garden
Where it all began, back in Wahaca Covent Garden

2015 is a particularly special year for us, as it’s been designated The Year of Mexico in the UK and the UK in Mexico by our countries’ respective Governments; a pairing up in celebration of the diversity, talent and cultural heritage of the two nations. As well as our supper club nights, we’ll be collaborating with the Mexican Embassy throughout the year on events that showcase the fun, vibrant culture of Mexico, so watch out for more excitement throughout the year. To hear about everything we’re up to, sign up to our database here.

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Our Annual spoon amnesty returns this January

It’s a tragic fact that every year more than 4,000 of our spoons go missing from our restaurants. Sure, they’re irresistibly bright and some say ergonomically perfect. True, there’s no finer ladle for your last mouthful, but please, PLEASE can we have them back?

Look just like the one you borrowed from us? It's time to come clean. Our forgiveness is unlimited.
Look just like the one in your cutlery drawer? It’s time to come clean.         Fear not, Our forgiveness is unlimited.

We remain convinced that the good customers of Wahaca wouldn’t pocket anything underhandedly, and reassure ourselves at every stock-count, that most of our spoons are simply being borrowed. Which is why we’re giving you another chance to seek absolution, by joining the Mexican Spoon Amnesty this January.

To do your bit, just return our spoons to your waiter at the beginning of your meal and we’ll reward you handsomely. Not just with a sense of forgiveness and gratitude in equal measure but with a free plate of tacos.

For those saints amongst you, (content with our gift of free chilli seeds), who’ve resisted the chance to take an extra bit of Wahaca home with you, good on you. Now’s not the time to turn to crime. Watch out for other spoon shaped ways you and your honesty can be rewarded when you drop into Wahaca in January.

So start your year with a clear conscience, gather those spoons together and we’ll see you for tacos and absolution soon.

Mexican grasshoppers hit the Southbank once more

Wahaca Southbank Experiment welcomes back the tasty chapulines.

As the population expands, we are putting critical pressure on global food supplies. Insects are eaten regularly by 80% of the world’s population and many see entomophagy (insect eating) as the only logical answer to a future food crisis.

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In Mexico, and specially in the estate of Oaxaca, grasshoppers are considered a delicacy and after toasting them with garlic, chilli, lime and salt, they are sold in markets and are most commonly eaten with freshly made tortillas and delicious salsas.

At Wahaca Southbank Experiment, we have cooked them with onions, and chillies to create a nutty salsa, smothered with melted cheese served with tortilla chips for you to very simply dig in.

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Ready to give them a try? pop in and tell us what you think of our dish on Twitter using #chapulinYES or #ChapuliNO

 

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Tequila Fest lands in London

If you’re a fan of all things agave, then here’s an event not to miss. On 22nd and 23rd November, The Tequila & Mezcal Fest will be bringing the finest Mexican agave spirits to the Grange Tower Bridge Hotel.

The Tequila & Mezcal Fest has been created by our friend and agave spirit aficionado, Eduardo Gomez, to educate you in the customs of production and consumption and engulf you in the taste, smells, sounds and sights of true Mexico.

Tequila fest

Expect cocktail master classes, with the tequila world’s most knowledgeable, who will be exchanging their wealth of knowledge in the heart of the festival.  Learn how to differentiate between the Blanco, Reposado and Anejo categories sipping your way through blind tastings. Salt and lime will be banned at the door along with novelty sombreros; this will be a sipping only zone.

Tequila & Mezcal Fest is the UK’s first ever and only festival dedicated exclusively to showcasing the best of the agave spirits, so don’t miss it. You can grab tickets at www.tequilafest.co.uk

Wahaca Wimbledon supporting children’s theatre

Joining forces with Polka

We are very excited to support one of few venues in the UK dedicated to producing and presenting work for young audiences since 1979.

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Every year over 90,000 children of all backgrounds come to Polka to see the most exciting shows and take part in creative learning activities. To make this possible, Polka not only relies on ticket sales but also on donations, as they are a registered charity.

From this week, when you purchase tickets from Polka you will receive a Wahaca slip. Simply bring that in when you order from the kids’ menu at the restaurant and we will donate 50p to Polka.

 

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To see what’s on at Polka visit www.polkatheatre.com

 

 

 

Be the first to try the tidiest tacos on The Taff…

Wahaca comes to Cardiff

The Wahaca taco van is taking over the streets of Cardiff this week offering free tacos on The Hayes (outisde Hugo Boss) on Thursday 6th and Friday 7th of November from 12pm to 3pm.

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Drop by, and you will be the first in town to try the tidiest tacos on the Taff for free before opening the doors of our brand new Mexican Street Food restaurant opposite John Lewis on the Hayes, St. David’s Centre, on Thursday 13th of November.

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For more news on the taco van location, check out #tidytacos on Twitter and like us on facebook/wahacacardiff

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Our Day of the Dead festival kicks off

Partying in Brixton, a trip to Mexico and deadly good cocktails.

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Day of the Dead, arguably the world’s most uplifting celebration is the perfect excuse to celebrate life, and remember those who aren’t around to party with us anymore. Here’s what we’ve got planned…

 

Win a trip to Mexico to celebrate Day of the Dead 2015 courtesy of Intrepid Travel

Always on the hunt for more rousing ways to celebrate this amazing festival, we’re sending 2 of you to join the revelry in Mexico City. Enter here.

 

Party like a Mexican at Day of the Dead Futuro in Brixton

Join us for the culmination of this Brixton weekender on Saturday 1st November, where together with Movimientos and Celluloid Circus, we’ll play host to cutting-edge live acts, performers and top DJs, as well as a Wahaca and Altos tequila bar, and free tacos from our brand new taco truck. Find out more and grab your ticket quick from here.

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Get down to your local Wahaca to soak up the fun

With 1 and a half kilometres of hand cut papel picado, 2000 day of the dead tattoos, facepainting, a 2 meter tall skull-studded Macaroon sculpture and even a skull-bombed chilli chocolate or two, Day of the Dead is really coming to life round at ours.

On Saturday 1st, we have free face painters on hand all evening in all of our restaurants, to give anyone who fancies the real Day of the Dead look. Don’t forget your tats…

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And to drink? Reincarnated as a cocktail, our bartenders will be shaking up a brand new Pomegranate Mezcalita that’s a perfectly balanced mix of smoky mezcal, fresh orange and bursting pomegranate seeds, designed especially for the season, it’ll breathe new life into any night out.

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Wahaca’s Day of the Dead 2014 : Traditional papel picado

If you have popped into one of our restaurants recently, you may have noticed our beautiful bunting hanging from the ceiling.

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“Papel picado” or perforated paper, is traditionally used to decorate special occasions all over Mexico and specially for Day of the Dead. Designs are hand cut from thin tissue paper using a guide and chisels. A tradition that goes back to Aztec times.

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This year we commissioned papel picado artisan Sergio, who is based in Metepec-Mexico, to create 1.4 kilometres Wahaca’s Day of the Dead paper for us.

Sergio originally a jazz musician, took on his father’s workshop when he became a father. He applies the creativity and sense of pride in creating highly detailed original designs. He often improvises, working directly onto blank tissue paper using his chisel and hammer like a paintbrush on a canvas.

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Montes&Clark are organising an exhibition of Sergio’s art in London next year to bring this tradition to life as part of the year of Mexico in the UK.

Join us to celebrate Day of the Dead in Brixton

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Join us to celebrate Day of the Dead in Brixton

On November 1st and 2nd, Brixton will play host to a weekend of cross-arts events bringing Day of the Dead to life, and we’ll be on hand to provide the tacos and tequila at the events official after party.

We’ll be helping take over Brixton’s Number Six on Saturday 1st with the help of our pals at Movimientos and Celluloid Circus, where you can party along to live acts, DJs and Day of the Dead performers, and we’ll be helping to keep the crowd rocking with a Wahaca cocktail bar and tacos from our brand new taco van.

You can buy tickets here, which not only gets you into the party, but free tacos too. The profits from our bar will be going to local Brixton community festival, Brixton Come Together.

The weekend long celebrations, part of The BFI’s “Sci-Fi Days of Fear and Wonder”, and supported by Film Hub London, Film London and the BFI’s Film Audience Network, will include everything from vintage sci-fi screenings in Brixton’s Ritzy cinema on Saturday and Sunday, to free children’s costume making, all given a futuristic twist. For tickets and full programme information head to DayOfTheDeadFuturo.com.

Hope to see you down there. logos

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Celebrate New Year’s Eve 2014 at Wahaca Southbank

Our ever popular New Year’s Eve party is making a welcome return to The Wahaca Southbank Experiement, with a live DJ, mind blowing margaritas and a Mexican street food feast, all served up with a Thames side view of the New Year’s fireworks.

New Years Eve

You can kick off this very special evening with a classic margarita, followed by a special menu of Mexican delights including tostadas, tacos, quesadillas and our indulgent churros con chocolate plus a glass of bubbly at midnight to welcome in 2015.

The evening’s soundtrack comes from our very special guest DJ, setting the beat throughout the night.

Along with all this, you’ll also get access to the always spectacular Lord Mayor’s fireworks. It promises to be a night to remember.

Tickets for the night, including a margarita on arrival, street food feast, half a bottle of wine and a glass of prosecco, plus access to the fireworks are £100. For more info and bookings email southbank@wahaca.co.uk or call 020 7928 1876.