A powerful street-art movement has been brewing in the streets of Mexico since 2006, and with the local social and political issues, it has become a way for young people to express their anger and frustrations through art.
Lapiztola collective in their early years initially took over friend’s walls to create something interesting and colourful, but later on, they realized that they could use those walls to communicate with others.
As part of a series of events for the Global Justice campaign, Lapiztola members Rosario and Roberto, were invited to bring original works to London that give an insight into the reality Mexico’s young people are trying to change.
We’re over the moon to pick up The Sustainable Restaurant Association’s Innovation award for championing the sustainability of Enotomophagy, or insect eating, at today’s SRA Awards. It’s great news for us and the planet as more of us join the 80% of the world’s population who already consider eating insects as a normal part of their diet and help to reduce the pressure on more traditional meat supplies.
If you’re thinking the idea of eating a grasshopper sounds a bit gross, honestly we can’t blame you, generally insects aren’t something that are a normal part of our diets in The UK. But take a moment to ponder why we think of them so differently to prawns, shrimps or lobster which are all arthropods and seriously tasty.
If you haven’t tried them already, we’re currently serving a few dishes using the hugely popular Mexican ingredient, chapulines, or grasshoppers, so come down and tuck into our Chapulines Fundido from our Street food specials menu, or our Chorizo and Chapulines Memela exclusively available on our Covent Garden Oaxacan Regional Specials Menu.
Chapulines are particularly popular in the Oaxaca region, from where we took our name, and earlier this month, Tommi and Oaxacan super-chef, Alejandro Ruiz got busy in the kitchen cooking up a chorizo and chapulines memela for the more adventurous of you to try recreating at home. Here’s how…
Please do continue to vote on twitter to let us know what you think of the chapulines, with either #ChapulinYES or #ChapuliNO depending on which way you swing.
The good news is, it’s a big #ChapulinYES from the SRA.
As part ofImagine Children’s Festival at Southbank this half term, “Piñatas London” is taking over our bar this Wednesday lunchtime (18th of Feb 12-2pm), to run a super-arty hands on FREE workshop for children of all ages.
Little ones will be able to decorate their very own piñata to take home, while adults can enjoy some delicious street food and Southbank Specials.
Piñatas London was founded in 2011, when Phillip Mursell and Iona Ascherson met at university. Phillip had long been involved in his family businessMexicolore, an award winning education resource dedicated to bringing Aztec culture and history to life in schools. They are experts in making traditional and funky, bespoke piñatas working at schools throughout London. This promises to be a very special workshop.
After the huge excitement of cooking with one of Mexico’s finest and most renowned chefs, Alejandro Ruiz on Tuesday evening, our original Covent Garden restaurant will be offering an exclusive menu, dedicated to his home region, and the state that gave us our name, Oaxaca.
The menu will be available for 8 weeks only from Wednesday evening and has been designed by Tommi and our development team to highlight the finest ingredients from the region, showcasing how lip-smackingly sumptuous eating in Southern Mexico can really get.
Here’s what’s on offer…
The dishes are available alongside your favourites from the Wahaca menu, so feel free to order 1 or more, to share or be selfish with.
The menu uses traditional salsas, moles and cooking methods that you’ll find across the Oaxaca state including venison filletwith an incredibly rich spiced fruit sauce from the Isthmus de Tehuantepec region and our own home made dark Oaxacan molealongside the meltingly tender beef short rib.
Fans of our recent campaign to get the sustainable practice of entomophagy (that’s insect eating) into British diets can give our Chorizo and Chapulines memelaa try, and see if the nuttiness of crumbled grasshoppers gets you voting #ChapulinYES or #ChapuliNO. If you’re able to resist Tommi’s Chocolate browniewith burnt salted Mezcal carameland clotted cream, you’re stronger willed than we are, and to be completely honest, you’re probably doing something wrong. It’s going to blow your mind.
We’d love to hear what you think about our interpretation of dishes from the Oaxaca state, so please tweet us your thoughts using #CulinaryTrip.
To find out where we’ll be taking you next on our mission around Mexico’s top foodie regions and to hear the latest on our supper club series, keep your eyes peeled on the blog.
Our Mexican Spoon Amnesty is in full swing this January, offering free tacos and forgiveness to anyone who returns one of the 4,000 spoons that have gone missing from our restaurants in the last year. Thanks to everyone who has done the right thing and returned our ladles to their loved ones. We hope you’re enjoying the clear conscience and have had a stern word with yourself. Good on you.
Of course we know there are a whole host of you who are honest to the coreand have never been even a little bit tempted to steal our cutlery. YOU GUYS ARE AWESOME. And over the last 2 weeks we can see you’ve been putting your law-abiding creativity to good work, creating illustrated Soup-erheros as part of our #SpoonCartoon competition. Together they’re creating an army of spoon shaped warriors all ready to join the fight against cutlery crime.
Here’s a line-up of some of our favourite #SpoonCartoons from over the past 2 weeks and click the link to see more incredible entries on twitter.
And our pick of the spoons for now is this piece of illustrative genius from Lucy, (Aged 3, plus 20). With Spidey on our sides, surely we can’t lose this fight. Definitely worth a meal for four. We’ll be in touch.
To join in the fun, and be in with a chance to win a meal for 4, drop into Wahaca (Ahhem…. This might be a great opportunity to also bring that spoon of ours back), grab some pencils and get sketching on our #SpoonCartoon postcards. We’ll be picking more favourites and more winners soon.
Together we’ll fight this terrible epidemic. One spoon at a time.
During the year, Mexico and Great Britain will be hosting a huge programme of events in the arts and many other disciplines like innovation, tourism and education, showcasing the best both countries have to offer.
The variety of ingredients and dishes, originating and being served up in Mexico often comes as a surprise, but the diversity is vast, meaning there’s always something new and mouthwatering to discover. To have a peek at the variety of cuisines found across Mexico, and to give you a taste of what’s coming, take a look a this video:
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. As part of the fun, our van will also take to the roads across the UK, bringing the wonders of Mexican street food to new places near you, so keep an eye on Twitter for where we’ll be parked up next.
First announcements include the Ballet Folclorico de Amalia Hernandez: Mexico’s National Ballet Company’s week long residency at the London Coliseum, The Mexican Morrissey Project UK tour and our very own Day of the Dead Festival, the biggest seen in this country, set to captivate thousands.
To make sure you don’t miss a thing, sign up to our database here.
Wow. Looks like you guys are big fans of the Oaxaca region and its foodie specialities – Ticket for Tommi and Alejandro Ruiz’s Oaxacan supper club sold out in less than 3 hours. But fear not, there’s still a chance for you to get a taste of the action and try dishes inspired by this very special evening.
Following the amazing demand for tickets, we’ve devised a brand new Regional Oaxacan Specials menu inspired by Alejandro’s cooking and his home region, which will be exclusively available at Wahaca Covent Garden from 11th February for 8 weeks only.
The Regional Oaxacan Specials menu brings a new and exciting level of dishes to our original Covent Garden home, aiming to push our creativity and twist our cooking to give a taste of a more indulgent Mexican cuisine to our Covent Garden customers.
Sitting right alongside our well-loved main menu, the Oaxacan specials will be available until April, when they will make way for a new set of specials inspired by Mexico City’s most highly awarded chef, Enrique Olvera, who will be flying over to cook with Tommi in Covent Garden for the second in our Supper Club series as our Culinary trip through Mexico continues.
Following the announcement of our 2015 Mexican super-chef supper club series, tickets are now on sale for our first event, on 10th February, when Tommi and world renowned Mexican chef, Alejandro Ruiz will be cooking up a four course feast of Oaxacan delicacies, in our original Covent Garden home. With only 100 seats available on a first come, first served basis, anyone with a real interest in Mexico and Mexican cooking should grab their tickets, pronto.
Alejandro’s menu, inspired by his home town and region of Oaxaca will take diners on a 4 course culinary tour of the area, with highlights including Hoja santa taquitos with Oaxacan cheese, Chapulines and fresh salsas; and Suckling pig with guiso tehuano.
In keeping with the regional menu, we’ll be creating a special Mezcal cocktail for the night and will be on hand to serve up a range of Mezcals paired with the dishes Alejandro is serving. Tickets for this mind-bendingly tasty four course meal are £40 per person, (incl. service), and are available to buy through our supper club partner, Grub Club’s page now. So what are you waiting for? See you down there.
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 Tommiin 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 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 ticketswill 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 firstname.lastname@example.org (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 Pujolis currently voted the 20th best in the world, to cook with Tommi for 1 night only in April. Later in the summer, Roberto Soliswill 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.
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.
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?
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 Amnestythis 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.