Win lunch for 4 at your local Wahaca

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Win lunch for 4 at your local Wahaca

With our new winter menu hitting the grills today, we’re looking for a gang of our lunchtime locals to come and try out the new dishes (for free). Select your nearest lunchtime Wahaca from the list below and enter your email address and we’ll pick one winner for each restaurant to come in for a tasting.

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BluewaterCanary WharfCharlotte StreetCovent GardenIslingtonSohoSouthbankSt. Paul’sStratfordWaterlooWhite City

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For a run down of all of the new dishes that we’ll be cooking up this winter, from our new tortilla soup and amazing battered fish tacos, to a Caesar chicken tostada with charred jalepeno mayo, head over to our website.

The rules: We’ll pick one winner at random from all entries received before midnight on October 30th. Each winner will receive a free food and 2 rounds of drinks at their local Wahaca for up to 4 people. Meals will be booked with Wahaca and can be taken any time before 01.03.14 between the hours of 12pm and 4pm. Winners will be notified by email.

Mexico take on The Balkan’s in a Battle of the Brass Bands showdown that'll blow your socks off!

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Mexico take on The Balkan’s in a Battle of the Brass Bands showdown that’ll blow your socks off!

London’s Latin Music Festival, La Linea, is throwing down the musical gauntlet on April 14th with a Battle of the Brass Bands contest at The Barbican Centre set to leave audiences wowed. The musical dual will see Mexico’s super heavyweight trumpeting troop (in the form of Banda Estrellas de Sinaloa de Germán Lizárraga) take on Serbia’s Boban & Marko Markovic Orkestar, in a melodic clash of epic proportions.

We’re reliably informed that Banda Estrellas de Sinaloa already have this battle well and truly sewn up for Mexico, due in no small part to their leader Germán Lizárraga’s impressive musical career, spanning 60 years of brass blowing. But your support is always welcome, so we’re doing our bit to get your there by giving you the chance to WIN a pair of tickets and a meal for 2 at Wahaca, as well as Mexican supporters scarves for two runners up.
To be in with a chance of winning, just email ola@wahaca.co.uk with the answer to the following question.

Which of these instruments would you not traditionally find in a brass band?
A) A Trumpet
B) A Trombone
C) A Violin

The competition closes on Friday 5th April 2013, so get your answers in now and you could be joining the audience for this white-hot-brass-knuckle ride not to be missed. Winners will be selected at random and notified by email.

Any one not lucky enough to win tickets can buy their own and find out a little more about the event, through their website.

This concert is part of the La Linea, the London Latin Music festival and is produced by La Linea (lalineafestival.com) in association with the Barbican (barbican.org.uk). The winning prize includes 2 tickets to attend The Battle of the Brass Bands on Sunday April 14th at 8pm, and a meal for 2 at Wahaca to the value of £60. Entrants email addresses will be added to our marketing database and we may send you fun things to do with Wahaca. You can unsubscribe at any time.

Win a sustainable chauffeur driven date at Wahaca every day of Climate Week

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Win a sustainable chauffeur driven date at Wahaca every day of Climate Week

Climate Week is fast approaching and to celebrate Wahaca being voted sustainable restaurant group of the year for the 2nd year running, we’re giving away a fully sustainable chauffeur driven date night every day from the 4th – 10th March.

The 7 lucky winners and their loved one will be picked up from an address in London by our friends at Climatecars, London’s environmentally friendly car service, and driven to their local Wahaca where we’ll have a table for 2 waiting for you. After dinner, a car will whisk you back home to bask in the sustainable glory with a belly full of award winning Mexican deliciousness.

The winners will be announced each day of Climate Week through our facebook page, so become a fan and keep your eyes peeled.

To enter the competition just complete your details below and we’ll put you in our big sustainable Mexican hat, and draw our 7 winners at random throughout Climate Week.

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Winners can be safe in the knowledge that Climatecars’ fleet is made up entirely of environmentally friendly hybrid cars which run on a combination of petrol and electricity resulting in significantly reduced emissions.

Climate Week is a supercharged national occasion that offers an annual renewal of our ambition and confidence to combat climate change. It is for everyone wanting to do their bit to protect our planet and create a secure future. You can check their website for all kinds of events going on around the country and see how you can get involved.

Buena Suerte!

 

The T’s and C’s: The competition is open to anyone who can be picked up and dropped off at a London postcode and is sadly not valid at Wahaca Bluewater, but we do still love you. Journeys must be to and from London postcodes and must be A to B journeys, with no extra stops. Wahaca will pick up the bill for your food, soft drinks and the first 2 rounds of boozy drinks. By entering you agree to receive informative and cheerful emails from Wahaca, you can unsubscribe at any time. Romance is not 100% necessary, but hey, a little love goes a long way, don’t ya think?p>

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Chilli growing photos: Our Competition winners

This June will see the launch of our new cook book Wahaca, Mexican food at home, which will talk you through some of our favourite recipes from the past 5 years in the restaurant. And as you may know, we’ve saved a page in amongst these delicious recipes for our most green fingered customers to show off their growing skills.

We had a huge number of entries in our competition (including from far flung outposts of Eastern Europe) and we’ve now chosen our winners, who will all have their picture featured and will receive a copy of the book to treasure when it has been printed. So congrats to Heather Rainbow, Laura Halvey, Rosie Martin, Nick Owers, Michael Anton, Jose-Paolo Roldan, Alistair ban Ryne, Alex Plim and Anna-Lucy Terry. You’re all winners and we’d recommend the book as a early Christmas present for all of your friends. Please send us an email to ola@wahaca.co.uk with your address so we can post a book out to you when they’re printed.

For all of those people who sent in photos that haven’t been chosen, we’re sorry that we couldn’t include you all, but please do keep up the chilli growing and don’t forget to check out our chilli expert’s series of videos for tips to help you along the way. One person who deserves a special mention is Sarah Walker, who sent in the photo below. It’s the first time we’ve seen chillies growing like this. Is that some kind of cross breed? We’ll have to get some seeds from your next harvest.

A new variety of chilli plant?

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Mexican nights out don’t get much better. Win tickets to see Miss Bala and a meal for 2 at Wahaca

This weekend sees the opening of Miss Bala, Mexico’s official entry for the 2012 Oscars, and yet another film that has got the critics going absolutely crazy form Mexican cinema. And because we love you all very much, we want to send you to see it and then invite you along for a meal round at ours afterwards.

Miss Bala tells the true story of Laura, a young woman from Baja California who dreams of becoming a beauty queen but instead finds herself delivered into the hands of a violent gang of Mexican drug smugglers. Combining explosive bursts of brutal action with mesmeric sequences of balletic beauty and searingly vivid imagery, Miss Bala has taken worldwide festival audiences by storm.

We’ve teamed up with the film’s UK promoters and have 5 pairs of tickets to go and watch it at the Odeon on Panton Street (just off Leicester Square) during its opening week, and they’re ripe for the winning. If that’s not enough, each winner gets a £50 Wahaca cheque to come for a meal too. Not a bad night out at all. To be in with a chance of winning, all you have to do is email us at ola@wahaca.co.uk with the answer to this rather tricky question:

Which Mexican state is the film set in?

We’ll be picking our 5 winners at random on Friday 28th October, so get your entries in ASAP. The 5 winners will receive a pair of tickets to be used at the Odeon on Panton Street before the 4th November and a £50 Wahaca cheque to spend on a meal for 2 at any of our restaurants.

¡Buena Suerte!

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The chilli growing contest heats up!

Earlier in the chilli growing season, you might have seen our article introducing the chilli growing competition that’s going on in a quiet little muse in Maida Vale. Well things have been sprouting all over the place down there and we’re pleased to bring you their latest update on how things are heating up (Get it?) between Mydestination.com’s Team Inferno and the Vindaloo Vixen chilli growing nuts:

Who’d have known chilli growing could be so exciting? Mere hours after the first instalment of the MyDestination.com chilli war, the competition’s first keen shoot was seen poking through Team Inferno soil, sending the boys into a state of delirium. Having thought this moment would take at least six weeks to arrive, the euphoria was understandable. The fact the shoot looked more like a weed than a sturdy chilli stem was ignored.

In a bid to claw back their disadvantage, the Vindaloo Vixens took their pots into hiding, only to return them to the office shelf a few days later sporting a worrying amount of mould around the cardboard seed sticks. The situation looked bleak. Against these odds, however, and with a little inspiration from Team Inferno’s techniques, the girls’ pots soon featured an infantile shoot too, and then another, and another, until all four pots were awash with greenery, and the MyDestination office was a happy place once again.

But the harmony was short-lived.

On the 5th of April at approximately 10:32hrs, Team Inferno dedicate Will reported a crime on the street, where Captain Plimento had placed his team’s chillies in a bid to catch some direct sunlight. Some jobs-worth had taken a swing at the defenceless pots, leaving pot number four soilless and pot number three shaken. The shoots didn’t catch sight of the culprit before he fled, and neither did Will.

‘Scandal!’ they cried. It was a blatant act of sabotage; salvaged from the wreckage was a long, straggly hair and an elastic hair bobble. The Vixens vehemently deny any wrongdoing, and have pointed a well-manicured finger towards the street’s dogs. The investigation is on-going.

Courageously, Team Inferno overcame their shock by picking the traumatised baby shoots from the destruction and re-planting them in fresh soil. With a significant amount of TLC and cuddles over the ensuing days, the roots re-established themselves, and soon all the plants began sprouting leaves at a herculean rate.

It was around this time that Captain Plimento took a holiday, for the stress of the chilli competition had taken significant toll upon him. On his return he learnt that Stefan, the office’s token German, had become particularly attached to the chillis, talking to them daily about current affairs and sports news, and forcibly ensuring they were kept well watered. It was a powerful display of paternal instinct, as if he had incubated the seedlings personally in his very own womb.

The Vindaloo Vixens claimed further foul play during this period: a single upturned stalk that smacked of revenge. No further accusations have been made, however, and the incident is being viewed by the majority as recompense for the insensitive manner in which the Vixens reacted to Team Inferno’s previous misfortune.

The chilli plants have since faced a tough couple of weeks, suffering from abject neglect over the bank holiday weekends which has left them looking pathetically wilted and weak, and demanding of them another fight for life that belies their nonconfrontational nature. It’s difficult to imagine there ever having been a chilli plant which has gone through quite as much undeserved trauma as these plucky survivors….

Tune in next time, or follow the live updates on twitter by searching for #MDIChiliOff to hear if the growing competition turns fruitful.

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It’s war! The chilli growing contest kicks off

A few weeks ago we spotted a tweet by @AnnaLucyT announcing that they were going to hold a chilli growing war in their office. Following the trends of the day, we thought it was only right to step in, and we agreed to arm them with all the chilli growing ammunition they required. In return we asked the avid chilli growers over at the offices of MyDestinationInfo.com to share their stories and photos with us so that we could all keep abreast of their growing challenge.

Here are our team captains – Anna Lucy Terry (Or AnnaBell Pepper) of the “Vindaloo Vixens” and Alex Plim (Or Captain Plimiento) of “Team Inferno”.

You can follow their updates live on twitter by checking out #MDIChiliOff, but here’s their first account of what’s going down in a sunny office in Maida Vale:

The first few days of the MyDestinationInfo.com Chilli Competition have seen a convivial office full of goodwill and friendships descend into near-anarchy, as whispers of underhand tactics, jealously and conspiratorial plots have circulated the desks.

Captain AnnaBell Pepper’s “Vindaloo Vixens” took a fairly indifferent approach to the potting process, relying upon rival Captain Plimento to prepare each tub for them so that they didn’t have to get their nails dirty. Captain BellPepper then decided to lavishly drench her tubs in water from a plastic beaker, while Team Inferno used a spray bottle from a pound shop to moisten their soil (having understood this was the right thing to do from their Wahaca blog research.)

It was the girls who then took the initiative and led the planting process, deciding on a stick formation (one seed in each corner and one in the centre) that the boys promptly copied, before slyly changing one of their pots to a circular pattern, hoping that this variance might place them ahead in the long run.

Both teams then decided to cover their pots in cling film – a tip that the Vindaloo Vixens had heard and failed to keep quiet – in an attempt to create miniature greenhouses that encourage seed germination. Captain Plimento went one step further deciding to source a couple of shower caps from his personal collection which he placed over his pots and secured with elastic bands to keep them airtight.

The Vindaloo Vixens keep their chilli pots on the office windowsill, while Team Inferno have made the first truly bold move of the competition by keeping their plants perched on an electric heater (which is completely safe, we hope…). They have since consulted a specialist chilli guru who has scared the team by suggesting this could bake the chilli seeds (presumably a bad thing.) Only time will tell whether this decision is inspired or tragically misguided.

At this stage it is impossible to tell which team is edging the lead. Captain Plimento nearly dropped one of his pots while in transit today, which he is trying to keep quiet in case it has had a malign effect on his team’s chillies. He feels pretty bad about this. Otherwise, there is little difference between the two teams; each pot just looks like a mound of dirt.

Keep your eyes peeled for more on this growing saga as the summer progresses. If you are growing some of our chilli seeds, please do post your pictures to our facebook page and bask in the glory of our collective adoration towards your green fingered exploits. Our favourites could win free meals at Wahaca. If you want to give some words of encouragement, or advice to this plucky group of chilli growers, please feel free to leave a comment below.

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Gabriel Orozco at The Tate Modern

Win one of 5 pairs of tickets to Gabriel Orozco’s critically acclaimed Tate Modern exhibition.

For those of you who’ve been following our blog and diligently reading ‘Ola London, it will come as no surprise that we’re pretty keen on our art, and particularly the amazing work that is being produced by Mexican artists in recent years.

The Tate Modern is currently hosting an exhibition by one of our all-time favourite Mexican artists – Gabriel Orozco. His work is described as creative, playful and inventive, often introducing beautiful geometric symmetry into everyday objects. You can check what happened when Tommi met up with him in Wahaca and picked his brains about Mexican food, culture and generally being a world renowned artist here.

To celebrate the largest retrospective of his work being exhibited here in London, the Tate Modern have kindly donated 5 pairs of tickets for us to share with you, the lovely readers of our blog.

How to enter: We don’t just want to give these tickets to anyone though, it’s our most arty fans we’re looking for, so email us an arty photo of you in Wahaca and we’ll choose our favourite on Friday 11th March. If you want to share your artiness with the rest of the gang, then you can also post your photos up onto our facebook wall for all to admire.

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Win a trip to the Guelaguetza festival in Mexico!

We’re hugely excited to say that we have 2 tickets up for grabs for 1 lucky reader and a friend to travel to Mexico as our roving reporter at the Guelaguetza festival in Oaxaca, Mexico this July.

Guelaguetza is one of Mexico’s biggest cultural festivals, and is a real feast for the senses. This annual celebration includes fantastic costumed parades, bands, amazing food markets and traditional dancing and we’re looking for our most eloquent reader to tell us all what’s it’s like to get in amongst the sights, sounds and smells of this incredibly vibrant celebration of all things Oaxacan.

To be in with a chance of winning, simply email Ola@wahaca.co.uk and tell us, in no more than 500 words about your best festival experience. The closing date for entries is the 31st May.

It could be the tale of your last trip to a literary fair, or how you found yourself in a field in Suffolk, or the amazing flavours you discovered at a local food festival. You’ll need to be pretty handy with a pen though as the winners’ Guelaguetza report will be featured in the next winter edition of our newspaper ‘Ola London for us all to ogle at.

We’re really excited to be able to offer such a brilliant prize and are hugely grateful to the amazing people at the Mexican Tourist Board, British Airways, The Oaxacan Tourist Board and Hostal de la Noria for making this trip a possibility.

So what are you waiting for? Get your pens out and get writing…

Terms and Conditions

This competition is open to all persons resident in the UK or Republic of Ireland, aged 18 Years or over except employees of the promoter and its subsidiaries, anyone professionally connected with this prize draw and immediate family members of any of the above persons.  BA reserves the right to verify the eligibility of Eligible Participants.  By taking part in this promotion, Eligible Participants confirm that they accept the terms and conditions set out below.

Entries must be submitted via email to Ola@wahaca.co.uk no later than May 31st and must be no longer than 500 words.

The prize: Two flights with British Airways travelling World Traveller class return from London Heathrow to Mexico City and connecting flights to Oaxaca, Double occupancy accommodation in Hostal de la Noria, Oaxaca, Airport to hotel transfers in Oaxaca and entrance for two to the Guelaguetza celebrations.

Flights depart from London Heathrow on 18th July and return to London on 25th July.

The prize is not transferable and no cash or credit alternatives will be offered.  The prize-winner will be responsible for all transfers to and from the airports, insurance, visa if necessary and spending money.

BA reserves the right to provide a substitute prize of similar value should the specified prize become unavailable for any reasons beyond its reasonable control. 

BA reserves the right to cancel or amend without notice these terms and any tickets or vouchers issued free in the event of major catastrophe, war, earthquake or any actual, anticipated or alleged breach of any applicable law or regulation or any other circumstances beyond the reasonable control of BA.

This prize draw is governed by English law and is subject to the exclusive jurisdiction of the English Courts.

The winner will be selected by Thomasina Miers and Mark Selby on the basis of style, creativity and relevance by May 1st and the winner will be notified by email soon after. The winner has 10 working days to respond to the notification. In the event that no contact has been made within this time the promoter reserves the right to award the prize to a second favourite entry.

The winner must agree to submit a short report of around 500 words about the trip, which will be published in the ‘Ola Wahaca newspaper and on our blog. The report must be submitted no later than 10 days after returning from the trip.

The judges’ decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into.

The promoter of two prize tickets is British Airways plc (BA), Waterside, PO Box 365, Harmondsworth, UB7 0GB.  Registered Number  1777777 England.