Wahaca (Covent Garden) and Women on the verge of a nervous breakdown

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I’ve probably been to Wahaca more than any other place in London but I suddenly realised the other day that I’ve never actually written about it…until now!
I’m pretty sure most of you will have been to Wahaca at some point, and if you haven’t then why not?! It’s easy, tasty, quick Mexican food. Last week I was meeting my friend Izzy for supper before the theatre and we only had about an hour between finishing work and the play starting so it was the perfect place to go. I’ll tell you more about Wahaca and the food in a minute but I have to mention the play we went to see – Women on the verge of a nervous breakdown. It was fantastic!! A couple of people had mentioned it to me as the sort of thing I’d like and they were spot on. Tamsin Greig leads a fantastic cast in what is a musical treat (especially as I had no idea it was a musical)! In short, it’s set in Madrid at the end of the 1980s and it follows the interwoven lives of various women, their trials and tribulations, often caused by men, and their subsequent nervous breakdowns. I have always thought Tamsin Greig was pretty great but I had no idea she was such a good singer, and the songs were so funny too. It’s lighthearted, unpretentious and really funny and I would highly recommend it! Tickets start from about £20 so it’s only a bit more expensive than the cinema and I guarantee that you will enjoy it!

Anyway, I don’t see myself as much of a theatre critic so back to the food! But before the food come the drinks. Wahaca do pretty good cocktails, and the mojito is really good, as are their flavoured mojitos – I rate the hibiscus one very highly! It’s so refreshing. This time we opted for the special – Blood Orange Margaritas.

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They were ok but more like a fruit punch as the blood orange wasn’t as powerful as we’d hoped, and Izzy had just come back from Florence where she said she’d had some fantastic blood oranges so I think they were a slight let down. But still very drinkable!!
When it comes to the food they do ‘street food’ which is a selection of small plates, and also larger plates which are burritos, salads etc. Despite having been to Wahaca over ten times I’ve never had any of the big plates as the small plates are so good!! I’ve tried pretty much all of them and it’s always difficult to know what to choose. On this occasion we went for a broad selection. They recommend 2-3 things per person and I’d agree, we usually go for two plates and then one side for each person and that tends to be enough. It makes for a pretty great table of food.

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Steak, cheese and salsa tostadas.

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Mini soft tortillas with tomato salsa, tender steak and melted cheese. Mouthfuls of deliciousness.

Sweet potato and feta taquitos.

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Corn tortillas stuffed with sweet potato and then deep fried, then served with crumbled feta, salsa and lettuce. Deep fried doesn’t sound too appealing but they are – trust me! Crispy on the outside and soft in the middle with the refreshing salad on top means these are another winner!

Chipotle chicken quesadillas.

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If you like cheese then these are for you! Chicken covered in a slightly spicy chipotle sauce with melted cheese in the softest tortilla. It is so good. The other quesadilla which I rate very highly is the chorizo and potato one, you just can’t go wrong with chorizo, and when combined with cheese…mmmmm.

Frijoles

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Slow cooked black beans with cheese and sour cream…another winner. They are so warming and filling, I really love them and could eat bowls of the stuff.

Sweet potato.

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Basically healthy chips… Cooked in a moreish seasoning they’re crispy on the outside and then fluffy in the middle.

All of the food above is always on the menu, but they have also started doing a specials menu. Last time I went I had crickets covered in cheese. It smelt slightly funny but was just melted cheese with an added crunch! The specials menu always had weird and wonderful things on it, and this time was no exception!

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We opted for the Chorizo and Chapulines Memela.

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Chapulines are grasshoppers…! It was a blue corn ‘slipper’ topped with grasshoppers, chorizo and cheese. I have no idea what a slipper is (other than the conventional slipper that goes on your foot) but it was like a crispy pizza base. It was a strange dish and the grasshoppers just added an extra crunch, but I’m slowly adding to the list of bugs I’ve eaten, and I guess that they are packed with protein!

Having munched our way through a fair chunk of the menu it was time to go and see the play. In case you hadn’t guessed by now, I cannot rate Wahaca highly enough, the food is quick, so tasty and cheap. The street food plates range from about £3-6 with most of them being £3 or £4, and cocktails are about £6 which is pretty good for central London. The only catch is that there are always queues, but there is often a bar where you can grab a drink and some nachos while you wait. The branch in Soho has a huge bar downstairs so that’s a good one to try. My biggest suggestion is to go for the street food, you can get a burrito anywhere and whilst I’m sure the ones at Wahaca are great, the sharing plates are so good you’d be crazy not to get a selection of them. Happy eating!!

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