Virtually absent from the dining scene five years ago, Mexican cuisine is finally gaining ground in London with a slew of cheerful chains popping up on the high streets – the most notable being US burrito giant Chipotle which has done so well it already has plans to expand, with a second branch soon opening in Marylebone. These fast food joints are fine for a quick lunch fix, but if you want the real deal there isn’t any better place for it in town than Taquería on Westbourne Grove.
The sunny casual eatery offers a wide range of dishes (quesadillas, tostadas, enchiladas etc.), many of which feature their soft corn tortillas made in-house daily; but what they specialise in are tacos, with no less than 15 variations in all. We bypassed the popular Carnitas (slow-cooked pork) on our recent Saturday afternoon visit and went straight for the Camarones al Mojo de Ajo and Puntas Albañil. The former was a trio of mini tortillas topped with creamy avocado mash and garlicky grilled prawns with smoky chipotle and coriander. Delicious small bites – perfect with a squeeze of lime and a spoonful of tomatillo salsa.
The messy Puntas Albañil tacos were even tastier – pan-fried skirt steak with chunks of bacon, tender onions, green chile and sliced avocado on larger corn tortillas. I eagerly wolfed it down, chasing it with a refreshing gulp of Pacifico.
In addition to the tacos we ordered a more substantial plate of Huevos Rancheros Clásicos from the lunch menu. Two soft-yolked fried eggs on crispy tortillas smothered in a tomato, onion and green chile sauce served with homemade Mexican chorizo, refried beans and crumbled cheese. Simply gorgeous.
One bite into the Huevos I contemplated ordering a portion of Mexican chorizo quesadillas (they are SUPER GOOD) but was properly stuffed by the time the plate was wiped clean. Still, that didn’t stop us from finishing off with some cinnamon sugar-dusted churros. The sickly chocolate dip was a bit heavy on the condensed milk for our liking, but the doughnuts themselves were incredible crunchy sticks of sugared goodness.
Aside from the very tasty authentic Mexican nosh served up by a really lovely bunch of staff, Taquería also boasts a well-stocked bar with an extensive range of tequilas and Mexican lagers. And if you’ve not eaten your fill there’s an entire wall of Cool Chile Co ingredients and tortilla presses on sale for you to whip up your own tacos at home.
139-143 Westbourne Grove
London W11 2RS
t. 0207 229 4734