The new Wahaca Edinburgh Restaurant
Edinburgh has seen so many hotly anticipated new restaurants springing up in 2016 and in October Wahacca opened its doors on South St Andrews Street. Wahacca was created by Thomosina Mires of Masterchef fame and it specialises in Mexican Market and Street Food. Feedback from their restaurants down south has always been excellent so we couldn’t wait to go along and try out their first Scottish restaurant.
Neon lights welcome you to the building and inside the door, a table football hints at the fun and casual nature of the place. The restaurant is surprisingly big and is situated over two floors with an open kitchen to the rear. Our table for the evening was upstairs so we had a bird’s eye view of the chefs hard at work as we climbed the staircase. The restaurant has won gold ratings for its eco credentials during the refurbishment and thought and care has certainly been taken with the refit. Street Art also features heavily in the restaurant’s design and the funky water butt lights definitely add character.
What to choose?
Beers ordered, we poured over the table top paper menus to decide what to have. The menu is split into Nibbles “to get your mouth in the mood”; Street Food – “smaller plates for grazing”; Bigger Food – “a main meal for one” – Sides and Desserts. They tend to recommend 2-3 street food plates per person to get you going. Tacos, Quesadillas, Taquitos, Tostadas, Baja Tacos and Market Treats all have between 2 and 5 choices available. Our waitress helpfully wrote suggestions on the paper menu to keep us right when we ordered.
While we were waiting on our drinks arriving we ordered the “freshly made everyday” guacamole with Hass avocados and freshly squeezed lime juice and tortilla chips (£4.50). That was the easy decision – the main event was a bit more complicated as there are lots of tasty sounding dishes to choose from. Then we spotted the Mexican Feast for 2 to share (£36) – a menu for adventurers, and it seemed like the perfect way to sample all of the Wahaca favourites in one go. We took the easy option and ordered that.
Initially, we were a bit confused when our first serving of tacos arrived from the feast menu and not our guacamole and tortilla chips until we realised that the Wahaca way is when it’s ready you will get it. It turns out the tacos were ready before the guacamole so if you prefer to have some order in your life you might need to do a bit of mental preparation for your visit.
Things must have speeded up in the kitchen as we soon had a table groaning with crispy prawn tacos, pork pibil tacos, chilli quesadillas, chicken tinga tacos, huitlacoche empanadas, salmon sashimi tostadas and sweet potato. It sure was a delicious Mexican feast with lots of fresh and spicy flavours served in a variety of tacos and tortilla wraps!
The Salmon sashimi tostadas with sustainable sourced Salmon and served raw with crispy onions, avocado and creamy chipotle mayo were a lighter alternative to the spicier taco and quesadilla.
The Chilli Quesadilla were also amazing. Hot Chilli (for me anyway)) and melted cheese wrapped in a tortilla – perfectly oozing and extremely moreish.
While the feast is a great way to enjoy Wahaca’s favourites we would probably order as we went on our next visit to control the amount and speed at which the food arrives. You are at the mercy of the kitchen so if you’re looking for a fast and delicious bite to eat then this is the place to go.
Room for dessert?
Churros were included in the Mexican Feast menu so there was no debate about what to have for pud! Last time we had Churros was in Madrid in 2008 and they were very greasy and the chocolate really gloopy. We haven’t had them since and hoped that this wasn’t going to be a disappointing end to a good meal. Two different melted chocolate pots and three delightfully crisp churros arrived and were really light, crisp and not at all greasy. A perfectly indulgent end to our indoor street food dining evening.
Wahaca is quirky, fun and they serve deliciously fresh Mexican market food. If you’re looking for a place to go with friends it’s extremely sociable and great value for money. It’s definitely somewhere we will return to in the future.
How to book a table at Wahaca Edinburgh.
16 South St Andrew Street
Tel: 0131 202 6850[/su_gmap]