Choosing a restaurant to review is always very tough; there are so many restaurants I want to try and so many I wish to share with you! Today I have chosen to share with you a restaurant I went to a while ago with my family. I loved this restaurant a lot, I don’t know whether it was the excessive cocktails or the company but I had a really wonderful evening. With this in mind, I decided to go back and tell you all about it. Rory pretty much eats everything, but Mexican is a personal favourite. So he was sold from the get go. On Friday night we headed to Wahaca Manchester to dine in the Mexican Summer of possibilities.
You can’t book at Wahaca; just turn up and they will fit you in. As there was no time pressure to make a table, we drank several glasses of prosecco at home, and then got a taxi to the Corn Exchange in Manchester. Short walk down the road and we arrived at Wahaca. This restaurant immediately feels Mexican, the decoration with fake cactus trees, and the weird lights all have a very quirky, original feel and immediately you feel immersed in a new world. Away from the city streets of Manchester, and in to the late summer Mexican party.
|(Photo credit to Wahaca)|
As we have been here before we knew the plan, and had a good idea of what to order, and didn’t need the explanation they give. The first time we came here, Diego (our server) explained the process of the various types of meals they do, and gave us great recommendations on both cocktails and food to order. Previously, Rory ordered the most immense Steak Burrito, whereas I had a variety of “street food”, we decided to combine the two and halve everything to share. We ordered one large main, and four “street foods” and plenty of drinks to no surprise.
To drink, we ordered a Passion fruit Wahaca Margarita (£6.95) and a Tamarind Wahaca Margarita (£6.95). When I order cocktails I often forget to think about the base alcohol, I dislike the tequila taste, so I made an error ordering my cocktail and ended up giving this to Rory. Then, instead I ordered a Strawberry & Basil daiquiri (£7.25), this was nice but for me it had a little too much spice and not enough strawberry flavour. We also ordered a carafe of wine (house white £11.50) to come with our meal, I ended up having the carafe and Rory had my many cocktails. I say at least I tried, but if I’m honest it just reminded me why I don’t often come to Mexican restaurants, I enjoy the food, but the drinks are never quite to my taste, this is personal preference though as Rory thoroughly enjoyed them.
After my several changes of drinks our food arrived and we began the descent into gluttony. Starting off with a personal choice, the smoky chicken and avocado tostadas (£4.25), this was easily my favourite. Sadly eating it first was a regret, but this was pure greed. The chargrilled chicken with the fresh coleslaw and guacamole complimented each other very well, offering a taste sensation in your mouth. Delicious start, sadly it did go a little bit downhill after that.
|Smoky chicken and avocado tostadas – £4.25|
Next I tried the black bean and cheese quesadillas (£3.75), this wasn’t the best quesadillas I have eaten, it was pleasant enough, after about half of one I was a bit bored of the bland flavours and left the rest for Rory to finish off. Maybe it’s me, but I felt the best part was the cheese and it was something I could have whipped up at home quite easily.
|Black bean and cheese quesadillas – £3.75|
Then I went for another favourite of mine from last time, the sweet potato and feta taquito (£3.95), this is corn tortillas filled with roasted sweet potato, feta and caramelised red onion, rolled and fried into crispy cigars. They were delicious. I thoroughly enjoyed all the flavours here, just the right amount of sweet potato to feta and a lovely crispy tortilla.
|Sweet potato and feta taquito – £3.95|
Last on the street food order was the pork pibil soft shell taco (£4.25). These were presented very nicely in a rack similar to a toast rack but wider (I would quite like these to serve large tacos in, they always fall over and all your filling comes out and you get in such a mess!). I am new to enjoying pork based food so I figured I would give them a go, if I am quite honest I was disappointed with these, I felt it lacked a lot of flavour and was a bit disappointing, it was nothing compared to Mike’s pulled pork.
|Pork pibil soft shell taco – £4.25|
Lastly we ordered a large steak burrito (£7.50), pimped up (+£2.50). The pimped up was the best bit, this is basically nachos; baja cheese, guacamole, warm tortilla chips and salsa as well as more grilled cheese. They were scrumptious, I love nachos, I think they are my favourite Mexican food and are eaten in my household usually once a week, more if Rory has his way. The burrito itself was not as good as last time, maybe it was because of all the alcohol last time, or because I was trying someone else’s food but this burrito was a little disappointing. I thought the steak itself was cooked perfectly and very nice, but the burrito as a whole was a little lacking.
|Steak burrito – £7.50, pimped up nachos – +£2.50|
Due to giving most of the food to Rory, we decided to order some churros and chocolate dipping sauce (£4.25) to end the evening. After ordering we sat back and relaxed, drinking our way through the bar. On the table Wahaca have a quick pay app, which saves waiting for the bill, we decided to try it and it worked really well! After pouring my next glass of wine I noticed that we had been waiting at least 20 minutes for churros, we decided to give it a little bit longer hoping they were just really busy. After waiting half an hour, Rory pulled our waitress over and checked on the food. Sadly the churros we ordered had been taken to the wrong table, so we had to wait. They did offer to take it off the bill or we could have some cocktails, as we had already taken care of the bill, and we already had many drinks we asked if they can do a cash refund. This is what they did in the end. Marginally annoying to wait for so long for a dessert, but at the same time we would have been waiting anyway to get through the vast amounts of alcohol anyway. The churros themselves were average, although the teacup the chocolate sauce came in was adorable!
|Churros and chocolate dipping sauce – £4.25|
Overall I felt this experience wasn’t as good as last time, I had a nice evening and I left feeling pretty full. But I felt the food lacking a little bit, and the service was a little slow. Maybe we just caught them on a bad night, I would say give them a go because last time we came I had a wonderful time and came out of there buzzing from great food and great company. On a final note, I would like to point out the quirky sinks in the toilet; the sinks are huge barrels with a tap similar to that of a garden tap. Very quirky and I like the character it adds.
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