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Posts Tagged: Mexican restaurant London

£7.50 Lunch Deal!

Soho has got great food everywhere you turn, but for some reason come lunchtime you get overwhelmed by the choice, curl up in a ball and then beeline towards some overpriced chain sandwich shop for a sad, cellophane-wrapped carby parcel, complete with some dog-eared rocket poking out the sides.

 

THIS HAPPENS NO LONGER! WE ARE STOPPING YOU RIGHT THERE!

 

For the same price as that carby parcel with a drink, you can pick up a lunch deal from El Camion. YUMMY. We’ve got a sexy burrito for you, that comes with a side of tortilla chips and salsa. AND a soft drink.

 

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Available Monday to Thursday, 12 noon until 5pm. VIVA LA LUNCHTIME!

 

 

 

Stuff We’ve Got Goin’ On

We can almost hear the sleigh bells ringing! The temperature has dropped, the nights are at their darkest – tis most definitely the season for all things food, for all things drink and for all things PARTY.

What’s been going on with us? Well, we’ve just been celebrating Thanksgiving in honour of our old muckers from across the pond and our chef created a special dish of Turkey Enchiladas: strips of marinated turkey wrapped in our thin tortillas, slathered in traditional green enchilada sauce and served with puréed black beans – yum! It might just have to last longer than Thanksgiving did…

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Watch out for more special dishes as Christmas approaches. Chef is feeling creative AND festive so expect some mouthwatering offerings starring turkey, cranberries, rich spices and warming treats.

And it’s not just the kitchen getting into the spirit of things! The bar team are currently working on a Christmas cocktail to make merry with. They’re a talented and competitive bunch so no doubt there will be an in-house cocktail competition to see who’s creation is the most palatable come Yuletide. Got some ideas? Send them our way!

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We’ve also got some awesome new tequilas and mezcals in, including Tequila Cabeza and San Cosme mezcal, so if you’re looking for a tipple to warm you from the inside, just ask our team what they recommend!

 

Membership at the Pink Chihuahua!

We all know what the hottest ticket in town is – everyone wants to get their greasy mitts on one. But we don’t give them to just anyone, and that’s why anyone who’s anyone really wants one and sometimes can’t get one… We’re talking about a Pink Chihuahua Membership card, obvs!

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Our legendary little basement bar on Brewer Street, The Pink Chihuahua, has seen many, many things. It’s seen the King of Cocktails, Dick Bradsell, shake up his crazy concoctions and create new ones for the cocktail history books, it’s seen the bartenders of Soho convene after hours and lose track of time one too many times and it’s seen many a birthday group dance on tables to The Cash Cows until the dawn. It’s a special little place.

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Here’s the rub. We’ve got to keep it special. We can’t let any Tom, Dick or Harriet in – not until we get to know them, of course. The Pink Chihuahua also only has a capacity of 50 people, so there’s that too. So, we ask that if you’d like to become a member of The Pink Chihuahua (we’d LOVE you to become a member) please fill in the application form online and we’ll invite you in to say hey, how’s it going? We’ll then issue you with a membership card, which you may use to sign in one other person. If it’s more than that, they’ll have to become members too! If you’ve got a special occasion coming up and would like to book a table for a group of you, please email us at info@elcamion.co.uk.

You can apply to become a member here.

Remember, it is an application only.

We hope you can join us for Pink Chihuahua fun soon!

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Spotlight On: Tequila Herradura

Tequila Herradura is pretty special. It’s an ultra premium 100% agave tequila from Casa Herradura, which is one of Mexico’s oldest and most renowned tequila producers. Made in a traditional 19th century Hacienda in Amatitán, Jalisco, everything about Herradura encompasses the historical craftsmanship of tequila, from using the most mature blue agave to being fermented naturally with wild yeast.

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There are three main tequilas in the Herradura range – Silver, Reposado and Añejo – as well as a few more super duper deluxe tequilas that would be perfect to bring out on a big occasion, like you might do with a fine wine. THAT’S how to be impressive.

But the ones that we are most likely to be drinking are the three aforementioned.

Herradura Silver is the youngest, being aged for a total of 45 days in American White Oak barrels. Its light straw colour and smooth taste has gained Herradura a reputation for being one of the finest tequilas in the world.

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Not only do Herradura do a spankingly good Reposado; they actually created the Reposado category in 1974. BOOM. Reposado tequilas are required by law to be aged for two months, but Herradura Reposado ages in the barrels for eleven months, giving the tequila a beautiful deep copper colour. Lovely jubbly.

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Herradura Añejo, introduced by Casa Herradura in 1962, matures in the barrel for 25 months. 25!! This is more than double the one-year ageing requirement for a tequila to be considered an Añejo by Mexico law. This ageing gives it a lovely deep amber colour and a complex, spicy taste.

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We hope you are lucky enough to try Tequila Herradura – it really is for the tequila aficionado.

Try a michelada on International Beer Day!

Mexico’s wayward answer to the Bloody Mary, the michelada is one way to spice up your International Beer Day – and it is also an amazing cure for a hangover (handy for the day after International Beer Day).

If you’ve never had a michelada before – or haven’t even heard of it – then, friends, you’ve been missing out. It’s beer like you’ve never known – it’s fresh, it’s spicy, it’s savoury and it’s darn right addictive!

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So, what is it? Well, it’s a Mexican cerveza preparada – a beer, served in a salt-rimmed glass with ice, with an assortment of sauces, spices and lime juice mixed in. There’s loads of different variations of michelada in Mexico, but we have our special spice mix that we use, made of hot sauces and other secret ingredients (you can use Worcestershire sauce, Maggi sauce, chamoy powder, serrano peppers, Camaronazo, Clamato, or even slices of orange).

It’s a fantastic summer drink – completely refreshing and thirst-quenching. It’s also great alongside food; the spicy savouriness bring your tastebuds alive, making every food taste amazing. Especially Mexican food. Of course.

Want to try one? We’ll be making them all day on International Beer Day and any other day if you ask, because they are awesome. ¡¡¡Salud!!!

World Gin Day with Beefeater Gin!

There seems to be a International day for anything and everything these days. There is a Chocolate-Covered Cherries Day, a Toothache Day and a Step In A Puddle and Splash Your Friends Day.

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However, Saturday 13th June 2015 is the seventh annual WORLD GIN DAY! Now, HERE is a day we can get on board with.

World gin day

Gin has come a long way since its roots in Holland in the Middle Ages as a medicinal product to treat gout and stomach complaints. It still can be used as an aid to treat conditions, such as heartache, sense of humour failure and lame parties, but usually nowadays it is to be enjoyed for leisure and with pleasure.

The house gin at El Camion is the mighty Beefeater London Dry Gin, which is the most globally awarded gin of the last 10 years. Ever since it won its first Gold Medal at the International Exhibition of 1873, it has won more awards than any other gin.

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Why do we like it? It’s tasty!

We like it for a lot of reasons. First off, any gin that calls itself ‘London Dry Gin’ can actually be produced anywhere. Beefeater is the only major premium gin that is still distilled in London. It is handcrafted in its Kennington distillery, using the same recipe that James Burrough created in the 1800s. The recipe is THAT good!

Secondly, it’s got a great name. No, it doesn’t mean that James Burrough had an insatiable appetite for Picadillo Beef Burritos (although if he’d tasted one, he probably would have). The gin was named after the Beefeaters – the yeoman warders who have always stood watch at the Tower of London. This gin is London though and through. ‘Maybe it’s because I’m a Londoner?!’

And finally, it goes great in cocktails. It’s a crisp, clean gin with a well-balanced flavour, which comes from 100% natural botanicals, including juniper, coriander and citrus peels. Its light freshness mixes well without being too perfumed and overpowering and it still retains complexity that gives depth to a cocktail. Gimme that gin!

 

So, on World Gin Day this Saturday, we shall be partaking in the celebrations by mixing up a storm of gin cocktails using Beefeater and other favourite gins of ours, including Beefeater 24, Hendricks, Monkey 47, Plymouth, Portobello Road and Sipsmith. We just hope that Sunday 14th June 2015 is World Bed Day.

 

http://worldginday.com

http://www.beefeatergin.com

 

Mixing Mezcal!

More and more people are getting curious about mezcal. The bar-drinker wants to try it and the bartender wants to try mixing it. Both things could be sliiiiiiightly intimidating for a few of those on both sides of the bar as it’s a complex spirit that requires a little understanding and care.

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If you know about tequila, you’re halfway there. A common misunderstanding is that mezcal is a type of tequila… wrong! Tequila is technically a mezcal though – any alcohol made from distilled agave is a mezcal. Tequila is made from 100% blue agave in a specific area of Mexico, whereas mezcal can be made from over 30 types of agave all over Mexico.

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In order to make mezcal, the hearts of the agave are slow-roasted over hot rocks in earthen mounds for several days. This gives a glorious smokiness to the spirit, which actually varies depending on the region it was produced in and the type of agave used, much like a fine wine.

So, how best to make the most out of mezcal’s spicy, earthy smokiness?

For the mezcal novice:

Simple is best. Mezcal on the rocks with a splash of club soda and lime is a great way to enjoy mezcal, and it allows mezcal’s natural flavours to flourish.

For the mezcal intermediate:

If you’re feeling a little more experimental, muddle a shot of mezcal with lime, cucumber, a splash of club soda and a dash or two of hot sauce.

For the mezcal pro:

Make a Oaxaca Old Fashioned with two shots of mezcal muddled with two orange slices, a couple of maraschino cherries and some diluted agave syrup in a cocktail shaker. Add a dash of Angostura bitters and shake, strain and pour over ice. Top with a splash of club soda and you’ve just made one hell of an awesome cocktail.

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Love mezcal and it is one spirit that will love you back. Enjoy!

So, You’re a Fan of Hot Sauce?

If you’ve ever been to El Camion, there will have been one thing that wowed you upon entry (no, not just our fabulous-looking wait staff and bartenders). THE WALL OF HOT SAUCE. This wall, that confronts you as you walk into our restaurant, is more like a shrine to the sauce we like best – hot sauce.

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It is a dedicated collection of hundreds of hot sauces from around the globe (we have around 350 to 400 in total – we stopped counting) that anyone is welcome to try on their burrito at any time. But what’s the big deal about hot sauce? Why do those who like it, LOVE it?

It’s slightly addictive if we’re honest. Not in a chemical MSG way, but because of what it does to your tastebuds. It’s sets them alight (sometimes literally), it sends your salivary glands into overdrive and it brightens and enlivens flavours – that’s why it’s so good with delicious Mexican food. And, of course, there’s the heat. Gotta get more of that heat!

Here’s a look at a few of the hot sauces on our wall. We could totally turn this into a game of Top Trumps.

 

Batch 37 Pain is Good Garlic Hot Sauce

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‘There is a point where pleasure and pain intersect. Once the line is crossed, once Mo’s hot sauce touches your lips, there is no going back. His special blend of habanero peppers, carrots, garlic, lemon and lime will leave you addicted!’

This hot sauce is 100% natural. The verdict is that the garlic flavour adds a nice dimension, meaning that you don’t just taste fire.

Heat: HOT

 
You Can’t Handle This Hot Sauce

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‘Designed to smell & taste great, while the extreme heat level allows your mouth to surf the big ones.’

Hidden beneath a black velveteen cloth, you get the feeling you are about to do something bad before you try this hot sauce. Sure, it might look and smell like BBQ, but it tastes like somewhere Satan lives. Seriously – one drop at a time.

Heat: VERY HOT

 
Doc Holliday’s Feel Good Elixir

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‘This elixir won’t cure anything but it will make you forget all your other pains and problems! No Preservatives or artificial heat enhancers. Use “Doc” for all your hot sauce needs, it is just what the Doctor ordered!’

It comes in a medicine bottle, so it’s good for you – right? Quite possibly… It’s got a southern-style barbecue flavour to it and it’s not going to burn the roof of your mouth off. It’s excellent with Mexican food flavours.

Heat: PLEASANTLY HOT

 

Hombre Loco Tequila Jalapeno Sauce

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‘Hey Gringo, a leetle Jalapeno and a leetle tequila es good for you soul! This combination of fresh Jalapeno peppers & top shelf tequila delivers an unforgettable flavour sensation to any food.’

Tequila and jalapeños – sounds like a great match! It’s certainly tangy and will add a sharp kick of heat to your nachos.

Heat: PRETTY HOT

 

Enjoy your hot sauce – make sure you let us know what you think!

Wine at El Camion – We uncork the reds…

If you fancy a drink at lunch but think it’s too early for cocktails and tequila (apparently, there is such a thing), we serve a fabulous selection of great wines by the glass, specifically chosen to pair well with the flavours and spices in Mexican food. In our last blog, we looked at our white and rose wines and gave suggestions of well-matched dishes. Now it’s time to look at the reds. Pass the corkscrew.

Santa Puerto
Red wines

Our house red wine is the Tempranillo Pleno, Bodega Brana Vieja, from the Northern Spain region of Navarra. This wine is made from 100% Tempranillo grapes, which is the same grape variety used to make Rioja, and it has been aged in old oak barrels for at least six months, which is where it’s spiced oak flavour comes from.

Tastes like: Ruby red in colour, Tempranillo Pleno tastes like dark cherry and vanilla spice. Typical of Tempranillo wines, it is soft and fruity and has a pleasantly sweet finish.

Goes well with: A light and soft wine, it is lovely on its own or with grilled fish or grilled chicken. It would be a great match with a Chicken Tinga Burrito.

Prices: £19/bottle £5/glass

Pleno Tempranillo
The second red on the menu is the Merlot, Santa Puerta, which comes from the Maule Valley in Chile. The area is made up of rich and volcanic soils and produces powerful, spicy and aromatic wines.

Tastes like: At 14%, it is a strong and robust wine, with intense berry fruit flavours. It has been aged in oak for nine months, which gives it a deep, spicy layer of flavour. Warming and rounded, it has a pleasant, silky finish.

Goes well with: The depth of this wine can handle big flavours, plus its high alcohol content will help to break down meaty dishes. Perfectly paired dishes include anything with beef and pork. Why not try it with a Carne Asada Enchilada?

Prices: £23/bottle £6.50/glass

Merlot, Santa Puerta
Our wines are available by the glass or by the bottle – which one you order is up to you! Feel free to ask us to recommend a wine to go with your meal. ¡Buen apetito!

A glass with lunch at El Camion? Wine not…

Here at El Camion, we are famous for our cocktails, but did you know that we also do wine?? Sometimes (most of the time), a lunch out calls for wine, but unfortunately a bottle of the red or white stuff isn’t always appropriate to order, especially if you’ve got to head back to the office or if you’re being trusted to pick out a birthday present for your partner’s grandmother, or the like. Luckily for you, we serve a great selection of wines by the glass, so you can enjoy a lunchtime tipple, without swinging from the office lights by 3pm.

Santa Puerto

 

White wines

Our white wines pair exceptionally well with Mexican food, as they complement the light spices and flavours of the cuisine, without being too overpowering.

Our house white wine is Viura Pleno, Bodega Brana Vieja, from the Navarra region in Spain. This area has been making wine since the ancient Roman times, so they’ve pretty much got it down to a fine art. This wine is made from 100% viura grapes, which are known for their versatility and are the primary ingredient in white Riojas.

Tastes like: Bright, straw-yellow in colour, it tastes clean and crisp – a bit like green apples or citrus fruits, with floral notes.

Goes well with: As it’s so easy-drinking, this wine goes well with most dishes on the menu, especially chicken, fish or salads, and at just 12%, it’s a great option for lunch. Try it with a Grilled Fish Ensalada or Grilled Chicken nachos.

Prices: £19/bottle, £5/glass

Viura Pleno

 

Our second white wine on the menu is the Sauvignon Blanc, Santa Puerta. This is a Chilean wine from the Central Valley, the largest and most productive wine-making region in South America. Made in a 100% sustainable winery, it is organic, meaning it is good for the environment and not too bad for you, either.

Tastes like: At 13.5%, this wine is full of flavour and is bursting with tropical fruits, like passionfruit, mango and peaches. It also has a herbaceous dimension to it, with a persistent, refreshing finish.

Goes well with: Sauvignon Blanc is one of the only white wines that pairs well with sushi, so any seafood dishes are good, like the Grilled Fish Tacos. The herbal notes also make this wine a good pairing with any dishes made with coriander and fennel, like the burritos and the ensaladas.

Prices: £23/bottle £6.50/glass

Grilled Fish Ensalada

Rosé wines

Our rosé is the Pleno Rosado, Bodega Brana Vieja from Navarra in northern Spain, made from 100% Grenache grapes. Grenache, or Garnacha, as it is known in Spain, is a red wine grape grown extensively in France, Spain, Australia and America. It is one of the most widely distributed grapes in the world, down to its versatility both in the vineyard and the winery.

Tastes like: With an intense strawberries and cream aroma, Pleno Rosado tastes like strawberry and raspberry fruits. Although it is dark in colour, it is light and crisp on the palate and it lifts flavours with its refreshing acidity.

Goes well with: As an ideal accompaniment to ethnic cuisines, fish and poultry, this wine is great with Mexican food. It’s a fantastic match with any of our dishes that are made with black beans – why not try it with a Yucatan Beef Tostada.

Prices: £21/bottle £5.50/glass
In our next blog, we will explore the red wines on our menu. Enjoy your lunch!