If you read this piece, you’ll already know that there are some great tequila tasting nights at Mestizo in London. But as well as offering the largest tequila selection in the capital, this fantastic restaurant also offers food and tequila pairing evenings. So you can eat and drink like a real Mexican.
If your experience of drinking tequila is limited to margaritas and of the shot variety, with lime and salt, the food and tequila pairing night will be a real eye-opener.
The tequila is sipped, straight – or on the rocks – with no mixer. And once you get used to the er, burn at the back of your throat, I’ll admit, it compliments Mexican very well.
Here’s what we had (and the Tequila to go with it):
Tequila Pairing at Mestizo
(paired with the Herradura Blanco tequila)
This is a corn husk filled with corn ‘masa’ (dough), strips of poblano pepper, in a sweet corn and onion cream sauce ‘steamed to perfection’. This is personally a favourite of mine at Mestizo – it’s doughy, sweet and as it’s steamed in its natural husk, it feels like a very simple, ‘unspoilt’ yet authentically flavoursome dish – a great way to start a meal. As it’s not overly spicy, it’s quite easy to drink with the Herradura Blanca.
(paired with the Herradura Reposado)
Although not my favourite part of the meal, this certainly served as a tasty little bite in between courses.
It’s basically a corn tortilla filled with spicy white flaked fish and then deep fried until golden brown. It came with a creamy tangy sauce for dipping and the slight heat from the spicy fish made it a good match for the Reposado.
By now with Tequila (and margharitas) still flowing (!) it was hard to keep up.. but I did!
Mole Verde con puerco
(paired with anejo or Reposado tequila)
Again, this is one of my favourites from Mestizo. It’s basically pork in a traditional green Mole sauce made from chilli, Romain lettuce, tomatillo (a green/purple gooseberry-like Mexican fruit), epazote and pumpkin seeds, with rice and beans.
I’m sure if you searched high and low in London you’d find these ingredients for the sauce, but they are so unusual for me, it’s a taste you wouldn’t often replicate at home which makes it so special.
I have to say, the black beans and feta on the side was a delicious accompaniment too. I can’t fault this dish! By now, the tequila swigging was slowing down but the Anejo and Reposado tequilas were good matches for this course.
It was quite a challenge to eat this after all the food we’d had but it was a great way to get an idea of authentic Mexican sweets.
The creme caramel and mango puree were particularly tasty and a great way to end a brilliant night of tequila pairing and fantastic Mexican food.
Mestizo Restaurant,103 Hampstead Road, London NW1 3EL, 0207 387 4064