Tacos and tequila, anyone? You betcha.
As you know, I’m always on the hunt for local spots that are relatively in walking distance, or a short bus ride away from me. If I can avoid the heat of the tube, I’m a winner. Portobello Road in Notting Hill happens to be one of those magical places.
Opened just a little over a year ago, Peyotito in Notting Hill promises modern Mexican. A multi-sensory experience of foodie sophistication, curated by Executive Chef, Eduardo Garcia, the acclaimed chef of Maximo Bistrot (one of Latin America’s top 50 restaurants) in Mexico City.
While sadly, never having been to Mexico, over the years I’ve found a love for Mexican food. I love the spice, the flavour and I love how fun the eating (and drinking) experience can be. Of course, I had to go and see what it was all about.
I’d heard of Peyotito before, but had yet to dine there. It was actually only as I’d been told that they opened up a brand new spot in Ibiza at the Nobu Hotel that I knew I needed to get myself to Notting Hill. Stupidly, I realised they opened in Ibiza after I’d just returned from a mini-break there. I know.
But that wasn’t stopping me from visiting their London home.
The night was warm, which meant that Peyotito had opened up the front of the restaurant, spilling out onto the Kensington Park Road sidewalk. With the lighting low, and the sun beginning to set, we chose seats right at the front (plus I like to try and have as much lighting as possible for photos).
The interiors are dark but inviting, it’s a contemporary feel, complete with candles and neon decals. Ivy leaves adorn the bar area, giving it that hidden gem in the middle of London vibe.
What to drink
The Peyotito Margarita
Immediately we were greeted with two of their famous Peyotito Margaritas. The flavours were strong and familiar. No, it doesn’t flashback to my 21st birthday, you have the feeling like you’re on holiday. I could immediately see why they were perfectly suited to expand their restaurant group to Ibiza’s shores.
The drink is complete with a spicy Tajin rimmed glass, blanco tequila, Cointreau, agave syrup, lime juice. Each cocktail even comes with a mini vial of additional Mezcal, which we “expertly” poured in. In fact, it was so good that I ordered a second one that evening. Also, so strong that I didn’t realise it’s tequila powers until I was sitting at home later that night wondering how I could possibly be that tipsy from two cocktails. For £11, you’re definitely getting your money’s worth.
What to eat
Their homemade tostadas, guacamole and spicy salsas. The sauces were excellent, incredibly filled with heat, my mouth was on fire – in a good way. I continued to alternate between guacamole and spice until our courses began to arrive.
Naturally, tostadas are for us. At the recommendation of our server, we tried the Tostada de Atun, yellowfin tuna with salsa macha and guacamole over homemade tostada. I don’t normally eat tuna, but thought I’d give it a go… it was exquisite. The flavours pack quite the punch, and it left Joe and I battling it out for the last bite (I won).
Make sure you order…
Once I spotted tacos on the menu, it took all of my willpower to not only order those. We tried the Tacos al Pastor, grilled chicken, homemade adobo, pineapple, with white bean purée. It might have been my favourite dish from Peyotito. I could have ordered these all night long. Perfect for if you want to pop in for a quick bite and a drink post-work.
We also ordered the Cochinita Pibil, braised pork with axiote seeds, black bean purée and habanero sauce. The braised pork was delicious. Again, it’s not something I would have typically ordered on my own. Joe is definitely the go-to for picking out our meat dishes, but I’m glad that he did because the flavours on this plate were incredible.
Our last main was the Mole de Olla, short rib, slow-cooked in traditional dried broth, with seasonal vegetables. This main is filled with truly beautiful flavours. It was the kind of meat that’s cooked so properly that it falls apart with a touch. I loved it.
For your sweet tooth
I wasn’t planning on ordering dessert. In fact, I was actually thinking at this point that I might go for another cocktail. But, forget about the booze (or get both), because you need to order dessert at Peyotito. I typically load up on tacos and can’t fathom eating another bite after mains. So this was a rare occasion.
Our friendly server also recommended to try the Marscapone Cheesecake with cactus fig compote & vanilla ice cream. I don’t know if I can now eat another dessert in my life. All others are ruined for me. One bite of this cheesecake and I was hooked like an addict. My fork didn’t stop moving and I’m not entirely sure I was even breathing as I truly might have been inhaling it.
Joe ordered the Churro con Chocolate, the traditional pastry with cinnamon sugar, and chocolate sauce. Although these were good and probably better if you really couldn’t finish dessert but wanted to tuck into something sweet. But I’m still selfishly saying mine was better. It just was.
We left Peyotito completely full and to be honest, a little bit tipsy. Over the course of the evening, we tried a starter, four of their main dishes, desserts and two cocktails. Don’t for a second let the concept of sharing plates fool you, you’ll be walking away from Peyotito feeling complete.
I have to say, I like this modern take on Mexican. Every dish was well presented throughout our meal, and I’d say that it’s definitely upscale Mexican dining, while in an incredibly relaxed setting.
Peyotito’s mod-mex gurus also do a weekend brunch that I 100% have my eye on. Brunching at the weekend has a menu that features Bloody Mary’s and Mexican, egg dishes like Huevos Rancheros, Papas con Chorizo, so I’m hooked.
Watch this space, because I’ll definitely be back.
31 Kensington Park Road, London, W11 2EU
Notting Hill, London
PS. Fun fact that I thought I’d let you know, their menu is largely gluten and dairy-free too.