There are more taco places in London than ever, and it’s glorious. But for lip-smackingly fresh tortillas in London, you only need to look to El Pastór. Found in London Bridge’s Borough Market, this petite taqueria is shabby taco-shack chic. Lights dangle from above, exposed brick sets off the optimistic turquoise of the tables, and the arched space lends El Pastór a slightly reverent vibe; a temple to tacos, if you will.
There is, after all, much to be thankful for in the way of food. Not to mention the fact that there’s an entire menu dedicated to mezcal. That deserves repeating – mezcal is not part of the drinks list (of which there’s a respectable selection of beers, cocktail and tequila), but it dominates a standalone multi-page menu of its own, and it’s marvellous.
But back to the food. At El Pastór, you’ll find salsas that are made fresh every day (a delicious mess of chillis, tomatoes and herbs, with five different kinds to choose from, depending on your preference). Guacamole that’ll have you licking the bowl clean. And all manner of tacos and quesadillas. We’re talking blue and white Mexican Nativo corn tortillas filled with everything from chorizo and confit pork to mushrooms and oaxaca cheese.
For good measure, do try the epic Al Pastór, a 24-hour marinated pork shoulder taco with caramelized pineapple, guacamole taquero, white onion and coriander. It’s superb. And, incidentally, takes its name from a taco that’s particularly popular on the streets of Mexico City. So good, in fact, that it was the inspiration for this restaurant’s name as well, which is now whispered in hushed tones by taco lovers the city over.