Club Mexicana to open first restaurant in May

On Thursday 21 May, Club Mexicana, the home of Mexican-Californian inspired street food that ripped up the vegan rulebook, is firing up the spit and throwing open the doors to its very first restaurant.

Five years on from their humble food market beginnings, the Club Mexicana journey has seen founder Meriel Armitage crowned London’s favourite street food trader, and make star appearances at the UK’s biggest festivals.

Now, following the launch of London’s first 100% vegan pub - The Spread Eagle in Homerton - Armitage and her team are putting down roots to begin an exciting new chapter amidst the hustle and bustle of Soho.

Inspired by the lively street-side taquerias of Los Angeles and Mexico City, Club Mexicana will sling expertly-made tacos and Mexican classics all night long, designed to be enjoyed with margarita (or two) in hand.

At London’s very first vegan taco joint, guests can watch the open kitchen hard at work, as Meriel and her team slice into the star of the show: a smoky, sizzling al pastor spit. The shawarma-style dish of house-made seitan is smothered in Meriel’s top secret marinade, made with five types of chilli and a handful of spices, with a punchy kick softened by tropical flavours from the fresh pineapple that sits atop each taco.

Taco-lovers can expect cult hits such as Meriel’s famous beer-battered Tofish Taco and the Cheezeburger Taco loaded up with ‘beef’ burger, red pepper queso, dill pickle and annatto mayo.

Banging new dishes include an indulgent Queso Fundido – essentially a Mexican fondue of gooey melted vegan cheese topped with spicy ‘chorizo’, ready to be to be dipped into for that all-important cheese pull – and a plate of tongue-in-cheek ‘Tater Tots’ drizzled with queso and lashings of fiery scarlet chilli oil.

Club Mexicana will be dishing up plate after plate of nachos, tostadas and much-loved burritos, including the ever-popular carnitas burrito packed full of jackfruit, salsa verde, pink onions, pico de gallo, sour cream, salsa negra and finished with chipotle oil.

For something sweet, guests will be invited to take their pick from blood orange granita spiked with margarita, rich chilli chocolate mousse topped with salted caramel popcorn, or an ice cream sandwich from Club Mexicana’s friends at Happy Endings.

To counter the heat, guests can grab a stool at the bar and watch busy bartenders pouring vibrant cocktails, natural wines and Mexican beers throughout the night. Cocktails on tap from Tottenham drinks company black-lines include boozy ice-cold margaritas made exclusively for the Soho taqueria, as well as smoky Palomas with mezcal and pink grapefruit.

Elsewhere on the drinks list there are Club Mexicana’s favourite frozen margaritas, which can be ordered in classic sour lime, or lime and pink hibiscus, as well the Chelada, a Pacifico beer served with plenty of lime and chili salt – a true taste of Mexico. For those really looking to get the party started, bottles of artisan tequila and mezcal will line the bar, ready to be sipped or slammed.

A slice of East London cool slap-bang in the middle of Soho, interiors will be decorated with Club Mexicana’s signature tropical neon pink signs and bold colour-pop artwork. Meriel has worked with the best emerging artists and craftspeople in London to source everything from the furniture to the signage, and a beautiful bar top made of crushed glass - the perfect spot for a cocktail where diners can keep those tacos coming.

As the days get warmer and summer kicks in, guests can also grab one of the outdoor tables to soak up the sunshine with tacos and a few chilled Mexican beers.

Armitage said, “We’re so excited to open our very first restaurant in the heart of Soho. We’re looking forward to doing what Club Mexicana does best - great vibes, lots of tacos and banging cocktails. We’ll be dishing up more tacos than ever before, as well as our biggest street food hits and favourite dishes. It’s going to be a lot of fun!”

“We are delighted to welcome Club Mexicana to Carnaby’s food hub, Kingly Court. The Mexican-Californian inspired vegan street food restaurant will enhance Carnaby’s ever-increasing, global dining offering,' says Shelley Webb, Head of Group Residential & Kingly Court.'