There’s nothing half-assed about Homies on Donkeys.
It’s a wonderful little taqueria up in Leytonstone, and when it comes to London’s best Mexican restaurants, HoD has earned its place at the table the old fashioned way. No angel investors, no big restaurant groups, just hard graft and great recipes.
It’s the work of Sandra Bello and Erik “Smokey” Bautista, who met in Tijuana fifteen years ago. They moved to London, started making salsa, scraped together some cash, opened a pop up, crowdfunded some more cash, and opened a real restaurant with tables and chairs and everything (but no cutlery, they’re quite strict about that).
Just down the road from the wonderful Singburi, the space they’ve created is like stepping into a pop-art piece, with a melange of vibrant colours and graffiti-style murals wrapped around the otherwise methodical arrangement of mustard-yellow chairs and sleek, minimalist tables. Tables which have napkins instead of knives & forks, because this is a taco place, not a Jane Austen novel. And just to make the point, they play a thumping soundtrack of ’90s hip hop. It’s great.
Tacos arrive in pairs, laden with the likes of medium-rare bavette steak with jalapeño relish; charred broccoli with refried beans; and hunks of slow-cooked chicken thigh with roasted tomato salsa. Speaking of, that salsa which got them started comes on a huge tasting platter, featuring the likes of roasted guajillo, red habanero, sweet chipotle, and more. And if you want to go beyond tacos, they have a couple of large plates, including a juicy hunk of bone marrow & braised chuck steak with a basket of corn tortillas.
The food is genuinely delicious, and is the product of many, many years of experimentation and refinement on the part of the chefs. And the best bit? It’s all quite reasonably priced, too.
So you won’t be saddled with a huge bill.
NOTE: Homies on Donkeys is open now. You can find out more, and make a booking at their website right here.
Homies on Donkeys | 686 High Road, Leytonstone, E11 3AA
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