Boho Mexica

151-153 Commercial Street, London, England, E1 6BJ, United Kingdom

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Although Boho Mexico is in an unpromising site on Commercial Street, it is aiming higher than the formulaic TexMex food that we have sadly grown used to in London: there is not a burrito in sight here. There is only a cursory wine list but they have Bohemia, for me the best Mexican beer, and I am reliably informed that the margaritas were fine. The premises is split into separate restaurant and bar areas, though the former is very casual, and so the whole place is effectively a casual bar serving snacks.

You are encouraged to try a couple of the snacks per person, followed by a main course, and this we did. Guacamole Tia Patty was one of the least good dishes, the avocado fresh enough but lacking spice or seasoning (10/20). Much better was Caldo Tlalpeno (£3.95), a soup with smoked chipotle and shredded chicken, thickened with chickpeas; this has plenty of taste and the chickpeas were good, having just a little firmness left (13/20). Prawn cocktail Acapulco style (£5.45) had decent prawns and a lively sauce (11/20). A red salsa with tortilla chips appeared to be freshly made and had a good chilli kick (11/20).

Tacos were offered as a trio of small soft corn tortillas with assorted toppings. Tinga Poblana (£3.50) was shredded chicken cooked with tomatoes and chipotle chile sauce, and was rather bland (11/20). Better was slow-cooked pork served with salsa and coriander (£3.50), the pork fairly tender and the salsa freshly made (12/20).

One of the best dishes was Tostados de Ceviche (£5.45), a pair of crispy tortillas topped with sea bass that had been marinated in lime, lemon and herbs. The fish was topped with a salad of lettuce, tomatoes and Serrano chile. The had a pleasing freshness, the fish fresh and the salad good, the spices and citrus marinade working well (13/20).

There was even a mole sauce on offer, chicken with a chilli and chocolate sauce (£5.45) sprinkled with sesame seeds and offered with a side of herb rice. The chicken itself was a little stringy, but the sauce was decent enough, though I have eaten much better mole sauce in the USA; this had just a little too much bitterness (11/20). Pork tenderloin in a herb sauce (£5.85) was enjoyable, the meat moist and the sauce good (12/20). Corn bread (£5.25) with Chipotle chile had a good fresh corn salsa (11/20).

Desserts were less reliable, Bunuelos de Navidad (£3.50) being dough fritters drizzled in sugar cane syrup i.e. churros, but these were dried out and disappointing (10/20). Better was a corn on the cob with chilli, mayonnaise, lime and cheese (also £3.50). Service was basic but friendly enough throughout. We ended up ordering practically the whole menu between four of us, and with plenty to drink, £41 a head seemed quite fair; it would be easily possible to spend much less. Overall this was certainly a cut above the usual TexMex offerings in London, and even though there was some unevenness in the cooking this was felt like a place that was really trying to bring a taste of Mexico to London, rather than just cashing on familiar TexMex clichés.

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  • Greedy Diva

    I held up high hopes for Boho Mexico, particularly given it was trying to move away from all the Tex Mex cliches. Found myself in a bitterly disappointing mole hell. Nothing was particularly tasty or well executed (apart from the cocktails).