The Barrafina boys serve tacos beneath a former railway arch. Nice
Mexican | NR | £
If you’re looking for a fun colourful space for chilled catch ups with friends with fine tacos in your hand, then El Pastor ticks the box and it’s conveniently located just by Borough Market. I’m keen to try more of the plates and of course the mezcal. Get down super early with your whole crew for a chance to dine together as a group.
El Pastor is just by Borough Market, about a 2 mins walk from Padella and London Bridge station.
Image Credit: El Pastor
It’s a cool space – a converted railway arch with pops of colour via the table tops & woven chairs. There’s an outdoorsy vibe about it but with the convenience of being indoors. A rich green permeates the room via the table tops and punches through many of the woven chairs in the space. In the back of the restaurant, you’ll find the open kitchen and this is where I’d recommend you perch your little butty. The exposed brick walls and concrete floor give the place a utilitarian feel – this juxtaposed against the vibrant colours and the hanging lights imbues the space with a fun energy.
Image Credit: The Spaces
FOOD & SERVICE
This was a quickie lunch – I got there at about 2:30pm when the crowds had died down and managed to nab a solo table facing a brick wall, not as sad as it sounds – promise. El Pastor has had much hype probs because it’s by the guys who brought us the enduringly popular Barrafina; whilst the fare is Mexican small plates, not Spanish, there’s a constant in the pursuit of fresh ingredients which do the talking. The tortillas are made fresh on site every day – I got the prawn taco (£3.50) & char-grilled stonebass taco (£3); I particularly enjoyed the pineapple salsa that came with the stonebass taco. They also do quesadillas which I love, so I’ll most def be hitting them bad boys up when I revisit. Oh and they’ve got a shit tonne of mezcal but I had to head back to work, so had to skip out on that (*sigh*).
Service was real friendly and convival, contributing to the pleasant ambience.
I think El Pastor might be one of the cheaper taco joints amongst the new slate of hip taquerias (Breddos, Corazon, Mole Taco Bar) with the priciest individual taco being £3.50 vs £4.50+ at the aforementioned spots.
It was quite quiet when I went for late lunch mid week but come the evening / weekends, I can only imagine it’s heaving with people and super buzzy. Actually when, a friend and I tried to go for a late lunch on a Friday, it had a queue with a 30mins wait time, which I think gives a truer indication of how busy it gets during peak period.
THE TAKE OUT
If you’re looking for a fun colourful space for chilled catch ups with friends with fine tacos in your hand, then El Pastor ticks the box and it’s conveniently located just by Borough Market. I’m keen to try more of the plates and of course the mezcal. Till next time El Pastor…