The last time I was in Coal Drops Yard it had just opened in February and it was empty and freezing. This time it was June and it was moderately busy. But still freezing. We had intended to get our spice at Kimchee but they had a queue out the door; as far as I could see it was through front of house incompetence rather than customer demand so we pushed on to CDY to see what we could find.
A whole lot of pretentious shops with impenetrable names (‘teenage engineering’ being both the most ludicrous and the most sinister) interspersed with some excellent looking fooderies, among which sprawled Casa & Plaza Pastor.
You can sit outside, inside outside or inside. We went for inside outside and perused the menu. Mostly it’s small plates of Mexican staples and bigger things to share. We took a selection of tostadas and tacos together with a fistful of salsas ranging from mild and fruity to f**k me I’m glad I didn’t get the hottest.
The salsas were seriously good, as was everything on the food front really. I don’t pretend to expertise in Mexican cuisine but I was enjoying it so much that I had to have another round of tacos and an extra beer (a bit pricy at £5.90 for a bog standard pint) – a choice I may come to regret later on the 5-a-side pitch.
The star for me was the raw tuna tostada but really everything was delicious. I looked enviously at the table next to us who had a big plate of beef thing that they were slapping onto tacos. I’ll have me some of that next time around. Service was excellent and we both agreed that this was the kind of place you could come to for a pit stop while waiting for a train or for a massive all day blow-out with a bunch of mates while ruining yourself on mezcal.
The one down side was the ‘authentic’ Mexican décor but hey, everywhere commercial aspires to Disneyland nowadays. I could go Barthesian on it but he said it all 60 years ago and infinitely more lucidly than I ever could; besides, I need to get to the pitch, these knees won’t ruin themselves.
To see where else I’ve eaten go to the GoogleMap …
Blue Badge guide to London and academic specialising in early twentieth century history. Blogging on history, academia, and food and culture in the capital (and occasionally elsewhere).