Tuesday, 29 March 2011

Navajo Joe - Covent Garden

Last week we went for dinner at Navajo Joe in Covent Garden. It’s a rather strange mix of Mexican and Asian cuisine, if I’m honest, it’s a combination which doesn’t work particularly well. The evening didn’t get off to a great start as our table wasn’t ready when we arrived, so we were asked to wait at the bar for 35 minutes. Chris was convinced this was a ploy to increase our spend during the evening; I’m not sure I’m cynical enough to agree with this but the delay did result in us missing the film we’d planned to watch afterwards. 

I booked through Top Table, so we had 50% off the food provided we ate 2 courses. To start, we ordered tempura prawns and mushroom & goats cheese quesadilla. The prawns were amazing, the batter was light and crisp and the prawns themselves were huge! The quesadilla was nice enough, but as far as I could tell didn’t actually contain any goats cheese which was a bit of a disappointment. They were served with an undressed side salad, and seemed to be missing the bold flavours promised by the website.  

For the main course we ordered a fajita platter to share. All in all it didn’t really live up to expectations. We were served eight wraps, which were nice enough, 2 skillets of mixed vegetables and meat and 4 pots containing guacamole, sour cream, salsa and cheese. So far so good. The steak and the prawns were well cooked, however the chicken was burnt to the extent it was rock hard on the bottom. The vegetables tasted as though they had been left stewing for hours, rather than being freshly cooked, and were luke warm. My main issue was the TINY pots of sauce, which were to be shared between two. I know it’s fairly common for restaurants to skimp on the accompaniments, but for me, cramming as much into a fajita is half the fun. The guacamole tasted as though it came ready-made, which seems inexcusably lazy for a restaurant which claims to ‘set the gold standard’ for food. Considering the fajita’s cost £30, I was expecting a fantastic meal. You could tell the ingredients were of a reasonable quality, but they hadn’t been cooked with any effort or skill. 

The staff were friendly, but seemed over-stretched and the loud electronic music was a little much for a restaurant. It felt as though the food was served as an afterthought, which could explain the poor quality. Next time I’m in Covent Garden, I’ll be heading to the far superior and cheaper, Wahaca, which sells fantastic Mexican street food. 

Delicious prawnys:


Not so delicious quesadilla:


Fajitas:


Navajo Joe on Urbanspoon

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