"Top marks for being a fun, friendly and exciting place"Review Rating: Reviewed by KimT
Just a week after opening a permanent location (the pop up was very popular) Senor Ceviche was positively buzzing on Thursday evening. Mind you, with the huge number of young people piling into Kingly Court (accessed through a discrete doorway from Kingly Street that opens into a wonderful atrium courtyard with restaurants, bars and shops on three levels – there are lifts providing access to the upper levels) it would be hard for any venue here not to be busy.
The frontage is brightly coloured and the large windows open onto the terrace walk-way which makes it feel an integral part of the scene – although it is quite dark inside.
People were mostly in their 20s and 30s and the Soho tribe were noticeable by their presence. My companion and I felt we were probably two or three decades too old to fully appreciate the lively ambience and the loud music which included Motown and dance hits (we were surprised there wasn’t a more Latin feel).
There’s a small bar in one corner and some folk were eating up at a kitchen bar. We sat at one of the tables which are packed together adding to the informal and friendly feel of the place. The staff – a mixture of London locals and those of Latin origin – were utterly pleasant, friendly and welcoming. Attentive too.
They offered help immediately with the menus printed on the place mats – suggesting that we should order two to three dishes each and that they would be served in a random manner a bit like tapas. There was plenty of water provided and we enjoyed a couple of glasses of Soave (£6) although bottles of wine were reasonably priced.
There were a few stand out dishes:
Yucas – crispy fried cassava with garlic sour cream (£4)
Chifa Chicharonnes – crispy pork belly cubes with a sweet soy sauce (£6.50)
Jale mixto with jalepeno tiger’s milk – the few pieces of baby squid tempura were good (£6.50)
Flat iron anticuchos – beautifully cooked slices of tender beef on skewers (£8)
Tamarind BBQ chicken anticuchos – sticky, tangy sauce on skewers of chicken (£7.50)
(However, my companion commented that the chicken wings (£5) were disappointing).
The cusco quinoa salad of roasted vegetables, edamame beads, giant corn and crumbled queso (£6.5) was probably my favourite dish overall and I shall recommend it to my friends who are into low carb, healthy eating.
Whilst we tried a few of the ceviche and tiradito dishes (e.g. sea bream with avocado - £8, Chimbote – sweet potato, asparagus, avocado and red onion - £7) they used fresh and light ingredients but most were similar in flavour. My companion, who has tasted a lot of ceviche, suggested that the dishes were probably designed for the more Western palate. The patatas fritas with huancaina and tomato fondu (£4) was served as a large portion but appeared and tasted like fast food fries. And they arrived quite late in the meal so had to be eaten on their own.
So. Top marks for being a fun, friendly and exciting place that’s great for young folk to gather and share. But as the portion sizes are generally small, you’d need to buy quite a few more than recommended if you were hungry which might make it relatively expensive compared to similar establishments.
KimT reviewed Senor Ceviche on Tue 04 Nov 2014