8 May 2014

Machete, Victoria Park and The Petebox

I'll let you into a secret - I've never had a burrito. The stalwarts of street food trucks everywhere, peoples' go-tos and a Mexican-via-America export, I'm obviously the shame of all eaters everywhere. I can't go a day without seeing a recipe for a burrito, taco or similar popping up somewhere and the popularity of outlets such as Freebird, Wahaca and Chipotle mean I really should have my wrist slapped.

After a fantastic night at 8 Hoxton Square and a rather boozy rest of the evening spent dancing round the living room, it was safe to say I wasn't feeling my best come Sunday morning. When your head's pounding and things are a little fuzzy but the sun has firmly got his hat on, there's no excuse but to get outside and soak up the weather.

I was meeting my friend Pete (aka The Petebox, the world's best beatboxer, check out his hugely popular Pixies cover below) for a late lunch. We've been pals for years but realised that hanging out happens every six months at best so it was high time to catch up before he hurtled back home after a gig.

A stroll through Victoria Park took us to the village and grabbing the first empty table we could find, we ended up at Machete, a small Mexican cafe that promises big things. The cocktail menu looks inspired but, I'll be honest, I barely looked past the Bloody Jesus Mom - the classic Mary made with tequila and a definite lifesaver with the perfect amount of kick.

The food menu is simple with towering plates of nachos on offer, tacos and, of course, burritos. There's a first time for everything so I bit the bullet and ordered the carnitas (pork) burrito and was definitely not disappointed. As thick as my arm, the burrito was stuffed with the melt-in-the-mouth pork, black beans, salsa, lettuce and warm brown rice that made eating it in an attractive manner nigh impossible. No big deal though, dip it in the cool tomatoey salsa and hope that your old pal Pete doesn't notice it smeared all over your face.

Slowly recuperating, I found it hard to finish so palmed the rest off on Pete who wolfed it down. A quick mid-afternoon stop for coffee at Loafing (grumpy staff), a stroll back through the park and some obligatory chocolate later and the day was over with encouragements to move back to London ringing in Pete's ear.

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