Tuesday 3 January 2017


I absolutely adore tacos, always have, always will, and to my delight this seems to becoming a bit of a trend in London. I am so on board with said trend that I'm determined to visit all the new taco places ASAP.

First on my list was brand new Temper in Soho. Opened by Neil Rankin, the chef behind the wonderful Smokehouse and Bad Egg, Temper is dedicated to barbecued meat and tacos. With a nose to tail philosophy, the whole animal is used and with the open kitchen and fire pit slap bang in the middle of the dining room you will exit this restaurant smelling of meat. But in a really good way. Rankin isn't a stranger to the concept of barbecued meat and tacos as evidenced from the carnivore heavy menu at the Smokehouse, thanks to his experience as Head Chef at Pitt Cue Co. Temper isn't a restaurant for the faint a heart, we were sat around the kitchen, only a few feet away from the roaring fire and meaty fumes and over the course of our meal the temperature slowly increased. Whilst it wasn't the most comfortable of dining experiences, the drama of an open kitchen, coupled with a stellar menu of big flavour dishes, meant our dinner was a fantastic experience.

Tacos are served in portions of two. I was surprised by how thick and stiff they felt compared to tacos I have previously come across. We started with the chipotle miso pork and aged cheeseburger. The cheeseburger tacos were one of my favourite items on the menu. Not only at the meatballs cooked perfectly medium rare, their rich taste and succulent texture made them incredibly moreish. I was pretty bummed to only have one to myself. The pork were another stand out item. With a decent kick of spice, these fatty nuggets of meat were absolutely heavenly.

Whilst our first two taco orders came fully assembled, the soy cured beef and the crab and pickled onion pork skin tacos were served as a do it yourself job. First things first, I found that the pot of filling was extremely generous considering you were given three tacos. You could easily accommodate a fourth taco for the amount of food on offer. Unfortunately I didn't enjoy these as much as the previous tacos. I don't have a problem with raw meat but the texture of the raw beef was just a bit too slimy for my liking. However it did have a pleasing umami taste. I felt that the crab taco lacked flavour and just tasted a bit bland compared to everything else we'd had thus far.

We were sat in front of the taco making press which I found quite mesmerising. Can I have one, please?

The 'main course' element of the menu is dedicated to various grilled meats with the nose to tail element meaning lots of different cuts are used. Portions are served in 100g portions which means you can order as much or as little as you please. If you're in the mood to try different things then you can order a variety of 100g portions. Or you can just order a 200/300g portion for one big meal.

We ordered 100g of roast goat which came on a generously sized flat bread. I wasn't sure how much 100g would be but it felt like a lot of meat. The goat had a nice chewy and crispy texture and tasted succulent and rich in flavour. The bread was fluffy, delicious and soaked up the meat juices nicely. I wasn't that keen on the mutton & aged beef kofta. The meat tasted a little dry with just a bit too much cumin for my liking.

I love roasted cauliflower and this jerk and pineapple concoction did not disappoint. The vegetable was cooked perfectly, with just the right amount of bite. The pineapple gave a refreshing burst of sweetness to the otherwise fiery jerk dressing.

Any time I see corn on the menu I have to order it. The grilled corn, lamb fat butter, mint and yellow chilli was another wonderful side plate thanks to it's slightly sweet and spicy taste.

There's quite a lot of side orders and veggie options available so even if you're not a meat eater there's plenty of choice. I've got my eye on the beef fat potatoes with raclette for next time.

Temper also serve a range of homemade sauces and 'sprinkles'. I wasn't a fan of the blackened pepper salsa, I think it was the over powering taste of carbon that put me off so I'd be keen to try the fresh tomato version next time. The 'sprinkles' are basically crispy dressings to add a little texture to the food. They all taste pretty similar to be honest but considering they were 50p each we decided to give them all a try. Don't bother trying them all, you won't taste the difference once they're on your food. But out of the three, the shrimp, peanut and lime zest was the most interesting.

A soon as I heard about the molten chocolate chip cookie dessert I knew I had to try it. Gooey, chocolatey and absolutely moreish this is cookie dough like I have never known before. Beyond indulgent, I, a self confessed cookie dough lover, found this too much to eat by myself so good thing I had Steve to lend a hand. This is rich, indulgent, and absolutely divine.

Despite a few dud options I absolutely loved our dinner at Temper. The portions are on the small side which means you're going to rack up a bit of a bill if you're very hungry but the quality of the food is worth it. I would return in a heartbeat and would urge you to visit as well for a special night out dinner. The service was perfect and being able to watch the food be prepared from the bar stools around the open kitchen was a fun touch. We even got chatting to the taco making guy who was incredibly knowledgeable and happy to talk about all the food.

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1 comment:

  1. This place looks so good!

    My dad actually has a tortilla press he brought back from Mexico so if you ever visit my parents' house, we can give homemade tacos a try. Ha!

    - Elodie x



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