Pachamama

Restaurants, Peruvian Marylebone
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(24user reviews)
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Fetch me a llama! I need to make a sacrifice. That’s the way to show gratitude to Pachamama. In Peru, Pachamama is the goddess Mother Earth; in London, she is a new Marylebone restaurant. But the name is apt: this is a place to revere. Four pillars underpin the Quechuan cosmos (water, earth, sun and moon), and four pillars support a great restaurant: food, service, decor and ambience. This hotspot has it all – and a price tag that mere mortals can afford.

We arrived with no great expectations. There’d been no buzz about the place, and we’d have walked past the door had we not been looking for it. Just another Peruvian bandwagon-jumper, we assumed, trotting down the stairwell into the basement. Oh, how wrong we were.

Firstly, it looked gorgeous. There was a thoughtful mix of rough and smooth, like a beautiful old hacienda in the process of being done up: chunks of plaster knocked out of the pillars, pretty vintage lampshades, wooden dressers full of pot plants. Low lighting, laidback Ibiza sounds and a constant influx of impeccably groomed twenty- and thirtysomethings (where do they all come from? Are the cooks cloning them in the kitchen?) made for a vibe that was electric. Not bad for a restaurant that had been open for less than a month, and should by rights have been inhabited only by friends, family, and bloggers with big cameras. On weekends, said our nothing’s-too-much-trouble waiter, the place goes from being ‘civilised party’, to ‘party party’, with a DJ on the decks from 8pm to 11pm. Wine kicks off at £4.50 a glass; all cocktails cost £8.50; the tasting menu’s £35.

But the best surprise was that the food looked – and, crucially, tasted – just as good as the crowd. Modish (but never wacky) Peruvian plates combined finesse and flavour with aplomb. A terrific sea bass ceviche came with chunks of crunchy radish and tendrils of samphire – a nice twist. Dinky skewers of chargrilled veal heart on a delicate celeriac purée would have converted even fervent offal avoiders (tip: ask for the fiery salsa on the side). Then there was a sweet baked plantain, offset by crumbly, salty feta and a mild aji (chilli salsa). And to finish? A bowl of glistening rice pudding, with buried treasure of tangy damson chunks at its centre, a scoop of fragrant own-made cinnamon ice cream melting on top and a smattering of toasted, flaked almonds. Divine.

All hail Pachamama! we say. Now, where’s that llama?

By: Tania Ballantine

Posted:

Venue name: Pachamama
Contact:
Address: 18 Thayer Street
London
W1U 3JY
Transport: Tube: Bond Street
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Average User Rating

4.3 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:14
  • 4 star:6
  • 3 star:0
  • 2 star:2
  • 1 star:1
LiveReviews|24
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Tastemaker

Pachamama is tucked away in a basement that is actually much bigger than you are led to believe when entering down the narrow stairway. Inside it's an eclectic mishmash of furniture, memorabilia and photos. The clutter could almost be Victorian... until you notice all the South American details. The rustic decor, dominated by wood, pastels and soft lights, feels like you are at your friend’s cozy home, and so it only makes sense that the menu is designed for sharing. That and the fact that the portions are actually tiny. 

It’s more of a fusion really, than traditional Peruvian. Pisco sours and the dishes we've tried (we had 6 between the two of us) were good to great. I would return for the food.

But one thing you need to be aware is the service. It was really friendly, but also really bad: we could never spot our waiter when we needed him and no waiters to be found became a recurring theme of the night and a running joke between the diners - we were always looking for our waiter, any waiter!

Interestingly, Pachamama's is the best managed Google account I've seen: they are so engaging and so responsive to every review. If only they could apply the same zeal to servicing their customers in real life!

tastemaker

All the food is made for sharing, making this the perfect place to visit with a group of friends. All of the food was delicious, making it hard to pick a favourite dish. A place we will be visiting again. 

tastemaker

I came here for Sunday brunch and loved the joint.

The surroundings are an instagrammer's wet dream and the food/ flavour combinations completely delicious. 

I had beetroot-cured smoked salmon, avocado and poached egg on a sweet potato waffle. It was as tasty as it was beautiful to look at. 


The staff were friendly, ambiance was good... basically, no complaints were had. 

Not a cheap brunch option but definitely a great spot for a "treat yo'self" kind of day.

tastemaker

I will admit, waffles are not my first choice when it comes to carb choices for brunch but I am a convert after tasting the waffles at Pachamama. I wanted to try them out because a) they looked beautiful and so aesthetically pleasing on Instagram and b) I love to brunch.


When my friends wanted to catch up over a meal, I suggested Pachamama so I could finally give it a try and to find out whether I truly don’t like waffles (turns out I do like them!). We had a cute table at the back, under a small roof, which allowed for great natural lighting shining down on our table (perfect for pictures ;)). It was also a quiet space so it was easy for us to chat amongst ourselves without having to shout across the table.


All three of us ordered the brunch waffles with two of us getting savoury ones and one friend getting a sweet flavour. I had the Beetroot-cured Smoked Salmon with avocado and a poached egg on a sweet potato waffle.


The sweet potato waffle base was what changed my mind. I don’t like waffles because of how crisp and airy they are, I much prefer a good cake-y bite. These were super soft and fluffy and surprisingly didn’t feel heavy in my stomach after finishing it! The beetroot-cured smoked salmon was absolutely delicious! I liked how it was thick-cut and I could see the red/purple colour from the beetroot. There was half an avocado, which was sliced nicely and the poached egg was done well too – a perfectly runny yolk! It was garnished with micro greens and some syrup, which I liked because it wasn’t overly sweet and complemented everything in this dish.


Overall, I had a great dining experience because the food was genuinely so good. It had the perfect combination of ingredients to make it a brunch dish, the waffle was soft and fluffy, and I didn’t feel sickly after indulging in a waffle! Definitely a brunch option I will be coming back too.



tastemaker

This was delicious! Went here with some friends for food. We got the breakfast. The waffle are amazing. The combination with the sweetness , eggs and bacon was good. We sat at the bar, so we had the view of the bartender. You could definitely tell that the bartender knew what she was doing! Unfortunately we did not get any drinks that day, but would definitely come back for the drinks! The atmosphere at the restaurant was nice, the staff was friendly. A place to recommend!

tastemaker

Was here for dinner, love the music and the decor of this place. Staff were warm and friendly. Food was good as expected, the small bites like the blue crab and pork recommended by the staff were delicious. Have tried most Peruvian restaurants in town so was amazed how different the dishes here are. The ceviche in passion fruit is unique but spicy, lamb leg was stunning, duck with rice is extremely tender and soft. I love the prawns which was very nicely cooked. The meal was pricey, ended up around 70 pounds per person with a carafe of wine. However still worth giving this a try!

Tastemakertastemaker

A last minute decision to eat brunch at Pachamama was a stroke of good fortune. A beautiful colonial style restaurant serving fantastic Peruvian food with a pisco cocktail menu to suit any mood. The waitress told me they serve the best pisco sour in London and I have to admit, it was pretty good!

tastemaker

This is one where I disagree with the rest of the reviewers on the star rating..... 


I am only giving this two stars because the food itself is the saving grave however the prices are so expensive for what you are getting. The octopus dish was £19 and literally had one tentacle with lots of potato which bulked it out. 


Its very much like tapas and they suggest about 3 dishes including sides per person. The average price for the meat or fish dishes are £16!  


As you can imagine its expensive and 4 4 people who had one alcholic drink each the final bill came to £185 including service charge. 


Tasty, granted, but the sizes are epically small. Dont come hungry! 

tastemaker

Not much to add, if you are looking for a new brunch to try, go there. If you have people visiting, go there. If you want to innovate on the traditional eggs royale, go there. I went to Pachamama for brunch last weekend and it ended up being one of my best brunch experiences in London. The sweet potato waffles with bacon and eggs on top are super original and decently priced for that quality, deffo recommend it.

Tastemaker

Came here for a Sunday brunch, not knowing what to expect. I knew it was peruvian but peruvian sunday brunch just sounded something really unique. I was definitely not disappointed. I had some of the most delicious sunday brunch food (although it really isn't like a sunday roast that you traditionally think of) and it was at rather affordable prices considering the area it is located in. The staff were extremely friendly and went through the menu in great detail. Our waiter was also kind enough to point out some of his favourite dishes and we went ahead with his recommendations. We definitely did not regret the quinoa waffles, even though we were apprehensive at first. Finally, there is probably a UK first or even world's first photo printing booth in the restaurant that is linked to Instagram. So this is one for the foodies who love to show off their snaps while they dine.

Tastemaker

Really good food, beautiful presentation however very expensive for what it was

I wouldn't be able to afford to come back unless special occasion
Well worth one visit though - rating based on price and restaurant atmosphere 
The brunch menu also looks fab!
Tastemaker

I came here with a friend when Pachamama was launching their new brunch menu, which included new appetizers and savoury waffles. I immediately fell in love with the interior design, which seems like a mess at first, but the basement location of the restaurant made for a somewhat secretive atmosphere, with airplants lining the ceiling, lit by skylight. There's a few quirky artpieces as well, such as a hat donning horse, and gorgeous instagram worthy neon signage. A restaurant is only as good as its food though, and I have to say I was not disappointed. We ordered the pork belly, sea bass ceviche and two waffles (one quinoa, one sweet potato, with fried chicken, eggs and bacon). We were quite full and satisfied after that. My only concern was that the appetizers and ceviche were served in rather small portions, so be prepared to order a few dishes if you're coming here. Otherwise, interesting concept, and definitely worth a venture out to Mayfair for for a Sunday brunch. 

Tastemaker

The options of ceviche and pisco sours available on food and cocktail menus across the capital demonstrate Londoners’ appetite for Peruvian cuisine. It’s therefore unsurprising that a few swanky Peruvian restaurants have popped up, riding on the coattails of this demand. The interest in Latin-American food stems from its vivacious colours, a healthy focus on fish and grilled meats and its reliance on fresh herbs and ingredients. The balance of acidic citrus flavours with hints of spicy heat makes it highly palatable- after all, our taste buds have been seasoned to Mexican flavours and we’re eager to embrace something equally bold and delicious.


One of the establishments that specialises in Peruvian fare is Pachamama, located in Marylebone, just a hop and skip away from the bustle of Oxford Street. Inconspicuous from street level, a descending stairway separates central London from a vibrant hacienda of rustic-cum-chic décor. Despite its subterranean setting, the restaurant doesn’t feel stale or claustrophobic- the atmosphere is breezy and lively and the chirpy waiting staff flow between tables, constantly demonstrating an open and warm demeanour. 


Pieces of rustic furniture- think stripped antique sideboards and retro fringed lampshades- feature alongside exposed brickwork and whitewashed walls. Lightbulbs hang from strings overhead and inaugural visits are marked by a vase of simple white blossoms placed on the table. These elements intermingle to create a space that is fun, casual and quirky.


We were drawn to the idea of a Peruvian brunch, a new menu offered by the restaurant, and made a reservation for a Saturday afternoon. It was busy, but the floor was well staffed, so servers were always poised and approachable. I immediately spotted the tell-tale sign of a visual feast: mobile phones and cameras were at the ready to capture each plate as it arrived. It wasn’t difficult to see why- the plates whizzing by were ornate and assembled with an artistic touch- each one a humble waffle in glorious Technicolor.


Our waitress was enthusiastic and went through the brunch menu with us in detail. Waffles were made from either sweet potato (gluten-free) or quinoa, the former a naturally soft and sweet base while the latter was more textured and dense. Selections of sweet and savoury toppings were possible, six in total. Waffles were larger dishes and were best shared- especially because they came out of the kitchen as they were prepared. It was suggested that we order one of the sides each.


I immediately honed in on the beetroot cured salmon, avocado and poached egg while my boyfriend leaped on the buttermilk fried chicken with yacon & aji sauce. I also ordered the aubergine with pecans and smoked yogurt on the side- apparently the restaurant’s most popular choice. 


My salmon was infused with a stripe of blazing red from beetroot and the avocado was perfectly ripe. The egg was poached to perfection and burst its golden yolk with a gentle prod. The flavours were fresh, simple and satisfying. There were no table sauces or accompanying condiments on the plate, however- the squishy potato waffle would have benefited from this, as a single egg didn’t provide much yolk and it was slightly dry as a consequence. 


The side was more of a revelation. The pieces of aubergine were tender, pulling apart effortlessly and revealing a soft, fleshy inside. Marinated in a smoky sauce that was rich and moreish, it sat in a creamy yogurt bed and was generously topped with crunchy chopped pecans. The textures and nuances made this a standout dish- it vacillated from being sweet, smoky and sticky in a single forkful.


The fried chicken topping was perhaps the star of the waffle menu- it was extremely popular with adjacent diners that afternoon and irrefutably delicious. This boasted a crunchy exterior with a perfectly moist centre without a single bite of stodgy mush. The sweet sauce drizzled over the dish was like honey. The syrupy sweetness sang in unison with the savoury chicken (because sweet and savoury can coexist when done properly).


The food was visually impressive and the service was superlative, but I recommend that you select your dishes with the intention to share- we chose a waffle each, both from the savoury menu, and lamented not going one sweet and one savoury. My waffle also arrived promptly, but I was almost finished by the time the second one arrived. Be prepared for tapas style brunching.


We had an enjoyable and tasty brunch at Pachamama- the ambience was more lively and casual than I expected and service was impeccable. The food was artistically presented and appealing. The only deterrent was the price point, so we’ll be limiting our brunch trips to Peru for special occasions- unless we come across some lost Inca gold, that is.

Tastemaker

I can't believe I hadn't been here before even though I pass by it a couple of times a week. We were looking for a last minute lunch option today and craving Peruvian food, that is how we ended up at Pachamama. Lovely South American accents and a big space with a lovely looking bar was awaiting us when we walked down the stairs from the entrance. Latin American songs were playing in the background and it got us in the right mood. We started with seabass and samphire ceviche which was delightfully citrusy, and the Peruvian corn in it was a surprising crunchy accent. Then we moved onto to the warm starters : the Fried chicken was matched well with the spicy sauce and the smoked cheddar tequenos ( fried spring rolls) were a pleasant surprise. I did't care too much for the aubergine dish which was served with a sweet yogurt sauce. But the burger which was called Pan con chicharron was surprisingly very tasty and was enjoyed with the herbed potato chips. The cocktail menu looked really intriguing but we decided to leave that to the next time. 

Tastemaker

Pachamama in Marylebone is a delightfully folkish looking restaurant which serves up stunning Peruvian cuisine using some of the most extraordinary ingredients to produce and intriguing menu!


The restaurant itself is beautiful and although it is quite a large space, it doesn’t seem so until you look closer because of the small snug concaves and cozy sectioned spaces. The décor is composed on low lighting, exposed areas of brick wall, vintage lampshades and wooden dresses with pot plants resting on top – very welcoming indeed!


Pachamama scores highly for me. The food, service, decor and ambience were all unique and amicable. As the food wasn’t heavy and the menu changes here with the seasons, I will definitely be returning to see what new delights grace the menu!


I was at this restaurant twice. Wonderful authentic Peruvian food, great friendly staff and magical cocktails, especially Pisco punch and Pisco sour !!!


Incredible experience. delicious food, highly recommend Ceviche See bass. Was very friendly service)


We booked last minute for 8 people over the phone. I.e. They were not full but they still asked for credit card details to confirm booking, which I provided over the phone.

At no stage did they indicate minimum spend.

When we arrived they said it is a MANDATORY £45 per person for food and we have to order wine. They further indicated that if we left they would charge the credit card for the full amount so we ended up staying.

We ordered 5 beers and they brought 8 beers instead. They charged us for 8.

My mother asked for a cognac with a mix on the side. They got this order wrong 4 times.

We were put in separate room and asked for aircon to be turned up. We had to ask 6 times before they did this.

They brought us lunch menus and when we asked for the dinner menus (it was 8pm) they neglected to bring them for 25 minutes and then told us to order because the table needs to be made available for another party.

The waiter was arrogant and dismissive.

We ended up spending £650 at Pachamama and left with very sour taste in our mouth.

I am a lover of food and a well traveled person and in 15 years of regular traveling this is the first time I have felt so strongly about the experience that I went to the trouble of writing a bad review.

Disgusting attitude by senior management.


Friendly environment, great music, amazing cocktails and the food travels you into the heart of Peru as our staff tries to turn your night out into a great experience.

Tastemaker

Great cuisine, and a great little semi-private dining space with a round table (because, as we all know, with a traditional rectangular set-up there's always a fun end and a boring end). Their brunch is very good too, especially if you can get the all-you-can-drink pisco punch deal for £15. 


Outstanding food and attentive but not intrusive service, great atmosphere and brilliant cocktails. We did the party menu which is lots of smaller courses and they were all fantastic but especially the ceviche. I can see why Alyssa may have thought the portions were too small but I disagree - it is all about quality over quantity and that is what this sort of place is all about.

"title"


The two star rating is down to the small portions- bipolar service and pace- and no tasting menu. The menu was interesting and had lovely flavour- but portion size was incredibly small. I'd have a much bigger lunch before dinner here again. We had complete plans to try the £35 tasting menu which was not available. The staff sighed and said "I guess we could try to do something for you... "Not exactly wanting spit in our food we ordered off the menu. Our starters and mains came in rapid fire succession making what should be a relaxed dinner a 35 min drive through experience. And while our food came so fast making eye contact for a second drink was like playing wheres wally in a room full of candy canes. Disappointed overall because it so easily could have been 5 stars. Atmosphere, DJ, and pisco sours were top notch.

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