Dinner on the Victoria Line

For 50 years the Victoria Line has been carrying weary commuters to and fro, from Walthamstow to central London and beyond. Over the years I’ve eaten breakfast and lunch on the move underground – but never dinner on the tube. That changed this week as we headed to the Tube Train Underground Supperclub, housed in a decommissioned Victoria line train carriage at the Pump House Museum in Walthamstow.Head chef Beatriz (Bea) Maldonado Carreno originally comes from Bogotá Colombia, and has worked in restaurants and supperclubs across South America and in London, developing her recipes and skills. She was most recently at Corazón – a renowned Mexican restaurant in Soho. Now this local chef is whipping up a wonderful six-course, Colombian inspired menu right here in Walthamstow. We love Colombian food and often enjoy weekends down at the Cafe Pueblito Paisa in Seven Sisters Latin American market. We’re used to big flavours, multiple carbs, lots of frying and BBQ-ing, and large portions. But this was a whole different style – Colombian fine dining.We kicked off the evening’s set Tasting Menu (£48 a seat) with a welcome drink. After the walk down to St James’ from Walthamstow Central and the challenge of finding and climbing into a tube train I happily downed a well-mixed Negroni, the other Walthamstowfoodie opted for an alcohol-free elder flower spritz. They have a ‘small’ and an extended ‘big’ drinks list, with prosecco and wine starting at £7 a glass and £19 a bottle. The house white and red were both delicious by the glass, although I never found out what they were.
First up was ‘Mousse de Alcachofa’ – a light and delicate artichoke mousse on guasca crackers. My Google search revealed that ‘guasca’ is a herb popular in Colombia with an artichoke-like flavour. However my Ecuadorian friend was explaining it is the type of oil used in the cracker … so who knows!
Next were the smallest ‘Arepas’ I have ever seen! Usually these hearty, Colombian street food staple are white corn flat bread stuffed or served with meat, cheese, egg, or beans. Here they were delicately topped with avocado, black beans, queso fresco (south american fresh cheese similar to feta) and tomato relish. Bea has turned messy, finger-licking street food into beautiful, Instagram-able dishes. But I was stunned by the drizzled sauce, Bea explained it was her twist on Hogao – a Colombian staple used like sofrito in almost every Colombian dish. It is simply tomatoes, onions and garlic to which she has added chipotle chilli.
Next we moved on to ‘Posta Negra’ – slices of Colombian style med rare rump of beef, served with a South American parsley and garlic chimichurri, and sweet balsamic glazed plantains. It was quite possibly the best beef I have ever tasted. Amazing flavour, served hot enough, yet the texture was so soft. It was completely moreish, I could have eaten a plateful and was regretting Bea’s efforts to make Instagramm-able fine dining plates. This was our favourite dish of the evening.
Following this was ‘Moqueca’ – a coconut and red pepper soupy sauce with steamed mussels, cod, prawns and squid served with coconut rice. The flavours in the soup were rich and the fish and seafood was all cooked perfectly, but I think it would have been better if they had been cooked in the sauce to create for of a fishy-flavoured soup like a bouillabaisse.
Then we were served an extra pre-dessert palate-cleanser 5th course a shot of a fiery lime & ginger granita.
Finally the 6th course dessert was ‘Bananos en Tentacion’ – another traditional Colombian and South American dish smartened up by Bea. This was bananas caramelised in orange and cinnamon, served on banana bread with coconut cream, crunchy granola and a spoon of refreshing orange water ice. Others stayed on drinking the night away, but we were well-fed and satisfied and of home. This proved to be a seriously tasty Colombian night out – highly recommended for a treat or special occasion, (although unfortunately not mobility accessible). Go to experience new flavours, lovely service and a novel night out in Walthamstow.

About walthamstowfoodies

We have a passion for good food – bought locally, cooked simply and shared with friends in Walthamstow, London and beyond
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