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5 June 2013

The Burrito Bulletin: Daddy Donkey Review

I can't remember exactly when I was converted to the joys of Mexican food in general, and burritos in particular, although it was possibly on this trip to New York in 2011. The key breakthroughs were: a) not all Mexican food is super-spicy and b) I don't mind a little bit of spice anyway. Still, finding good Mexican food in London was pretty tricky until relatively recently, but now, thanks to the wonders of street food, it's relatively easy to find yourself an excellent burrito.

Daddy Donkey — kick-ass Mexican grill on Leather Lane.

But having tried a few, including Wahaca and Tortilla, my favourite is still Daddy Donkey. They have a burrito truck parked about halfway down Leather Lane, in Farringdon, weekday lunchtimes, although I noticed today that they were putting the finishing touches on a bricks-and-mortar outlet slightly further up Leather Lane. The more permanent version of Daddy Ds will be open for longer hours, by the looks of things, until late on Friday nights. Woo hoo!

The new Daddy Donkey branch — coming soon.

Anyway, you don't really need the pitch number for the burrito truck—just find the truck with the huge queue, which never sees to die down, even in winter, this being Farringdon. Today, it was gorgeous and sunny, so we had to wait even longer. Fortunately, Daddy Donkey is a very slick operation.

Daddy Donkey's burr-istas in action.

While you are queuing, you can choose your burrito adventure. I've always had the Daddy D Burrito, which comes with your choice of meat, black beans, coriander-lime rice, salsa, cheese and sour cream, wrapped in a flour tortilla. You can also go for tacos or even a small Daddy D, but the latter is only £1 cheaper and about half the size. The full-size Daddy D is very filling, but it's delicious. I almost always have chicken and mild salsa, but the carnitas options is also very tasty.

Burritos aren't very photogenic, but the Daddy D is
delicious. And huge.

Once you've chosen you start to give your order to the series of expert burr-istas, who will fill up your tortilla and wrap it neatly, so you only make minimal mess while eating it (but do take extra napkins. Trust me). £6-ish seems like a lot of money for a take-away burrito, but quite often, I'm still full come dinner time, even with the one-mile walk in each direction from my office. I've certainly never had room to add some guacamole or try the tortilla chips, but I'm sure they are yummy too. Although there is nowhere to sit on Leather Lane, there are a few parks and green spaces nearby. We usually go to St Andrew's Gardens on Gray's Inn Road, which is on the way back to the office, but you could also go to Gray's Inn Fields. I actually sometimes prefer to eat my burrito on the go because the inevitable rice and bean fallout is more likely to hit the pavement than land on my clothes. It's just the price you have to pay for the best burrito in London.

Daddy Donkey. Pitches 100-101 (and the indoor version coming soon), Leather Lane, London, EC1N 7TE (Tube: Farringdon). Website. Twitter.

Update: The Daddy Donkey shop is now open at 50b Leather Lane. Just in time for the English, er, summer.

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