Monday, February 26, 2024
HomeLondon foodRincon Costeno evaluation – an offally good style of Ecuador in Elephant...

Rincon Costeno evaluation – an offally good style of Ecuador in Elephant and Citadel

Broaden your horizons by consuming another person’s consolation meals

There’s a concept that for any international delicacies to take root and turn out to be well-liked within the UK, its numerous traditions, flavours, substances and dishes should be boiled down right into a collection of simply comprehensible archetypes. Sadly for an island that fortunately and absentmindedly trades in cliches and stereotypes, which means culinary cliches and stereotypes. Y’know the way it goes. The continent-sized collections of gastronomic customs from China and India have been dumbed right down to turn out to be chow mein and fried rice, curries and poppadums. Thai meals, and all of the wealthy, various produce inherent to it, has been tabloidified as purple and inexperienced curries with the interchangeable manufacturing unit farm protein of your selection.

If Ecuadorian meals have been to ever get such therapy, it most likely wouldn’t comply with the sample at Rincon Costeno in Elephant and Citadel. Offal and seafood, alone and together, are simple sufficient to recollect, however might be off placing to the many individuals on the market with stunted neonatal tastes. That does depart extra room for the remainder of us to take pleasure in Rincon Costeno’s many-splendored menu.

Soups from Rincon Costeno

The ‘soups’ at Rincon Costeno shouldn’t be neglected, and never simply because they’re usually hearty sufficient to be a light-weight/midweight meal in of themselves.

Caldo de Manguera paired slices of black pudding flecked with rice, paying homage to andouillette and Korean sundae, with squid-like rings of rumen tripe. The skinny and calmly oily, but moreish and earthy soup sure the hearty and tender twosome collectively to scrumptious impact.

illustrative photo of the caldo de manguera from Rincon Costeno
Black pudding, black magic.

Yaguarlocro was a equally skinny and umami soup. It wasn’t fairly as barnstorming because the Caldo de Manguera although, if solely as a result of the rumen tripe had been finely chopped, shedding a lot of their dimpled mouthfeel within the course of. It was nonetheless heartily filling although, with loads of potato and grainy black pudding to go round, in addition to avocado on the aspect for extra added richness.

illustrative photo of the yaguarlocro from Rincon Costeno
Chopped to bits.

Encebollado de Pescado had an virtually bisque-like aroma. This already eminently slurpable soup was helped alongside by meaty chunks of tuna, sharp purple onions and starchy but mild blocks of spud-like cassava. It might’ve carried out with much more of the latter, however that was my solely grievance right here.

illustrative photo of the encebollado de pescado from Rincon Costeno

Menudo con papas y mote was a soup of daring textures. Bobbing within the moreish liquid have been agency, meaty strips of dimpled rumen tripe, hearty potatoes and agency, then yielding comfortable kernels of mote corn. There’s nothing meek or apologetic about this soup, and nor ought to there be.

illustrative photo of the menudo con papas y mote at Rincon Costeno
A soup for kings and emperors.

Though produced from peanuts the thick Papa Mixta soup was paying homage to candy potato, albeit with extra nuttiness and fewer sweetness. Whereas pleasurable sufficient, it wasn’t as winsome by itself phrases as a number of the different soups right here. The velvety rumen and omasum tripe and tender potatoes greater than picked up the slack although.

illustrative photo of the papa mixta from Rincon Costeno
It’s fascinating how that is billed as ‘potato’ soup given the plethora of different substances.

Offal and seafood dishes from Rincon Costeno

The honeycomb tripe within the Bandera, chopped into slender strips, suffered from the identical lack of mouthfeel because the rumen tripe within the Yaguarlocro. It got here in a skinny peanut sauce that had a one-note moreishness to it, however it was genteel and inoffensive sufficient. Meaty swordfish and shrimp, served on the aspect, had the advantage of a modestly tangy and sprightly brine. That seafood duo appeared like an afterthought, relatively than an integral a part of the dish, though the 2 components have been pleasurable sufficient on their very own phrases.

illustrative photo of the bandera from Rincon Costeno
Served with comfortable, small-grained rice on the aspect.

Dense and meaty hunks of swordfish got here in a coconut-based sauce. The latter wasn’t wherever as cloyingly uninteresting as I had feared with a calmly creamy consistency and a crisp sweetness. The comforting, cosseting really feel of this dish was helped alongside by lashings of sentimental, small-grained rice and caramelised plantain.

illustrative photo of the encocado de pescado from Rincon Costeno
At this time’s fish dish is swordfish à la crème. Take pleasure in your meal!

Fritto misto (or misto fritto because the menu phrases it) consisted of surprisingly prime quality seafood. Plump prawns, agency squid and juicy white fish, cooked just-so, have been joined by a cluster of briney mussels, clams and cockles. Solely the predictably leaden scampi let the aspect down. The entire shebang got here dusted in a crisp, ethereal and feathery mild batter that, aside from the odd contact of grease, simply outclasses most different deep-fried efforts on this metropolis.

Crisp, puffy and lightweight chips, produced from cassava relatively than potato, have been equally exemplars of their variety. Deep-fried plaintains, dense but additionally stodgy, weren’t.

illustrative photo of the fritto misto from Rincon Costeno
Not your grandma’s fish and chips. Nicely, except she was from coastal Ecuador.

Deep-fried tilapia wasn’t as achieved because the fritto misto. The skinny curlices of the batter, seemingly lifted from some fried rooster, have been crunchy and moreish, but additionally a contact too oily. The white fish itself was a contact dry in locations and solely fairly mild, however the fish flesh did shear away from the various bones simply sufficient.

illustrative photo of the pescado frito tilapia from Rincon Costeno

I think the ‘roasted’ tripe had truly been pan-fried given the quantity of grease, however these abdomen strips have been nonetheless agency and wrinkly sufficient to be eminently scoffworthy.

illustrative photo of the roasted tripe from Rincon Costeno
Abdomen lining.

Meat dishes from Rincon Costeno

The goat stew was a extra coherent and thus extra satisfying dish than the Bandera. Tender, earthy goat meat got here off the bone simply, the sweetness and sourness of the calmly fruity sauce sticking simply to each chunk and sinew.

illustrative photo of the goat stew from Rincon Costeno
Served with comfortable, small-grained rice on the aspect.

Rincon Costeno’s model of pork hornado was a disappointing effort, the big expanse of bland whiteness made palatable solely by some tender moistness and an intermittently salty and moreishly browned crust. The included carby sides helped decide up a number of the slack. Subtly hominy-like mote corn was texturally intriguing, going from agency to puffy in a single mouthful. The notable factor concerning the wee discs of tortilla de papa wasn’t their light sweetness, however their mild and fluffy texture, someplace in between that of gnocchi and mashed potato. Which is suitably apt for a potato-based aspect dish.

illustrative photo of the pork hornado from Rincon Costeno
I stored misspelling ‘pork hornado’ as ‘pork twister’. Notice to self: would eat a pork twister.

Breaded rooster escalope was an unexpectedly joyous plateful. The breading was fine-crumbed, crispy and grease-free, whereas the flattened chook beneath was moist with a slight gamey high quality to it. Of the 2 complimentary carbs, the comfortable and separated small grained rice was preferable to the skinny, weedy and floppy fries. After such doughty dollops of carbs and deep-fried meat, the sharply refreshing salad of purple onion and tomato was extremely welcome.

illustrative photo of the chicken escalope from Rincon Costeno
Breaded rooster escalope (or rooster schnitzel/milanese if you’ll).

Should you’d favor your pounded escalope to be of beef relatively than rooster, then it’s simply pretty much as good with salty rump as a high-quality price range bovine drop-in.

illustrative photo of the carne apanada from Rincon Costeno
Rooster substitute.

Miscellaneous dishes from Rincon Costeno

Cured lupini beans, which may very well be taken as both a starter or a aspect, had a vegetal fattiness that meshed effectively with the nutty crunch of toasted corn. Even so, the entire shebang was far too dry. The small heap of juicy tomatoes, purple onions and coriander helped with this, however not for lengthy given the wee serving to.

illustrative photo of the cured lupini beans with toasted corn from Rincon Costeno
Has bean.

I like the thought of the bolon de verde, however not Rincon Costeno’s model of it. This fried ball of inexperienced plantain filled with coarsely floor pork was hearty and starchy, but additionally dry with a repetitively monotonous style bordering on bland.

illustrative photo of the bolon verde from Rincon Costeno
Consider it as a jacket potato cosplaying as an arancini or a scotch egg.

The ‘do-it-yourself’ ice cream definitely appears to have been whipped up on-premises, relatively than brought-in, introduced as it’s with a picket lolly stick jutting out of a plastic water cup. Though the frozen coconut milk/water might’ve been much less crunchy and grainy, it undoubtedly made for bracing palate-cleansing refreshment.

illustrative photo of the homemade ice cream from Rincon Costeno
Don’t get me began on the usage of ‘do-it-yourself’ on restaurant menus.

The Verdict

It’s unlikely that Rincon Costeno is aiming for mass market recognition, not with a menu chockablock stuffed with seafood and offal. As a substitute, it appears glad to ply its commerce with Ecuadorian expatriates. That’s why, I think, a lot of their menu is so immensely satisfying. Once you’re catering to the house crowd, thoughtlessly dumbed down caricatures simply aren’t going to chop it. 

I’ve usually wished that extra eating places would try to broaden diners’ horizons relatively than pander to their usually parochial, reactionary tastes. So it’s ironic {that a} restaurant that does simply that for many Londoners, or no less than these Londoners keen to step via their doorways, is one that’s truly enjoying it protected for its major viewers. Nonetheless, that doesn’t make Rincon Costeno’s offal and seafood dishes any much less pleasant. If something, it solely highlights how serendipitous consuming out in London might be.

What to order: Nearly something with seafood and/or offal in it.

What to skipPork hornado; Pescado frito; Bolon de verde.

Title: Rincon Costeno

Deal with: Arch 146, Eagle Yard Arch, Hampton Road, London SE1 6SP

Telephone: none listed


Opening Hours: seven days every week 11.00-20.00.

Reservations? Yeah, if you need.

Common value for one particular person together with comfortable drinks: £20-25 approx.

Score: ★★★★★



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

- Advertisment -
Google search engine

Most Popular

Recent Comments