As the latest addition to the shiny new BH2 complex in Bournemouth’s town center, Las Iguanas is a super vibey Latin American restaurant and cocktail bar. Right up my street.
I’ve been to their Brighton restaurant before and made the most of their ‘2-4-1’ cocktail bonanza but I haven’t been for food for a long a time. So, kudos to the lovely Heather (East Dorset Foodie) for passing me her invitation to the grand opening evening last Thursday – it was so much fun!
The evening began with an incredibly warm welcome from two carnival princesses in head-to-toe carnival get-up, the management team, PR team and marketing manager.
We were happily shuffled towards the Las Iguanas Head Bartender who had joined the team for the evening to give VIP guests (ooh-err) the chance to get hands-on and learn how to make their own Caiprinihas. Passing their absolutely fab neon sign which translates as “I love you a lot” (or there abouts), Tash and I perched at the pop-up bar and got to work…
Recipe: start with a generous handful of limes, teaspoon of sugar, mash it up, pack full of ice, glug in 5 seconds worth of Cachaca, give it a good stir, top up with ice and enjoy!
With a cocktail in-hand, we were taken to our table and offered the chance to try a couple of different courses each on the house! Excitingly, Las Iguanas have a separate vegan/veggie menu which made our lives much easier.
As we browsed the selection of fresh flavours – mouths salivating – we were approached by a lovely waiter who spotted our matching watermelon phone cases and recommended we try a couple of Watermelon Magaritas. The resulting photo was snapped by their photographer!
So, we started our evening in the best possible way – now how about the food?
For starters, we shared a Fiesta Ensalada with mixed leaves, carrot, cucumber, pink pickled onions, oven-dried tomatoes & fresh avocado, tossed in a poppy seed dressing. Beautifully fresh!
For the main event – I went for the Portobello Mushroom Fajitas which boasted to be “freshly-cooked to order in our special mix of spices, onions & peppers. Dished up sizzling, with guacamole, jalapeños, roasted tomato salsa & soft wheat tortillas.”
Second to curry, I would say Mexican is probably the second most frequently cooked and eaten world food in our house and frankly, these fajitas knocked my socks off. Packed full of flavor and practically served a mountain as a portion – an absolute steal at £13.95 and so good I think I’ll probably order the same thing again next time I go!
Tash wanted to try something different and chose the Moqueca De Palmitos – a creamy coconut curry with butternut squash and charred red peppers, garlic & fresh tomatoes. In her words, the presentation of the food on a candle-lit burner made its arrival to the table feel extra special. As for the meal itself, it was a delicious creamy blend of coconut and spice – warming and tasty.
We made the most of our drink tab by testing a couple of Piña Coladas and a pitcher of New Gin & Juice out, just to make sure they were all of a high quality. Despite seemingly tasting a little low on the actual alcohol content, they were fresh and beautifully mixed which helped to give our meal more of a party feel – this is a great location for a bash!
And with a final course spare (but with practically no space left in our tummies) we shared a Tembleque which was sort of a cross between a coconut, a crème brulee and a jelly. It looked great and was another whopping great portion size (for those with big appetites) but the texture was a little strange. I’ve always had a preference for savoury foods though and I’m not much of a pudding lover in general so no complaints.
All in all, the night was an absolute blast – the interior design is really well put together to provide a cosy dim-lit spot for couples to canoodle but also offers buzzing latin beats and a cocktail menu as long as my leg for those who want a dining fiesta. We also want to give a BIG shout out to the entire team who work there and who were each extremely attentive and warm at every given opportunity.
The launch was a roaring success and I’ll be heading back as soon as I can for some more of those mushrooms!
(Hero image – Credit: Paul Underhill)
|Invited by PR company?||Yes|
|Guest of chef/restaurant/owner?||No|
|Restaurant/outlet knew ahead we were bloggers?||Yes|
|Was the meal complimentary from the restaurant?||Yes|
|Any complimentary items provided by restaurant/outlet?||Yes|