Firebean (Mexican) – Gants Hill, Ilford
With clean and modern decor and spacious seating for 18, there’s a large plasma screen for your entertainment, but oddly no toilet facilities.
Having opened in 2015, they offer a fully Halal, Mexican-inspired menu, with traditional options to choose from.
The restaurant also keeps things interesting by offering a lunch time special, a student special, as well as a family combo.
With no shakes on the menu, we went for the imported Mexican drinks, Jarritos, specifically lime and cola.
But, and unless you actually enjoy a watered-down version of Coca-Cola, which is also available by the way, we’d stick with the former.
A far healthier and tastier option is a small glass of cold pressed orange juice sans the bits. Great on a hot summer’s day!
If you’re going to visit Firebean for just one reason and one reason alone, then it has to be for this Firebean Special Nachos!
What makes it so good? Well, the freshly made, inhouse nachos which, if you’re lucky enough to be served staight out of the fryer, were delightful.
Opting for the special allows one the choice of premium toppings, which, in our case, was the recommended lamb chilli, that certainly didn’t disappointment.
Had with the lashings of yellow cheese, the box was a generous portion of finely minced, flavourful lamb, sour cream that worked well against the heat of the jalapenos, the tangy-sweetness of the salsa, and the smoothness of the fresh guacamole. SUPERB!
The wings come in portions of 3 or 5. In our case, the wings supplied on the day were so small that management were kind enough to compensate by adding a fourth. Still, for £3, these wings weren’t very good value for money, to be honest.
Now these Mango Habanero Wings were divine!
Finger lickingly delicious, they were sweet and spicy, and so well sauced that you’ll wish there was an extra portion given the tiny size of the wings.
As good as these Buffalo Wings were, particularly in comparison to most other places, they simply didn’t compare to the above.
May be next time we will ask for a mix of both.
Choose from beans, rice, vegetables and sauces. Just remember, the home made sauces are chipolata mayonnaise, salsa verde and salsa roja.
What we ended up with was a bit of everything, which, quite to our surprise, resulted in the best main on the day.
The bowl could have been a little larger, especially when compared to the cheaper naked bowl version served in West London’s Gringos.
Having said that though, this is a healthy option that’s also extremely delicious.
At this point, we decided to go off-menu and sample three different meat-oriented tacos. Note, that aside from the rice, there’s also the choice of beans with these tacos.
The Garlic Mushrooms Taco consisted of sauteed mushrooms in fresh garlic, with black beans, cheese, sour cream and chipotle mayonnaise. Sadly, the sour cream and chipotle mayonnaise sauce ended up overwhelming everything within the vicinity, particularly with the saturated mushrooms tasting of nothing.
As for the Beef Steak Taco, then this too was rather disappointing what with the so-called chargrilled beef strips with pinto beans turning out tasteless and anything but tender. Again topped with cheese, sour cream and chipotle mayonnaise.
But, it was the Lamb Chilli filling that rescued things somewhat. The minced lamb baked in Mexican spices with pinto and black beans, cheese, sour cream and chipotle mayonnaise, all came together well.
Since the tacos are small, it gives one the opportunity of mixing and matching, and trying a variety of combinations.
We went for the chicken tinga which was filled to the brim with spicy shredded chicken that was moist and well flavoured.
With the sheer assortment of ingredients, the combination made for a flavourous sandwich.
A great option both in terms of taste and size.
The lack of dessert options meant that they kept things traditional. As such, there’s churros covered in cinnamon sugar.
The two dips available are chocolate and caramal, which were nice and work equaly well as an option.
The more adventurous option, and certainly the more tastier, is the chocolate filled churros.
Accompanied by a caramel dipping sauce, you can’t go wrong with this!
- NO/ NO
- UBER EATS
- JUST EAT
- TAKE AWAY
The beef and lamb are HMC-sourced, and the chicken HFA.
With a 5-star hygiene rating, the place is essentially astrictly fast food restaurant. and if you stick to our menu recommendation you can't go wrong.
Although there's no toilets available, takeaway is available, along with delivery via three leading companies.
A lunch menu is on offer between 11am-3pm every Tue-Thur for just £5.99.
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