Madre at Escape to Freight Island
Tacos for the soul are on the menu at Madre, a spin-off of the popular Liverpool Albert Dock collaboration from the founders of London-based Breddos Tacos and Scouse favourites Volpi and Belzan.
Inspired by the food culture of Mexico City, Madre is a taqueria with its own “non-traditional, upscaled, ingredient-driven tacos” and a few other small offerings besides. Madre is the Spanish word for mother, and springing forth here are plenty of flavour-packed as well as colourful combinations. There’s smoky tatemada and popping orange-red achiote, zingy citrus and bright green guacamole. Tacos come in twos and you can expect a varied selection of punchy pick-up-able picks. For fillings, think slow-cooked beef with black beans or tempura-battered cod with jalapeño aioli, garlicky chicken thighs or deep-fried mushrooms. At the time of writing, we were licking our lips at the Iberico pork al pastor number, or “The taco og!”, as the menu put it: marinated pork neck and leg chargrilled and served with chilli de arbol, salsa brava and salsa verde (green salsa made with tomatillo and hot peppers), and slow-cooked pineapple.
On the side, or on their own, those ideas keep coming: Cadillac nachos with “all the salsa”; charred corn on the cob with chipotle and garlic mayo and Wensleydale cheese, and tuna tostada with avocado puree, unlike any tuna sandwich you’ve encountered before.