First they conquered San Sebastian, then Sevilla, Algarve and Mallorca. Now, the famous Mimo cookery school has landed in Borough Market. And these guys aren’t holding back when it comes to creating intimate and unique dining and cooking experiences.
Their downstairs cooking classes are where you learn about Spanish cooking, no matter your skill level – you definitely don’t have to be a MasterChef contestant to be able to enjoy Mimo. Here, guests learn how to make a banging paella, a whole host of seasonal pintxos and tapas, as well as Basque, Algarve and British classics.
But while the international Mimo team are known for these classes, they’re Chef Table experiences are where you go for utter indulgence. Park yourself upstairs in the main dining room overlooking Southwark Cathedral, around a long island bench with large exhaust fans overhead.
In the centre lies several clean and polished stoves ready to make some magic. Gather around one of the stools and get ready. Two chefs and a sommelier will take care of you throughout the evening as you watch and partake in the making of their multi-course feast.
Start with some bubbles before they crack out the famous Basque txakoli wine. This slightly sparkling, very dry white wine is what local Basque people drink throughout a hot day in the sun. It gets you in the spirit for an evening of Spanish-inspired eating and drinking.
Apart from this tipple, just about every other food and drinking option will be different each time they host a Chef’s Table dinner. The two chefs, Joseba Lasa and Ander Macho, will design the menu on the day or just a little further in advance after taking in all the dietary requirements of guests.
They’ll waltz around Borough Market the morning before, gathering locally sourced ingredients to use that evening. And once they’ve designed the menu, the head sommelier, Nobuko Okamura, will create wine pairings for each course.
It all comes about very naturally. The team brainstorm and get creative with one another – making something special each and every time. It will feel like you’re out to dinner at a mate’s place – just so much better.
Their entire team is full of energy and are happy to sip on a little wine while making your dinner. They’ll talk about Spanish cooking and culture and answer any questions you throw at them as they cook up dinner before your eyes.
For some of the plating, they’ll invite a few of the guests around to help out. Try as hard as you can, but you won’t make the dishes look as good as the chefs do. But that’s not the point. Cooking is meant to be fun and approachable – that’s what Mimo are trying to show here.
Roll up your sleeves, take another swig of wine, and try to make a sexy looking quenelle of ice cream. If you fail, who cares? It’s all a bit of fun anyway. The other dishes, done by the pros, will be Instagram worthy so there is no need to fear.
Stumble downstairs at the end of the night, past the small shop selling their wares, and find your way home after passing through the empty market at night. It’s all quite romantic and whimsical.
And while their dinners are the most celebrated of experiences, they do so much more. Take part in one of their Borough Market food tours, picking up fresh produce along the way. They’ll then create a personalised menu from what you’ve harvested – much like the MasterChef mystery box challenge.
We’re already thinking about which summertime lunch hour session to join so that we can get a little day drunk while noshing on all the best Basque food on offer at Mimo. There’s just so much Spanish goodness to choose from.
1 Cathedral Street SE1 9DE