” And “why shouldn’t we put him through hell if the truth is that he’s an jerk? One Hamilton Place, Park Lane, London W1Rating: One of the ‘Overtures’ (or starters to you and me) at Ella Canta, a new high-end Mexican restaurant in The Intercontinental, Park Lane, is ‘Nationalistic’ guacamole.Flavours are bold, deep and gloriously unfettered – soft chunks of octopus wear a warmly smoky chilli sauce, threaded through with crisp slivers of deep-fried shallot. And there are verdant sprigs of coriander, and a blob of rich avocado purée, that stop things getting too intense.
Pickled salmon sits atop tiny tostadas, topped with an elegant slice of avocado, and more smoky heat from the chipotle.There’s the power of the street, with the refinement of a Michelin-starred kitchen.I’ve had some of my female readers complain that the term neediness makes it sound like I’m framing women as weak, fragile, insecure creatures that just cling to men (and stress them out). I think women bring a tremendous strength and power to the table in relationships…when they have access to it and are free of their own fears. Those fears are greater now more than ever really since there’s an entire industry devoted to making sure men and women are wrought with insecurities so they buy products (sowing in and agitating tiny insecurities is the bread and butter of the marketing world).My friend Manuel, a proud Chilango, had raved about the place. If you’ve never eaten real Mexican, prepare to be dazzled.
And if, like me, you sit in utter thrall to one of the greatest countries on Earth, Ella Canta is a true gran dama: bold, beautiful and quietly brilliant.Ancient and cutting edge sit merrily together, and her plates glow with the vibrant primary colours straight out of Mexican folk art.And while her technique often errs towards the high end (sangrita sorbet with a shimmeringly fresh ceviche, a slash of pineapple purée with soft shell crab ‘El Pastor’), this food has true Mexican soul.And one that encapsulates the cooking of Martha Ortiz, Ella Canta’s immensely talented executive chef.Because like the great Enrique Olvera of Pujol in Mexico City, she reveres the past, without ever getting bogged down in it.In order to have a truly fulfilling relationship (or even start a healthy relationship) with a great guy, you need to come from a place of strength, confidence, and fulfillment.