Day of the Dead 2023 at Wahaca


Summer sunshine might feel like a distant memory but at Wahaca, Autumn brings with it a bright, colourful celebration that’s as Mexican as they come – Día de los Muertos, or Day of the Dead. This vibrant fiesta is celebrated across Mexico every November and is an upbeat celebration of life, with friends and family gathering to joyfully remember the dearly-departed.

Throughout its Day of the Dead 2023 celebrations, which run from 4th October to 8th November, Wahaca will be welcoming some extra-special, skeletal guests! Each of its restaurants will be getting into the seasonal spirit by showcasing some specially-created calacas, the skeleton figurines that are traditionally displayed across Mexico during the annual fiesta. Hand-crafted for Wahaca by talented Mexican artisans from Oaxaca, the calacas create a fun focal point for restaurant visitors to remember lost loved ones – rather than embodying mournfulness, they’re designed to evoke joyous memories of our deceased relatives and friends.

Wahaca’s restaurants across the UK will also be decked out in traditional papel picado with specially-created altars reflecting the traditional ofrendas set up each year in homes across Mexico to honour loved ones that have passed away. During half-term week, younger diners can get involved and take home their own skeletal souvenir of the Day of the Dead with Calaca crafting activities at all Wahaca locations. And there’ll be a marvellous Mexican pop-up market in Emma Cons Gardens, adjacent to Wahaca Waterloo, from Thursday 2nd November to Saturday 4th November, where Mexican artisans based in the capital will be showcasing their wares. There’ll be free face-painting for kids, adult crafting sessions to create Mexican-style flower crowns and a Wahaca van serving tacos, churros and hot chocolate – all soundtracked by live Mexican music.

And last but certainly not least, Day of the Dead is an occasion that should always include some fabulous feasting – so Wahaca is introducing two new seasonal specials to celebrate. The Four cheese & jalapeño empanada (£6.75) is an indulgent twist on a street food favourite, oozing with a blend of British-made ‘Halloumi’, mozzarella, Monterey Jack and feta, and packing a subtle chilli kick. And raise a glass to the dearly departed with the Marmalade Mezcalita (£8.95) – Quiquiriqui Matatlán mezcal, zesty lime and a house-made guajillo chilli marmalade syrup, making for a sweet, smoky cocktail with a sophisticated spiciness. And on the evening of Day of the Dead itself, 2nd November, diners in every Wahaca restaurant will be offered a shot of Gran Centenario tequila on the house –  a wonderful way to round off the evening and toast lost loved ones.

Featured Photo by Daniel Lloyd Blunk-Fernández on Unsplash.

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