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SEEN Talks to Enrique Vivas of Del 74 in Clapton

If you haven’t ventured yet into the wilds of Clapton, there to sample the many delights of Del 74, what’s keeping you? SEEN caught up with owner Enrique Vivas recently to get the lowdown on the fun, food and drink…

Enrique, many congratulations on such a fun-filled bar! What led you to open it in Clapton?

Thanks Eli, that’s always been the main objective, of my partner & great friend, Jorge Felizardo, to have a fun place and to have fun whilst doing it. We opened the first one in Clapton as it’s a great neighbourhood where a lot of exciting new places are opening; we like the people there and we like the atmosphere of the area. It’s not pretentious and we hate pretentiousness. For us is all about keeping it simple, keeping it real & Clapton reflects that to us.

Your lovely business partner, Jorge, hinted at a secret sauce. Tell us more… 

Jorge is my business partner and super friend – don’t know which sauce he was referring to, but all of our sauces are kind of a secret, Eli ;). I make our ceviche following the recipes from my aunt Patty, who learned a lot of the cooking secrets from my grandma, Amparito – and I make it trying to emulate the flavours I remember when eating ceviche by the beach with my family when still a little boy, growing up in Tabasco Mexico.

Del 74 is like London’s best-kept secret. Is that deliberate?

We are not trying to keep it a secret per se, but we just like that people are discovering it little by little and by word of mouth, as we want people to come by but with no expectations. My partner Jorge and I believe that these days, due to social media, expectations are overblown, in particular when it comes to food, and when your expectations are too high, there is nowhere to go but down.

Were your parents good cooks? Is that how you started?

My mom was and is an excellent cook, and my grandma Amparito is the greatest cook in the family, although these days Tia Patty seems to be taking the throne. I grew up watching my grandma cook, and one of my favourite activities as a kid, and even now, is to go to the market, at 6am, when the sun is just waking up, and get vegetables & fresh meat to cook the meal for the day – the smells were always my favourite part.

You’ve got some time to yourself (unlikely, I know!) You’re in central London. Where do you go?

Very busy indeed; to be honest I hardly ever go to Central London, I like it here in the East, but when I do go I like to go to Crobar with my partner Jorge and get plastered – there is no place with more laissez faire attitude than Crobar – Pretentiousness level = 0.

Thank you Enrique!

Del 74 Tacos
87 Lower Clapton Road
London
E5 0NP

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