A pop up restaurant in the Waterloo vaults; graffiti laden walls and an ivy laced bar, Marcos is dressed as a traditional Italian family run restaurant. Opened by Forzawin, all thats on the menu is… Marcos meatballs, and a vegetarian option. The mezzanine restaurant only holds 36, so you have to book!
Tickets are £18 (inc booking fees) and for that you get a plate of meatballs, a glass of wine and a bit of family feud entertainment.
Besides eating meatballs, I literally had no idea what the evening had in store for us when I agreed to join Veg for a night of ‘meatballs and murder’. The location was very cool, in the vault under Waterloo Station, I’d never been before so I was impressed by how lively it was and the array of activities going on.
Upon entering Marcos I was greeted by the waitress who squeezed my arm and said “ooh lovely man” which I found quite funny (as I had heard her say it to the 3 guys in front of me too). They initially didn’t have enough space for us so they pulled 2 tables together and fetched a mix match of chairs for everyone. It took a while for our wine to arrive but it was quite pleasant and after about 15 minutes the meatballs began to emerge.
Bearing in mind it cost £18 I was a bit disappointing to see only 4 meatballs on top of the pasta. They did taste good but needed a bit more seasoning to be noteworthy, we asked for Parmesan cheese (which arrived after 5 minutes) which made everything taste much more flavorsome.
Overall the food was ok, nothing special but it was a fun night out and more of an experience over anything else.
There was a group of 10 of us and as mentioned above the restaurant only holds 36, so the only way the could accommodate all of us was to put a round table at the end of a bench table. The seating was a bit awkward.
We were served our wine in an Aperol jug, which was amusing and before long everyone was being served their meatballs. I assumed as they only served one dish, the vegetarian option would have been meatballs too, but instead we were presented with a plate of pasta with tomato sauce and a side of melanzane-esqe aubergine in tomato sauce with cheese on top.
The pasta was cooked to perfection, could not fault it. Aldente. The sauce however was pretty ordinary. Perhaps it is meant to compliment the meatballs, but on its own it lacked any wow factor. The aubergine bake again lacked in flavour, it tasted like they had layered it with the same sauce and a bit of onion, then whacked it in the oven.
I am in two minds about this review. In one, if you only serve one dish, it needs to be bang on, the best. In the other, the entertainment and antics of ‘Marco’ and his family more than made up for the average food. Not the sort of dining experience you have on any old night out for something to eat!