Tacos by guest chefs at Ghostboy Cantina

Author: Maggie Scardifeld
Photography: Courtesy of Ghostboy Cantina

Toby Wilson is lending his taquería menu to a roster of up-and-coming chefs on Monday nights.

When Toby Wilson opened Ghostboy Cantina in Sydney's Dixon House food court in February, his idea was simple: serve tacos to Chinatown with a focus firmly on deliciousness over authenticity. Now he's asking his friends in hospitality to do the same.

For the next phase of Ghostboy Cantina, Wilson introduces regular "Temp Taquero" nights. The series will see a different guest chef devise and cook their own taco menu for one night only. "We'll focus on unearthed talent," says Wilson. "Great chefs that aren't necessarily known to the public yet."

First up, on Monday 18 April, is Hugh Piper, former owner of The Copper Mill in Alexandria and a current chef at Two Chaps and Fleetwood Macchiato. "He staged at Astrid y Gastón in Lima a couple of years back and his parents are Peruvian," says Wilson. "It should be a cracker." Piper's menu for the night will reflect his heritage and include a mahi mahi and prawn ceviche tostada and a taco filled with ají de gallina, a traditional Peruvian chicken stew.

Other chefs confirmed to participate include Bar Brosé chefs Harry Levy, late of Alfio's in Leichhardt, on 16 May, and Michael West, who cooked at the Michelin-starred restaurant RyuGin in Tokyo for nigh on two years, on 30 May. West will dish up Japanese-leaning vegetarian tacos - perhaps Brussels sprouts with konbu and pepitas or winter greens and egg yolk.

"It's likely these chefs don't have 100 per cent control over what's served where they're working, and this is an opportunity for them to take control and get creative," says Wilson. "We may well have some more familiar faces every now and then but for the most part that won't be the case."

Temp Taquero menus will include three or four tacos and a few sides, with prices much the same as the usual Ghostboy menu - between $4 and $7 a dish. "Hopefully as it gains momentum more and more chefs will want to get involved and it's something we can do every Monday night, indefinitely," says Wilson.

High-five for the underdogs.

Ghostboy Cantina's Temp Taquero evenings, select Mondays, Dixon House food court, cnr Little Haymarket & Dixon sts, Haymarket, NSW. facebook.com/ghostboycantina







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