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Entries in Blog (51)

Wednesday
Mar282012

Istanbul Dining - Hamdi Restaurant

March 22 saw the beginning of my fourth trip to Istanbul, but despite three previous trips all at least three days long, I had never eaten at a proper Kebab place. This was to be the trip that changed. The Boyfriend, instructed to find me the best kebab the city had to offer settled on Hamdi, a restaurant that caters to both tourists alike so that Friday, The Boyfriend, five friends and I decided to try it out.

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Sunday
Mar042012

Novikov - Another Mayfair Italian


Another week, another Friday night, another Mayfair Italian. This week the restaurant in question was Novikov, the new complex on Berkeley Street housing a bar, an Italian restaurant, and a Pan-Asian. As tacky as the concept seems - two restaurants in one - for some reason it works. Most likely because of the location, on Berkeley Street, which means it gets all the people who can’t get reservations/space at the bar at Nobu. To cut a long story short, within a few short months Novikov has become the place to be. 

 

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Sunday
Mar042012

Burger & Lobster & The Failure of Capitalism

The free market seems to be failing in London's restaurant scene. The incredible lack of decent places to eat - combined with a population of seven million people, means that the good restaurants now fall into two distinct categories. 1) The ones that accept reservations, and require booking a month in advance to secure a table on a Saturday night 2) The ones that don't accept reservations, and require showing up at around 6pm to ensure being able to eat that night. 

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Wednesday
Feb012012

Top 10... First Date Restaurants

First dates are usually stressful enough without having to factor in where to go for dinner. So here goes, Top 10 best first date restaurants in London. 

 

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Wednesday
Feb012012

Babbo - London, definitely not New York



How the people behind Babbo got away with taking the name of one of the most famous Italian restaurants in NYC's name, I don't know. All I know is that ever since it opened, its been on my list, just like the one in NYC. Deep in the heart of Mayfair, the crowd is surprisingly un-scene - a mix of business people, and older couples - not a flash of a red sole in sight. As per usual, I was optimistic about Babbo, mainly because of a) the name b) this interview here, in which the chef states his favourite restaurant is La Petite Maison. As we already agree on what a good dining experience is - this was clearly going to be the place for me. Sadly, fate just didn't want me and Babbo to have that special connection. Our experience was one of the most disappointing I've had in a while.

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Monday
Jan302012

Dinings

 

When people ask me what my favourite Japanese restaurant is - my reaction is always Dinings. This answer is always met with the same response - "Where? What about Zuma? Or Nobu? Or Umu?" Nope, as much as I love all three, there is something nice about the utilitarian approach of Dinings, where one gets the impression, that this place is serious about their food. There is little in the way of atmosphere, and the decor is bland, although service is perfectly acceptable. 

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Sunday
Jan082012

Automat  -


The Boyfriend and I have a bit of a tradition, its a relatively new tradition tradition but still , of getting a long drawn out boozy lunch on New Year's Eve. Over Bob Bob Ricard, last year's location, we were in search of some other relaxed, moderately priced, cool restaurant.  This year it was Automat an upmarket diner in the heart of Mayfair - a restaurant that has been on my eat list ever since I heard about their Truffle Mac and Cheese and the invite only club downstairs

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Wednesday
Dec142011

The Balcon - As chic as Chanel?

Thistime last year, The Boyfriend and I headed to Brasserie Roux, as apre-Nutcracker pit stop, and ate a selection of rather uninspiring food intheir grand but empty dining room. This time, we headed back to visit their newversion – The Balcon, as a pre-Nutcracker pit stop and found it to be a verydifferent experience. They've clearly tried to make the place cool - it'sinspired by "Coco Chanel's 1920's Paris apartment". Theyare possibly under the misguided view that if they throw the words "CocoChanel" in a restaurant blurb, the place will automatically become the new"scene" place. Last time I checked Ms. Chanel was known for the2.55, the LBD and tweed suits but not her interior design skills.

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Sunday
Oct302011

Nizuni

22 Charlotte Street is  an unfortunate address for a sushi restaurant, opposite Roka, the constantly packed and incredibly scene Japanese restaurant. It's a bit like being a normal person forced to stand next to a supermodel in a group picture. In this case the normal person was actually rather good-looking. 

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Monday
Oct242011

Vapiano - Italian food organized by Germans

It is a dream combination. Italian food, created in an incredibly efficient way. This is what Vapiano is all about. There is no messing about wasting time trying to work out who pays what, as every person is given a card, that they then "charge" food and drinks to at a selection of various stations. Your food is made to order at one of each station whilst you watch (pasta, antipasti), or just collect them (dessert or drinks), or order and get a buzzer (Pizza). It works out perfectly. Each person gets what they want, charged to them and can edit their dish to their particular liking - no basil, no issue, no garlic, no problem. Even better, you can get it to go (their pasta makes a very good breakfast), and their takeaway boxes are perfectly lunch sized Tupperware. In fact, this is possibly one of my favourite casual places to go. It is great place to meet up with old friends, as the lack of service means no-one really cares if you sit there for four hours, as I did last Tuesday.
Pasta, my personal favourite from Vapiano, is from a list, divided into four different price categories and can be combined with any of their six fresh made pasta. Antipasti include things like beef carrpacio or bruschetta.

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