• The Holly Bush

    Picture the scene.  You plan a long-overdue visit to one of your favourite restaurants.  You sit down, browse the menu and immediately spot an amazing sounding dish.  This is definitely what you are going to order and you can’t wait to tuck in.  But then – disaster! The waitress informs you that it’s not actually available.  A mistake was made and the menu is incorrect.  Sad times….  This is exactly what happened on my visit to The Holly Bush in Hampstead and, needless to say, I was more than a little irritated.  However, all was not lost.  This story does have a happy ending… The Holly Bush is a wonderful pub.…

  • Duck and Waffle

    After spending quite a bit of time hanging around in establishments at the top of tall buildings, I have realised that a pattern is emerging.   The higher up in the sky you are, the worse the service usually is.  Which is a shame for many reasons, not least because most of these places seem to implement a kind of “sky tax”, meaning you pay through the nose for the privilege of being there.  True, the views are spectacular so at least you have something nice to stare at while you wait half an hour to get served at the bar (Hutong, I’m looking at you).  However, is feeling like you’re…

  • Flat Iron

    I’ve been watching a lot of “Parks and Recreation” lately and have fallen a little bit in love with Ron Swanson – the deadpan, mustachioed, all-American red blooded male.  Ron Swanson has no time for nonsense such as salad or kale smoothies.  He likes his meat rare and his whisky neat.  He is probably my soulmate….  So I paid a visit to a restaurant that Ron Swanson would most definitely approve of – Flat Iron.  There is just one thing on the menu here and that’s steak.  Really really good steak. Flat Iron is part of the annoying “no reservation” trend that seems to have swept London lately, so I played…

  • 10 Greek Street

    I started this blog with the intention of working my way through Time Out London’s top 100 restaurants.  Well, it’s now April and so far I have managed to visit just one restaurant from their list.  I fail at converting intentions into reality.  However, I have broken the seal with my visit to 10 Greek Street.  In fact, the seal was veritably demolished, along with my lunch and my waistline. 10 Greek Street is as discrete and unassuming as its name.  Small and spartan, with white walls, wooden flooring, and the dishes of the day chalked up on blackboards, it has that whole effortlessly chic thing down to a tee.  Even the menus are…

  • Adam Handling at The Caxton

    My best friend has found a new best friend.  And that new best friend isn’t even an actual person.  It’s the rather brilliant Bookatable, purveyor of shiny restaurant bargains.  There’s no way I can compete so, as the old saying goes, if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em. Our first foray with Bookatable took us to Adam Handling at The Caxton.  As a huge fan of Masterchef, I was very excited to eat at the restaurant of one of my favourite former contestants.  Handling was a finalist in the 2013 series of Masterchef: The Professionals, and right from the outset he impressed with confident and competent cooking.  I adored him even more after…

  • Recipe – Beef Stew With Dumplings

    As I was dragging my sorry self to work on a recent dark and dreary morning, I noticed a brightly coloured van tootling it’s way around Tooting.  It was from a company called Riverford Organics and was dropping off lots of boxes of loveliness to my fellow SW17 residents.  As soon as I got into the office, I googled Riverford to see what they are all about, and was pleasantly surprised to see that not only do they provide boxes of organic fruit and veg, they also supply organic meat.  I placed an order for a veg & meat box and, soon after, received a delivery of a range of…

  • Recipe – Pan Seared Pigeon Breasts with Red Wine Sauce

    Following a meeting on New Year’s Eve, I decided to head into town and ended up wandering into Borough Market, which was surprisingly not packed to the rafters for a change.  Despite the risk to both my post-Christmas bank balance and waistline, I couldn’t resist roaming around and picking up various goodies.  One of the delectable morsels that I purchased was a wild pigeon from Furness Fish, Poultry & Game.  I have always loved their stall and I defy any foodie to be able to walk past it without buying something from their amazing range of food.  I had never cooked pigeon but, having seen almost every contestant on this year’s Masterchef:…

  • The Manor, Clapham

    “This drink tastes of plants” declared my dining companion.  Our lurid green sorrel and elderflower bellinis were perhaps an inauspicious start to our meal at The Manor, as was our rather over-keen waitress who had seemingly been told to push the tasting menu for all it’s worth or risk pain of death.  At one point, we did think that she was going to hang around the table while we perused the a la carte options, but thankfully duty called elsewhere.  However, things only improved from then on. The Manor is owned by the team behind The Dairy, which has had rave reviews and full tables since it opened in Clapham last year.…