• Coach and Horses: Where everybody knows your name

    “La la la….where everybody knows your name”. The theme song for Cheers set out the show’s premise of that friendly local boozer where you’re surrounded by friends. But of course that isn’t the real world, is it? Maybe in a small village where there’s only one place to go drinking and you have no choice but to get to know the bar staff, but in London?? That most unfriendly of places?? You’re kidding. So when I visited the Coach and Horses in Clapham for the second time, handed my card over the bar to start a tab and the barmaid couldn’t spot my name, it was a pleasant surprise to hear her…

  • Bob Bob Ricard: Where dining dreams go to die

    Recent events in the world of politics seem to suggest that people can’t be trusted with crucial decisions. So, learning absolutely nothing from this, I thought it would be fun to let other people choose my next restaurant. I’m terrible at making decisions for myself, so why not leave it in the hands of the internet…? What could possibly go wrong? I even drew up the shortlist myself, so there was no chance of being sent off to a Harvester in Croydon or an Angus Steakhouse in Piccadilly. The options were Bob Bob Ricard, Fifteen or Rules, all of which sounded perfectly civilised on paper. I watched, excitedly, as the votes poured in and Bob…

  • Bordelaise: French vibes in Tooting

    Before I say anything else, you need to know this. The chef at Bordelaise is a very bad man.  Despite being dangerously full after having demolished two large rounds of food, he insisted that my friend and I each have a pudding, rather than going down the more civilised route of sharing one. What’s more, we were “coerced” into the richest, most decadent dessert on the menu. But more of that later… Bordelaise is the latest offering by the power team behind The Little Bar and The Little Taperia in Tooting. These guys can’t seem to put a foot wrong, so I was pretty confident that Bordelaise would be a…

  • 5 top places to drink a Negroni in London

    I discovered the pleasures of a well-mixed Negroni a couple of years ago and have been addicted to them ever since. A Negroni is a cocktail made with one part gin, Campari and vermouth, served over ice, usually with a slice of orange. It’s not for the faint-hearted. Dry and packing a pretty punch, with no mixer this is all thriller, no filler. The last few years have seen Negronis become increasingly fashionable, and you’ll likely find one on most cocktail menus throughout town. Here are 5 of my top picks: Bar Termini Bar Termini is THE place to go for a Negroni.  It’s the where I popped my Negroni cherry…

  • Medlar: Disappointing dining in Chelsea

    I’m often asked why I started a food blog. There are actually several reasons ranging beyond simply “I like to eat”, and one of these was motivation. Motivation to get off my sofa and experience London’s wonderful food scene. So one of the main “objectives” behind this blog was to work my way through the Time Out Top 100 restaurants list. Clearly I had ambitions way beyond my budget because, before I realised it, a brand new Top 100 had been published and I’d ticked perhaps one restaurant off the list… I’m still trying to hit them all but these days I use the list more as a guide than a…

  • Aquavit

    Not long before we moved to London, my then boyfriend and I visited for a week’s holiday.  We stayed in one of those old fashioned hotels in Paddington, delighted by how cheap it was, not realising that the area was a notorious red light district.  I was so in love with London then.  It was unlike anywhere I’d ever been before; a place fat with possibility.  We visited a pub not far from Hyde Park and I was thrilled by how buzzy it was, how it felt like an integral part of a neighbourhood that I wanted to be a part of too.  That pub has long since closed, like so many…

  • Miusan

    Contentious as it may have been, the Night Tube is a thing of great excitement for this Londoner.  No longer do I have to limit myself to nights out in south west London.  No longer do I have to make that mad dash for the last tube, bringing brilliant evenings to an abrupt end.  The city has opened up to me and it’s great.  Weirdly, I quite like grubby, touristy old Camden for the occasional night out but I’ve so often had to cut those nights out short.  Taxi from Camden to Tooting?  No chance.  But, thanks to the Night Tube, I can now relax and enjoy what Camden has to…

  • Jackdaw and Star/We Serve Humans

    I have a theory regarding burgers which goes a little something like this.  If you need to eat it with a knife and fork then it’s a good burger.  Of course, that theory does fall down from time to time.  I’m sure there are plenty of burgers that are stacked high and stuffed full and still taste rank.  But in general, a good burger is one that you most definitely can’t pick up in your hands.  Case in point: McDonalds and their teeny, shrivelled “burgers”.  I can easily eat a Big Mac one-handed and my hands are positively Donald Trump-esque in their dimensions.  So I don’t care if I look silly or genteel or “posh” with…

  • Chi Kitchen

    If I were to tell you that Debenhams on Oxford Street is the place to go for a really great meal, you would probably laugh in my face.  To be fair, I wouldn’t blame you.  Department store eateries are generally a little bit sad.  Old ladies and bored husbands huddled around weak coffee and dry cake, surrounded by beige formica.  No thank you.  And Debenhams?  A middle-of-the-road shop with about as much character as a clothes peg; the one that’s not as classy as John Lewis.  But…department stores are realising that shopping habits are changing and that it’s going to take something extra to get customers through the door these days.  And that something is…

  • Where to eat on Seymour Place

    Once upon a time, I had a truly terrible job working for a company on Seymour Place.  I think I lasted all of four months, and they felt like the longest four months of my life.  There wasn’t even anything exciting in the area to make up for the work woes.  I spent my free time eating claggy pasta salad from the local caff or drinking cheap wine in one of the old man pubs nearby.  So, funnily enough, it’s not a part of town that I tend to frequent much these days.  But, London being what it is, Seymour Place has evolved and developed over the years into somewhere really rather interesting.  The…