• The Best Food and Drink of 2016

    Yes, everyone keeps saying that 2016 has been the worst year ever.  But when it comes to food and drink, this year has been a cracker.  With more new restaurants and more foodie entrepreneurs than ever, there is no excuse to eat badly.  Here are the best things that I snaffled into my greedy face this year: Chicken and pistachio shish from Arabica Bar & Kitchen I wanted to eat everything on Arabica Bar & Kitchen’s menu.  I’ve eaten a lot of samey mezze over the years, but these guys really know how to sex it up.  It’s easy to be bamboozled by choice; however, you should definitely include the…

  • Taking A Bite Out Of….Las Vegas

    Las Vegas has a certain reputation.  Brash. Blingy. Larger than life.  And with so many top chefs setting up shop in Sin City you would expect its food scene to be just as epic.  But guess what?  It really isn’t.  Dining out in Vegas is a bit like losing on the slot machines.  You get drawn in by the shiny colours and flashing lights, excited by what could happen.  But you end up disillusioned and broke. This was my experience after visiting Zefferino, an high-end Italian restaurant in The Venetian.  The location is perfect, overlooking the “Grand Canal”.  However, the food is no better than what you would find in an average Italian…

  • The Best Food and Drink of 2015

    Yep, it’s the end of another year so time for yet another list.  Here is my round up of the best things went into my mouth over the course of 2015: Chicken Berry Biryani from Dishoom I visited the Kings Cross branch of Dishoom all the way back in January but I still keep raving about their biryani.  Tender meat, fluffy rice, a good amount of spice….it ticks all the biryani boxes but has the added bonus of cranberries.  Plus the restaurant itself just looks so, so sexy. Spaghetti with Cuttlefish and Ink Sauce from Osteria Alba Nova Good food can be hard to find in tourist-ridden Venice, but venture…

  • Taking A Bite Out Of…Istanbul

    Kebabs.  They have a bit of a bad reputation to be honest.  My first experience of the delicacy known as kebab meat and chips, “fresh” out of the local chippy in Pontypool town centre, was enough to put me off for a long long time.  Even the more upmarket grilled meats of Turkish restaurants around London didn’t really help to convince me that a kebab is anything more than a greasy, stomach-churning mistake.  So would a trip to Istanbul,  the home of the kebab, change my mind? Istanbul is a crazy, colourful, feast for the senses, and food plays a huge part in this. Everywhere you look there are stalls selling…

  • Taking A Bite Out Of…Krakow (Part 2)

    Having resigned myself to the fact that I may put on a pound or two while in Krakow (although calories on holiday don’t count, right?), it was time to fully embrace a cold weather diet.  This was helped along by the fact that the best pierogi shop in Krakow – Przystanek Pierogarnia – was situated right at the end of my street.  Pierogi are boiled dumplings usually filled with potato, cheese or meat – sometimes all three – and topped with fried onions.  This is food that really sticks to your ribs.  I went for the potato and bacon dumplings, and just kept going back for more….  Comfort food has…

  • Wine from the Rias Baixas

    It’s not often that wine evokes strong memories; usually it has the opposite effect.  However, I will always remember the first time I ever tried wine from the Rias Baixas region of Galicia, in north-west Spain. We had journeyed across northern Spain, starting out from Barcelona, and our trip so far had been defined by rain, rain, and then a bit more rain.  As we headed towards the north-west coast, I wasn’t expecting anything different.  This corner of Atlantic Spain was known for it’s wild weather and it’s equally wild coastline.  When we arrived at the city of Santiago de Compostela, the rain looked like it had well and truly set in for…

  • Taking A Bite Out Of….Krakow (Part 1)

    Winter in London is a bit of a non-event really.  On the rare occasion that it does snow, you can guarantee nothing but grey slush and deadly pavements in a matter of hours.  So this year, I decided to escape the capital for somewhere that can offer a proper winter.  The Polish city of Krakow did not disappoint.  Not only did it provide lots of fluffy white snow for me to jump around in, it is also the best place to experience good, hearty winter cuisine to warm you through. My first meal in Krakow set the tone for my visit.  Braving the drunken hoards of the Old Town, I headed to Pod Aniolami,…

  • Taking A Bite Out Of….Venice (Part 2)

    I was starting to get more than a little disenchanted with Venetian dining.  Everywhere was just so damn expensive!  After wandering for what felt like hours on Saturday night, trying to find a suitable restaurant, I was almost ready to give up and head back to the apartment in a sulk.  However, I then remembered walking past an interesting little restaurant earlier that day – and amazingly I actually managed to find it again!  Osteria Alba Nova was cosy, dimly lit, and had an appealing menu that didn’t cost the earth.  My smug satisfaction only increased when I was directed towards their specials board – wild boar, guinea fowl, duck….  I knew…

  • Taking A Bite Out Of….Venice (Part 1)

    Thank God for Skyscanner and the boredom of a long, dark winter.  One spur of the moment decision later, and I’m off to Venice for the first time ever.  How have I waited so long to visit this most beautiful of cities??  I envisaged dimly lit alleyways, hidden squares, and narrow bridges over dark water.  Mist rolling in from the lagoon and echoing footsteps.  A place that has inspired tales of murder, lust and the supernatural.  It did not disappoint.  However, Venice may be a place of great beauty, but I had read that it is not a place for great food.  Apparently you should consider yourself lucky if you manage…