Monday, 6 May 2013

And the award goes to...

World's Worst Blogger award goes to....

Although I have the same number as hours in the day as Beyonce, there are not enough to get everything done. How does that woman do it?! 

As I'm writing this, two suitcases are laid out, one half unpacked from the long weekend, one half packed for next week. Cab is booked for 5am (the horror) Blogging has been left out in the cold like yesterday's leftovers. Unloved, disregarded and smelling a bit nasty.

I apologise (and digress) one day I will pick up from where we left off. This day (not today!) will come now from my new home, which is very exciting.

Meantime? Here are a couple of photos from M's camera that slipped through my New York round up net.

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Saturday, 13 April 2013

Where in the world? Cannes to Bodo's

I'm hoping I can be forgiven for not knowing where in the world I am at the minute. From partying in Cannes at various Scandinavian, German and of course French events to a day at Turkish baths and dining at one of my favourite Austrian restaurants in London, my passport has been well and truly stamped this week.

It started with an Irish (read: Guinness) themed dinner, that also featured Amarula liquor from South Africa. This pleased me greatly being such a fan of 'Randall Narrates' work (Google it)

Following this it was bikini time for Turkish Bathes

On arrival in Cannes we took every possible opportunity to soak up the sun we have been so deprived of in London.

This is what we left April? Seriously?!
While in Cannes our favourite little Caribbean Run bar was frequented - post some very fresh seafood at Astoux.

We were sad when the rum was over. So of course we ordered another more photos of Cannes! Well, maybe this sneaky Parisian one.

On arriving back I immediately went off to Bodo's Schloss < read all about it. Here it was Schnitzel with noodles and dumplings followed by copious amounts of cocktails....even Bernard was thirsty

Thus concludes an epic week. 
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Wednesday, 3 April 2013

Restaurant Review: Mishkin's

For a good year now Mishkin's has been on my wish list for visiting. It has just never been the right time - until now.

After pre drinks at Foundation (who by the way have put their prices up quite significantly but are still really good value during happy hour) we headed over to Catherine Street for some Kosher-ish deli action.

Cocktails first (obviously), I went for a Diamond Fizz, D went for an Ezra's Green Rose. On arrival I seemed to luck out since D's came in what can only be described as a thimble. The Diamond Rose was great. Loved the retro cocktail shaker style cup.
Diamond Fizz - Right, Thimble/Shot - Left
Mishkin's Menu
On reviewing the menu it was inevitable we were going to go for a mac and cheese (main size) as a side to share. We had both previously been to We Feast (here and here) so had tried Mishkin's wares before. The salt beef muffin was delicious - and D had the Reuben which I never had. We opted for a large one of those bad boys to share.

As well as the mac and cheese and Reuben the final dish was causing us some problems. We kind of fancied the salt beef, but know the beigel shop on Brick Lane that sells the exact thing (they get their produce from here) and costs £3, so this felt a bit unnecessary. Instead we opted for the roast beef.

Felling satisfied with our choices, inevitably the waiter came trundling back to tell us the roast beef was all out. We would have to pick again. There was a chill dog on the specials board - we went for this instead. Variety is in fact the spice of life.

On arrival the mac and cheese as expected looked divine. The Reuben was ginormous and the chili dog looked as good as you could expect (from a kosher-ish restaurant). I started with the chili dog and M&C, D worked through half of the Reuben.
The Reuben
Chili Dog

On switching I was feeling kind of stuffed (unheard of) and this Reuben felt like a Man Vs Food episode. I took my first bite. The taste? Good, the quantity…vast! This was a mountain. D was also struggling through the chill dog and mac and cheese.

We powered on but could not finish. Defeat at Mishkin's. Perhaps it was because my expectations were too high after so much anticipation, or perhaps it was because the salt beef muffin from taste was the best thing on the menu, but we were slightly disappointed.

Atmosphere: 3/5
Food: 3/5
Drink: 3/5
Overall: 3/5
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Tuesday, 2 April 2013

Rotary Bar and Diner

About a month ago we had a long overdue girls night out. Gossipping about boys over pints of cocktails and burgers are the best kind of catch ups, don't you think?

We went to Rotary Bar and Diner, which opened back in February on City Road, right by Old Street. I arrived first (as per...;)) and took a look at the cocktail menu 'The Big Six', which caught my eye...the anniversary fizz. Gin, Aperol, Lemon, Passion Fruit and Soda. In a pint. Yay. By which stage S had arrived...and we doubled up. Cheers.
Rotary Cocktail Menu

Two Anniversary Fizz, we're classy girls drinking from tankards
The name of the game here is burgers. Big filthy burgers. First up we ordered some starters to share. Chicken wings come either sticky or hot. Hot please. We also went for the Cornish Crab Salad with blood orange. Nice and conveniently everything is priced in batches and a big round numbers. Starters are £5.
Rotary Bar and Diner Menu
Hot Chicken wings - so good
Crab salad - not as good as the wings
Burgers are £10. Between the three of us we had a Rotary Burger (rare breed beef, bacon, cheese, onions, bun sauce) a Chicken Roll (with cheese and bun sauce) and a Veggie bun. now usually I am never tempted by the veggie options especially when burgers are involved but doesn't roast field mushrooms, Somerset brie, wild garlic and slaw sound ridiculously good?
Chicken burger and dripping chips
Chicken Roll with Cheese
Veggie Bun - Roast Mushroom

The Rotary Burger, with bacon and cheese
MMM Pickle 
The Chicken Roll looked the best

On the side it was dripping chips. Some of the best fries we've ever had. Up to Honest Burger standards (that is a high standard). Do you know what goes well with amazing chips...Holy F**k sauce. Hell yes.

Next door to Rotary Bar and Diner is now YUM BUN. At the time all we had was this teasing blackboard. We will be back for delicious buns. Yum

We'll probably be back. I don't usually have entree envy, but damn that chicken roll looked good. If they can take the hot chicken wings and put them in a roll I will be queuing around the block for that shiz. You can catch Rotary until the end of the year. Enjoy
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Sunday, 31 March 2013

Restaurant Review: Balthazar London

In case you didn't know, it's snowing. At Easter. While trying not to let this ruin any plans this weekend I took myself off to Covent Garden to take some photos. Now, it feels like everyone has left the island. There doesn't seem to be any Londoners in London. Everywhere is deserted. Covent Garden however was packed.

On the off chance I popped my head into the refuge of Balthazar just in case they could squeeze little old me in without a reservation. I wasn't hopeful - it was packed. On this occasion I was seriously lucky. They could squeeze me in! Hurrah. 

I pulled up a seat at the bar and grabbed the menu. First things first...cocktails or champagne. One of life's toughest decisions. I opted for the very reasonably priced house champagne (£11).

Balthazar Cocktail Menu

Now, having looked on the menu online previously I knew there was mac and cheese, and I had a suspect feeling this was what was going to end up on my B adorned placemat. The burger however looked and sounded amazing. If it wasn't completely piggy I would have had a burger with a side of mac and cheese. Alas, I gave some consideration to my waistline. 
Balthazar Menu

This bread was ridiculous

While perusing the menu a basket of bread arrived. Next door to the main restaurant is the bakery selling fresh breads. If the baguette in front of me was anything to go by, this will be delicious. The bread was to die for. The butter was soft enough to spread but not too melty. I made myself stop eating it before the mac and cheese arrived, thinking I would dip it.

On arrival the size was perfect. not too small I was going to be unsatisfied, not too big I was going to hate myself if I finished it (which inevitably...I would). Now I am going to out on  a limb here and say this was the best mac and cheese I have ever eaten. 
Gruyere and Bacon mac and cheese 
So delicious
The gruyere cheese was perfect and the bacon was massive and so tasty. It was pretty much an eyes rolling back in your head type of experience. It didn't even need the bread. The pasta to sauce ratio was so perfect. At only £11 this was a steal.

As I hadn't completely stuffed myself with bread - and had a reasonably sized meal i was definitely looking at the dessert menu. My natural reaction was to go to baked cheesecake. The only thing throwing my was the cinnamon and apple donut that comes with. I'm not a big fan of cinnamon. I asked for the waiter's recommendation. 
Dessert Menu at Balthazar

One of the most popular desserts? The almond rocher. Apparently like a massive Ferrero Rocher, I was sold on this recommendation. I saw the cheesecake go by, it looked OK... but I held out keeping the faith. My Rocher arrived, it looked perfect, exactly how I wanted it to look, but how was the taste? Amazing. I was so glad I went for the recommendation. First the coffee hits you, then the chocolate then the nuttiness. Every bite was delicious. 
Almond and hazelnut Rocher

To accompany my Rocher I opted for a Bordeaux Blanc (one of their best sellers) the generous serving was an excellent wine. Again, really reasonably priced at only £6.50. Altogether Balthazar completely lived up to my high expectations.

Will definitely be back, and can recommend walking in to try and sit at the bar. It was packed when I arrived around 3pm, but arrive at 4:30ish for the best chance of grabbing a seat at the bar after lunch and before the pre-theatre crowd arrive.

Atmosphere: 4/5, it was buzzing 
Food: 5/5 can't fault it. 
Drink: 5/5, an excellent selection and incredible value considering where you are
Overall: 5/5 highly recommend.
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