Archives for category: my good book

Ever since El Bulli was closed, all projects by the Adria brothers have created a lot of excitement. Albert Adria’s pop up restaurant at Hotel Cafe Royal, 50 Days, was quickly booked out. We initially only booked the cocktail menu but luckily managed to get a table through a last minute cancellation. Keeping asking helped!

The meal started with a cocktail at Cafe Royal’s Oscar Wilde Bar, which would look extremely OTT in bright lights but with dimmed lighting, it offered the perfect setting for the cocktails and snacks, which were the ”starters” of the tasting menu. It was followed by the main meal, which was served in the hotel’s restaurant Domino.

Some of Tickets‘s signature bar snacks were on offer to compliment the two cocktails: Elote and Ephimere. Ticket’s Olive beautifully became part of the ornamental decorations. It was a gem,  releasing intense flavour from 6 pressed olives. Read the rest of this entry »

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It is so busy at work these days, I decided that unless it is an amazing experience, I would not be bothered writing about it here. Aulis at Fera is certainly one worth spending the time for!

There have been too many chef’s table on offer in London lately and to be honest, I am not particularly excited eating in a busy kitchen. Aulis is different. It is a Chef’s table in a private kitchen within the professional kitchen at Fera at Claridges, a 2 Michelin Star restaurant famous for its creative and natural take on modern British cuisine. The chefs who prepared the meal are from the development team of Fera, and the dishes are yet to be offered in the menu of the restaurant outside. Yes, we are guinea pigs in that sense and what a pair of happy guinea pigs we have been!

Beautiful and glamorous as it is, Claridges always feel a bit too formal and restrained. The journey from its main entrance, through Fera’s reception, dining area hall, via the professional kitchen into the compact private kitchen full of gadgets set the scene to something more playful and experimental.


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The Fat Duck has been closed for 10 months when the team moved to Australia to allow for refurbishment on its restaurant and kitchen in Bray, UK. I was super excited to try out its new tasting menu again, revamped as ”The Itinerary”.

As it is a ”trip”, the ”ticket” needs to be purchased in advance just like one would do when you book a holiday. Yup, paying for the whole meal (£255 a head) in full before you can eat a thing. I do not know of any restaurant would dare to ask diners to do that. But it is Heston Blumenthal afterall- he makes his own rules. And to be fair, he does not ask diners to pay for the service beforehand as in UK, service charge is discretionary. At the time of booking, and 10 days prior to our reservation, we were also asked many questions related to our childhood memories, general and food related. We were curious how this would get incorporated into the food.

Upon arrival, we were greeted by a lovely lady outside the entrance and led into a small, dark glass box. It felt futuristic and mysterious. Another lady gave us an ”itinerary” (which was like a map) and a magnifying glass. She then opened a smooth sliding door, revealing the dining area.

Itinerary The Map

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Mid-Autumn Festival is near- time to have moon cakes! Traditionally they are made with lotus seed paste and salted duck egg yolks. However, there are many variations of moon cakes as well as people in Hong Kong get bored easily. The most exclusive ones are allegedly made by Spring Moon 嘉麟樓 at the Peninsula Hotel, Hong Kong. It is limited edition which means every year, people queue for hours and it is usually sold out way before the festival. The price has gone up by nearly double this year to HK$485 (GBP40) a box!

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So is it really worth the hype? Check here to see the answer >>

The perfect Irish coffee
On a cold day like this, what could be better than having a nice and warm Irish Coffee? I found out how to make a perfect one from Daphne who works for Ballymaloe, the famous culinary destination in Cork, Ireland. Click here to check out the recipe >>

Cromer is a small traditional seaside town in North Norfolk, a 3 hour train journey away from London, famous for its crabs (photo below). We decided to investigate whether it is worth the travelling the distance to have a taste.

Dressed crab in Cromer
Beautiful sea in Sheringham
Like most famous seaside towns, e.g. Brighton, Cromer has its own pier. On a sunny day like when we went, it was full of people, all looking down. No, they were not trying to jump down- they were fishing/ checking out the crabs! Continue reading >>


The Corner Room, London
I am lazy. If it was not for my friends visiting from US, I probably would not be bothered to head East for food, especially when the destination was a restaurant that does not take bookings. In this case, my friends decided to head there early to get a table. When I arrived at 7pm, the place was still not full so at least it was not a frustrating start to the evening.

Corner Room is the breakfast room of a boutique hotel, which was converted from and named after The Town Hall in Bethnal Green. It is strange to see such a smart hotel in a scruffy neighbourhood like this. I think in modern terms, that is ‘hip’. Like its big sister Viajante, Corner room is also run by Chef Nuno Mendes.

Mackerel with melon, pistachio & gooseberry granita at Corner Room, London
The dining area was lovely- simple and full of light. There was a lot of seafood on the menu. We had Mackerel with melon, pistachio & gooseberry granita (photo above) and Stone bass ceviche & broad beans (2 photos down) as starters. They were fresh, firm and well-seasoned. Though the mackerel was served in a curious straight line, offset from the centre of the circular plate. I did not realise at the time, but it was actually a preview of the bizarre presentation style that was to continue throughout the whole meal. Continue to see more! >>

Heston Blumenthal's Chocolate and Rosemary ice-cream and Salted Caramel Popcorn ice-cream
Just in time for summer, Heston Blumenthal, chef of Fat Duck ( the 3 Michelin starred restaurant and one of the top 3 restaurants in the world) and Dinner (which explores ancient British recipes) collaborated with high- end supermarket Waitrose to create two special ice-creams- Chocolate & Rosemary and Salted Caramel Popcorn (photo above). I decided to have a taste off – really just an excuse to have 2 tubs of ice-cream at the same time! So which one is better? Continue reading >>

Coca Cola 125th Anniversary Special Edition ‘Hutchinson’ bottles and 50's style soda bar at Selfridges
I went to check out the Selfridges sale and got distracted by the heritage inspired Coca Cola bottles! They are special editions to celebrate their 125th anniversary, sold at £1.99 each.

Some are straight long bottles called Hutchinson, which were first created in 1899. Others are classic curvy ones with the words ‘Coca Cola’ cast in the glass. They are sold in special white paper boxes at the Selfridges Food Hall or chilled at the Soda Bar on the Ground Floor, in the fashion department. It is manned by 50’s styled waiters and waitresses. Continue reading >>


Menu at the Bonnie & Wild (M.Manze's traditional Pie & Mash hall)
Bonnie & Wild is a ‘part-time’ (they insisted that it is not ‘pop-up’!) restaurant named after Bonnie Gull Ltd and Wild Game Co. The former specialises in fresh Scottish seafood and the latter Highlands seasonal game. It is not hard to imagine what the menu of the Bonnie & Wild would be consisted of and I really looked forward to it.

It will open on Saturday evenings from July 2nd but we managed to get a preview meal!

the Bonnie & Wild (M.Manze's traditional Pie & Mash hall)

the Bonnie & Wild (M.Manze's traditional Pie & Mash hall)
The venue blew me away. It is at M.Manze’s in Chapel Market, Angel. Between 11am to 3pm, this 1905 Grade II Listed shop is a traditional English pie and mash shop. Apparently even David Beckham goes there!

Not much light was turned on the night we went. It kind of created an old English charm. We were led to one of the classic wooden booths in the middle of the hall, with seats that were not very deep- a bit like the pews you would find in old churches. As I am petite, I found it comfy. But I cannot imagine how anyone bigger than my size could squeeze in there! In fact, the seat bounced up and down when the diners behind tried to get in and out- kind of charming! Continue reading to see the food >>