Tag Archives: London

January 2014 Pictures

9 Feb
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The Breakfast Club, Hoxton

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Borough Market

A chilly Borough Market

A chilly Borough Market

An AMAZING acai berry smoothie!

An AMAZING acai berry smoothie!

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Biscuit Biscuit, the ceramic cafe in Greenwich

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Our finished ceramics!

The Breakfast Club, Hoxton

After detoxing for so long after Christmas, we decided to treat ourselves to brunch at The Breakfast Club, an absolute must-visit for brunch (or lunch) when in London. There are a few branches across London, though as they are so popular and don’t take reservations, it is often super hard to get in one without queuing for an hour! Luckily, the branch in Hoxton was quite a good size and as we went early enough we beat the hangover crowds rocking up at around 11.30am. I went for my favourite – poached eggs with smoked salmon – which was as tasty as ever, though the brunch menu is quite adventurous and has some fabulous Mexican inspired dishes that I definitely want to try next time! This branch also has a ‘secret’ bar underneath which you can go to on a weekend evening via their ‘fridge’…

Borough Market

Borough Market is a thriving food market opposite London Bridge tube station and really gets going on Saturdays. There you can find foods from all over the world and really specialised ingredients, as well as plenty of tasters! It can get really busy (and disorientating!) but you can stumble across some great finds, including this ‘umbrella street’! I would definitely recommend the raw cacao chocolate shop as well as this amazing Acai Berry Smoothie – who knew healthy could taste so good?!

 
Biscuit Biscuit Ceramic Cafe

With a day off work one Friday, my friend Rosie and I decided to get our crafts heads on and visit Biscuit Biscuit, a ceramic cafe near the Cutty Sark in Greenwich. Here you can choose from a variety of ceramic designs, with prices starting from £10, and spend an afternoon painting away! We had some (fairly standard) smoked salmon/cream cheese sandwiches for lunch there as we painted our objects; I chose a cupcake where the lid came off whilst Rosie chose a skull where you can put a candle in the back of it. Once we finished painting them, we handed them in to be glazed and fired before collecting them back a week later.

Those were just a few things that I got up to this January! What did you get up to? 

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Afternoon Tea at Sketch

16 Dec

Every year, my mum and I arrange one day together to have a completely festive day out and this year we decided to have a wander around London with afternoon tea included! 

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Wearing my favourite coat from Forever 21!

We began our morning by having a little look around the Southbank Christmas markets as this is probably the quietest time to see them. As usual, there were plenty of Gingerbread houses, Bratwurst, snowglobes and handmade crafts which really get you in the Christmas spirit! We then headed over to Sketch, just around the corner from Oxford Circus tube station and just off Regent Street.

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Afternoon tea at Sketch

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The Glade

Sketch is a quirky restaurant with different themed rooms split across a number of levels. As we went on a Monday, our afternoon tea was held in the Glade, a smaller, forest-themed room downstairs. (This is just across from The Martin Creed Gallery Restaurant which is a much bigger room where main meals and weekend afternoon teas are held). The Glade was lovely, serene and relaxing, though in my opinion it did seem a little too quiet as there was no background music. Weirdly, the most sound was in the toilets which was a room of modern looking white pods that were filled with strange whale/crashing sounds or a man talking about kilometres… very odd! 

Mum getting lost in the pods!

Mum getting lost in the pods!

On the way to the pods! Wearing a Forever 21 Jumper, H&M shirt and Urban Outfitters tartan skirt

On the way to the pods! Wearing a Forever 21 Jumper, H&M shirt and Urban Outfitters tartan skirt

At the table with my new Just Fabb bag

At the table with my new Just Fabb bag

The afternoon tea itself was tasty and unique – I appreciate restaurants that offer something slightly different to the standard afternoon teas, which is why I am still such a fan of The Sanderson Hotel’s Mad Hatters Tea Party afternoon tea! We went for the ordinary afternoon tea which still had many different elements that were all explained to us at the time – you can read their detailed menu here. The sandwiches were quite nice but it was really all about the desserts!  The greek yoghurt mousse with blackcurrant marmalade & creme de cassis jelly was so zingy and tasty, as was the chestnut & cranberry tartlet. The gianduja chocolate eclair was sweet and sticky and the coconut and praline lollipop was also gorgeous. The scones were a good mix of fluffy/dense and not only came with strawberry jam but also a deliciously sweet fig jam. I washed this all down with peppermint tea which was constantly topped up by the sweet, efficient staff. 

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Overall, the afternoon tea was lovely and the staff were great but unfortunately there was so much cleaning/repair work/maintence going on all around the building that this kind of took away some of the magic. Perhaps this is because it was a Monday and the quietest day in terms of customers but it was a little disappointing.

After being so indulgent, mum and I had a little walk around Covent Garden and a quick browse around the shops before settling down to the Charlie and the Chocolate Factory show at the Drury Lane theatre. It is the perfect show to see this time of year as it is so bright, colourful and makes you feel like a kid again! I just wish the chocolate factory had been introduced earlier as it was so amazing and didn’t appear until 10 minutes into the second half of the show!

 Have you been to Sketch before? What are your favourite things to do in London at Christmas?

 

Restaurant Review: Muriel’s Kitchen

9 Mar

After such a cold, miserable week (and finally catching the cold that has been doing the rounds at work) I decided that it was the perfect time to visit Muriel’s Kitchen next to South Kensington tube station for some hearty, comforting, home cooked food. 

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I have walked past Muriel’s Kitchen a few times and have always been enticed by the window full of delicious cakes, the counter full of colourful seasonal food and the warm, cosy interior. It is usually busy, though we turned up at 6pm on a Thursday and managed to quickly get a table for two overlooking South Kensington. 

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The menu includes home-cooked mains like salmon, chilli con carne, lasagna and vegetable pie and this is tweaked each month to suit the seasonal produce. We chose the lasagna and the chilli con carne to share with each other; these both cost £9.99 each (any sides are extra). The food arrived within about five minutes and they kindly bought us extra sour cream when I found the chilli a little spicy!

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The food was super tasty and just what we wanted on a chilly London evening – the seasoning was subtle and I was happy that the lasagna was packed full of meat, as often restaurants seem to serve cheesy pasta sheets instead! My only bugbear was that there did seem to be a little more oil at the bottom of the dishes than I would have liked and I have to be careful with oil, though luckily it didn’t seem to affect me.  

As the dishes were so filling and heart-warming we didn’t have room for one of the gorgeous cakes, so I think I will just have to visit another time. The question is, which one to choose…? 

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H&M Flagship Store Relaunch & 25% off

14 Feb

News just in is that H&M will be relaunching it’s flagship store on Oxford Street on 14th March amidst four days of music, fashion events and surprise live performances. 

If you are in the queue before 1pm on opening day you will receive a wristband entitling you to 25% discount off all products in store on the day. The remodelled store will be the first H&M store in the world to offer Wi-Fi to customers and will comprise six floors of fashion including womenswear, menswear, a shoe lounge and a chill-out area on the fourth floor.

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Weekend Update: Chinese New Year and Cafe Concerto

10 Feb

As always the weekend has flown by! Friday night was just spent pampering, relaxing and watching Season 2 of The Hills (how have I only just started watching it?!) whilst Saturday I went to the gym, blogged and caught up with a Uni friend in Chinatown to celebrate Chinese New Year. Unfortunately, the restaurant we chose was literally terrible. The staff were just unbelievably rude – they rushed us to order, then bought us the wrong food, didn’t rectify it even though we asked twice but still charged us the higher amount it should have cost. They then refused to refund us the difference and when we convinced them they literally threw the money on the table at us and hurried us up to leave! I have never been treated so badly in a restaurant, so here’s a word of warning to you all not to eat there! 

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Terrible restaurant

Happy Chinese New Year!

Happy Chinese New Year!

Today, the boy and I ventured out into the rain to have a little wander around Mayfair and ended up eating at Cafe Concerto (I’m always a sucker for a patisserie window)! We shared a chicken, bacon and mayo sandwhich and then split a chocolate mousse cake which definitely perked me up on this dreary day. 

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Tonight I will be indulging in a little face mask and watching Mr. Selfridge. How were your weekends?