Farang (Pop Up) – Highbury, London

Seb Holmes’s Pop Up, Farang, is now in Highbury!

I hadn’t heard anything about it at all and then one day on the bus home, I realised that San Daniele (a restaurant which was always fairly empty) was absolutely buzzing and full of people. I also realised that there was a new sign outside and quickly jotted down the name in my handy dandy notes on my phone under my “Where I want to eat” page.

We booked it for Sandra’s birthday for the first weekend of December.

It was full of people again and we went into the candle lit restaurant that still had hints of San Daniele’s existence, but as a pop up, Seb really has transformed the place.

We wanted everything on the menu, so it was great that they had a tasting menu so that we didn’t need to make any decisions and we could just try it all.

IMG-1416
Tiger Prawn mix on Betel Leaf
IMG-1418
Crispy Prawn Won Ton
IMG-1419
Crispy Prawn Won Ton
IMG-1422
Tempura Chicken with Scotch Bonnet Sauce
IMG-1428
Chicken and Mushroom Coconut Soup
IMG-1432
Whole Seabass
IMG-1436
Whole Seabass
IMG-1439
Whole Seabass with Pickled Vegetables and Rice
IMG-1442
Green Curry with Cornish Hake, Prawns and Salmon Dumplings
IMG-1444
Persimmon Sorbet and Pandan Ice Cream
IMG-1446
Black Sticky Rice Dessert

Everything was so full of amazing traditional flavours of the South East and it definitely made me feel like I wasn’t in London and back in Asia while we were eating there. Seb definitely has the Asian touch.

Our top dishes (in no specific order) were:

  • The Prawn in the Betel Leaf – it was a really nice start to the meal because of all the zingy refreshing flavours.
  • The Tempura Chicken in Scotch Bonnet Sauce – So spicy! But so so so so good.
  • The Whole Seabass – I literally kept eating this until the plate was clean (don’t think they needed to wash the plate after I was done with it). Not only was the fish cooked to perfection but everything on the dish was amazing!

http://www.faranglondon.co.uk/

Advertisements

Madame D – Liverpool Street, London, UK

IMG-0310
Madame D from the outside
IMG-0287
The menu

I went to Madame D in October as I had seen so many delicious looking photos on Instagram and needed to try it for myself.

The menu is ever changing based on seasonal foods, but they stick to keeping about 10 different sharing plates on the menu and they do every single one very very well. It was honestly very hard to choose what to order because we wanted to try everything, but we settled on the Curried King Prawns, the Steamed Whole Seabass, the Tenderstem Broccoli and the Himalayan Fried Chicken.

IMG-0368
Curried prawns
IMG-0315
Whole seabass
IMG-0291
Broccoli
FullSizeRender (18)
Fried Chicken

Everything was really tasty and we left feeling incredibly full and satisfied. It was a buzzing atmosphere, the service was great and the food was just as delicious as it looked on Instagram and I was so pleased we went to check it out.

They also do have a cocktail menu which looks brilliant, but we stuck to wine and beer and it worked well with the food.

IMG-0305
Bill
IMG-0306
The interior
IMG-0308
The bar

 

http://madame-d.com

London China Town Restaurant – China Town, London, UK

Sunday Dim Sum was a family favourite of ours growing up and it still is when I go to Hong Kong to visit my Grandma.

It is essentially a Chinese version of brunch with lots of little dishes of dumplings. You will go in a big group with your whole family and sit around the table for a couple hours chatting away while all the plates of delicious dumplings and congee and rice and roasted pork etc continue coming out from the kitchen.

My current favourite in China Town is London Chinatown Restaurant. Everything comes steaming and fresh from the kitchen to your table, they have a good menu, the food is authentic, it all comes fairly quickly after you have ordered and it is really well priced. And the best thing is that you can usually get a table – which can be an issue on Sundays in China Town for Dim Sum.

IMG-0371
Pan fried pork dumplings
IMG-0372
All the essentials

IMG-0373

http://www.londonchinatownrestaurant.co.uk/

https://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/Restaurant_Review-g186338-d4035885-Reviews-London_Chinatown_Restaurant-London_England.html

 

Giuseppe’s Place – London Bridge, London

Today I am flying to Italy for a long weekend in the Italian Lakes – In fact I have probably just landed in Milan while this post is going live – so I thought it would be appropriate to post an Italian Restaurant that I have been to recently.

Established in 1990, Giuseppe’s Ristorante Italiano (as they like to call themselves) pride themselves in being London South Bank’s oldest family run Italian restaurant (as they state in their website). In an alley way in London Bridge, there is a door way with stairs leading down into a lively, little underground, very authentic Italian restaurant. With live music playing in a corner, the restaurant completely full, the very warm welcome from the Italian waiter – we immediately felt that we had found a gem, even before we had tried the food.

The restaurant was full but they kindly let us know that if we went to the pub next door and had a drink, they would come up and let us know once a table was ready for us. So we did just that and they came and got us in no time.

IMG_3709
The Bruschetta and Anitpasti Platter

We were sat in a booth in the cozy, little restaurant and were served straight away. Between the five of us (Jack, Frank, Sandra, Victoria and I) we decided to share 3 starters and then get a main each.

IMG_3713
The Calamari

For the starters we ordered the Bruschetta, a plate of antipasti and some calamari to share. It all came how I would imagine it to come if I were in a family run restaurant in Italy. Simple, tasty Italian food. No frills and nothing fancy.

IMG_3715
Spaghetti Pescatore

For my main I had the Spaghetti Pescatore, which is my absolute favourite pasta dish of all time – seafood with either with linguine or spaghetti. It was honestly cooked to perfection – with loads of seafood (clams, mussels, calamari, prawns and fish) and a gorgeous tomato based sauce that coated it all.

It was a great atmosphere, great service, great food and overall a great little find!

 

http://www.giuseppesplace.com/

Atalaya – Alcossebra, Spain

Karen, Jack and I had a very experimental, fusion meal in the little seaside town of Alcossebra. The setting was lovely on a quiet side street with an artsy, oceanic vibe about it with pottery in all different shades of blue for decoration.

For the beginning of the meal they brought us some complimentary bread which was served in a basket still warm with a couple of dips on the side.

20160729_211924
Freshly baked bread with dips

And next came the amuse bouche which had really interesting textures and flavours.

20160729_211132
Amuse bouche

IMG-20160807-WA0030

For the starters we shared three: The Chicken and Foie Gyozas – a Western take on the traditional Japanese gyozas, The Chilled Tomato Salad with Basil Mouse – which was freezing cold and so refreshing, and The Prawns in Thai Sauce – which were giant prawns. It was all delicious.

20160729_212247
Chicken and Foie Gyozas
20160729_212721
Chilled tomato salad with basil mouse
20160729_213813
Prawns in Thai sauce with prawn crackers on top
20160729_214039
One of the prawns

For mains I had the Pork ribs with Hoisin Sauce which just fell apart and was so tender it melted in my mouth. Jack had the fish and Karen had the fillet steak. Everything was cooked perfectly.

20160729_215214
Pork ribs with hoisin sauce
20160729_215240
Corvina with Cauliflower and Hazlenuts

 

20160729_215324
Duck with Pear and Foie

We ordered Irta’s Island for dessert which was an orange mouse, cocoa crumble and vanilla ice cream put together on a dish to look like an island in the middle of an ocean coloured ceramic dish.

I am usually not a fan or orange flavoured sweets – but this was absolutely stunning and crunch of the cocoa crumble was like a triple chocolate cookie crumbled over the top and it really make the dish.

After the dessert we ordered and shared, they brought out complimentary sweets for us the end our meal. There were chocolates, slices of melon and sticks of Marshmallow.

20160729_222453
Irta’s Land
20160729_224139
Complimentary dessert nibbles
20160729_224242
More complimentary dessert nibbles
20160729_221450
The colourful menu
20160729_225428
The menu on the night that we went
20160729_225313
The restaurant

 

I was quite surprised to learn that this little town had a restaurant that was so new age and experimental with their dishes. And you could really tell that a lot of time and passion had gone into all their dishes.

http://restatalaya.wixsite.com/atalaya

https://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/Restaurant_Review-g662644-d6888411-Reviews-Atalaya_Restaurante-Alcossebre_Province_of_Castellon_Valencian_Country.html

 

Mangal 1 Ocakbasi Restaurant – Dalston, London, UK

20151113_203103

20151113_203211

20151113_223646

It might look like a take out kebab shop as you pass from the outside, but as you walk in you will see all the fresh meat skewers and the long hot coal grill with its smokey, mouthwatering and incredibly inviting smell drawing you in. At the back there is a large restaurant seating area.

Mangal Ocakbasi is a Turkish grill house based in Dalston that Jack, his mum Sandra and I discovered one evening.

20151113_204136

We ordered a plate of mixed dips to share as a starter – which came with a basket full of warm Turkish bread.

20151113_210558

20151113_210551

For our main we ordered a large mixed grill plate to share which came with a large plate of salad. The spices on the meat enhance the flavour and are not overbearing and there is a barbeque like taste to it. We were actually surprised at how delicious it all tasted.

20151113_210555

20151113_222547

We ended the meal with some sweet baklava and a Turkish tea – which was nice to have a little bite of sweetness after all the spiced meats.

Gorgeous, well priced and a buzzing atmosphere!

http://www.mangal1.com/

Warung Murah – Seminyak, Bali

On the way to Double-Six Beach in Seminyak, there is an open aired restaurant which has a buffet of mouth watering Indonesian food behind a glass window where you point at what you want and the servers add it to your rattan dish.

I always choose the red rice (which has a deliciously nutty flavour), some meat (usually grilled chicken) and some stir fried vegetables. It is healthy, full of wonderful flavours and spices, and costs me only Rp.20,000 (£1 – yes ONE BRITISH POUND!).

Belly is full and happy and ready for some lounging on the beach.

20150626_144957.jpg

 

https://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/Restaurant_Review-g469404-d1182597-Reviews-Warung_Murah-Seminyak_Bali.html