Wednesday, 19 December 2012

My Blog Has Moved

Hey everyone, I'm no longer blogging at Foodie in London.

Come and follow my new blog: Foodie Mom In London, covering food (obviously), with a whole lot of motherhood musings thrown in too, thanks to the arrival of Stanley.

I'd love to hear from you. x

Tuesday, 30 October 2012

Rita’s Bar & Dining in Dalston

So I finally made it to Rita’s Bar & Dining … without my camera. Duh! So I just want to tell you about the food really quickly.
Not sure what you call it. US fast food but posh? Whatever you coin it though, it was awesome and I’m plotting my return, to work my way through the specials.
Damn Tasty Food at Rita’s Pop-Up in Dalston
*Green Chilli Mac & Cheese – was the tastiest I have experienced in a while. Fat, soft pasta tubes, zingy and spicy from the green chilli, made with strong mature cheese and orangey in colour so I think there was a hint of tomato in there too.
*Fried Chicken Roll – Gorgeous.  Just fried chicken in a bun but crispy, and topped with a garlicky, delicious burger type sauce and thin strands of lettuce.
*Patty Melt – the grilled rye bread works so well with the juicy rare and soft beef in the middle. Another moreish snack-worthy winner.
*Soy & Ginger Hot Wings - And finally the piece de resistance. Oh mamma, check out a plate of those when stoned/ hungover/ starving (delete as appropriate). Let’s just say they were finger-lickin’.
We washed all of this down with a few Frozen Rita’s. Standard.
What’s Wrong with Rita’s in Dalston?
The negatives? No bookings and the unfortunate placing slap bang in the middle of Dalston, which one of my friends aptly named as the new Kavos.
Therefore if you want to ensure a seat on arrival, arrive early and the get the hell out before the trendies besiege in the evening ready to party at the downstairs live music bar Birthdays.
Why is Rita’s Rita’s in Dalston?
I’m not actually sure why it’s called Rita’s but the pop-up is a collaboration between Jackson Boxer (Brunswick House Café), REAL GOLD, Gabriel Pryce & Missy Flynn.

Rita's Bar and Dining on Urbanspoon

Saturday, 13 October 2012

Franco Manca – Probably The Best Pizza In The UK

I’m embarrassed to say that despite calling myself a Foodie in London, it has taken me until this week to visit Brixton’s Franco Manca pizzeria!
Franco Manca has been constantly hailed as the best pizza in London since it opened in Brixton market in 2008 and today its popularity has borne three further branches across London. But only the original Brixton branch would do if I was finally going to sink my teeth into a piece of this supposedly heavenly dough.
Brixton’s indoor Market Row has a charming array of little eateries including Rosie’s Deli Café, Casa Morita, and Seven at Brixton, where I nervously perched at an outdoor table opposite Franco Manca, to spy on the busyness of the restaurant while I waited for my (very late) husband to arrive.
I’d heard that Franco Manca was so popular that it drew long queues at lunchtimes and as the clock approached midday I was eyeing up the booth seats under the awning of the double sided restaurant, (the indoor market path runs through the middle), to be sure we didn’t lose out on the best seats.
When my hubby finally turned up with baby in toe, he was hot, stressed and grumpy – hung-over and trying to get a small person across town is never a good combo. In the end we sat inside at the back by the pizza oven where it was warm and cosy.
We wasted no time and ordered from the paper menus on the tables. I didn’t even see a whole separate board of specials until it was too late. We chose two classics:
1) Gloucester Old Spot ham (home-cured), wild mushrooms, buffalo ricotta and mozzarella
 2) Tomato, cured organic chorizo (dry & semi-dry) and mozzarella
The large sourdough oven-baked pizzas arrived in minutes and were devoured even sooner and then a fight broke out about who had had more of the ‘only four’ pieces of semi dry chorizo – an indication of just how good this pizza was.
At the end of the meal I even found myself chewing on the empty crust of sourdough it was so tasty.
Franco Manca – Why Do You Taste So Good?
So why is it so good? These are the elements that I reckon make it such a winner.
Dough – clearly it’s all about a tangy, doughy Sourdough base. Franco Manca’s bread is left to rise for 20 hours and then baked in an artisan wood fire brick oven. The website says the oven uses ‘a blast cooking process that locks in the flour’s natural aroma and moisture’ – so true.
Mozzarella – the mozzarella was rubbery and delicious and generously topped across the pizzas, holding together all the other tasty ingredients, doing it’s job. Franco Manca’s cheese comes from the award-winning Alham Wood Organics Buffalo Farm in Somerset.
Tomato – Taking it back to the motherland, Franco Manca’s tomatoes are hand picked in Salerno, Italy in the summertime and never canned or frozen.
And there you have it, Franco Manca – probably the best pizza in the UK. Now when can I get my next fix?
Franco Manca on Urbanspoon

Thursday, 13 September 2012

Dirty Burger, London

As the capital’s current trend for fast food continues, (you’re a nobody if you’re not opening a pop-up American restaurant in trendy Dalston; burger-van-turned-restaurant; or somewhere to sink your teeth into overpriced hot dogs), I decided to get in on the action and headed up to Kentish Town to visit Dirty Burger.

Dirty Burger by Soho House

Those of you, who are true to the plight of the street food movement, should look away now as this little burger shack is brought to you by world-dominating Soho House. It’s part of the group’s new development, which also includes a Pizza East and another US-inspired diner Chicken Shop.


Dirty Burger: What’s Inside?

The place is simple. One table, a few stools and some mustard and ketchup bottles here and there in a small but bright corrugated iron shed.

The menu? Literally a cheeseburger, onion rings, crinkle cut fries and milkshakes. The burger was good – a solid flavoursome meat pattie, slightly sweet glazed burger bun, properly melted cheese, lettuce,  and a slice of tomato and pickle garnish.

The crinkle-cut chips were triple cooked salty deliciousness, and the (red) onion rings were (I think I read this somewhere) beer battered.

Dirty Burger: What’s The Verdict?

Yes I did feel a little dirty when I left but who doesn’t after a US-style fast food feast? If you’re craving a burger this is as worthy a place as any to get your fix, and if you really feel the burger guilt afterwards, you can always walk it off on The Heath.

Dirty Burger on Urbanspoon
Visit the Dirty Burger website

Thursday, 23 August 2012

L’Entrepot, Hackney Downs, London

With a 4-month old baby indoors, it’s rare for me to get out on my own of an evening at the moment, but thanks to my lovely hubbie, I was released on Monday and all geared up to sample some meat at the Flat Iron pop-up at The Owl & The Pussycat pub on Redchurch Street.

Fellow blogger and confidant @hungrybecs had raved about Flat Iron on her blog: The Becs Diet and boy was I ready to tuck in to some tasty steak.

As I rounded the corner to the pub, getting ready to stand in line (no bookings), the street seemed mysteriously quiet and I knew something was awry. Damn it. I hadn’t done my homework properly. Looking up at the sign on a beautifully warm and sunny Monday evening, I painfully read the chalked info: ‘Flat Iron open Tuesdays-Saturdays’. Doh!

Frantically scouring the internet on my i-phone whilst silently chanting my mantra ‘must eat in pop-up, must eat in pop-up’, I looked for a replacement venue.

I was keen to get down to Rita’s in Dalston, but this was also closed as it was Monday. Lucky Chip at The Sebright Arms was around the corner but in the end my friend told me of a ‘lovely little restaurant’ she’d seen in Hackney Downs so I settled for a permanent opening and we jumped in a cab to go visit.

Borough Wines' L'Entrepot in Hackney Downs

L’Entrepot, an offshoot from Borough Wines, is a wine shop, restaurant, bar and café, carved out of a former railway engineers shed by Hackney Downs station. The inside’s minimal and light with white walls, filament light bulbs and scattered single tables and sharing tables.

The menu was small but everything sounded delicious and so we took some time to choose. On either side of us diners were tucking into marvelous looking charcuterie and cheese plates but after watching a few dishes go by we settled on the following:

1. Anchovy paste and cherry tomato on sourdough. This was lovely to start. I’m not the biggest fan of anchovy but turning it into a paste gives you a much softer version.

2. Salmon cannelloni with crab bisque. Rich and delicious and the pasta was really well cooked to the point of being a little crispy. Fab!

3. Duck with broad bean salad. I found this a little dry but as we ordered everything together, this was the last dish I got to, so it may have been my fault for taking so long to get fork into it.

My favourite dish of the evening was the; 4. Goat’s cheese, pear and aubergine salad, all layered in a tasty cheese/veg/fruit stack and served with lettuce, cherry tomato salad on the side.

L’Entrepot London, The Verdict:

All the food was rich, fresh and well flavoured. L’Entrepot is a lovely little bistro to visit with friends. If you like your wines, they're also offering £8 corkage for those wanting to sample some vino with dinner at shop prices, and if you’re a regular, you can bring back your empty bottle for refills of the house white, red or rose which comes straight from the owner's vineyards.

L’Entrepot London, Details:
230 Dalston Lane, E8 ILA 020 7249 1176

Thursday, 9 August 2012

Netil 360 Roof-top Members Club in London

This could be East London’s best-kept secret…but not for long.
Netil 360 is an ‘unpretentious’ members club, high up on a roof in Hackney, by London Fields.
Venture up deck for great views over London’s rooftops, good tunes, yurts, chilled out vibes and hot tubs. Yes that’s right, hot tubs on the roof!
Members can use the hot tubs any time they fancy a dip and in addition there's regular Hot Tub Cinema nights that anyone can buy tickets to. For dates and upcoming films visit the Netil 360 website for a chance to watch flicks like Anchorman and Cool Runnings.
Hire Out a Yurt at Netil 360, London
If you’re looking for an original space to have a partee, you can hire Netil 360’s Disco Yurt. For £1,000 you can have a private party for up to 30 people in your own rooftop yurt complete with 80s disco ball, DJ and bar. Fun!
Bootchi Belli pop-up at Netil 360, London
Netil 360 is BYO so make sure you stock up with spirits and wine before you hike up the six floors to get in.
To accompany your drinks in the sun, the Bootchi Belli pop-up restaurant has opened offering a daily-changing menu of magical munch. Dine on bites like Ginger Pig bacon and avocado on sourdough; yam fries with Bootchi Belli’s hot fanny sauce (oh yes, it's hot); or puy lentil salad with chorizo and goat’s cheese.
Netil 360 website
Visit the website to find out more about becoming a member and all their upcoming events.
See you up on da roof!

Monday, 30 July 2012

Olympic Opening Ceremony at The Fringe 2012

As promised, a couple of photos of The Fringe 2012.

The Fringe private members club opened its doors for the first time last Friday to see in the Olympic opening ceremony.

There was a small hitch of the sound not working for the first 40 minutes of the show, which resulted in one of the poor sound guys up a ladder trying to fix the speaker. In the end he received a huge cheer as the sound of the stadium spectacle was eventually brought to life.

The Fringe is minutes from the Olympic stadium and although I missed a shot of the Red Arrows passing due to being stuck in a large queue at the Planters Rum tiki bar, we did get a great view of the fireworks finale.
The previously derelict warehouse has been revamped into three floors of bars, DJ spaces and rooms to hire out for private events.

The Fringe 2012 is situated on the canal and has a raised outside platform where people can watch all the Olympic action on a giant screen.

Good luck team GB!

Tuesday, 24 July 2012

London Olympic Launch Pop-up - The Fringe Members Club

Greetings to any blog readers out there.

Sorry for the silence. I had a baby … and lost a few months of life online.

Anyways. Hubby's offered to babysit on Friday and I’m going to the launch of London Olympic private members club The Fringe.

It’s housed in a Victorian warehouse and it’s just 100 metres from the London Olympic site. Watch this space. I’ll try to take some good photos when I get there.

The Fringe Olympic pop-up members club website:

Thursday, 8 March 2012

Foxcroft & Ginger on London Word

Here's a link to my latest review for

Read me: Foxcroft & Ginger at Boxpark

The editor sent me along to sample the very tasty cafe/restaurant.

Image caption: Pork belly squares with sesame, sticky glaze and salty caramel - courtesy of Eve Aspin

Thursday, 23 February 2012

Vietnamese Dining in London

Yum, yum Vietnamese food!

Fresh, cheap, spicy - you can't beat it.

Read all about it in my feature on Vietnamese dining in the capital on Visit London's blog this week.

Read more on Vietnamese Dining in London

Test Driving New Restaurant Orchard

The lovely Hot Dinners sent me to visit the newly-opened Orchard on Sicilian Avenue, Holborn.

This is the second venture from the duo behind successful vegetarian restaurant Vanilla Black although don't expect the same sort of experience if you're heading down there. This is much more laid back cafe-style dining.

Read more about my visit to Orchard

Photo caption: Orchard's Golden Syrup Pudding with Burnt Satsuma and Cream = highly recommended!

Friday, 10 February 2012

Le Cordon Bleu School London Launch

I'm now writing for They kindly sent me down to cover the launch of London's flagship Le Cordon Bleu School this week.

Check out the fun we had on the Hot Dinners blog: Foodie in London at Le Cordon Bleu London Launch