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Charlie O

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Everything posted by Charlie O

  1. I agree - its one of my favourite restaurants. I've yet to go there and be disappointed.
  2. Sounds like they're supplying the Turkish convenience shops down around Hoxton too.
  3. Jan Moir reviewed it in the Telegraph (here) and gave it positive marks. I haven't got much experience of other good places to eat in the area that are suitable for an anniversary. The Wild Mushroom and The Place are restaurants that I've heard of that might be suitable. There are a few things worth including during your weekend though: Tush's Fisherman Rolls - freshly caught dabs fried in olive oil and served in a white roll - are a must. He can usually be found on the road the old fisherman's huts. The Mermaid is good for fish and chips IMHO - some people say they're fantastic. Judges Bakery is also worth visiting.
  4. Charlie O


    You could always make a terrine with it - bone the rabbit, mix in a processor with sausage meat, then add whole hazelnuts, juniper berries and herbs. Put it in a bain marie for about 90 mins at 180C While it's cooking (and cooling down) you could also use the bones to make rabbit stock. Another favourite recipe of mine is to bone the rabbit keeping the flesh in one piece (quite tricky). Then lay an omelette and herbs on top, roll it up and tie. Use the bones to make a stock and braise the meat in this for about 2 hours (I think). To serve, slice the meat and reveal the yellow omelette spiralling through
  5. There's a Vietnamese grocery on the Kingsland Road. Just past Cremer Street and before the Geffrye Museum if you're heading north. Google maps link here It's smaller than anything in Chinatown but they're very friendly. I wouldn't know if they stock betel leaves though.
  6. I'd second the recommendation (not that it needs it). Emmanuel is a really friendly guy who is very passionate about his bread.
  7. is it? £60 is a pretty sharpish tab for the food alone. ← Agree with that - but then £25 for three courses puts it in gastropub territory. Anyway, I'll leave Phil to talk about the pricing. I'm off to spend more time in my bucolic paradise
  8. I feel compelled to defend my neighbourhood - it's nothing like that. Bacchus is a short walk up Hoxton Street (past the library and the college) from the square. This is the sort of place where kids play out unsupervised and there's a thriving market. sunbeam - I'd stick to talking about food rather than property Anyway... kai-m - if you're staying near Bethnal Green than Bacchus is very close. It is in a different league to some of the other places mentioned in this thread and that is represented in its prices. The food is not faultless but there is ambition...
  9. What Innocent and McDonalds want to do with their own brands is up to them. It's an interesting choice however for Innocent to make having worked so hard to differentiate themselves from the mass market unhealthy food and drink sector. they've put a lot of effort into presenting themselves as a different sort of company so McDonalds seems an odd partner. Having put yourself up on a pedestal means that there could be some sort of consumer/brand backlash - look at the don't-be-evil-let's-censor-results-for-China Google palaver.
  10. I see there's a new Laduree outpost on the corner of Burlington Arcade/Picadilly. I've only noticed it in the last few days but it could have been there a lot longer. Has anyone been?
  11. That's a great review - thanks Bapi.
  12. I'd say Hawksmoor is very good for what it offers - steak and (triple cooked) chips. There's a short thread on it here. I'd second what PS said - given the choice between Canteen and St Johns B&W, it'd be St Johns every time. They're also open all day so if you're in the area it might be worth popping in.
  13. Bacchus and Canteen are two very different restaurants. Though it is not one, Canteen serves the sort of quality food that I wish more pubs would. Simple, honestly put together and very reasonably priced. However, its name is not unworthy. It is in the redeveloped part of Spitalfields Market - which, depending on what is around, can sometimes feel a little like the outside part of a shopping mall - and many of the diners can share long tables. To be honest, while its very good, I'm not sure that it is special enough for a birthday meal. Bacchus, on the other hand, is based in an old pub but I guess that I don't need to write much more about it. For a birthday meal, given the choice of the two, I'd go for Bacchus. You could always go to Canteen the next day for lunch. Having said that there are a number of other interesting, not too expensive restaurants around the area. St Johns Bread and Wine is just the other side of Spitalfields. Up the road and nearer your hotel is Hawksmoor - which you absolutely must visit for a post meal cocktail. Up on the Kingsland Road are a number of very cheap Vietnamese restaurants, although there's also one on Curtain Road that gets a lot of good reviews. You'll also not be too far away from the Eyre Brother's Restaurant which I've never been to but have heard mixed reports things about.
  14. There are a couple of threads here and here that might answer your question. I'm sure there was another good one that I was reading in the cooking forum a while back - maybe a search will find it
  15. Hmmm - sounds like what you want is a good breakfast from a greasy spoon cafe. Reasonably near you is the New Piccadilly (Denham St, just off Piccadilly Circus). There's more information on it here (as well as profiles of lots of other cafes if it is too far out of the way): click If you're on your way to UCL, you can pass through the Covent Garden/Neal Street area which will have a many nondescript places to try. Monmouth Coffee is also around that area - IMO best coffee in London - though you won't get a quintessentially traditional English breakfast there. For pubs, I tend to use Fancy a Pint.com which gives a good guide to old man's pubs across London.
  16. I remember an article in one of Steingarten's books where he talked of Michelin starred chefs in Paris giving up the pomp to run more simple bistro-type restaurants. Over on the New York pages there's a thread with a reasonably similar theme. Are Arbutus and other places like Galvin at the forefront of a similar trend over here? I really hope so. Does the fact that Arbutus won a star indicate that Michelin have also picked up on this?
  17. Traditionally aubergine is supposed to be salted so that the moisture draws out the bitterness. I've read in a few places that modern aubergines have been bred (at least in the UK) so that they don't need this step - since I've stopped doing it I haven't noticed much of a difference.
  18. Interesting... Do you have any idea what their ambitions would be if, say, they did open a second place?
  19. Name appropriation happens to the best of us I understand what you're saying about the market. I'd hate to see it developed or whatever. Having said that, all four of us had eaten at Smiths a couple of months ago and we all agreed that the steaks at Hawksmoor were noticeably better. If the aim of your restaurant is to provide some of the best steaks in London, surely you'll go with the supplier that meets that need. It doesn't harm the the Ginger Pig has a good reputation for looking after its animals when they're alive.
  20. Inspired by the praise in the Dos Hermanos blog and Jay's review I went to Hawksmoor last night, and it's very good. Arriving earlier than the rest of my group, I sat at the bar and looked through the cocktail list. A lot of thought has obviously gone into the creation of the drinks here, and by the time everyone arrived and had ordered their own drinks, I was ready for a second Hawksmoor Fizz. One of the nicest cocktails I've had in London. Sitting down at our table, we skipped starters and went straight for the steaks. The menu makes a point that all of the meat is from the Ginger Pig, and it shows. Two people had a small rib-eye which was very tender. I went for the hangar, which is only served rare. This is apparently a difficult cut to cook well but both the examples served were tasty and not at all tough. We ordered a few portions of triple cooked chips (which had the right combination of crunch and fluffiness) and some sides of greens. We could only manage one desert between our group. This was a chocolate and pecan sundae which was ok though nothing particularly special. Service, however, was easy going and attentive. By chance, another friend was in at the same time. She ordered a cocktail but when it came, realised she'd ordered the wrong thing and didn't particularly like it. She didn't make a fuss but the bar-man noticed she wasn't drinking her cocktail and when she ordered a glass of champagne, took the drink away to the kitchen and didn't charge her for it. As the restaurant fills up, the acoustics mean that it can become hard to hear your companions, particularly at some of the bigger tables (we were sitting at a round, '50s Danish style table to give you some idea of the decor). What I liked about the place was that it was food done simply, without pretension and very well.
  21. I'd second the recommendation for St John Bread and Wine. One of my favourite places. You do need to book a couple of days in advance but its got a great atmosphere and is very relaxed.
  22. If you follow this link there's a list of foam recipes, including a pea one. It was part of a special feature that the Observer did on the future of food in the UK.
  23. I was just going to post the same one - great proper cafe. They'll bellow that your food is ready ("egg, ham, chips") and if you're not up to pick up your food within a milisecond, you get a warning, "egg, ham, chips - going cold." Mind you, it's just round the corner from the Channel 4 building so probably already well known to media types.
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