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Everything posted by Clerkenwellian

  1. This isn't true! ← ok, not ALL restaurants. But the majority of London's chinese restaurants do. ← I hadn't really thought about it - I guess the seafood is frozen in most Chinatown places, but what else?
  2. Am I naive in being surprised and slightly appalled at this? Is off-site preparation common in mid-market restaurants?
  3. I don't agree - if you use a decent handheld blender with an emulsifying disc then success is guaranteed and it takes a couple of minutes max. You won't get as good a result as whisking by hand, but it's miles better than anything you can get out of a jar. (Although I agree that if you're serving to the very old, very young or someone with a weak immune system then using raw egg presents a problem)
  4. Alternatively, if you're lucky, a reasonably powerful blender will be able to re-emulsify it without needing to use another yolk.
  5. The Real Greek Mezedopolio, next to the restaurant you went to, is great for casual dining - 30 or so different meze, an interesting wine selection and nothing else. Their two branches in the City - Real Greek Souvlaki - are quite different: a limited selection of meze and a short menu of souvlaki. Good enough, but a place for a quick bite rather than a proper meal.
  6. Proper worcestershire sauce has anchovies in - I didn't realise this until I ordered a bloody mary at a kosher function.
  7. Cafe du Marche is a lovely "space" (without wanting to sound like an estate agent) but I've always found it a bit overpriced. Haven't been to Sutton Arms since the chef changed last year.
  8. Immediately by the Barbican it's a bit of a desert - you do have to wander towards Smithfield to find anywhere decent. The second floor of Smiths isn't too far - decent food and vaguely British to boot. Or, right opposite St John, the Clerkenwell Dining Room - ordinarily overpriced but has (or used to have) a good value pre-theatre menu. You have to go a little further up St John Street for gastropubs, but the Well is pretty good. Or if you want something lighter, there's Cicada ("pan-asian tapas", but better than it sounds) or the Real Greek Souvlaki place (Greek "street food"). I've never been to Searcy's, and I don't know anyone who has!
  9. Apparently East@West has closed down. The couple of times I went there it seemed do be doing well enough - does anyone know the story?
  10. St John Bread and Wine - reasonably priced; great ingredients simply but skillfuly cooked, very "London" in its feel and clientele.
  11. It's excellent, and good value, but you can't book and there can sometimes be quite a wait. ← even on a saturday morning? ← Particularly on a Saturday morning! It's where Clerkenwell's yuppie population brings its children for breakfast, and the place gets packed. 12pm or 2pm is okay, but any time between is asking for trouble.
  12. It's excellent, and good value, but you can't book and there can sometimes be quite a wait.
  13. Will steam being emitted from a pot of boiling water really burn you more severely that sticking your hand into that water? That doesn't seem correct to me. I agree that since steam is capable of being heated above 100C, it can burn you more severely in that case. ← If you're comparing 1g of water with 1g of steam then, yes, the steam will burn you more severely. Chances are, of course, that in your scenario you've got 5kg of water and only 20g of steam.
  14. Pedant's corner: whilst steam is the same temperature as water, it has more thermal energy. The additional energy is the "heat of vapourisation" - the energy that was required to transform water is at 100C into steam. The heat of vapourisation is then released as heat when steam hits an object and condenses back to water. This is why steam will burn you more severely than water; I assume it also affects cooking although I couldn't say how.
  15. Just wondering - is is possible to sue Michelin?
  16. I had a disappointing meal in the brasserie just after it opened and haven't been back.
  17. Chef Scott Wade is a god-like genius. Well, he's very good anyway. ← What on earth made him open in Canary Wharf? (not that I'm complaining...)
  18. In the spirit of the season, I feel duty bound to whinge about the terrible meal I had at Curve yesterday. Food was barely above canteen-level cooking. Service was something else: despite the restaurant being empty, plates were whisked away whilst we still had food in our mouths. Whoever wrote this must have been on crack. The Gun is brilliant, though.
  19. ...or Comptoir Gascon, opposite Smithfield Market
  20. I haven't been to a hotel for afternoon tea for twenty years, but with friends visiting from the States it seemed like the right time. Only problem is that there are seven of us, and the Wolseley doesn't have a table big enough (!) Any suggestions?
  21. The carrot air looks incredible; I'm amazed it foams so much without gelatine or egg white. How long does it take? Also, if you freeze it, how do you defrost without it losing all the air?
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