Friday, December 01, 2006

Eating Out in London, The Highlights


I’m back! I’ve eaten too much, am broke but relaxed after the long break. It has been interesting going back this time because I’m eating less with my eyes and more with my stomach. I love the ambience, design and concepts of all the restaurants but a lot of the food falls short of what is promised. With our money being so weak, I was even more picky than usual about restaurants. We spent a little more but ate out less. We lunched quite a bit because most restaurants have a set lunch menu that’s good value for money. So where do I begin documenting my culinary adventures? Its going to take me a while to sort out all my pictures and thoughts so I think I will my favourites in London.

The day after I arrived, we had lunch at GBK (above). Everyone ordered a burger each so I decided to have salad which I only had a bite off. It was delicious but there was just too much food! After eating a quarter of Hunky’s avocado and bacon burger and quarter of Mar’s blue cheese burger, I was full. As you can see from the pictures, the burgers are rather large. They were still good but I could taste that unmistakable meaty taste I associate with meat that has been sitting in the fridge for a while. I’m happy to say, I find something much better later on in my trip.


It was after watching The Prestige that we visited Randall & Aubin on Fulham Road for lunch. I ordered the organic beef burger with pancetta (£12.95) above left while Hunky had pork chop with apple sauce, onion gravy and mash (£8.95) above right. Bloody hell it was a fantastic burger! Moist, fresh and full of flavour, it is the best (and most expensive) burger I’ve ever had. I liked that there was nothing fancy apart from the single slice of crispy pancetta, just pure, clean flavours. Hunky’s pork chop was really delicious too. The mash was so-so but the pork was really juicy and tender. It was a massive chunk of meat!

Another memorable meal was at Chez Bruce. It was awarded a Michelin star recently so Hunky has been harping on about taking me there. Dinner was completely out of the question because they were fully booked the whole time I was there. We managed to get a booking for lunch on the coldest day I was there. Walking across Clapham Common, the cold wind was merciless. I was in such a foul mood by the time we got there because I was hungry and my ears hurt from the biting cold. It didn’t look like much. It was a small restaurant with clusters of tables but you know its fancy when you get served by “real” English wait staff and a sommelier. Hunky and I decided to go for the 2 courses for £19.95. He had foie gras & chicken liver parfait with toasted brioche to start and grilled plaice with Jerusalem artichoke puree, seared scallops and prosciutto. Do you know that Jerusalem artichoke is neither from Jerusalem nor an artichoke? Why can’t they call it what it is?! Anyway I digress, for starter I had paysanne salad with confit of duck, foie gras, pancetta and red wine jus (below left). The description left out the fried quails egg and that the duck was not a duck at all. More like duckling or pigeon. Either that or it was some new breed of dwarf duck! It was pretty good but I think my cholesterol meter went bust. My main course was okay, nothing to write home about. It was a rump of lamb with braised savoy cabbage, sarladaise potato and prunes (below right). I liked the hint of rosemary and prunes. Hunky’s fish however, now that was superb! The fish was just cooked and the scallops divine.
One Saturday, we went to meet some friends at Spitalfields. Unfortunately for me, the market was closed due to renovations. So sad! What does one do when shopping plans get thwarted? Eat of course! We went to have lunch at Canteen which is one of the new restaurants in the area. It was really busy which we took as a good sign. Three of us had roast pork with braised red cabbage, quince paste, roast potatoes and sautéed seasonal vegetable (below). I was surprised at how healthy it tasted. There was very little salt, surprise, surprise. At the same time, it was bland. It was just nice for lunch. Hunky’s venison pie was really yummy. Not gamey at all.
I'm getting hungry again looking at these pictures! Mmmmmm.....

4 comments:

  1. Welcome Back! Yeah, I can imagine food being really pricey in UK as I still remember feeling very poor when I last visited. No wonder whenever my friend comes back for Xmas, she says the food is so cheap here.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Anonymous10:08 am

    ooooooooohhhh that picture of hunky's pork slab is sooo inspiring!

    ReplyDelete
  3. wah, so good life, go london to eat. snort!!! (green with hysterical jealousy)

    ReplyDelete
  4. So pleasing to the eyes and definitely pleasing to taste. Love it!

    ReplyDelete