Tan Viet is known for their crispy skin chicken that it is deserving of a line out the door. I’ve heard so many glowing reports it was about time I got some. Even the little old Viet lady next to me tells me it is really good. She also decides to help me with my order. Oh bless… but is it that obvious I’m not from these parts?
We arrive and there’s a line. We’re about 10 people deep. Getting a pork roll is so tempting right about now. Stay focused, Priscilla… I estimate a half hour wait and 20 mins later, we’re in. I smell chicken skin! It smells so good I am taking in gulps full of chicken air. Tastes kinda like chicken.
Regularly frequented by the staff of the Japanese Consulate, Umu (one michelin) is normally situated in the heart of Mayfair. However, on this occasion we find Umu located inside Frieze Masters, a fine art exhibition in Regents Park, London. For four days only the Umu became a pop up restaurant featuring a limited selection of of sashimi, sushi, mains and desserts off their original menu. Nonetheless, this is sufficient to showcase the exquisite craftsmanship of Head Chef Yoshinori Ishii, who with his nine years experience at Japan’s three Michelin-starred Kyoto Kitcho, delivers a menu that is gracious, delicate and visually dazzling.
The shellfish tomato jelly (£16) is a jewelled masterpiece marked with a constellation of abalone, scallop and shrimp gems nestled cooly in a wobbly translucent jelly. Served cold, the dish is playfully subtle and texturally contrasting. The meat is supple while the veg holds the crunch. All going down very nicely with the slip of the jelly.
Just when Dixon st couldn’t get any better it graces us with a delicious Hong Kong style eatery serving up Cantonese food in a casual ‘dai pai dong‘ setting. It’s hard not get too excited while you wait outside with the pork bun enshrined capsules, glistening BBQ ducks and live seafood tanks looking sweetly at you.
Old Town Hong Kong Cuisine has a great mix of value and deliciousness. Atmosphere is buzzy, service incredibly warm and friendly. I’m just so used to it hard and fast, so I’m a little dumbfounded at how pleasant it all is.
What’s hot on everyone’s lips? The baos of course. With their variety of char siu ($7 for two), pork (siu yuk – $8) or Peking duck ($8). In fact, Old Hong Kong Town appears to be one of the better places serving up value for money Peking duck – half duck ($35) or whole duck ($65) with a second course of san choi bao.
When visiting London as an Aussie/Kiwi, you will pick up that there is wave of us starting to take over with our food and coffee. Coffee is downright horrible in the UK, that there’s even an app to navigate your way through the toilet water taking you to Aussie/Kiwi coffee Mecca. Try London’s Best Coffee Guide (£1.99) or London Coffee Guide (free). Otherwise if you spot a decent looking cafe and it sounds like you’ve walked into a shop back home, you’re good as gold.
Gourmet Kitchen Burger is no exception. It reminds me of our beloved Chur Burger in Sydney.
Owned and operated by Kiwis, they promise great burgers with quality ingredients all cooked to order. GKB has expanded into franchising and are now located across the UK. So if you’re stuck for a lunch option and stroll past, give it a go.
We begin with the onion rings (£3.35). Gloriously crispy, you could hear that emphatic crunch with each bite. I had these with bacon aioli (£1.25) and garlic mayo (£1.25) – I couldn’t decide. Hmmm bacon… The dips were delicious and these were easily the best onion rings I’ve ever had.
The home made slaw (£3.00) is fresh and clean. Happy days. I personally hate haloumi, so I am pretty impressed that I fall in love with these halmoui bites (£3.75). They are void of that chewy rubber feel I dislike so much and that kiwi fruit and habernero sauce is a show stopper, packing quite the kick.
This is my second time at Burger and Lobster. If you have read my previous post, you would know that this to me, is the happiest place on earth. I love getting down and dirty with some lobster. Yeah!
At this point, it’s popularity still hasn’t wavered. In fact, I’m sure it has worsened. We spend 2.5 hours waiting to be seated. The only reason I am happy to wait is because they call you when your table is ready. Which means I can have a cheeky one (or two) and it really is worth the arduous wait.
Burger and Lobster, don’t have a menu as such and only serve the following three items:
- Whole lobster steamed or grilled with clarified garlic butter or garlic and lemon butter;
- Lobster roll served in a hot dog bun with a slick of wasabi mayo; or
- Beef burger with optional cheese and bacon
All are served with a side of salad and fries at £20 a pop. Approx. $35AUD.
First time round I did the whole lobster, but now I wanted to tackle the lobster roll so I could compare the two.
Originating in NYC, Shake Shack is the all American food chain serving up burgers, hot dogs, shakes, fries and frozen concretes.
It is notoriously known for the following signature items: juicy burgers, concretes, gooey cheese and long windy lines taking it to 34 locations across the globe. Locally, it’s also known for being part in the burger wars with Five Guys in the ultimate burger off in who does the better all American burger?
But most of all, it is the only burger place where each burger served looks exactly like it does in the photo. It is picture perfect!! Follow them on Instagram @shakeshackuk, for your total viewing pleasure…
The secret to their juicy burgers is that it is made from a mysterious beef blend, taking different parts of the cow to make up the patty. The concrete is also widely known to be made from frozen custard and not ice cream! It is called a concrete because when you flip it upside down it stays put like a nice little concrete slab and doesn’t so much as drip.
The patty is 100% Angus beef hormone and antibiotic free, cooked medium unless requested otherwise. I mean… what’s not to love? Picture perfect wholesome burgers that’s what!
As you would have seen from previous post, I decided to embark on a 5 day juice detox, to recharge, reboot and hit the reset button. The experience has been quite incredible and has left me feeling absolutely amazing. I highly recommend it.
If this something that you have reservations about, I would encourage you to keep an open mind and watch the documentary film, Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead. This is what sealed the deal for me. Even this interview with Joe Cross in the Philippnes is thought provoking enough!
I’ve been doing daily updates on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter where you have asked me several questions about the cleanse and I will answer them right here!
Photo Courtesy of the Daily Addict
So I’ve come back from London and I’ve come back feeling a bit blurghh. If you knew what I did, you would know why! I’m never one to shy away from a bit of indulgence, especially on holiday mode but I knew my body wasn’t in a good way. My body was sluggish, craving all the bad foods and wanting more, more, more!
The silly season is soon upon us and I thought I would go in for a pre-season detox. I will be embarking on a 5 day juice detox. Before you think I’ve gone right mad. Keep an open mind, just as I did. I too felt the same way, until I watched a documentary film called “Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead” which totally turned me around. You can watch this on YouTube here. It follows the journey of fellow Aussie, Joe Cross who conducts a 60 day juice fast to regain his health in an attempt to combat his debilitating and rare auto-immune deficiency including his dependency on steroids. You will be pleasantly surprised at the results. I urge you to keep an open mind and check it out. It is life changing and very inspiring.
Now to the cleanse
Uccello is tucked away on Level 4 of the Ivy and overlooks the Ivy Pool, which I find weird as I have never really seen this with my very own eyes in broad daylight. Think Pacha. It’s a great spot if you are wanting to make the most of the great sunny weather and make use of a city slicking roof top pool. You can eat, eat, eat and let it all hang out. Minus the itsy bitsy teeny weeny.
Headed up by David Lovett, the menu promises an authentic Italian experience, with a less is more approach. It focusing on good quality produce and it shows. The seafood is incredibly fresh, the pasta is hand-made and flavours are subtle yet tasty enough to make each and every dish truly sing.
The highlight of meal, apart from eating all this gorgeous food was seeing Karl Stefanovic in the flesh. I have a massive man crush on him! You really have to love a man that can make you LOL in the morning when you have your cranky pants on and panda eyes are in full swing!
The Stuffed Beaver is an interesting spot. It’s a Canadian inspired joint that dishes up a mixture of Canadian and a Tex-Mex type menu. I’m talking fries, tacos, dogs, burgers and nachos. It’s not 100% Canadian through and through but the staff and the owner are. They do serve the classic poutine which if you’re like me and have never tried this before, is a speciality junk food originating from Quebec, a true emulsion of French Canada. It’s fries served with gravy and cheese curds and it is as it sounds, evil and glorious. The venue has your typical sports bar vibe, great for a cheap eat and groups wanting to share. Everyday they have a dam special. Wing half day Wednesday is their most popular item and I can totally see why.