L O N D O N , O N E B I T E AT A T I M E
A GIN OF TEN JJOURNEYS Ten sustainably sourced botanicals. One perfectly balanced gin.
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Bad news. I’ve just looked into my crystal ball and in the future – as I’ve long suspected – we’re going to be eating freeze-dried meals vacuum packed in little silver sachets. Think astronaut food but worse, because we’re not going to be eating it in space, we’ll be tucking into our dehydrated ‘spag bol’ in the scorched wasteland of a post-apocalyptic Earth, shovelling it in behind burned out cars while we run from androids or aliens or zombies. Can’t wait! The (relatively) good news is that until all this happens we’ve got plenty of time to enjoy food that hasn’t been reconstituted and processed so it’ll last for a million years – though that doesn’t mean we can’t wonder about what we’ll be eating and drinking in the slightly more-immediate future. So that’s what we’ve done on page 54. We asked some of our favourite people and brands to look into their own crystal balls, ignore the fire and androids, and tell us what they actually think the next decade or so holds for the food and drink industry, from the beer we’ll be drinking to the gadgets we’ll have in our kitchens at home. So test tubes filled with powdered far side of the Moon-style IPA, and robots doing the washing up, yeah? Not exactly, no. Back in the present, find out everything you’ve ever wanted to know about eating seaweed (p79), visit the place in Italy where the whole town cooks together once a year (p64), and hear the fascinating story behind the brand that made us care about the tonic in our G&Ts (p73). And there’s not a freeze-dried chilli con carne in sight. f
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FRONT COVER: Photography by Ian Dingle
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FEAST 054 FUTURE FOOD 064 MAIDA, ITALY 073 FEVER-TREE 079 SEAWEED 082 COOKBOOK CLUBS 090 MIXOLOGY: RAY’S BAR
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112 BOTTLE SERVICE 123 THE DIGEST 127 INSIDER: LAKE DISTRICT 134 THE SELECTOR
— PART 1 —
GRAZE “I CAME IN AS THE STREET-FOOD STORM WAS TAKING OFF – THE SCENE WAS SO ALIVE AND ROGUE AND INFECTIOUS” ZAN KAUFMAN ON FOUNDING BLEECKER BURGER, 037
014 THE FOODIST | 016 LONDON LARDER | 020 WEAPONS OF CHOICE 027 RECIPES | 034 COLUMNS | 037 Q&A: BLEECKER BURGER 041 HEAVY MACHINERY | 042 THE RADAR
What’s tomato with you? Well, you haven’t tried these three alternative London-made ketchups, of course...
1. RUB IE S IN T HE RU B B L E BANANA K ETC HU P
Two recent openings prove that the humble taco is well and truly seizing its moment, writes Mike Gibson
IRST CAME TEX-MEX. So-called ‘Mexican’ staples chewed up and spat out by American-style diner chains, which bore scant resemblance to the unique food of the North American country. Then came the burrito chains – where rice was shoved into heaving burritos at shops that moved units in their hundreds by the day – and the Mexican dinner kits that invaded supermarkets, with their snow-white tortillas and pouches of spice mixes and salsas. Later came Wahaca. A chain, yes, but one that provided a genuine and accessible window into Mexican cuisine, presided over by a chef-restaurateur – Thomasina Miers – who learned her trade in Mexico City, and who regularly takes her staff on research trips back to her spiritual (if not actual) home. Finally, at some point in the last year or two, London formally welcomed the taco to swell its comfort-food ranks. While the above might be simplistic (there have been Mexican restaurants in London for a good while now) it does feel like the cuisine has a new face: the
down-and-dirty taco joint, typically with little regard for lighting or cutlery, but with lots for flavour and nuance. Because when tacos are good, they can be spellbinding. Street-food kings Breddos Tacos’ long-awaited restaurant, which opened last year in Clerkenwell, is a cathedral to the taco; one that makes the combination of slow-cooked filling, simple garnishes and roughly nixtamalised tortilla a near art form. I defy you to try one of its baja fish tacos and form a description that does justice to its simple, devastating deliciousness. Or what about Del74, the pop-up-turned-restaurant (sensing a theme yet?), which serves up unpretentious but incredibly sophisticated tacos from a tiny kitchen in Clapton? And this is without mentioning El Pastor, Corazón, Temper and Foley’s. Mexican food has taken its time to become a genuine force in London dining. And, wherever it goes from here, I’ll always be thankful for the glorious things that can happen when filling meets tortilla. f
You might have heard of Rubies in the Rubble – the Borough Market stalwart is all about creating off-thewall condiments with food that would otherwise be wasted. We love this new banana ketchup – more savoury than you might think, with a streak of turmeric, ginger and chilli. Yum. £3.50; rubiesintherubble. com
2. DR W IL L’S B E ET R OOT K ETC H U P As the name suggests, this range of condiments is made by a practising doctor at Great Ormond Street in the time he has in between saving lives. Dr Will Breakey and restaurateur Josh Rose have come up with a line of creative ketchups, including this earthy beetroot number, and all are free from refined sugar. It’ll be available from Selfridges soon. £3.99; dr-wills.com
3. APHR ODIT E’S POM E G RANAT E K ETC HUP Street-food kings Aphrodite’s have been garnering as much acclaim for their range of condiments as their Levantine-inspired food truck, and this pomegranate ketchup, made with molasses and spices, is just as much at home as an accompaniment on the plate as it is in a slow and tasty braise. £4.50; aphroditesfood.com
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TH AT’S WHAT THEY SAID Snippets from our writers and personalities across the industry, all on foodism.co.uk
THE LONDON LARDER
This month: Prairie Fire BBQ’s barbecue sauces
THINGS ARE A LITTLE SNUG IN THIS BUZZING ARCHWAY RESTAURANT, BUT THAT JUST MEANS THERE’S LESS SPACE BETWEEN YOU AND THE TACOS
JORDAN KELLY-LINDEN, foodism’s editorial assistant, checks out Borough taco joint El Pastor
IT’S TECHNICAL, MICHELIN-BAITING CONTEMPORARY COOKING IN A RECLAIMED SPACE THAT FEELS LIKE A FAR CRY FROM WHITE TABLECLOTHS IN A HUSHED DINING ROOM MIKE GIBSON, foodism’s deputy editor, puts 108 Garage in Notting Hill to the test
‘Bang bang’ beef short rib came with anchovy-miso aubergine, which managed to cram what felt like all the umami in the world into one dish JON HAWKINS, foodism’s editor, on one of Sparrow in Lewisham’s big hitters
You could start with a beer, or a michelada – beer seasoned with lime juice, chilli and spices. You could grab a shot of smokey mezcal... But if you don’t grab one of the watermelon house margaritas, we’re not friends anymore
MIKE GIBSON, taco enthusiast, gets his beak wet at Del74 in Clapton
I LOVED COOKING, I LOVED THE LIFE AND I LOVED THE BONKERS HOURS. KITCHENS ARE RUN A BIT LIKE AN ARMY, BUT WITHIN THAT STRUCTURE YOU CAN BE AN INDIVIDUAL – AND A SLIGHTLY MAVERICK ONE AT THAT. IT REALLY WORKED FOR ME WHEN I WAS COPING WITH THE LOSS OF MY MOTHER WHEN I WAS A TEENAGER ALLEGRA MCEVEDY, chef-patron of Albertine, on how she got into cooking
What’s the product? A slice of Kansas right on your doorstep – or, er, in your cupboard. Useful for both marinating and dipping, Prairie Fire BBQ sauces come in two different styles: original and ‘With a Kick’. Whichever one you go for, they’re an essential component for your next summer barbecue.
Who makes it? Prairie Fire BBQ was born out of founder Michael Gratz’s nostalgia for his hometown, Kansas City. Apparently London’s food scene had everything apart from authentic Kansas-style slowsmoked BBQ sauces and rubs, so he decided to do something about it.
What does it taste like? The original sauce is smooth, rich and unashamedly sweet, but the ‘With a Kick’ version, laced with sour tamarind and spicy chipotle, is a whole other story – and watch out, because it has a slow-burning heat that’ll creep up on you when you least expect it. It’s just begging to be poured over slow-cooked baby-back ribs or brisket.
Where can I get it? The sauces can currently be found at farmers’ markets and quality London butchers including Parson’s Nose, HG Walter and Moen & Sons. They are also available at prairiefirebbq.com for £6, along with the rest of the range of sauces and spice rubs. f
Summer explorers welcome Visit East Village to uncover endless options for summer fun. From relaxing walks and perfect picnic spots to eclectic bars and restaurants â€“ your summer starts here. Plan a great day out at visiteastvillage.co.uk
DISCOVER THE NEW EAST
LOCAL HEROES S U M MER P OP-UPS
Last year’s much-loved Cuban fiesta is back this summer, featuring a line-up of food and drink traders that’ll keep you coming back all summer. Grab rum cocktails or a cold glass of Chandon from the bar, or graze on Del74’s tacos and Mama’s Jerk’s chicken. SW9 8JH; brixtonrooftop.com
Pergola on the Roof has a big sister – a super-sized version of its White City site, this time in Paddington. Expect Patty & Bun, DF/Mexico, Mamalan and more, all serving up portable versions of their restaurant staples, on a big, vibey rooftop that’s (a little) more centrally located than the original incarnation. W2 6PY; pergolaontheroof.co.uk
Until 24 September Yeah, you like vermouth. But do you really like vermouth? Well, you can find out at Stevie Parle’s CRAFT London this summer – he’s invited German vermouth brand Belsazar to the Greenwich restaurant for a popup rooftop bar. As well as glugging specially created £8 vermouth spritzes, you’ll be able to take part in ticketed masterclasses, too. SE10 0SQ; craft-london.co.uk
Half Hitch Gin founder Mark Holdsworth on his distinctive entrepreneurial spirit
gone by. From 1869 to 1964, Camden was one of London’s largest distilleries, stretching from the canal to the Roundhouse, with only tell-tales like the road name Juniper Crescent remaining as a nod to the past. With a genuine affection for Camden and good grounding from my years at Bacardi, my ambition was clear – to reinvigorate gin-making in the area. I started with a small rotovap, like those used in labs, and then a 210-litre copper still. I knew my gin had to stand out – I wanted it to be enjoyed neat or over ice – so I narrowed down an array of botanicals to tea and bergamot. I use a unique combination of production techniques: copper pot, vacuum distillation and handcrafted tinctures to achieve its distinctive taste.
In two years, Half Hitch has won five global awards and sells in Selfridges and Fortnum & Mason, as well as being served regularly in St James’s Palace. f Order a 70cl for £39.95, or learn how to make gin at Gin School for £50 per person; halfhitch.london
Photograph by ###
Y WORKING LIFE began on a stall in Camden Market. I loved everything about the area, which paved the way for a return to the Lock after a 15-year career in spirits, working in research, development, sales and marketing at Bacardi. Bacardi has a formidable portfolio beyond its rum namesake, and I worked on tequila, liqueurs and cachaça as well as Bombay Sapphire, Dewars, Martini and Grey Goose. In 2014, it was time to put a lifelong ambition to have my own start-up into action. The catalyst was learning about Camden Lock’s former gin glory. I have memories of walking along its footpaths to work, without giving thought to what its large warehouses and cobbled streets had been home to in years
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WEAPONS OF CHOICE Keep cool with a design-led fridge, plus picnic essentials and a hot way to raise your steaks PHOTOGRAPHY BY DAVID HARRISON
C HIL L FAC TOR KITCHENAID ICONIC FRIDGE, Â£1,300 Max out your kitchen style with this beautiful monolith of a fridge, featuring chrome plating and available in a choice of three signature colours. kitchenaidlondon.co.uk
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P I ZZ A T H E ACTIO N ROCCBOX, £499 Want to try your hand at pizza baking? This portable oven comes with wood and gas burners, and will reach a maximum heat of 500°C. roccbox.com
BASKET CASE LAKELAND TRADITIONAL PICNIC HAMPER, Â£67.99 Looking to dine alfresco this summer? Grab this handy picnic kit, which comes with cutlery, china plates, plastic wine glasses and a cooling compartment. lakeland.co.uk
HOT STONE S STEAKSTONES RAISED SHARING STEAK PLATE, Â£95 Add some theatricality to your dinner with this hot stone cooking set. Just heat it up on the hob or in the oven, bring it to the table and get griddling. steakstones.co.uk
A TASTE OF HISTORY
IT’S DIFFICULT TO SUMMARISE A CENTURY OF COOKING, BUT NEW COOKBOOK ‘THE IVY NOW’ MANAGES TO DO JUSTICE TO THE ICONIC LONDON RESTAURANT PHOTOGRAPHS BY JENNY ZARINS
ITH SO MANY restaurants opening and closing in our capital, and with an occasional tinge of restlessness on the part of both diner and restaurateur, longevity can sometimes appear underrated. But sometimes it takes an anniversary for the achievements of a restaurant in remaining not only open, but relevant to London’s food scene, to remind us how difficult that can be. Enter The Ivy. The iconic Covent Garden restaurant is celebrating its 100th birthday this year. Throughout that time, it’s survived a fast-changing food scene, renovations and
reinventions – not to mention the best part of two world wars – and is still a pillar of the London dining scene today. Part of the celebrations for this grand old palace to contemporary dining’s 100th birthday is the release of a brand new cookbook, The Ivy Now: The Restaurant and its Recipes. Pulled together in part by chef Gary Lee and writer Fernando Peire, it comprises some of the best-loved recipes from The Ivy’s illustrious history (and yes, the Bang Bang Chicken is present and correct). Check out four of our favourites here. f
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F O O DISM RE CIPE S, IN ASSOC IAT ION W IT H C ORAVIN
Photograph by ###
There was once a time when opening a bottle of fine wine, one you were given as a present, or any bottle you wanted to treat with patience and care, meant committing to finishing off the bottle there and then. But then something changed. The Coravin™ Wine System is the only tool in the world that lets you pour and drink the finest wines,
by the glass, without pulling the cork. Thanks to the Coravin’s unique technology, your favourite wines will be protected from oxidation, so you can keep enjoying your favourite bottles over time, any time, in any quantity, and without any risk of waste. The Coravin is available in a variety of colours from coravin.com
TIGER PRAWNS SERVED WITH BURNT LEMON AND A HOME-MADE PIRI PIRI BUTTER, THESE TANGY PRAWNS MAKE A GREAT STARTER THAT’S QUICK TO KNOCK TOGETHER
ING R E DIE NTS ◆◆ 2 lemons, halved
◆◆ 1-2 tbsp icing sugar
◆◆ 600g raw tiger prawns
◆◆ Sea salt and freshly ground
The piri piri butter ◆◆ 1 tbsp olive oil, plus a little
extra for oiling the prawns
◆◆ 1 large plum tomato,
peeled, deseeded and diced
◆◆ 110g unsalted butter, at
◆◆ ½-1 dried bird’s eye chilli,
or a large pinch of crushed dried chilli flakes ◆◆ 1 garlic clove, minced ◆◆ Pinch of caster sugar ◆◆ Finely grated zest of 1 lime ◆◆ 2 tbsp finely chopped coriander
prawns Cooking the means ls el sh in their tely lu so they ’re ab avour fl h it w ng bursti
Preparation ◆◆ 10 mins
◆◆ 10 mins
Serves ◆◆ 4
OT ONLY DOES The Ivy’s piri piri butter make a rich and spicy accompaniment for these prawns, cooked in their shells, but “it can also be spread onto hot toast, or whisked into a tomato soup at the last minute before serving, to add a little kick,” say The Ivy’s kitchen team. The key to this dish is its simplicity, letting the prawns take centre stage and adorning them with spice and richness. This dish makes for a great starter, but could alternatively be served as a sharing plate.
1 For the piri piri butter, heat 1 tbsp olive oil in a small pan, add the diced
tomato and 10g of the butter and simmer for 2-3 minutes. 2 Add the chilli, garlic, sugar and a pinch of salt, and cook for a further 5 minutes, or until the tomato mixture has cooked down to a thick paste. Cool slightly, then mash with a fork to reduce until smooth. 3 Mix the tomato paste into the remaining softened butter, add the lime zest and the chopped coriander, then season with pepper. Cover and set aside. 4 Dip the cut side of each lemon into the icing sugar, then press them into a hot, dry frying pan. Within a minute they should have blackened, so set them aside. Wipe out the pan and
return to the heat. 5 Lightly oil and season the prawns, and sear them in the hot pan until coloured on both sides. Reduce the heat and continue cooking until they are nearly done (they will feel firm to the touch and have turned pink). 6 Add half of the piri piri butter to the pan, allow it to melt and foam, while turning the prawns in it. Cook for a further 2 minutes until everything is piping hot. 7 To serve, lay the prawns on warmed plates, drizzle the piri piri butter over and serve with the burnt lemon on the side. The remaining piri piri butter can be wrapped and frozen for another time. f
CAULIFLOWER TABBOULEH VIBRANT, CRUNCHY AND FRESH, THIS RAW VEGETABLE SALAD MAKES FOR A GREAT ALL-ROUND SIDE THAT’S SURE TO PLEASE
OMETIMES, ALL YOU need is a crunchy, cold, nourishing salad. Tabbouleh is a Levantine staple, using fresh, uncooked vegetables dressed in a simple dressing to create a side that’s totally easy to prepare, and goes with plenty of different dishes. “This will make a great accompaniment to any meal,” say The Ivy’s kitchen team. “We use a variety of cauliflowers, predominantly for the colours, but this will work just as well
with plain white cauliflower if you can’t get purple or Romanesco.”
1 Cut the cauliflowers into large florets and grate into a large bowl, using the coarse side of a box grater (or chop in a food processor using the pulse button). 2 Finely dice the cauliflower stalks, shallots, celery and celeriac and add to the bowl. Finely slice the spring
onions and add to the bowl with the pomegranate seeds, raisins, pumpkin seeds, chopped herbs and lemon zest. 3 Pour in the lemon juice and olive oil, season well with salt and pepper, mix well to combine and add a light dusting of icing sugar if the flavour is a little bitter. 4 Cover and leave to stand for 1–2 hours before serving to allow all the flavours to marry. Taste and stir again before serving. f
Preparation ◆◆ 15 mins
Serves ◆◆ 6
ING R E DIE NTS ◆◆ ½ white cauliflower
◆◆ ½ purple cauliflower
◆◆ ½ Romanesco cauliflower ◆◆ 2 shallots
◆◆ 1 celery stick
◆◆ ¼ celeriac, peeled
◆◆ 1 bunch of spring onions
GET THE BOOK
Photograph by ###
The Ivy Now by Fernando Peire, with recipes by Gary Lee, is published by Quadrille and priced at £30. Photography by Jenny Zarins.
◆◆ Seeds from ½ pomegranate ◆◆ 50g white raisins
◆◆ 30g pumpkin seeds, toasted ◆◆ 50g flat-leaf parsley, finely
◆◆ 50g mint, finely chopped
◆◆ Finely grated zest and juice
of 1 lemon
◆◆ 60ml fruity olive oil ◆◆ Icing sugar to taste
◆◆ Sea salt and freshly ground
A SHOWSTOPPER OF A MAIN, THIS LAMB IS SERVED WITH SMOKED AUBERGINE AND QUINOA TABBOULEH
Preparation ◆◆ 10 mins
◆◆ 30 mins
Serves ◆◆ 4
HE IVY HAS always been a trailblazer when it comes to incorporating other cuisines into its brand of modern British cooking. “Thanks to the multicultural nature of our kitchen, we have the good fortune to learn many new dishes and methods of cooking from all over the world, without ever leaving West Street,” say The Ivy’s kitchen team. “This dish was introduced to us by a young Moroccan chef, who in turn was handed the recipe by his mother. It has proved a very popular dish.” This dish mixes flavours and textures, too – gamey lamb rump is offset by cold smoked aubergine and crunchy quinoa.
1 Marinate the lamb overnight in the olive oil, sumac, rosewater, chopped garlic and rosemary. 2 For the smoked aubergine, place the aubergines under a hot grill or directly over a gas flame and cook, turning occasionally, until the flesh is very soft and the skin has blackened. 3 When cool enough to handle, remove the skin and stalk and place the aubergine pulp in a food processor with the remaining ingredients.
nk and Perfectly pi , this ed ic subtly sp the is sh di b m la dinner er m m perfect su
Blitz until smooth, taste to check the seasoning and leave to cool. 4 For the quinoa tabbouleh, cook the quinoa in a pan of boiling salted water until tender (around 15-20 minutes) and drain thoroughly. Mix with the remaining ingredients, season to taste and set aside. 5 When you are ready to finish cooking, preheat the oven to 200°C. 6 Heat an oven-proof, heavy-based frying pan or skillet until smoking hot. 7 Season the lamb with salt and pepper and place fat-side down into
the hot, dry pan. Sear the lamb really well for 2 minutes, then turn over and brown the other side. 8 Turn the lamb fat-side down and cook in the hot oven for 12-13 minutes for medium-rare, as The Ivy serves it, or longer if you prefer it well done. Remove from the oven and leave to rest for 5-10 minutes. 9 To serve, spoon the smoked aubergine and tabbouleh onto the plates. Slice the lamb, arrange on top and sprinkle with the dukkah and a pinch of sumac. f
ING R E DIE NTS ◆◆ 600g lamb rump, cut into
two even portions
◆◆ 2 tbsp olive oil
◆◆ 1 tsp sumac, plus extra to
◆◆ 1 tsp rosewater
◆◆ 1 garlic clove, finely
◆◆ 1 sprig of rosemary
◆◆ Dukkah spice mix, to
◆◆ Sea salt and freshly ground
The smoked aubergine ◆◆ 2 aubergines
◆◆ 1 garlic clove, roughly
◆◆ 2 tbsp light tahini
◆◆ 1 tbsp lemon juice
◆◆ ¼ tsp cayenne pepper
◆◆ 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
The quinoa tabbouleh ◆◆ 100g quinoa
◆◆ 2 tbsp raisins
◆◆ 1 tbsp sunflower seeds ◆◆ 1 tbsp chia seeds
◆◆ ½ red onion, finely chopped ◆◆ ½ preserved lemon, skin
shredded, insides discarded
◆◆ Seeds from ½ pomegranate ◆◆ Small bunch of mint,
◆◆ Small bunch of coriander,
◆◆ Small bunch of flat-leaf
◆◆ Juice of ½ lemon
◆◆ 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil ◆◆ 1 tbsp pomegranate
◆◆ Good pinch of ras-el-hanout
LEMON PANNA COTTA SERVED WITH FRESH AND FROZEN RASPBERRIES, THIS SIMPLE BUT EFFECTIVE DISH IS EVERYTHING WE WANT IN A SUMMER DESSERT
ita and A fruity gran pair ies rr be fresh rasp ith the w ly nt ia ill br a cotta creamy pann
I N GREDI EN TS The raspberry granita ◆◆ 300g raspberries
◆◆ 100g caster sugar ◆◆ 100ml prosecco ◆◆ 75ml lemonade
◆◆ 50ml raspberry liqueur,
FTER A JOYFUL summer dinner-party closer? Look no further. “If you can find edible flowers, do use them, as they really lift this dish,” say the Ivy’s kitchen team. We’d recommend serving the desserts on frozen plates, if possible, to slow the inevitable thawing.
(such as Edmond Briottet)
The panna cotta ◆◆ 4 leaves platinum-grade
◆◆ 525ml double cream ◆◆ 350ml whole milk
◆◆ 70g caster (superfine) sugar ◆◆ Finely grated zest and juice
of 2 lemons
To decorate ◆◆ 150g raspberries ◆◆ Lemon zest
◆◆ A handful of edible flowers
and herb sprigs
◆◆ 30 mins
◆◆ 20 mins
1 For the raspberry granita, combine the raspberries with 50g of the sugar in a pan, cover and cook over a low heat until the raspberries have totally broken down. 2 Blend the raspberries until smooth and pass through a fine-mesh sieve into a clean bowl.
3 Remove 2-3 tbsp of the raspberry purée and set aside. 4 Whisk the remaining purée with the remaining 50g sugar, the prosecco, lemonade, raspberry liqueur and 170ml water until combined. 5 Pour the granita mixture into a plastic freezerproof container, cover and freeze. Every hour, run a fork through the mixture to prevent it from setting solid and creating ice crystals Freeze for several hours until frozen; preferably overnight. 6 Immediately before serving, fluff the granita up with a fork once more (it should resemble snow). 7 For the panna cotta, soak the gelatine leaves in cold water for about 3 minutes until soft. Bring the cream, milk and sugar to the boil, then remove from the heat. Drain the gelatine from the bowl, squeeze out any excess water and whisk the soft gelatine leaves into the hot cream. 8 Add the lemon zest and juice, mix to combine and leave to infuse at room temperature for 1 hour. 9 Strain the mixture into a jug and pour into dariole moulds that have been greased with sunflower oil. Cover with clingfilm and leave to set in the fridge overnight. 10 To serve, toss the raspberries in the reserved raspberry purée. Briefly dip the dariole moulds in hot water to loosen the panna cottas and turn them out onto cold or frozen dessert plates, placing the panna cotta in the centre of each plate. 11 Decorate the panna cotta with the extra lemon zest. 12 Spoon the granita around the panna cotta, decorate with the raspberries, edible flowers and herb sprigs and serve. f
Photographs by Jenny Zarins
◆◆ Sunflower oil, for greasing
Enjoy your favourite wines without pulling the cork
The Coravinâ„˘ Wine System The Coravinâ„˘ Wine System is the only tool in the world that lets you pour and drink the finest wines by the glass without pulling the cork. Thanks to the Coravin technology, your favourite wines will be protected from oxidation so that you can keep enjoying your bottles over time, any time, in any quantity and without any risk of waste. Available at www.coravin.com.
Richard H Turner
What does the chef, butcher and restaurateur keep locked up in his basement? A stash of the world’s most elusive whiskey, Pappy Van Winkle
FIRST DISCOVERED THE whiskey known to its disciples as ‘Pappy’ while on an R&D trip to New York for Hawksmoor. Co-founder Will Beckett handed me my first ever sip of this legendary bourbon, and it’s a decision I have no doubt he now regrets given my monthly bar tab. I fell hard for Pappy Van Winkle’s Family Reserve, to give the spiritus frumenti its full name; its rich sweetness tasted complex and grown up, a million miles from the shots of my youth. I later shared a mutual love for it with my dear friend, partner in business and crime, the late Josh Ozersky – a writer, a meat lover and a fellow of similar appetites. As a result, I made it my mission to
sequester any and all bottles I stumble across, which turns out to be no mean feat because there’s simply never enough Pappy to go around. It is so good, and in such short supply, that it has gone from being a mere whiskey to a highly coveted elixir. A quick search of eBay reveals that you can get your hands on a 23-yearold bottle available for £1,850, and empty bottles with velvet sacks are going for a mere £160. Yep, you read that right: £160 for a whiskey bottle... with no actual whiskey in it at all. As it turns out, I’m not alone among chefs in my unbridled enthusiasm. In its US homeland, Sean Brock, David Chang, John Tesar and Anthony Bourdain are known to love it. This side of the pond I’ve enjoyed Pappy with Nathan Outlaw and Jamie Oliver, and, on the occasions I’ve stocked it in Dickies Bar at Meatopia, it’s been the first to run dry, mostly consumed by fellow chefs, and Josh when he was with us. By now – if you’re not already familiar with the Pappy story – you’re probably wondering what the big deal is, in which case it’s time for a brief history lesson. It all started over a century ago in 1893 when Julian ‘Pappy’ Van Winkle, Sr. at the tender age of 18, began working as a salesman for the liquor wholesaler, W.L. Weller & Sons. Fifteen years later, at 33, he bought the company, later adding the A. Ph. Stitzel Distillery in Louisville, Kentucky. Then, at the end of prohibition in 1933, Van Winkle, Sr. merged the two companies and the Stitzel-Weller Distillery was born. Five iconic lines were written on a bronze plaque set into its stone entrance:
WE MAKE FINE BOURBON AT A PROFIT IF WE CAN AT A LOSS IF WE MUST BUT ALWAYS FINE BOURBON Inside were heavy panelled white doors adorned with, instead of a door knocker, a ring of brass keys. Five keys that symbolized the five key steps in making bourbon: the grains, the yeast, fermentation, distillation and finally that all-important aging. The very best Pappy is aged for 15, 20 or 23 years, considerably longer than most other bourbons, in charred new oak barrels. The 15-year is bottled at 107 proof and was both Josh’s and my favourite, while the 20-year is bottled at 90.4 proof and has been described as “intensely fruity”. The 23-year is bottled at 95.6 proof and could well be one of the most expensive bourbons in the world. Pappy has won many awards and medals over the years, but few have been as central to its rise as the score of 99 (“superlative”) given by the influential Beverage Tasting Institute to the 20-year-old whiskey in 1996. It was
I SEQUESTER ALL THE BOTTLES OF VAN WINKLE I FIND – NO MEAN FEAT, AS THERE’S NEVER ENOUGH
the highest rating ever given, which led Pappy to explode into the cult it is today. Time moves slowly in bourbon, though, and some 24 years prior to that the Pappy story had taken another twist. In 1972 family shareholders voted to merge the company into Somerset Importers Inc. of New York, and the Stitzel-Weller Distillery closed, and stands empty to this day. The result is that younger and future Pappies will be made at the modern Buffalo Trace bourbon plant, which also produces Blanton’s, Eagle Rare, and 13 other bourbons. Do they make Pappy that is just as good? It is indeed the same Van Winkle family recipe with their spotless integrity, and generations of acquired skill. But it is unlikely to be the same – even at the old Stitzel-Weller Distillery, not every year was the same. There are different grains, different yeast strains, different water, different conditions. Bourbon is, like the ingredients from which it is made, a product of the earth, with its own variable characteristics; its own terroir. Nonetheless, today’s Pappy is still just as sought after. In fact, so sought after that in October 2013, 65 three-bottle cases of 20 Year Van Winkle and 9 three-bottle cases of 13-year-old Van Winkle Family Reserve rye went missing from the warehouse. The heist was months in the planning, with the culprit avoiding security cameras. A $10,000 dollar reward was offered to anyone giving information leading to an arrest and conviction. And years later, in 2015, nine Kentucky residents were indicted for theft of over $100,000 worth of stolen whiskey, including Pappy Van Winkle. All nine defendants were charged with being members of an organised crime syndicate. Right now, my stash rests under lock and key, carefully stored in black or red velvet: bottles of Pappy Van Winkle come numbered, sealed, and secure in their embroidered cloak. If you try hard enough, you might just be able to track some down for yourself, but it is only sold on allocation. Of course, if you want to try before you buy, it can be found on a very small number of bar shelves around London; bars with connections. Somehow Pitt Cue always carries it – co-founder Jamie Berger, being a man with those connections, started stocking Pappy before it was fashionable. Jamie has longstanding relationships with those who make the decisions about who gets what, and with great responsibility comes great power… f
OPEN SEASON SE ASONAL PR ODUC E AND W HE R E TO F IND I T This month, eco chef and restaurateur Tom Hunt gets excited about aubergines, which you’ll find in season in the UK until October The aubergine is a king among vegetables, bulbous in its purple cloak and green crown. Once cooked it becomes a rich and buttery delicacy – the caviar of vegetables, and you should enjoy it as such. They’re one of the more exotic vegetables now commonly being grown in the UK. My favourite way to eat them is cooked on a grill, sliced and given a lick of olive oil and then charred, or simply placed whole on the coals to cook in its own blackened skin, allowing the juices to sweeten and flesh to become soft, velvety and smooth.
THE URBAN GARDENER
Petersham Nurseries’ Amanda Brame tells us how to make use of a small city garden. Here’s what you should be doing in July and August These are challenging months because it’s hot, containers dry out, and there’s the added complication of how to keep it all going when you’re away on holiday – my best advice is to create some shade, use saucers underneath containers to retain water, add a layer of good compost, and give the pot a very good soak to keep moisture in.
Baba ganoush, with its smoky, rich and silky texture, is my favourite dish to make with aubergine, although I like to add a little yoghurt to lighten the delicious creamy dip. Caponata is also a must in summer, now that tomatoes are ripe on the vines and basil is flourishing. To enjoy them at their best, keep aubergines in the fridge and eat them within a couple of days. f The Natural Cook by Tom Hunt is available now (Quadrille, £20). For more on Tom and his food projects, see tomsfeast.com
of soapy water, and prevent carrot flies from laying their eggs by surrounding your crop with spring onions or garlic. Finally, keep sowing! Beetroot, carrot, kale, chard and spinach are just a few things you can get going. Amanda Brame is deputy head of horticulture at Petersham Nurseries; petershamnurseries.com. Read the column in full at fdsm.co/columns
In terms of upkeep, now is the time to pinch out the tips of climbing beans when they reach the top of your canes and nip off the side shoots from your tomatoes (which appear in the ‘V’ between leaf stems and the main stem), remembering to feed weekly. Continue earthing up main crop potatoes, throwing over any lawn cuttings if you have them – this gives them a little extra nitrogen. Be vigilant about pests and diseases. Keep aphids in check with a dousing
The astonishing story of Lucy Anderson’s magic milkshake Lucy thought milkshakes sucked. While her friends slurped away happily, her tummy would feel grumpy and bloated. Then her mum tried her on a2 Milk™. The difference was remarkable. Without the A1 protein found in most other cows’ milk, Lucy soon got her taste for milkshakes back. And Lucy’s mum got her smiling daughter back. Lucy’s mum shared her story at a2milk.co.uk/ Lucy Why not try it yourself?
*In a poll of 155 Netmums members, 85% would recommend a2 Milk™ to a friend. a2 Milk™ is not suitable for cows’ milk protein allergy. If you have been medically diagnosed with any milk intolerance, seek advice from your doctor before use. Customer’s name has been changed to protect her privacy.
AT THE TABLE... New Yorker and Bleecker Burger head honcho Zan Kaufman talks to us about making the journey from law to street food, and the brand’s plans for the future You used to be a lawyer in New York. How did you come to be a burger flipper in London? I was working in corporate law, which meant laborious hours and very monotonous work, and my college roommate’s mother had opened up a burger place. I went to visit, and I asked if I could work at brunch on Sundays and be the bartender for a couple of hours a week, just to break up my day job. I had a serious moment when I tried the burgers; it was like nothing I had ever tasted before. I was 28 at the time. I’m American, so I’ve been eating burgers all my life, but this burger, no joke, changed my life. I haven’t had any burger come close to it since. So I pretty much quit my law job the next week – it’s not as brave as it sounds because I already knew I was moving to London to get married the next year – and then the next year I worked at this restaurant, learning as much as I could about the process. The most valuable lesson I took from the woman who ran it – a powerful matriarchal figure – was her relentless commitment to every aspect of the food. Nothing was ever good enough, and if it wasn’t to her standards we didn’t serve it. I saw that in action for a year and it really penetrated my psyche, and that has never left me.
EYES ON THE PRIZE: An encounter with a life-changing burger in New York resulted in Zan Kaufman starting up Bleecker. The former lawyer hasn’t looked back since
Did that restaurant influence the burgers that would eventually be served at Bleecker? The burgers are pretty different, the only thing that I definitely took from them was the mixed fries – part-sweet potato, partnormal – but the burgers are built differently. Theirs came on nice plates, they had different sizes, and they had Kobe and non-Kobe, so the building blocks of the burgers are very different, but the fundamentals of how you made them were the same. And she had really good relationships with their suppliers.
How have you seen London’s street food scene change since you arrived? I was so lucky, because when I started Bleecker I rode a magical wave of street food. →
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had before; we can potentially fit up to 50 people in a very small site – we’re talking 500 square feet – so it’s still small and intimate and buzzy, but people can sit down. We’ll probably have more different kinds of beer and wine on tap, but our key food items will still be our key food items. I can’t imagine playing around with the menu that much.
Your street food truck and stall is quite different from your newer restaurants. Does there come a point where you have to put that worry about being ‘cool’ to one side?
→ I came in as the storm was taking off and we got carried through that, which was very fortunate. They say timing is everything, and it really was for Bleecker. The street food scene then was so alive and rogue and infectious, and it was so nice to be part of that community, with the traders, with KERB, with Street Feast. I moved to London and all of a sudden I had 40 friends, and we were all in this together. I still think of that community as my community in London, and we were in it with the customers at the time, which I think is probably the difference with street food now. The customers from that time, a lot of them are my friends now. Do you think street food in London is no longer the realm of outsiders?
Tell us about the new restaurant It’s going to be in the most beautiful setting I’ve ever seen in a corporate building; Bloomberg have not spared any expense. So for Bleecker to be inside somewhere like that, compared to a car park in Dalston, where we started, is a bit of a juxtaposition. There are more seats than we’ve ever
IF I HAD TO DO IT ALL AGAIN, I’M NOT SURE I COULD GET THERE
Have you got plans beyond this restaurant? Is there an endgame? I definitely think a lot more about that now. I’ve never thought about an endgame or my exit strategy, though, because how can I exit from something that I love so much? I can’t imagine going past ten restaurants. Whether those are in other cities? I’d love to go to Paris; eventually it would be very nice to go back to New York – even though it would be very daunting, that for me would be the cherry on the top. But I’m not willing to do it unless I can keep the product at its level, which is going to be the biggest challenge. f bleeckerburger.co.uk
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I wouldn’t say it’s mainstream yet – I still think there’s a lot of people who won’t eat from those sort of environments. I imagine that there’s probably a sense of community, but I don’t know if it’s to the same extent. You are still in it together, it’s hard, it’s a grind, and you can commiserate and celebrate together. But it’s probably much more transient now, and it probably seems more approachable. There are more markets, where more people are trying to get in, and maybe they don’t realise how hard it is to make it as a business. So maybe the lifespan of street food traders is shorter. It’s hard. It’s really hard. And I think if I had to do it again right now from the beginning I’m not sure I could get there, because it takes every ounce of energy you have to get through it. And at the beginning
you’re doing everything – you’re doing the marketing, you’re doing the admin, you’re doing the food, you’re doing the hiring – and it’s so physical as well. You need that fresh set of eyes and excitement about it. That’s why I always thought restaurateurs transitioning into street food seemed a bit wrong. They didn’t have that real spark and that integrity. The motivations are different, and I can smell it from a block away. But it’s inevitable: people see opportunities and they’re going to try to pounce on them.
Yes. For me, when we were just the truck, my favourite place to trade ever was the Gherkin. My background is in New York, where it’s about speed – it’s lunch and it’s exciting. So now we’re going back to the City in Bloomberg I feel like I’m finally getting the spot that I always wanted to have. When I thought about having a burger place it started in my mind as a shop, and I wanted it to be in the City. So now we’ve come full circle. If you talk about ‘cool’ customers, to me the customers at the Gherkin are the coolest: they’re the nicest, and they’re so interested in the food. To me, that’s cool. It’s a really difficult thing that I try not to be conscious about, because I think anytime you start to lead with ‘cool’ it’s disastrous. I never want to do something because it’s cool; I want to do something because I like it and it feels right. But as we grow, it’s inevitable that this question is going to come up a bit more. I try to keep it at bay because really what drives me is commitment to the burger. That’s always been my driving force. I’ve been learning to be a leader, and at every stage of our growth the leadership is very different, but what I think I’ve learned is that you can’t focus on too many things, because if you have too many things that you’re trying to get across you get nothing across.
OUR PRODUCTS: 2 x Gourmet Beef Burgers, 100 % British beef & perfect with our GBK Smoked Chilli Mayo, House Relish & Habanero Relish.
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AL L PR E SS
Given that Antipodeans wrote the book on coffee geekery, it’s not surprising the giant roaster at the Allpress roastery in Dalston is a feat of engineering. The New Zealandbased company enlisted engineer Mike Scobie to custom-build their roaster to spec. It uses a system called hot air roasting: unlike traditional drum roasting, it stops smoke entering into the equation at all as the beans are heated and then cooled, resulting in a purer flavour. Find out more at allpressespresso. com/roast-method-matters
HEAVY MA CHINE RY
Photograph by David Harrison
IT’S ALL HOT AIR Meet Allpress’s custom-built roaster, which uses air flow for total control of flavour
T U YO
Contemporary Mediterranean cooking, with a Spanish twist, meets Levantine pinchos (small, sharing bites) at Broadway Market’s latest restaurant opening, Tuyo. E2 9AP; tuyo.london
Gabeto translates as ‘our house’, and we can’t help but wish this modern Latininspired dining room was just that. Exposed brick walls and bold commissions by artist John Bulley characterise this dreamy space in Camden Market’s historic stable blocks. The decor isn’t the only thing turning heads here, though: treat yourself to a South American-style feast of tacos and charcoalgrilled seafood, washed down with one (or two) of their firey downbeat negronis. NW1 8AH; gabeto.co.uk
THE RADAR The bar and restaurant openings you need to know about, just in time for summer in London Grazing
S U B C ULT
SU VL AK I
From Soho to Shoreditch, Suvlaki is gearing up to open its second site later this month. Owners Irene Margariti and Yannis Theodorakakos will bring a (smokey) taste of Athens to the streets of east London, with a selection of charred, charcoal-fired skewers, mezze small plates and Greek wines imported from Kokotos estate, north of Athens. It’ll all be served up in a relaxed but buzzy restaurant. E1 6SB; suvlaki.co.uk
M INNOW LATE JULY
The Pavement in Clapham gains a new neighbourhood hang-out as Chris Frichot and Saba Tsegaye open Minnow, a modern European restaurant inspired by the fresh flavours of the Indian Ocean and the best of Britain’s seasonal produce. We’re already eyeing up their Instaworthy baby octopus dish and it hasn’t even opened for business yet. SW4 OHY; minnowclapham.co.uk
T HE W IG M O R E
The classic British pub gets an upgrade as chef Michel Roux Jr and the team behind Artesian bring some top-notch tipples and fine-dining dishes to Regent Street’s old banking hall. W1B 1JA; the-wigmore.co.uk
T HE OYST ER M EN
Seafood specialists Matt Lovell and Rob Hampton cast their anchors and glide into their first ever permanent venue. WC2E 8NA; oystermen.co.uk
Photographs by (Minnow) Jade Nina Sarkhel; (Oystermen) Greg Funnell
Ditch the soggy shop-bought sarnies and head to Sub Cult’s semi-permanent pop-up in Finsbury Avenue Square for a mid-week lunch worth stepping away from your desk for. Pulled pork, seared seafood and lamb keema are on the menu (not all in one sandwich, we might add), so what are you waiting for? Head on down. EC2M 2PF; sub-cult.co.uk
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LET’S EAT IT
Clear your diaries for the month of October: London Restaurant Festival is back, with even more mouthwatering new events and experiences to choose from
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F YOU’RE READING this magazine, you won’t need reminding just how incredible London’s food scene is. Brimming with talent, from fresh new faces to industry stalwarts, our restaurants are world leading – which is something we should celebrate. Enter London Restaurant Festival, an annual event that takes place throughout October, showcasing the very best of what our world-class dining scene has to offer. But this is a food festival with a difference: it takes place in the restaurants themselves, which are being given over to special offers and events including LRF’s legendary Gourmet Odysseys, Restaurant Hopping Tours and Meet The Chef experiences. We’ve had a sneak peek, and we can safely say the festival is going to be better than ever. There’s a whole host of new experiences on offer, like Restaurant Recipes, which give you the chance to learn how to cook some of London’s most celebrated restaurant dishes at leading cookery schools, followed by dinner in the
restaurant that evening. Launching the series will be Michel Roux Jr and Masterchef Professionals winner Steve Grove, who’ll be cooking up some of Le Gavroche’s most popular dishes to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the iconic establishment. Elsewhere, the Ultimate Gastronomic Weekend has been turbocharged to include an overnight stay at the five-star Andaz Hotel on Liverpool Street, as well as a Gourmet Odyssey experience, and more. Then, of course, the rest of the lineup is just as stellar as always. Kitchen Table’s James Knappet, The Sportman’s Phil Howard and José Pizarro will be among those hosting dinners for the American Express Meet The Chef series, while the new Thai Odyssey takes in celebrated Southeast Asian-inspired restaurants incuding Som Saa and Kiln. And this is just a taste of things to come – last year involved almost 300 restaurants and 100 events. That’s a lot of food. Interested? Tickets go on sale on 25 July, so get booking. f
FOODISM’S TOP PICKS ◆◆ Learn to cook one of Le Gavroche’s
signature dishes with Michel Roux Jr, before having dinner with the vaunted chef at his iconic restaurant. ◆◆ Restaurant-hopping tours, including
one of Devonshire Square – sponsored by foodism, no less – that takes you around Pitt Cue Co, Mac & Wild and Cinnamon Kitchen. ◆◆ The Ultimate Gastronomic Weekend,
with a Champagne Gourmet Odyssey, a four-course meal at Benares, and a night at the five-star Andaz Hotel on Liverpool Street. ◆◆ One-off tasting menus at some of
our favourite restaurants, including Tozi, Barrafina, HKK and more. fdsm.co/london-restaurant-festival
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R ATI B E N L G E
N A E CH
Photograph by Eugene Mymrin / Getty
T GOES WITHOUT saying that we love good food and drink at foodism. But we especially love good food and drink that has the potential to effect change. It’s not just that eating and drinking sustainably and ethically is good for the planet. It’s that it results in what we’ve been striving for since our first issue: better food and drink, and a better system of venues, businesses and producers making it. That’s the reason why we felt strongly enough about the people doing great things in sustainable food and social enterprising in London and beyond to devote a whole issue of our magazine to telling their stories. So when we were choosing a way to reward those venues and businesses that
make London so special, we could think of nothing better than to focus on those businesses who do good things in food and drink. From the best restaurants with a sustainable edge to the cafés who are helping coffee farmers earn a fair wage, the social enterprises giving people a much-needed second chance and the street-food traders changing the way fast food impacts the environment, these awards represent the cream of the crop in London’s sustainable and ethical food and drink scene. The foodism 100 will take the form of a 100-strong shortlist of venues and businesses, of which ten category winners will be chosen at an event this September. Have a look at the categories, and get nominating. →
HOW TO ENTER
B ES T C ASU AL RE STAUR ANT » BE ST FIN E-D I NIN G RE STAUR ANT » B ES T B AR » B E S T PUB » BE ST CAFE » BE ST PO P -UP OR RE SID E NCY » BE ST S TR E E T-F OOD TRA DER » BE ST FOOD MA R K ET » B E S T SOCI AL ENT ER P R I SE » BE S T FOOD & DRINK P R ODUCER 48
Photograph by (Zoe) David Harrison; (Coffee) Probuxtor
Think your business – or your favourite local joint – should be considered for the foodism 100? Head to fdsm.co/ foodism100 or get in touch with us on social media using #foodism100 and tell us why they should win. Our panel will review the entries, and we’ll announce the final 100 – and the ten category winners – at an event in September. Keep an eye on foodism.co.uk for news on the date and venue.
Photo taken by co-founder Tim. View from the quinine plantations in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
WE GO TO THE ENDS OF THE EARTH FOR THE PERFECT G&T Gin is only as good as the tonic it’s paired with. While most tonics mask the delicate flavours of gin with ar tificial sweeteners like sickly saccharin, at Fever-Tree it’s all about taste. In fact, one might say our founders Charles and Tim are a little obsessed. In their quest for the perfect tonic, Charles and Tim spent days in the British Librar y researching quinine sources before travelling to some of the most remote par ts of the world in search of the finest natural ingredients, venturing as far as the Democratic Republic of the Congo to find the world’s purest quinine. It’s this unique ingredient that gives our tonic its essential bitter flavour, and when balanced with botanicals like natural orange oils, makes for a gin & tonic that’s crisp, clean and like no other.
— PART 2 —
FEAST “SEAWEED’S PROPERTIES READ LIKE THE WISH LIST OF A HEALTHCONSCIOUS, WHISKY-DRINKING ECO WARRIOR. IT CAN CURE HANGOVERS AND COULD CLEAN OUR OCEANS” GARETH MAY GETS TO GRIPS WITH THE SLIPPERY STUFF, 079
054 FUTURE FOOD | 064 MAIDA, ITALY | 073 FEVER-TREE 079 SEAWEED | 082 COOKBOOK CLUBS | 090 MIXOLOGY
A TASTE OF THE FUTURE What will we be eating in 20 years’ time? That’s the question we put to industry experts from around the world of food and drink. Get ready for sour beer, happy kitchens and high-pitched wines. Not following? All will be revealed... ILLUSTRATIONS BY MARIA CORTE
Photograph by ###
F THERE’S ONE thing we at foodism have learned about London’s drinking and dining scenes during the time we’ve spent immersed in them, it’s that as soon as you think you’ve got something figured out, it changes before your eyes. So, when you factor in a rapidly accelerating pace of technology, it’s a little difficult to predict what the state of eating and drinking in the capital will be in ten years or so. Which is precisely why we didn’t try. Instead, we thought we’d leave it to the insiders: luminaries of everything from the burgeoning English wine industry to street food, coffee, kitchen tech, craft beer, restaurants and more. We asked them to look into their crystal ball at what’s been brewing over the last few years, and try to pick out some of the innovations and advances they’re predicting over the next decade or two. Don’t hold them to it, though: after all, it can all change in an instant...
Kerttu Inkeroinen, marketing director at Union Hand-Roasted Consumers are paying more attention than ever to where their coffee comes from. What’s driving this change?
People in general are more interested and aware of provenance of their food and drink, and coffee is no exception. It seems there’s a growing desire to know that the supply chain is fair and ethical: more and more brands are making their supply chains more visible, and this is in turn making consumers more aware, interested and critical of what they buy – think of speciality gin, craft beer, natural wines and now coffee. A range of bean varieties and post-harvesting processing methods means that coffee is perfectly placed, with a new and knowledgeable trade behind it, one that Union Hand-Roasted has been a leader in. Our founders, Steven and Jeremy, have been shouting this message for years, so it’s great to hear their calls being heeded by customers.
What are some of the more experimental projects Union has been involved with, and what are the plans for the future?
From a supply chain point of view, we have always pushed the boundaries to see how we can go further in our relationships, particularly with our Union Direct Trade model. One of the exciting projects we are currently working on is the Yayu Wild Forest Project in Ethiopia, where we work with the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew to protect one of the few remaining wild coffee forests in Ethiopia, the birthplace of the highly regarded Arabica coffee. We want to be part of building and protecting the future of coffee, and this is one of our initiatives to do that. Coffee quality in the UK has risen dramatically over the 15 years that we’ve been in business and we’re excited to see speciality and single-origin coffee become more mainstream. We have also looked into some innovative ingredients like cascara – the husk of a coffee cherry and a byproduct of coffee production – to see how they could be used in drinks. Cascara is currently waiting for EU approval for use as food stuff, but we think it’s an exciting way to use a waste product to create a delicious drink.
What are some innovations in coffee you’re expecting over the next 10-15 years?
Pods are driving the home coffee category at the moment, but they have limitations and there are environmental issues. We’re expecting there to be a ‘next-generation’ convenience solution for home consumers who want to make a highquality coffee at home, easily and conveniently. unionroasted.com
Mark Harvey, managing director at English winemaker Chapel Down The English wine revolution is in full swing. What’s driven its growth?
While sparkling wine overall is faring well, English in particular is leading the trend and experiencing record levels of growth. Coolclimate wines are in vogue – consumers understand the challenges of producing wines in these conditions and appreciate the consistent high quality these regions deliver, and they’re prepared to pay a premium. Historically, champagne has been the shining example, but now England is delivering world-class wines, too. In the UK alone, more than 30 million bottles of champagne are sold annually, so the headroom for growth for our nascent industry is massive. The biggest challenge for English winemakers will be meeting demand.
Samm Swain, buying director at homeware store Lakeland Does the involvement of top-level chefs and better technology mean consumers are becoming more capable of cooking at a high level at home?
Photograph by (coffee) Alan Schaller; (Chapel Down) Chris Gale
With so much information available online and on-screen, we now have access to more information than ever before. This is especially true of food and cooking-related content, but today’s hectic pace of life means that we perhaps don’t have as much time as we’d like to devote to cooking. With more and more developments in the world of cooking technology, we are able to achieve better cooking results more easily. Electrical appliances and digital devices – multi-cookers, steamers, air fryers, predictive digital thermometers and more – combine convenience with user-friendly features to make cooking at a higher level possible for many of us who otherwise wouldn’t achieve it. And technology is developing at such a rate that this can only benefit someone cooking at home who at times lacks the confidence to try something new. Put simply, a connected home is a budding chef’s best friend.
What part can the internet and smart technology play in shaping our kitchens? We’ve already seen app-linked coffee machines, weighing scales and fridge
monitors, and given how much we all depend on our smartphones, it’s likely we will continue to see yet more technological innovation to cater for digital-savvy and timepressed consumers who want to eat well. Smart technology already exists in some homes – in our TVs, fridges and heating systems – but it has not yet reached its full potential, by any stretch. Food forms such a fundamental part of our daily routine that the way we prepare, cook and eat it is a natural area for development. The kitchens of the future will doubtless be designed and built to take full advantage of whatever new technology is available. They’ll be a place where technology supports us, but where the environment encourages a social, happy, sharing place. We expect the kitchen to remain the hub of our home. It will be a space that we love, that we’re proud of, and where we spend more and more time with family and friends. lakeland.co.uk
What are some of your plans for the next decade or so?
At Chapel Down, we strive to push the boundaries of English wine production through innovative ways of thinking – whether that’s through blending new and traditional winemaking techniques, or creating different styles of wine (including England’s first orange bacchus, and England’s first single-varietal albariño). We want to continue to lead the charge.
Do you think English winemakers’ still wines will grow to match the quality and abundance of our sparkling?
Sparkling wine will be the priority for growth in England, but still wines will have an important role to play, too. Our still wines are typified by aromatic characters and a vibrancy of fruit – from crisp, clean white wines to delicate rosés and elegant light reds. England is increasingly becomingly known for whites made with bacchus, a grape that’s considered England’s answer to Marlborough sauvignon blanc. At Chapel Down, we produce five different expressions of the grape, from crisp and vegetal to rich and tropical. I can only speak for us, but we’re always experimenting with new varieties and winemaking styles, like our late-harvest Nectar and, as I mentioned, England’s first albariño. Our Kit’s Coty Chardonnay won a Platinum ‘Best in Class’ at the Decanter World Wine awards recently – a humbling accolade that signifies the level of quality England is capable of. chapeldown.com
Dawn Davies, buyer at The Whisky Exchange
Stephen Thompson, coowner of TT Liquor
What are some of the major trends you’ve noticed in spirits buying in the last decade?
The obvious one is the gin revolution that’s swept the country. The premium-isation of the whisky category is also a strong trend over the last four years, driven by investment potential and an interest in countries like Japan – all things Japanese are very hot right now. For bars, vermouth and the aperitivo moment is still growing but we’re not drinking this at home just yet – with the exception of the spritz.
What do you think some major innovations will be over the next 10-15 years?
Keep an eye on non-alcoholic spirits. Seedlip was the first to get into this, but investment in them by Diageo shows the potential of this category, and more contenders will appear on the market soon. I also predict we’ll see more spirits that make use of waste products. Bars have been getting behind this idea, and it won’t be long before a spirit brand really gets into this field. I also think, if producers can get the quality right, pre-mixed cocktails could make a comeback.
What are you predicting is the next spirit to really take off over the next decade?
Rum and bourbon are vying for that top place – sales are on an upward trend and bars are getting behind both categories strongly. Rum needs to embrace a system of categorisation so the consumer can understand what they’re buying and drinking. Japan’s popularity will continue to grow – sake is seeing an uplift and Japanese gin has great potential – but I’d put my money on Canada: they have a culture of craft production and are starting to release some real quality liquid into the market, be that beer, wine, whiskey or gin. thewhiskyexchange.com
Now more than ever, customers want to interact with their drinks. Why do you think this is?
ALL THINGS JAPANESE ARE HOT RIGHT NOW
– Dawn Davies, The Whisky Exchange
Training staff to a higher standard has led to an increase in new, experimental ways that drinks are created and served, which has encouraged guests to enquire about products, drinks or advice. It’s all formed a much more interactive experience between the customer and the bartender. Interacting is about learning and experiencing new things to broaden your knowledge and, of course, your palate. At TT Liquor, our entire company is focused on handson interactive experiences and enlightenment, from the liquor store to the interactive cocktail classes and tasting journeys. It all gives guests the ability to truly learn and understand techniques of the cocktail and spirit world.
What do you think will change about the way we drink in bars?
The well-educated bartender and connoisseur of drinks has been relatively niche up until recent years. There has always been an outstanding bar scene in the UK, but the volume of bars serving high-quality, accessible cocktails has previously been low – they’ve historically offered more simple drinks designed for speed of service and high profit. Recently, though, people are looking for bar experiences with far more quality, and these people are also happy to pay for this experience, which means ambitious businesses can survive and prosper. For us, we think there has been a movement away from the ‘lager generation’; innovation and creativity is the driving force that we see continuing for the long-term in the bar and drinks industry; and as long as the it continues to innovate and offer something, this can become a strong, cultural change – not just a trend.
How else can the customers get involved in what they’re drinking?
The independent off-licence is on the rise and so are independent distillers, brewers and producers. There’s scope for these locations to become hubs that offer tastings and education around new and interesting products. This is one of the main reasons we have always wanted to add a retail experience to TT Liquor: we offer free tastings several times a week and are putting a lot of effort into building a community here at our liquor store. ttliquor.co.uk
REGENT STREET AND ST JAMES’S RESTAURANTHOPPING TOURS London’s premier lifestyle destination, Regent Street, and the adjoining streets around St James’s, stand out as the home of ﬂagships and ﬁrsts - and some of London’s top restaurants. Experience ﬁve restaurants in one day for £45, including Jamie Oliver’s Barbecoa, Duck & Waﬄe Local, Sakagura, Anzu and Gordon Ramsay’s Heddon Street Kitchen.
EAT FILM, IN ANDAZ TEMPLE CINEMA Eat Film is the perfect marriage of food and ﬁlm: a series of screenings hosted in the Andaz London’s magical, hidden masonic temple. With dinner from one of Andaz’s restaurants: either Eastway or Japanese restaurant Miyako - for just £39. Films this year include: Tampopo, Chef, Jiro Dreams of Sushi and Delicatessen.
BARRAFINA TASTING MENU, WITH ESTRELLA GALICIA An unforgettable ﬁve-course tasting menu from Barraﬁna, London’s ﬁnest tapas restaurant, for £65 per person. Each course will be paired with wonderful artisan beers from Estrella Galicia - all drinks are included.
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Jonathan Downey, co-owner of Street Feast and London Union
Sam Millard, brand manager at Beavertown Brewery
What’s changed in London to accommodate such a groundswell in street food?
None of this could have happened without the dozen or so new street-food pioneers and entrepreneurs brave enough to prep food in their kitchen at home, stand behind a stall in a market or in a car park, and try and sell food they love. Talented traders like Lisa from Yum Bun, Ben from Lucky Chip, Zan from Bleecker, David from Smokestak and more, and then the KERB crew. Then there were the two or three of us who wanted to bring it all together in one place and create a vibe and a community – Petra at KERB and Dom at Street Feast. Add in a generation not interested in fine dining or the ceremony of (s)wanky restaurants and you’ve got the world’s best and most diverse street-food scene. It’s always changing, though, and that’s what makes what we do so exciting (and exhausting). In the last week alone I’ve been looking at sites in Bermondsey, Wood Green, the City, Waterloo and Manchester, as well as Williamsburg, Manhattan and Miami. Some will happen, some won’t.
What are the biggest changes you think we’ll see in street food over the next few years? I think (and hope) we get to see many more professional chefs making a move into street food – giving up 70 hours a week in a basement to focus on fantastic food outdoors or under cover. We’re definitely going to see more USstyle food halls, offering great choice and good quality in a more conventional setting. Not as exciting as the real street, maybe, but more variety than the same old chains. streetfeast.com; londonunion.com
Why do you think craft beer has proven so popular?
WE WANTED TO BRING THE TRADERS TOGETHER AND CREATE A VIBE
– Street Feast founder Jonathan Downey
Part of the step into the mainstream is driven by locality and provenance, and that’s spilled over into what people drink. The craft beer scene is drawing in new drinkers, who want to step away from the faceless, mass-produced and fairly bland lagers brewed by the multinational beer brands they started on in their teens, to something with a bigger, more complex flavour. And the more people try, the more they want to explore. It’s also down to choice: the huge range of craft beer in today’s market means that all breweries have to be on their A-game, all the time. That level of competition keeps us all honest, always pushing ourselves, and the industry as a whole moving upwards. If one improves, we all improve, and that is an exciting place to be, both for us and for the drinker. There’s also the accessibility and inclusivity factor: a lot of craft breweries have a taproom, like we do, where you can come to the source, see the place and get a feel for it and the people who work here, while having a beer. Everyone wants to be part of the vibe and we love welcoming them into our world and getting to engage with them on a personal level.
How are you expecting the craft beer industry to develop over the next decade?
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Expansion in the industry is inevitable: there will be more beer out there for more drinkers and I think more pubs, gastropubs, bars and restaurants will start taking a risk and going independent, stepping away from being tied and giving their customers more choice. Restaurants will spend as much time curating their beer list as they do their wine list, and the idea of beer and food pairings will be the norm. The move into cans for hoppy beers will continue. The drinker is used to it now, and it’s a better vehicle for the beer so the idea that it isn’t ‘classy’ will die out. The variety of styles will keep growing, and the appreciation of sour styles in particular will become more mainstream. Consumer education will come on in leaps and bounds – it’s a big part of what we and other breweries are trying to do. Elsewhere, more breweries will keep adding to the market and the drinker will be able to get super fresh, high-quality craft beer in every off-licence and local pub. After all, ‘well-made and meticulously crafted’ doesn’t need to imply ‘rarity’. beavertownbrewery.com
SENSORY DINING Jozef Youssef, founder of research project Kitchen Theory With the rise of development kitchens and projects like yours that explore the psychology of flavour, is the diner now playing a bigger part in menu creation?
FLAVOUR IS IN THE MIND, NOT JUST IN THE MOUTH
– Jozef Youssef, founder of Kitchen Theory
Definitely. Chefs are now cooking with emotions in mind, but unlike their predecessors it’s not their own emotions that they’re engaged in satisfying; it’s those of their guests. The science of gastronomy has emerged from the kitchen and taken a keen interest in the dining room. We think it’s now the time for what we call gastrophysics and multisensory gastronomy. If molecular gastronomy was all about exciting the guest through use of novel textures, flavours and cooking techniques, multisensory gastronomy is about exciting the guest by engaging them on every sensory level.
What are some key discoveries that you’ve made during your research into flavour?
No two people can physically or mentally perceive taste and flavour in the same way. From differences in the pH of your saliva and your age (related to your sense of smell) to the personal associations, memories and emotions we each have linked to food. Having said that, we’re all human, so it’s fascinating to see how our research at Kitchen Theory has shown that there are significant correlations in how people will associate particular colours and tastes (red is sweet, green is sour), shapes and tastes (sweet is round, sour is angular) and even sounds and tastes (most will associate white wine with a high-pitched instrument like a violin, while red wine is associated with deeper instruments, like cellos). The most important thing overall, though, is that flavour is a construct of our minds – not just what happens in our mouths.
How big a part will all this play in the creation of menus in the future?
In today’s gastronomic landscape there is an appreciation for, above all else, creativity; nowadays, the menu stands for more than just being about great ingredients and flavours. We think the research and development by projects like ours will inevitably trickle down into more casual and even fast-food experiences. kitchen-theory.com
COLD STORAGE Just when you thought fridges couldn’t get cooler, KitchenAid’s new Iconic Fridge is here – and there’s a special gift if you buy it in-store
T’S FAIR TO say that US appliance brand KitchenAid knows its way around iconic design – the company has been making cutting-edge kitchen technology for almost a century. And now, with a brand-new, experiential store in London – its first ever, which includes all of the KitchenAid range, presented through cooking classes, interactive demonstrations and more – the brand has released a new flagship product – the American-style Iconic Fridge. The Iconic Fridge is typical of the type of design that has characterised KitchenAid since it released the first iteration of its classic Stand Mixer in 1919. With a polished chrome chassis, chrome handle and full metal exterior available in Empire Red, Almond Cream or Onyx Black, its visuals are in some ways more akin to a classic car than a kitchen appliance. The exterior is
carefully created to pair beautifully with KitchenAid’s existing products, too – especially the sleek lines of its classic Stand Mixer. And inside, it’s full of features that are suited to contemporary living: a capacity of 221 litres, a ProAir system that keeps a close eye on temperature and humidity, and even a touch interface to control its functions. Want to see it for yourself? Take a walk down Wigmore Street and look for the window with the super-sized Stand Mixer in it – there, at KitchenAid’s Experience Store, you’ll be able to see it next to its beautiful counterparts – and to take advantage of a special offer... ● Find out more and shop the entire range at kitchenaid.co.uk; follow the brand on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram at @kitchenaid_uk
YOUR FREE GIFT The long wait for a KitchenAid shop was finally ended last year, when the brand opened its flagship Experience Store on Wigmore Street. And if you’re keen to check it out, there’s an added incentive: the first 100 people to buy an Iconic Fridge at the store will receive a free stand mixer. T&Cs apply. Visit 98 Wigmore Street, W1U 3RE; call 020 7935 2575, or find out more at kitchenaid.co.uk/store
A NIGHT ON THE TOWN Every year in the Calabrian town of Maida, they honour St Francesco the only way Italians could – with a meal for everyone. By Neil Davey PHOTOGRAPHY BY GREGORIO PAONE
CCORDING TO SALVATORE Aloe, “St Francis of Assisi was a rock star. Our St Francesco is a punk rock star.” Maida is hometown to Salvatore and his brother Matteo, founders of Italy’s Berberè and London’s Radio Alice pizzerias. Salvatore has returned for the Ciciarata, the annual Saint’s Day event where Francesco’s most celebrated achievement – feeding the needy – is recreated. It’s done in impressive style on an epic scale: overnight a group of local men cook pasta, chickpeas and tomato sauce to be served to, depending who you believe, between 5,000 and 10,000 locals and visitors. The plan is for the brothers to recreate something similar this summer in London, in aid of local charities. Salvatore looks around smiling. Quite how they’ll do it remains to be seen – with open flame, and gallons of boiling water, the words ‘health’, ‘safety’ and ‘nightmare’ spring to mind – but with St Francesco on their side, anything’s possible… f
Radio Alice’s version of the festival takes place on 29 July; radioalicepizzeria.co.uk
THE FLAME GAME
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Midnight, Saturday. In the ruins of the old monastery, huge fires are built and tended. Flames crackle, smoke fills the air and the cauldrons of water bubble and steam. A team of local men will work – and drink and smoke and chat – through the night, until lunchtime Sunday. It’s an honour to be part of the team, explains Salvatore. Many of those working are in their fourth and fifth decades of participation.
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LUNCH IS SERVED
We return around 9am. The crowd builds, the noise level increases. As the meal is served, bodies surge forward – a few slightly terrifying pensioners seem to be the ringleaders – and the cacophony of pots, lids and cries of “Prego! Prego!” approach Glastonburyesque decibel levels. Pots full of hot food are passed back and forth over people’s heads. We wait for the screams but this is organised chaos at its absolute finest.
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THE FINAL PREPARATION
Some say they’ve cooked two tonnes of chickpeas and five of pasta. Others say 200kg and 500kg. Whatever, it’s a lot (and it requires amusingly large wooden spoons). Brilliantly, the chefs who are running the show are fiercely strict on timings, ensuring the pasta is still suitably al dente. Just because it’s a feast for the entire town, cooked in cauldrons, doesn’t mean standards can drop… For the record, it’s smoky, hearty and delicious.
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Share a treat this summer
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Before the meal is served, the origins of the feast must be acknowledged and the priests assemble to bless what we are about to receive. Hush descends – well, mostly. There’s a short blessing in Latin, a small shower of holy water – and then the noise levels double. This sense of tradition – and expectation – is only slightly let down by the crowds gathering to take a quick selfie.
SCOOP UP SUMMER WITH JUDEâ€™S GIN & TONIC ICE CREAM
G R E A T
B R I T I S H
I C E
C R E A M
DISCOVER WHITLEY NEILL Handcrafted Gin of Exceptional Quality Inspired by the vivid beauty, botanicals and mystery of Cape Town, and a never-ending drive for perfection.
INSPIRED by CAPE TOWN
Also available in Rhubarb & Ginger, Blood Orange and Quince @WhitleyNeill
SPARKLING FORM From humble beginnings, Fever-Tree has found worldwide success. Mike Gibson takes a look at the brandâ€™s recipe for greatness
IN THE MIX: When Fever-Tree entered the mixers market, it changed the game completely, introducing a new, high-end tonic to match premium spirits
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HEN IT COMES to ad slogans, not much in recent years has hit the sweet-spot as precisely as FeverTree’s. Because, if you’ve seen one of the mixer brand’s ads on the Tube, chances are you agree with the sentiment: “If three quarters of your gin and tonic is the tonic, make sure you use the best.” That was the message, and the ethos, that the embryonic Fever-Tree started out with when Tim Warrillow and Charles Rolls set up the brand in 2004, and it’s been on a meteoric rise ever since. “We had both realised that there was this extraordinary gap in the mixer category, specifically tonic water,” explains Warrilow. “Whereas premium spirits had been growing and growing all around the world, and consumers were becoming ever better educated, ever more interested, and paying more money for good-quality spirits.”
PEOPLE WERE SPENDING MORE MONEY ON GREAT SPIRITS, YET THEY HAD NO CHOICE OF MIXER
Considering the frenetic pace at which the bar and drinks industry is expanding at the moment, it’s strange to think such an opportunity could have existed. But, as Warrillow explains, “the mixer category had remained dominated by one global brand, who had really revelled in the fact that they had no competition for generations. Really the only battle they had been fighting was with the own-labels in the supermarkets, and so they had just spent all their time cost-engineering, with no real regard for quality or flavour. So there we were thinking ‘this is absolutely extraordinary: people are spending more money on a great spirit, yet they have no choice but to drown it in this increasingly artificial mixer.’” As well as the first product it launched – Indian tonic water – Fever-Tree now has a presence across the mixers category, from the flavoured tonic variants to lemonades, a whole range of ginger beers and ginger ales,
THE SEARCH FOR QUININE TOOK ME TO THE DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO and even cola. If there’s a singular reason for Fever-Tree’s rise to near dominance of the premium mixers category – both in the drinks industry and in the consumer market – it’s this: until they entered the market, no other mixers brand was creating products with a firm emphasis on flavour over price. Now, 13 years after it was launched, its mixers are the partner of choice for most spirit brands, big or small; according to data research company IRI it holds a 28% share of the total retail mixer market in the UK (not just the premium category, which it firmly dominates); and as well as being the tonic of choice for almost all of the venues in the World’s 50 Best Bars list, you’re now hard-pressed to find a pub that doesn’t stock it, too. As you’d expect, this is not just down to good fortune; nor is it a rags-to-riches story as such (and what riches they are – in April of this year, it overtook Britvic as the most valuable soft drinks company in the UK, worth a staggering total of £1.8bn). Both of its founders were old hands in the industry: Rolls was the man at the heart of the contemporary rebirth of the historic Plymouth Gin, and Warrillow’s background was luxury food and drink marketing. But regardless of prior expertise or experience, it was still a typical start-up, at least in terms of its scale: “We had no one when we set up – it was literally Charles and me,” says Warrillow. “It really did start in the British Library, researching the history and ingredients of tonic – and then we went out to go and find them.” This is what’s at the heart of Fever-Tree’s constant pursuit of flavour: just like the brands that have been at the epicentre of the 2010s’ booming craft spirit market, FeverTree uses quality ingredients sourced from all around the world, with no compromise on quality. Shortly after their period of extensive research in 2003, and aided by
Rolls’ extensive knowledge of sourcing botanicals and ingredients for Plymouth Gin, the two started going and seeing them for themselves. “We suddenly came to find this wonderful world of people who were out and about finding fantastic, natural ingredients,” Warrillow recounts. “And they in turn were excited, because we were going to them and saying ‘look, we are developing a new tonic water, and we want to develop the best. Don’t worry about the price – we just want to get the best ingredients that we can.’ Historically, the only time that anyone had talked to them about tonic was a supermarket going ‘we want a tonic water but we’re only prepared to pay you this amount for it.’ We were looking at it very differently. “So we suddenly realised there was this amazing world – it took me to the Democratic Republic of Congo to find quinine, Charles was out in the Ivory Coast hunting for this wonderful fresh green ginger – and we
MIX AND MATCH: [clockwise from left] Fever-Tree’s classic tonic; removing cinchona bark for the signature blend; the brand’s full range
continue to travel all over to source these ingredients. I hope it’s reflected in the flavour, but it’s certainly reflected in the fact that we’ve helped breathe interest back into this category, which in turn has made people more interested in gin and tonic.” Fever-Tree’s range might now include myriad products and flavours, made to match with a whole range of spirits, light and dark (more on that later), but unquestionably, the cocktail that drove its success was the first one it looked to address: the humble G&T. And, although both gin and tonic are thought of as quintessentially British products, it was actually Spain that Warrillow remembers playing the key role before it hit the mainstream in its homeland. Warrillow recounts a story by which a bottle of FeverTree’s first product made its way into the hands of legendary Spanish chef Ferran Adria shortly after it was launched: “We got a call from Ferran, who told us ‘At last someone is →
JUST THE TONIC
We’d be surprised if you’ve never tried tonic water on its own or in a G&T, but you’d be forgiven for not knowing quite how far back its history goes. The drink – sweetened, carbonated and flavoured with bitter quinine and lemon, among other herbs and spices – came to prominence in colonial India in the early 1800s. The quinine that lends it its characteristic flavour is a medicine, and made the drink an effective tonic against malaria – especially when combined with gin. Hence the name, and the cocktail.
PEDALING THEIR WARES: Fever-Tree’s founders Charles Rolls and Tim Warrillow with their phenomenally successful soft drink
→ taking this category seriously. How can I get hold of this in my restaurant?’ Actually the great gastronomes there in Spain all loved gin and tonic. It was their signature drink, they made it in these big balloon glasses, they really celebrated it, and they used Hendrick’s
Photograph (main) by Oliver Dixon
IT TURNED THE HUMBLE G&T INTO A PRESTIGE PRODUCT TOP BARS COULD REALLY CELEBRATE
and Fever-Tree. That really helped put gin and tonic on the map.” The clincher, as Warrillow points out, was turning the humble G&T into a prestige product that bars could really celebrate. “It allowed them to say ‘We serve it differently now – there’s more ice in it, there’s more fanfare, it tastes better, and everyone has a better time drinking it’.” Shortly after, Waitrose got in touch, and the rest, as they say, is history – the craft gin revolution happened, and Fever-Tree’s story since then is a steady rise to prominence and then dominance, brought about by approaching the bar trade as they would if they’d made a spirit – letting bartenders fall in love with it, and the effect of that trickling down to consumers thirsty for a mixer that allowed the gins they so coveted to shine. So what now? In the time since they launched, Warrillow estimates more than 70 premium mixer brands have been launched by brands big and small, yet none can claim anything like the success that the inimitable market leader can. As the UK’s most profitable soft drinks company, Warrillow admits they’re in a better place to influence market trends now than ever, and
they remain no less ambitious. As Warrillow rather bashfully puts it, “We’ve got a bit of distribution scale, reach and reputation behind us, so we think we’re in a more interesting position now to really explore lots of other opportunities. Gin and tonic – where we’ve been very focused, particularly in the UK and Europe – actually only accounts for 6% of global premium spirits sales. Dark spirits account for ten times that.” You might be able to see where this is going. A gap in the market, a spirit category looking for an able deputy to make up its classic long drinks. If three quarters of your… Well, you know the rest. “The quality of mixers available for these dark spirits is pretty poor and pretty limited,” says Warrillow, “so that’s why we’re quite excited about the development of our dark spirit range, which includes a smoky ginger ale, a spiced orange ginger ale, a ginger beer, a cola, and more. That’s an enormous opportunity. Now we’ve got a brand that I think can really help communicate that message more quickly. And the dark spirit companies are saying, ‘If you’re going to do this, we’d like to work alongside you.” Whether the accomplishments in the gin category that propelled Fever-Tree to unparalleled success can be replicated with a whole world of other spirits remains to be seen. What’s certain is this: if they can make it happen, they’ll hit some truly eye-watering heights. And with their track record, you’d probably back them, wouldn’t you? f
AWARD WINNING GIN FROM THE SILENT POOL IN SURREY Now available at Waitrose stores nationwide. www.silentpooldistillers.com
SECRETS FROM THE DEEP
Seaweed is the superfood that you never knew you needed. Gareth May gets to grips with the slippery stuff thatâ€™s saving our oceans, as well as our food
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N THE PANTHEON of unappreciated foods seaweed is pretty much the don. As idiosyncratic as they come, the marine algae’s properties – strictly speaking it’s not a plant – read like the wish list of a health-conscious, whisky-drinking eco warrior: it’s a cure for hangovers, a potential cure for cancer, it (could) clean our oceans like Henry the Hoover on crack, and its super qualities are so off the chart it really should wear Spandex and a cape. The ‘weed’ moniker really doesn’t do this wonder stuff justice. To truly appreciate seaweed we have to ditch the umbrella term and say it like it is. There are over 12,000 species of seaweed in the world, from the green dreadlocks of the brilliantly named bladderwrack to the foot-tickling frilly fronged sea hedgehog (but the less we say about creephorn the better). Around 600 of these grow along our Great British shores, though as a nation we typically harvest just 35 varieties. The Cornish Seaweed Company are such farmers of the sea, snipping and clipping kelp and co since 2012. England’s first-ever harvesting and processing edible seaweed company, the team says the best way to get onboard with seaweed is to treat the algae like a “brand-new group of vegetables”, and champions each species as unique from one another as carrots are from broccoli.
“Anything you do with vegetables, you can do with seaweed,” says co-founder Caroline Warwick-Evans, before chanting methods of cooking (and munching) like a water baby’s Christmas list. “Boiling, steaming, chopping into a salad, having as a snack… Seaweed is so underappreciated. It’s the best food you could eat for your body, inside and out.” It’s this diversity that makes seaweed such a slippery hit with chefs, including fellow Kernow resident and two-Michelin-starred chef Nathan Outlaw, who says it’s each species’ unique properties and flavour profile that elevate the foodstuff. Pickled dulse, for instance, is an excellent accompaniment for rich dishes as it cuts through fat, while kombu
ANYTHING YOU CAN DO WITH VEG, YOU CAN DO WITH SEAWEED
is great infused into stocks to give more body and depth to the dish. “Each species lends a slightly different note so will give a different finish to whichever dish is cooked using it,” he explains. “We tend to use seaweed dried, pickled and for infusing.” His dried gutweed and sea lettuce hollandaisestyle sauce sounds good enough to drown for. Likewise, the seaweed chutney with a mix of sea lettuce, nori and dulse, made by Eric Guignard, owner and head chef at acclaimed Surbiton restaurant The French Table. Johnnie Crowne, formerly at Michelin starred The Harwood Arms, and founder of Nest, the pop-up restaurant celebrating British produce, uses seaweed to add extra flavour to fish and meat stocks and enhance the natural flavour of other ingredients in a dish, often adding sea herbs to give punchy mineral notes to recipes. “It comes down to all seaweed and sea herbs having good levels of umami, which really helps to balance different flavour profiles together,” he says. “We use seaweed from Norfolk but the best stuff comes from a few hidden bays in Anglesey [where they pop-up for three weeks
KELP WANTED:[above] Johnnie Crowne uses seaweed in his dishes at Nest; [right] harvest and prep at the Cornish Seaweed Company
in the Boathouse Restaurant every August].” Aside from the random mention on innovative menus, the many faces of seaweed are rarely spotted outside of a restaurant. We certainly lag behind in our admiration, even if our Celtic regions have a rich history of using the likes of kombu. Seaweed’s been stabbed on to the forks of civilisations since the dawn of man. Eaten by Inuits in Alaska and Okinawans in south Japan, after the Vikings introduced it to hungry British tums as a foraged survival food we took to it in our own way. Scottish farmers fed kombu to sheep to sweeten the meat, the Irish munched on dulse to stave off the thudding morning-after headache, and in Wales laverbread is still a popular local delicacy. In the modern world Asia leads the way in seaweed consumption, harvesting over 90% of the world’s farmed varieties. In Japan, China and Korea, seaweed cultivation is a mega coastal industry with nori the most-plucked from the sea’s bosom. Eight million tonnes of seaweed is produced annually across the globe with an estimated value of nearly £3.5bn, making it one of the most valuable aquaculture crops on the planet. It’s also one of the most sustainable crops we have at our disposal so there’s an ethical angle here too, as seaweed is considered one of the foremost foods for the future to combat food scarcity. It could also help to solve sea pollution. Dr Charles Yarish of Stamford’s Marine Biotechnology Lab is developing a method that utilises the natural extraction capabilities of seaweeds and bivalves as a ‘bioremediation tool’ for the world’s seas or, in layman’s terms, in the right conditions seaweed could become the ocean’s janitor, mopping up toxins and man-made chemicals. The world’s cupboard is running bare and seaweed is bloody everywhere, so I’m pretty sure rock pools wouldn’t mind if we pinch
EIGHT MILLION TONNES OF SEAWEED IS PRODUCED ANNUALLY a bit. Such a diet would conveniently boost the human of tomorrow’s health. Seaweed is packed full of all 56 minerals the body needs including iodine, protein, calcium, iron, potassium and magnesium (it’s for this reason that seaweed extract is used in many processed foods such as chocolate and yoghurts and also sold as vitamin supplements in heath food shops). It’s also incredibly low in fat, vegan and gluten free, and contains 85% less sodium than table salt, making it a genuine alternative to that bête noire of seasonings. The Chinese in particular are currently making advances in seaweed research, working specifically on the notion that species such as laminaria and saccharina may be able to treat cancer. Joo Won, the head chef at Michelin-starred Galvin at Windows, is certainly flying the fine fettle flag. As well as ‘that full umami taste’ kombu gives his dishes he’s also all about the health kick. “Kombu is full of nutrition, which benefits our essential body function as well as keeping our hair and skin looking good and clean,” he says. It’s part of the reason algae not only sells as a food product but a beauty one too. Seaweed: it’s not just a pretty face. f
KNOW YOUR SEAWEED
Get your head around some of the better-known edible varieties Nori
Famously known as the black, dried seaweed that’s often wrapped round sushi, nori can also be used as a seasoning in salads and pasta. Also great as a superfood snack.
Velvet-looking purple seaweed that’s perfect chopped and mixed in with curries and scrambled eggs. Dried dulse packs a punch. Potential hangover cure.
This umami bomb is most commonly used as a base for dashi and miso soup. When added to a pan of boiling grains it can help out with digestibility. Also cuts through acidity.
The perfect health-kick side dish. Think of it as the Robin to Dulse’s Batman. Great served as a simple salad.
Irish Moss Photograph (Nest) by Justine Trickett
Don’t eat it; use it for cooking as a natural thickener. In China it’s used as a cold remedy to clean out blocked sinuses.
FOOD WRITERS WRITE TO MAKE PEOPLE HAPPY Photograph by ###
More than simply a collection of dishes, recipe books are now being used as a way to bring people together. Clare Finney explores the rise of the cookbook club 83
OW BAD IS your problem?” Richard H Turner – chef, butcher and author of beef cookbook Prime – grins at Stevie Parle over a beer squeezed into the calm before service at the Dock Kitchen. The chef, founder and owner of this restaurant and several beloved others raises his hands in answer. “God knows. They’re everywhere. On chairs, on the floor, by my bed…” he trails off hopelessly, then chuckles. “The thing is, I’ve only a hundred or so that I use. The other 1,200 or so I don’t even look at.” Nevertheless, he continues to buy cookbooks at the rate – at least up until he stopped Amazon Prime recently – of about two or three a week. It’s why we’re here – or at least, it’s one of the reasons why we’re here in the Dock Kitchen, on the eve of Parle’s monthly cookbook club. Cookbooks are big news for publishing right now: food and drink represents the single biggest category in non-fiction, and last year accounted for £90m worth of sales. I gleaned this from Stephanie Jackson, the director of Octopus Publishing, when she came to talk about cookbooks in Borough Market for their panel discussion Read, Cook, Live: the ingredients of a
cookbook. The market also has a cookbook club, hosted by Angela Clutton, who moderated the panel discussion – because as Turner’s habit demonstrates, there’s more to cookbooks than simply a collection of recipes and a snappy name. There’s the writing style; the luscious (or not) food photography; the presence or absence of celebrity; and those dreaded words ‘diet’ and ‘clean’. There’s whether the recipes work or not – not just on a practical level, but as engagement and inspiration to
FOOD AND DRINK NOW REPRESENTS THE BIGGEST NON-FICTION CATEGORY IN PUBLISHING
the reader to simply cook more. It’s to this end that a spread of cookbook clubs have sprung up across the city and further afield: to digest the books that we are devouring, if not quite at Turner’s rate, at least on an unprecedented scale. “What matters to me is that people leave this club feeling they want to cook from books more, that they want to push themselves a bit. I think that’s what all cookbook clubs should do,” Clutton tells me. “Encourage people to carry on.” At Borough Market, the cookbook club members all bring a dish, from a specific book, to the Market’s Cookhouse. Any last-minute prep is done by Clutton, and the members present each dish and their experience of cooking it before proceeding to feast. At Stevie Parle’s club his kitchen cook the recipes, and the author comes along to help cook, and to speak to customers, if they choose. Food writer Thane Prince’s Cookbook Club is different again: her members bring a tenner each month to The Drapers Arms in Islington and a dish if they want to. Members cook from a chosen book – in which case Prince will get the author along for a brief Q&A session – or along a particular theme (eggs, flowers and leaves, ‘the book I use most’ being among past examples) but it’s
not compulsory, says Prince: “People don’t always have time or money to cook, and that’s fine: they can just come and enjoy the food and conversation.” Yet all of them, from Maida Vale to the Yorkshire Dales – where Lynn Hill runs an online cookbook club – subscribe to Clutton’s philosophy that cookbooks should be more than aspirational volumes kept pristine on a shelf. “We’re trying to encourage people to actually cook from a new cookbook, rather than see it as something pretty with pictures,” she continues. “It’s a hit if a reader takes three recipes into their repertoire. That’s what publishers tell us,” says Turner – which makes Prime’s prospects look promising. That night Parle and the Dock Kitchen team will dish up five recipes from the book to what sounds like (from the satisfied noises I overhear from fellow diners) pretty unanimous praise. “That was spectacular,” declares one diner upon polishing off his charcoal-grilled highland steak with stilton hollandaise. “I want to make that.” Those who don’t have the book already invariably buy it upon leaving, congratulating Turner. Yet the phenomena of cookbook clubs has been fuelled by far more than a quest for publicity on behalf of authors or their foodie friends. “It’s nice for the author, if they have a new book out and are doing publicity anyway – but it’s nice for our crowd because they discover new books and recipes,” says Parle. What better way to discover a cookbook than to taste it, and from a critically acclaimed kitchen, too? “We have generally done food writers whose food you can’t taste, unless you cook it – because chefs are different from food writers. They write for themselves, to show off,” he continues, with alarming honesty. “Food writers write to make people happy.” Diana Henry is a prime example. Indeed her latest book Simple has been the subject of both Borough Market’s club and the Dock Kitchen’s. “She is an actual genius,” Turner says simply, echoing the sentiment of everyone who has been lucky enough to sample Diana’s recipes. Her name attracted a lot of followers. But for most it’s the spirit of a cookbook club – of sharing food with likeminded people – that draws them rather than any specific title or name. “We wanted to do something foodie and wanted to do something within the community.” That was the inspiration behind
THE PHENOMENA OF COOKBOOK CLUBS IS FUELLED BY MORE THAN A QUEST FOR PUBLICITY the Walthamstow Cookbook Club a few years ago when Jules Ovenden and her partner found their local area had become something of a magnet for London homeowners. “We already wrote a blog called Walthamstow for Foodies, so it seemed a natural progression to do something around food. Food is a connector,” she enthuses. “When I went to Thane Prince’s club in Islington that was a catalyst, seeing how well that worked.” Being in North London they had a wealth of different nationalities living nearby, a
richness reflected in the various food shops. “You can get absolutely anything here. Peruvian sugars, Slovakian spirits,” she laughs – but it’s the people who, with their food, their stories and their enthusiasm for cooking and feeding, have made each meeting a culinary and cultural journey with which even the most authentic ethnic restaurant would struggle to compete. “We have a Brazilian, an Ecuadorian, an Italian,” she lists. “Sometimes we make the theme their cuisine, and they will go all out – like it’s their time to show off. They bring not just one but four dishes because they want to demonstrate the food of their homeland. It’s lovely to see.” Like Prince’s club, Ovenden’s posse meet in a local pub, and bring a dish each. “We have a table for savouries, a table for desserts, then people stand around the table and introduce their food and explain what it means to them.” Their accounts, and the subsequent discussions among the group can range anywhere from holidays abroad to childhood memories. The books are just the beginning, says Prince – who is arguably the godmother of cookbook clubs in London having set hers up four years ago, long before the others. “I moved back to London from where I was working in a cookery school in Suffolk, and I missed interacting with people who liked talking about food. I wanted something for people who just care a lot and want to talk about recipes, why they work, their →
AROUND THE DOCK: [left] Dock Kitchen, where Stevie Parle hosts his club; [right] Thane Prince’s club at the Drapers Arms was one of the first
MARKET DAY: [above] The Cookhouse at Borough Market, where the market’s cookbook club takes place; (below) Angela Clutton hosts the group
THIS IS MEANT TO BE ONE EVENING A MONTH WHICH IS SIMPLY STRESS FREE 86
Photographs by (Borough Market Cookhouse) John Holdship; (Angela) Adrian Pope
→ inspiration and memories of cooking.” She called it a cookbook club “because that was the easiest way to put a handle on it,” she continues, “but the object really was to gather people in a room and let them talk food.” The fact that there is a book or theme, as there usually is at Thane Prince’s and Ovenden’s clubs, gets the juices going – as does the wine, and the act of feasting. “I think there is something about the communality
of all bringing something and sharing,” says Clutton. “You get a special feeling knowing you’re all in the same boat.” When I arrive at Borough’s Cookhouse, clutching my takeaway box of ‘fish and caper kebabs with burnt aubergine and lemon pickle’ for their Ottolenghi’s Jerusalem evening I understand exactly what she means. It is nerve-wracking. The anxiety of presenting your food to a professional food writer and a group of people you may not know is mitigated only by the fact everyone else there had to face the same fear. All shared the sort of challenges we’d faced in the process of cooking Ottolenghi’s food: the hunt for barberries and kaffir limes, the degrees of burning aubergine, and sheer quantities of tahini. We swap tips, and criticisms. One man, dismayed at the stash of leftover herbs he now has left after the 23g the recipe demanded, is advised by a woman to “chuck it in the food processor with salt and oil and make pesto – then use that in recipes in future.” Another member takes me through how to burn an aubergine without sending the smoke alarm keening. “There’s no pressure,” says Clutton – a phrase I will hear repeated by everyone running a cookbook club apart from Parle, who has a restaurant to feed. “Everyone’s very respectful and supportive of one another, and very frank about their experience of cooking.” They aren’t competitions – nor are they supper clubs, where people tend to come in groups and not mingle. At Borough,
places are offered to all club members on a first-come-first-served basis, with a limited number of spaces reserved solely for residents of SE1. Prince and Ovenden in turn ensure newcomers are warmly welcomed, and that everyone gets chance to speak. “Of course some people do talk more than other others – but in that case I will say, ‘right, stop talking now, let’s go on to someone else.’ I am deeply committed to the idea that this is a positive experience.” Most members see it as an opportunity to develop their cooking skills in an environment where everyone is likely turning their hand to a new recipe. “I’ve had a couple of mums saying they feel they can push themselves do something outside of their ‘mum cooking’ comfort zone,” says Clutton: inspired by the book, and by the sight and tastes of other members cooking. “Some dishes are magnificent,” – professional foodies have been known to attend both Prince’s and Clutton’s club – “and some not so good. It doesn’t matter. The point is sharing together.” “I think it is less pressurised than a supper club,” says Ovenden. “It’s not to make money, and everyone only has responsibility for their dish.” Some people slave for hours: “We have members take the day off work, or arrive two hours late because they were ‘just finishing’ something. One woman spent all day on a pavlova, and had such a disaster with it she had to keep starting again. But she got there.” Others might just bring a salad, which they can stash under their desk at work during the day. “Life is difficult,” says Thane simply. This is supposed to be an evening once a month which is simply stress free.” For some people this is all too true. “One lady who comes cares for her very ill elderly father, and has made a pact with her brother that if she gets a space, he’ll drop whatever plans he has to cover for her. This is what →
AVAILABLE AT ALL MAJOR WAITROSE STORES AND ONLINE
XPERIENCE YOUR SUMMER DIFFERENTLY
MEAT AND GREET: [left] Tripe, laab-style, one of the dishes featured in Prime: The Beef Cookbook; [above] the book’s author, Richard H Turner
→ she does for escape,” says Clutton. Another has a very intense, high-powered job and revels in a discussion which is resolutely work-free. In stressful lives, the cookbook club acts as a welcome distraction: an oasis for those who find solace in slaving over a hot stove and sharing the spoils. “I rarely hear that London thing of people saying ‘oh, what do you do?’” observes Clutton. The cookbook, or books, act as a springboard for all sorts of subjects – not least the particular culture or society that book might represent. “I love what cookbooks tell you about a time, a place, social issues,”
Photographs by Paul Winch-Furness
THE SIMPLE HONESTY OF MAKING FOOD FOR STRANGERS JUST BREAKS DOWN BARRIERS
continues Clutton, citing Nigella Lawson’s Domestic Goddess (1998) and Mrs Beeton’s Book of Household Management (1861) as examples. Sure enough, when it comes to the Jerusalem evening, we enjoy a lively discussion at Borough Market about how Ottloenghi’s recipe collection completely encapsulates that city. For members of Lynn Hill’s virtual Clandestine Cake book club, in which members cook from a given baking book and send pictures in for the forum once a month, it is the cooking alone that provides comfort: “people do suffer from anxiety and such things, and might be more comfortable sharing online than meeting up. This way they don’t have the fear of presenting something in front of lots of other people, but they feel involved and are encouraged to try new recipes.” There is, Hill points out, an element of showing off when it comes to baking. “I think all people like to show what they’ve created, even if it’s just on an online forum.” As The Great British Bake Off powerfully proved, more than any other type of cooking, baking is something we do for others – to see, at least, if not to eat. In fact, Hill is better known for her ‘IRL’ Clandestine Cake Club, featured on Radio 4’s Food Programme last year. There, members bring along a cake – “a whole cake, not muffins or cupcakes, so that you have to share it” – and share slices and baking stories over a cup of tea. Some come who
are aspiring GBBO contestants (readers may remember Dorret, the contestant whose black forest gateau collapsed live a few years ago); others, because they love baking, but live on their own and have no one really to bake for. Today the club has numerous local branches, as well as its online presence – but its ethos remains unchanged. “There is an art to baking a good cake, and when you have the chance to share what you have made with others, even if it is just a photograph and a description online, it gives many people the lift that they need.” “It feels like a community,” Clutton reflects. In a world – or at least a city – where neighbourliness can be thin on the ground, this in itself seems an achievement. “For those who’ve just moved to Islington, joining something like the cookbook club would be a great way of meeting people in the area,” Prince tells me. Through reading, cooking and sharing, people in Southwark, Islington, Walthamstow and beyond have got to know each other, sharing cookbooks, and meeting up outside the club of their own accord. “It is a wonderful thing that happens: how the simple honesty of making food for strangers just breaks down barriers. It’s an extraordinary display of – camaraderie, really, for this adventure that everyone is on,” concludes Clutton: and with as many cookbooks as Parle and Turner own, and Octopus are publishing, this adventure shows no sign of slowing. f
GOING UNDER Below Dalston’s favourite pizza joint, something exciting is happening. We take a close look at the killer cocktails at subterranean Ray’s Bar
PHOTOGRAPHY BY DAVID HARRISON
MOTOR CITY RUM ENSEMBLE
This rum manhattan/daiquiri combo is made with two types of Cuban rum and a blend of dry vermouths. A squeeze of lime juice freshens it up.
INGREDIENTS ◆◆ 35ml Havana Club 3YO ◆◆ 15ml Havana Club 7YO ◆◆ 7.5ml Cynar
◆◆ 20ml dry vermouth blend ◆◆ 10ml date syrup ◆◆ 25ml lime
Shake over ice and double strain into a Nick and Nora glass. Garnish with a date slice and a cherry.
T’S TEMPTING TO wonder what Kingsland High Street would feel like if not for Dan Beaumont, Matt Tucker and Dan Pope. You might not have heard of this trio by name, but chances are if you live in and around east London, you’ll have stumbled into their New York-style pizza-by-the-slice joint Voodoo Ray’s for a late-night bite on your way home. Before that, the three of them also founded Dalston Superstore, an easygoing London LGBTQ club that, when it’s not pumping out funky house, does a great line in brunch and excellent cocktails, just the other side of the historic Rio Cinema. With this in mind, the juxtaposition of the upmarket underground bar just underneath a quick-and-easy pizza place starts to make a little more sense. Because Ray’s Bar is a proper cocktail bar. Drinks here are made with chef-like precision and poise – from the Smoking Jacket, with its spiky, medicinal punch and smokey mezcal flavours, to the Motor City Rum Ensemble, a “modified daiquiri” with an aromatic finish like the aftermath of a fireworks display. Dave Miller manages the bar and creates the drinks, and it’s clear from the menu that it’s the work of someone who has a genuine passion for alcohol. Not that it’s unapproachable, though: there’s live jazz on Wednesdays, and on Thursdays, you can find one-off drinks menus specifically created to pair with sets from DJs until late. This is Dalston, after all… f 95 Kingsland High St, E8 2PB; raysbarlondon.com
Photograph by ###
SOUTHERN SPIRIT From authentic barbecue to cool new music, get a taste for America’s Deep South with Southern Comfort – the ultimate summer serve
T'S SAFE TO say that New Orleans and America's Deep South are some of the hottest destinations of the moment. It could be something to do with the authentic Southern-style barbecue that's been such a hit on menus this side of the pond; it could be something to do with allure of the region's sultry summers; or it could be the area's well-known sense
SOUTHERN COMFORT ENCAPSULATES THE SPIRIT OF AMERICA'S DEEP SOUTH 92
of hospitality and love of good times, from incredible music and infamous parties to cutting-edge cocktails. If there's a drink that encapsulates all three elements of the Deep South, it's Southern Comfort. Its spicy-sweet flavour – a gentler take on whiskey – makes it the perfect partner to the intense flavour of meat that's been cooked low'n'slow. It's also a go-to drink in the warm summer months, whether you like it served simply with lemonade and fresh lime, or in a more complex cocktail. What's more, Southern Comfort prides itself on working with key food and music events – keeping the ethos of true Southern hospitality alive, whether that's at home in New Orleans or further afield here in London. This year, Southern Comfort has partnered with Wing Fest, a weekend devoted to a celebration of the chicken
wing and live music that will take place at London's Printworks on 5-6 August – don't miss it for the chance to try out some of Southern Comfort's signature serves, like the Southern Hurricane, made with grapefruit juice, passionfruit juice and grenadine; or the Southern Cup, a refreshing long drink made with cucumber bitters and Sicilian lemonade. And in September, catch Southern Comfort at Meatopia, the annual event dedicated to showcasing the best of barbecue, from goat to vegetables – perfectly paired with Southern Comfort cocktails, of course. ● Keep up to date with summer events, cocktails and the chance to win experiences by following Southern Comfort on Instagram and Facebook at @ southerncomfortuk; southerncomfort.com
This gin cocktail makes use of flavoured sherbet and lime, as well as liqueur Mastiha, which comes from the mastic tree that grows around the Mediterranean.
IN G R ED IEN TS ◆◆ 35ml Monkey 47 ◆◆ 10ml Mastiha
◆◆ 5ml grapefruit sherbet ◆◆ 5ml lime sherbet
◆◆ ½ a fresh lime, squeezed ◆◆ Soda water
Shake over ice and strain into a highball glass. Top with soda water, cap with crushed ice and garnish with a slice of lime, a cherry and pineapple leaves.
Photograph by ###
Beer cocktails are steadily swinging their way into fashion, and this one is combined with a hop syrup, a bit more of that sherbet, and pamplemousse liqueur. (That’s grapefruit, to you and me.)
IN G R ED IEN TS ◆◆ 15ml pamplemousse liqueur ◆◆ 5ml hop syrup
◆◆ 10ml grapefruit sherbet ◆◆ 25ml lemon juice ◆◆ Lager, to top
Shake over ice and strain into a beer glass. Top with lager and garnish with a slice of grapefruit.
Photograph by ###
— SILENT POOL —
THE WORLD OF SILENT POOL A FOODISM GUIDE
Discover Silent Pool, a visionary gin that’s the result of craft, science, and a very special part of the south-east of England
CONTENTS ◆◆ Introducing Silent Pool Gin
◆◆ The Silent Pool, the Surrey Hills, and
Silent Pool’s unique home
◆◆ The distillation process and a scientific
approach to making gin
◆◆ The top ten bars for drinking Silent Pool
S I L E N T
PO O L
G I N
THINK OF ENGLAND Silent Pool Gin is a multi-award-winning English spirit that truly represents its home – full of contemporary expertise, and true to the innovative vision of its creators
IVEN THE HUGE range of gins on the market and the renewed popularity of the drink both at home and aboard, it can be hard to find one that stands out proudly from the rest. But what if we were to tell you about one that’s so unique, such a product of its particular environment, that it could only ever be made in one place in the world? We think you’d be as excited as we were to try it for yourself. Because that’s what makes Surrey’s Silent Pool Gin so special. While many gins you’ll find on the market are ‘contract distilled’ – in other words, made in other, more established distilleries by distillers who also
turn their hand to other products – Silent Pool was set up by a team of impassioned people who wanted to give their special corner of Surrey a gin that was befitting of its environment. This is where the brand still runs its entire
SILENT POOL WANTED TO GIVE THEIR HOME A GIN THAT BEFITTED IT
operation, from distillation to bottling, to this day. It’s made by the same core of people who started the brand, in accordance with their vision. But this is no tiny, experimental spirit: it’s the product of expertise, commitment to sourcing great ingredients, and an approach that’s dazzling in its technicality and its complexity. It’s for these reasons that Silent Pool is one of the fastest-growing gins on the market, claiming a Double Gold in the San Francisco World Spirits Competition recently. We think you’ll find its story just as compelling as we do. ● Find out more about the brand, its home and its approach at silentpooldistillers.com
T H E
THE SILENT POOL Silent Pool Gin is imbued with a taste of its own special corner of Surrey and the spring that gives it its name. And we’ve got a trip to the distillery to give away
T TAKES A lot to make a great bottle of gin: from the distilling process to the myriad botanicals from all over the world that you’ll find in every bottle. And it’s a process so intricate that every facet of the gin’s unique environment has a huge impact on the character of each and every measure you pour. Silent Pool so perfectly expresses its environment that it wouldn’t be quite the same if it was made outside of the small patch of gorgeous Surrey
THE SILENT POOL IS FED BY A DEEP AQUIFER 98
countryside it calls home. With a passion for handcrafted, artisan spirits, a group of friends began a search for a site where they could distill a quintessentially British spirit, and instill it with the true character of the precise part of England in which it was made. And where better to set up camp than the Surrey Hills, a staple of the region surrounding Guildford and an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. It’s also a place where juniper berries – one of the principle ingredients of every London Dry gin in the world – once grew with abundance. The friends set about converting a group of dilapidated farm buildings right on the edge of the freshwater pool that gives Silent Pool its name. The pool is famous in local legend as the place a woodcutter’s daughter drowned, and
WIN A TRIP TO SILENT POOL
Want to experience this corner of Surrey and the making of Silent Pool Gin for yourself? We’ve got a fantastic prize on offer for one lucky reader and a friend: a trip to the Silent Pool Distillery, including dinner. The lucky pair will be shown around the distillery with an expert guided tour, before being whisked off for dinner at local restaurant the Onslow Arms, Silent Pool’s unofficial boardroom and the birthplace of the brand. Travel to and from London is included. For T&Cs and to enter, go to fdsm.com/silent-pool
it’s this eerie story that gives the pool its name. Once they made their camp, the team set to work on the mission of distilling a small piece of England into each and every bottle. Using crystal-clear water from the pool on the Duke of Northumberland’s Albury Estate alongside 24 unique botanicals from every corner of the globe, the team has created a gin of distinctive flavour and uncompromising quality, and one that’s both an effortless classic and a unique expression of a complex local environment. And it’s this story that makes Silent Pool so inspiring: once a chalk quarry fed by a deep, underground aquifer, the Silent Pool was an important source of water for everyone who lived nearby. Now, the artisanal distilling process that takes place on its serenely quiet banks mimics this part of local history, using the pool’s water supply to create something that’s equally as precious. The result? A gin that’s nuanced, earthy, crisp and complex, and one with a smooth finish that’s created by the addition of locally sourced honey – another small flourish that gives the signature spirit its esoteric, quintessentially Surrey flavour. So, whether you’re sipping it neat, drinking it in a martini, or in a aromamaximising copa glass with ice, tonic and a twist of orange zest, next time you drink Silent Pool, make sure you raise your glass to Surrey. And if you want to see it for yourself, see below and left. ●
C O C K TA I L S
Want to go further than a gin and tonic or a martini? Try one of Silent Pool Gin’s signature serves: CHAMOMILE COLLINS ◆◆ 50ml Silent Pool Gin ◆◆ 25ml chamomile
◆◆ 25ml lemon juice ◆◆ soda, to top
Build the ingredients in a Collins glass over ice and stir thoroughly. Garnish with a sprig of lavender.
AVIATION ◆◆ 40ml Silent Pool Gin ◆◆ 20ml maraschino
◆◆ 20ml freshly
squeezed lemon juice ◆◆ 2.5ml crème de violette Shake and strain into a chilled cocktail glass.
ST CLEMENT’S ’75 ◆◆ 25ml Silent Pool
◆◆ 12.5ml lemon and
◆◆ 5ml sugar syrup
◆◆ Champagne, to top
Shake and strain into a flute. Top with champagne, garnish with lemon twist.
ROSA’S RUIN ◆◆ 35ml Silent Pool Gin ◆◆ 20ml Cocchi Rosa ◆◆ 15ml lemon juice
◆◆ 10ml sugar syrup ◆◆ 2.5ml Punt e Mes
Shake with plenty of ice and strain into a martini glass. Garnish with a single rose petal.
T H E A PPROAC H
SCIENCE IN ACTION Silent Pool’s unique flavour is no accident – it’s the result of careful curation of ingredients and a scientific approach
HILE MANY GINS claim their gin to be ‘hand-crafted’, Silent Pool believes that making a product as nuanced and complex as its signature gin takes more than just a good palate. Indeed, its slogan – ‘intricately realised’ – reflects just that: the realisation of a spirit that’s been engineered by experts to taste as good as it possibly can. As distiller Tom Hutchings, who has studied the effect of different soils on juniper berries, puts it, “A whole lot of research had to go into extracting exactly the right combination of flavours from our romantic botanicals. We broke each ingredient down to the molecular level, identified each ingredient’s flavour profile, and customised our method of making gin with the sole aim of obtaining exactly the right fragrances and flavours in Silent Pool Gin.” This might sound overtly scientific,
especially in an industry dominated by spirits brands that so frequently praise the virtues of crafting products ‘by hand’, but Silent Pool’s distillation process is guided by a simple and obvious ethos: that if a product is manufactured in a distillery, to exacting standards, and designed to be uniform in its taste from bottle to bottle and batch to batch, the process should be a science, not just an art. There are different methods of extracting flavour to match the gin’s distinctive botanicals. For instance, the juniper, liquorice, orris root, bergamot and other heavier-flavoured ingredients are macerated in the gin’s base spirit before it’s transferred to the still; whereas the ‘gin tea infusion’ process sees the more medium-bodied botanicals like elderflower and rose petals macerated separately, to ensure that
SILENT POOL BELIEVES THAT A PRODUCT MANUFACTURED TO EXACTING STANDARDS, AND DESIGNED TO BE UNIFORM IN ITS TASTE SHOULD BE A SCIENCE, NOT JUST AN ART
their aromatic notes are left intact. The third process in the distillation takes place in what’s referred to as a ‘multi-chambered fractioning column’. “Through precise control over a series of plates and cooling pipes, we are able to separate the exact flavour needed from each botanical.” says Hutchings. This no-compromise approach, twinned with a fastidious demand for the best ingredients, is as much a part of Silent Pool’s identity as the water from the aquifer and the people who distil the spirit. Gin has come a long way since it was born in the 1700s, and Silent Pool’s team are of the opinion that such a unique, scientifically-minded process is a natural result of living and working in an age of abundant technology. As Hutchings puts it, “our process allows us to use flavours that previous distillers could only dream of.” ● CLOCKWISE FROM LEFT: A selection of botanicals; Silent Pool’s distillery; a ‘basket’ maceration chamber; head distiller Simon Sherlock
P RODUCT S
If you like Silent Pool Gin, try some of the distiller’s other unique products, each made to the same exacting standards as its gin: WRY VODKA A unique vodka made with 100% rye grain and finished with just a touch of rye malt. It’s then filtered through charcoal, made from local Horn-Beam wood from the Surrey Hills by local woodsman John Sinclair. 70cl; £20
STRAWBERRY GIN CORDIAL A quintessentially English product made from a high-proof gin base that’s steeped with freshly picked Godalming strawberries. It’s only made when the harvest is up to scratch. 35cl; £20
SILENT POOL MISTS Available in flavours including bergamot orange and kaffir lime, these aromatic mists make a great finishing touch when sprayed on the top of a martini. Two sprays is all it needs. 30ml; £10
PRESENTATION GIFT BOX This beautifully designed gift box, soon to be released, will be perfect for a birthday or anniversary, and definitely something to keep in mind come Christmas time. All available at the distillery or from silentpooldistillers.com
LADIES & GENTLEMEN B A RS
WHERE TO FIND IT
Dave Mulligan’s subterranean bar, built in an former public toilet. 2 Highgate Road, NW5 1NR
Want to try Silent Pool Gin for yourself? We’ve rounded up the top ten cocktail bars in London to find it. Happy sipping...
THE RIVOLI BAR AT THE RITZ The grand bar at the Ritz, one of London’s most historic hotels. 150 Piccadilly, W1J 9BR
THE NORTHALL BAR POWDER KEG DIPLOMACY A Prohibition-themed cocktail bar just up the road from Clapham Junction. 147 St John’s Hill, SW11 1TQ
Placed firmly among London’s best hotel bars, at the Corinthia near Green Park. 10a Northumberland Avenue, WC2N 5AE
VICTORY MANSION An eclectic cocktail bar and a staple of the Stoke Newington bar scene. 18 Stoke Newington High Street, N16 7PL
EVERY CLOUD An approachable neighbourhood bar near Hackney Central with an enviable cocktail list. 11 Morning Lane, E9 6ND
MERCHANT HOUSE An underground bar tucked away in the heart of the City. 13 Well Court, EC4M 9DN
WORSHIP ST WHISTLING SHOP An experimental cocktail bar lead by GM Arnaud Chevalier. 63 Worship Street, EC2A 2DU
OXO A historic bar and restaurant at the top of the Oxo Tower. Oxo Tower Wharf, Barge House Street, SE1 9P
THE HIDE BAR A resplendent Bermondsey bar doing twisted classics and original creations. 39-45 Bermondsey Street, SE1 3XF
‘Henry Hales, founder of Sir Plus, surplus fabric menswear designer. 2016 Diplomat for a new era.’
Become a diplomat of a new era, follow Diplomático rum’s philosophy…. do what you love and celebrate every second of it.
— PART 3 —
EXCESS “A GRILLED HOTDOG BUN COMES BRIMMING WITH OPALESCENT LOBSTER MEAT, SERVED WITH A RAMEKIN OF DRAWN BUTTER” NICK SAVAGE ON SEAFOOD IN HIS HOME STATE OF MAINE, USA, 106
106 MAINE, USA | 112 BOTTLE SERVICE | 123 THE DIGEST 127 INSIDER: THE LAKE DISTRICT | 134 THE SELECTOR | 146 DECONSTRUCT
YOUâ€™RE SO MAINE
Nick Savage returns to his home state of Maine, US to meet the locals keeping its fishing industry alive
Photograph by National Geographic Creative / Alamy Stock Photo
MAINE MAN: An oysterman hauls his catch up from the water. The state of Maine has been associated with fishing and seafood for hundreds of years
AY ONE OYSTER over another as if they’re conjoined at the hinge and you have a rough topographical model of Mount Desert Island in the New England state of Maine, a plug of pink granite heaved up from the earth and hewn down by glaciers so that a deep sound of seawater runs up its belly. It’s the second-largest isle on the eastern seaboard of the States and, to a biased former resident like myself, its most beautiful. I’m driving to its northern shore to shuck the hell out of some oysters fresh from the Atlantic. Approximately 10,000 years ago the ice retreated northwards to create Georges Bank and some of the world’s most fertile fishing grounds. Migrating Native Americans followed the caribou herds south to find a glut of marine wildlife in the Gulf of Maine. In 1619 the first English year-round fishing and trading station was established on Monhegan Island, a year before the arrival of the pilgrims on the Mayflower. Over the ensuing centuries, seafood has become so synonymous with the state that the quickest
THE QUICKEST WAY TO IDENTIFY WHERE YOU’RE FROM AS A MAINER IS TO YELL ‘LOBSTER’ way to identify where you’re from as a Mainer is to yell the word ‘lobster’ until you’re hoarse and your interlocutor is deaf. I wheel the car onto the gravel at Hadley’s Point. The sky is perfectly mirrored in the pellucid plane of the sea. Across its surface glides a Boston Whaler flats boat captained by Joanna Walls, a shock of yellow hair descending from the back of her sun-faded baseball cap. I clamber onto the bow and she loops the skiff around northwards to her 22acre oyster farm, tucked between two thickly conifered islands. As we approach I get the opportunity to catch up on what’s been going on in her life. Joanna’s husband Jesse Fogg and I used to play (American) football together in high school. “Jesse’s up in the Arctic working as an engineer for half the year on a haddock trawler, and I’m either delivering sailboats or working on David Rockefeller’s yacht,” she tells me as black oyster cages hove into view – the beginnings of their start-up, Bar Harbor Oyster Company. “We were looking for something to work on together that would be relatively permanent, so we wouldn’t have to be away on seasonal jobs.” Maine can be a difficult place for young people to earn a livelihood unless they possess a keen entrepreneurial instinct. While many islanders rely on jobs in carpentry, caretaking and fishing, Jesse and Joanna wanted to do something new. So they purchased an Oyster-Gro system and became YouTube autodidacts on all things bivalve. The results were worth the wait. We pull the cages from the dark green water and shuck a few shells. Located at the mouth of Mt Desert Narrows, a brackish creek, the Atlantic oysters have a flavour profile that’s similar to British natives, the cold water amping up
STILL WATERS RUN DEEP: [here] Portland Harbour, one of Maine’s most important ports; [left] fried local fish and the iconic lobster roll at Bob’s Clam Hut
the amino acids and offering a mouthful of freshness and brine. Though they’re only two years old and not fully formed in texture yet, you can taste their promise. I return to my hotel for a swift shower to wash off the salt. Maine in general and Mt Desert Island in particular are famous for having attracted The Rusticators in the 19th Century, an abundantly wealthy set of summer residents looking for an antidote to the industrial age, among them titans of finance such as JP Morgan, the Rockefellers and the Vanderbilts as well as literary lights like Nathaniel Hawthorne, Harriet Beecher Stowe and Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. Mansions sprung up across the island, including The Asticou Inn where I’m staying, constructed in 1883 by an extremely distant
CONSIDER THE LOBSTER ROLL… Bob’s Clam Hut
Originally opened in 1956, this friedfood haven is a veritable mecca for seafood. Not only does it serve an excellent lobster roll, it offers a range of shellfish battered in cornflour and deep fried. Try the oysters if you’d like something more delicate than clams.
Eventide Oyster Co
Consistently topping ‘Best in America’ lists, the Eventide Oyster Co has established itself as a heavy hitter in Portland’s Old Port. Here, grilled buns are eschewed for steamed bao and the lobster meat is dressed with a lemon and brown butter vinaigrette.
Driving down Route 1, I’ve often encountered traffic jammed up for miles from the bottleneck at Wiscasset Bridge, due in part to motorists pulling off to dine at Red’s Eats. The formula is almost too simple: a grilled hotdog bun comes brimming with opalescent lobster meat, accompanied with a plastic ramekin of drawn butter. Lobster is an ingredient that deserves simple preparation, and this is as simple as it gets.
Luke’s Lobster Tenants Harbor
Photograph (lobster roll) by Ted Axelrod
THE OYSTERS ARE ONLY TWO YEARS OLD AND NOT FULLY FORMED BUT YOU CAN TASTE THEIR PROMISE
relative of mine – AC Savage. It’s a remarkable building because it’s one of the few to survive the Great Fire of 1947, which destroyed the majority of Bar Harbor’s old piles. The hotel offers keyhole insights into the past, as well as beautiful views, comfortable beds and the best happy hour in town. From here I drive through Seal Harbor, summer community to many of America’s oldest families, and north on Route 1 across Hunter’s Creek and beneath the rose-coloured southern slope of Cadillac Mountain, eventually reaching the sleepy, leafy municipality of Otter Creek and its excellent seasonal restaurant Burning Tree. Originally opened in 1987 by Allison Martin and Elmer Beal Jr, it helped plough the furrow for farmto-table restaurants in New England. →
Luke’s Lobster has arguably become the world’s most celebrated lobster shack, crawling out from native Mainer Luke Holden’s first location in New York City to establish outposts in DC, Boston, Philly, Las Vegas, Maryland, Miami and Japan. The Tenants Harbor shack is the most bucolic, but it’s not just a pretty face – the lobster roll here is handsomely stacked with meat and topped with oregano and celery salt.
Thurston’s Lobster Pound
Nestled on idyllic Bass Harbor on the backside of Mt Desert Island, Thurston’s is a counterpoint to many of the tourist traps that have sprouted up along the Maine shoreline. All of Thurston’s seafood comes from fishermen working out of Bernard, and there’s no fried food on the menu at all. I had my first lobster nearby when I was three years old, but one recollection of Thurston’s trumps all others: eating a roll with a cold Budweiser and dirty hands after a hard day of organic farming.
THE MAINE EVENT: [clockwise from here] The state’s famous lobsters in all their glory; fishing boats at Mount Desert Island; Bar Harbor
→ In between a plate of crispy kale with oven-roasted littleneck clams and a bouillabaisse teeming with monkfish, cod, scallops and mussels, I manage to collar Allison for a chat. “Originally the restaurant started as a senior project when I was at College of the Atlantic, to examine the state of American agriculture,” she says. “For 24 years we’d meet with fishermen at the Thirsty Whale Tavern in Bar Harbor, then fillet the fish ourselves. Sadly most of them have gone out of business.” Over the past century, the cod, haddock, pollock and
flounder fisheries have been decimated, with only lobster remaining abundant, due in part to the ineffectual nature of lobster traps, which actually feed the crustaceans more often than they catch them. As Allison’s sommelier approaches to get her attention she concludes: “It took me decades to start thinking of myself as a chef. My project was more to introduce young people to food systems, organics and foraging.” That may be true, but anyone who dines at Burning Tree will attest that her cooking is the calling card of a consummate chef. Driving back through the state’s largest city – Portland – I stop off in the Old Port to meet with Matthew Moretti, who with his father runs Bangs Island Mussels. Just a minute’s walk down the jetty from clamorous Commercial Street I find him putting a fresh coat of paint on a cuddy cabin. Nearby is the tugboat that he lives on with his girlfriend, who is sunning herself and reading a book. As I prepare myself for the flight back to London and inevitably my shoebox flat, I feel envious of what at the moment resembles a pirate’s life. Instead of Spanish doubloons Matt’s fortune revolves around Spanish raftstyle rope systems, which currently have
300,000 pounds of mussels growing in Casco Bay. Bought by all of the best restaurants in the city and sold across the country, they carry a certain aspirational gravitas. With a hard-earned education from Bates and Northeastern College, Matt isn’t quite ready to abide by the status quo, and has expanded his operations to farm wakame, sugar kelp and scallops, with a trip planned to visit the pioneers of this technology in Japan. There’s a tendency among Mainers to go out into the world during their twenties and then return to the state to raise a family. After a week spent around enterprising young people working hard to innovate Maine’s working waterfront, I’m grappling with the inclination to do the same. f
WHERE TO STAY Double rooms at The Asticou Inn are available from $230 a night during high season (about £180). For more information on the hotel, go to asticou.com
Photographs by (Mount Desert Island) Andre Jenny/Alamy; (Bar Harbor) Walter Bibikow/AWL Images
LOBSTER TRAPS ARE INEFFECTUAL AND ACTUALLY FEED THE SHELLFISH
R A G U S O ZER E T S A T % 100 eshment
refr Great tasting, long lasting
With our unique blend of 13 natural Swiss herbs
Get to know your way around orange wines with five great modern examples: 1 TESTALONGA SKIN CONTACT 2015, Swartland, South Africa. Made with chenin blanc grapes with four weeks of skin contact. 11.5%, 75cl; £30, highburyvintners.co.uk 2 AUTHENTIQUE LEISURE ‘SKIN CONTACT’ PINOT GRIS 2015, Amity Hills, OR, USA. This pinot gris is made with direct-press and skin-contact juice by a new-school winery in Oregon. 13.2%, 75cl; £23.17, thevinobeano.com 3 LO ZERBONE CUVÉE CURTÉIS BIANCO, Piedmont, Italy. As modern as it gets: vegan, skin-contact and natural, by a tiny Piedmont winery. 12.5%, 75cl; £16.50, boroughwines.co.uk 4 M&S TBLVINO QVEVRIS 2015, Kakheti, Georgia. This wine, from M&S, uses rkatsiteli grapes native to Georgia. It’s left to mature in giant clay jars that are buried underground. 12%, 75cl; £10, marksandspencer.com 5 CASÈ BIANCO 2015, Emilia-Romagna, Italy. An orange wine made by Casè from four native Italian grapes. 11.5%, 75cl; £18, boroughwines.co.uk
THICK SKINNED We check out a few prime examples of the fast-emerging orange wine category, as well as five beautiful craft gins from London to Washington, and some European-style lagers, too PHOTOGRAPHY BY DAVID HARRISON
ORANGE IS THE NEW WHITE: Skin-contact wine – otherwise known as orange wine – is riding a wave of popularity as independent winemakers experiment with the style. It’s done by leaving skins on white grapes for longer while pressing, resulting in an orange hue and a tannic quality that’s similar to rosés (which are made with red grapes).
1 DEATH’S DOOR, Washington Island, WI, USA. One of the new wave of American gins, made with red wheat and infused with fennel and coriander seed. 47%, 75cl; £44.75, thewhiskyexchange.com 2 MARYLEBONE GIN, London, UK. A highstrength gin at more than 50% ABV, this is a classic example of the recent uprising of London craft distillers. 50.2%, 70cl; £43.50, masterofmalt.com 3 SLINGSBY GIN, Harrogate, UK. A classic London Dry gin from new Harrogate distiller Slingsby, which is made with grain spirit and 24 different botanicals. 42%, 70cl; £39.95, masterofmalt.com
4 G’VINE FLORAISON, Charentes, France. Made in the region most famous for cognac, this gin is infused with vine flowers. 40% 70cl; £34.95, thewhiskyexchange.com 5 FOUR PILLARS RARE DRY GIN, Yarra Valley, Australia. A favourite among bartenders, made in an iconic Australian wine region. 41.8%, 70cl; £34.95, 31dover.com
LONDON CALLING: While the term ‘London Dry’ might imply a gin has to be made in our capital, it’s actually just the name given to gin made in a particular way native to London, with a specific mix of botanicals.
Photograph by ###
1 SIGNAL LAGER, Croydon, London. An unpasteurised lager made with hops from Britain, the Czech Republic and Germany. 4.8%, 330ml 2 HOWLING HOPS HOWLING PILS, Hackney, London. A beer that emulates the classic pilsners of the Czech Republic. 4%, 330ml 3 40FT LARGER, Dalston, London. Brewed like a Cologne-style Koslch beer, and ‘bigger’ than a lager in flavour – hence the name. 4.5%, 330ml 4 WEIRD BEARD SPREADSHEET NINJA, Hanwell, London. Named for the office
anorak, this beer is a pilsner made with Citra hops. 4.8%, 330ml 5 THE LONDON BEER FACTORY LONDON BOHEMIA LAGER, West Norwood, London. Brewed with malt from the Bohemia region of the Czech Republic. 5%, 330ml
6 PILLARS BREWERY UNTRADITIONAL LAGER, Walthamstow, London. An ‘Indian Pale Lager’ hybrid from the north London brewer. 4.5%, 330ml All available from Craft Metropolis. Visit craftmetropolis. co.uk/foodism for an exclusive discount
Photograph by ###
LAGER, LAGER, SHOUTING: The London craft beer revolution’s bestknown exponents might be hoppy pale ales, but there are a good few choice lagers made by newschool brewers if you know where to look.
THE TASTE OF THE UNDERGROUND
Turkish-influenced restaurant Firedog is all about sharing charcoal-grilled meze platters with friends, and we’ve got a feast for four worth £250 up for grabs
HROUGHOUT LONDON, DINING deep down in the belly of the city has an undeniable appeal. And when you combine that with delicious Turkishinspired feasting and killer cocktails? Well, you’ve got what sounds like the recipe for a great night to us. That’s exactly what you’ll find at Firedog, a new eatery in Fitzrovia whose food is inspired by the fragrant, spiced dishes you can find across The Aegean region, in particular Turkey. So round up some friends, pitch up and get ready to feast: at the Newman Street grill restaurant, you can tuck into Turkish-inspired hot meze dishes like charred octopus with smoked corn purée, fried sweet green peppers with sumac mayo, and kayseri pastirma with capers and dill. Highlights from the cold meze menu include hung yoghurt with
red pepper and feta, smoked aubergine with lime, and lime and mandarin-cured red mullet. Tempted? We thought so. From the grill that gives the restaurant its name, you can try 30-dayaged, urfa chilli-rubbed rib eye steak, lamb saddle with harissa and fresh herbs, and charred lamb cutlets with an olive marinade, to name a few. The restaurant also does a line in weekday set lunch menus, and you can tuck into a weekend bottomless meze brunch menu, too. What’s more, pair it all with carefully created cocktails, like the Tarkan-Kan, made with Havana Especial rum, Black Penny espresso, pistachio orgeat and walnut bitters. If this all sounds like it’d tickle your fancy, enter our competition to win a Firedog feast. See right for details. ●
WIN WIN DINNER FOR FOUR
If you love feasting menus as much as we do, you're in luck – we've partnered up with Firedog to give one lucky reader a meze dinner for four. For a full list of T&Cs and to enter, go to fdsm.co/firedog
SERVE IT UP This month The Grand Journey, an immersive pop-up from Bombay Sapphire, took diners on a voyage inspired by its botanicals. If you missed it, don’t fear: try these signature serves available at five great bars from early August
BLUE BAR THE BAR: Located at Knightsbridge’s Berkeley hotel, this is a classic destination bar, with great drinks and a special-occasion vibe. THE CONCEPT: The drink is inspired by the fabled angelica root, a key botanical in Bombay Sapphire’s gin. It was worked on by a perfumier, too. THE DRINK: The Angel Scent is made with pine needle-infused Bombay Sapphire, as well as Martini Ambrato, elderflower, raspberry and more. the-berkeley.co.uk
SCOUT THE BAR: A new London bar where simplicity reigns supreme, and there’s a focus on minimising waste from fresh ingredients, too. THE CONCEPT: The bar team at Scout made this drink based around liquorice. It will be served in a pitch-black room that houses the bar’s lab, the drink illuminated by a spotlight. THE DRINK: Sweet Cicely is made with Bombay Sapphire, fennel and cicely liqueurs, a dash of cicely vinegar, dry white wine and meadowsweet bitters. scout.bar
PANDA & SONS THE BAR: A speakeasy themed around an old-time barbers, in the West End of Edinburgh, featuring theatrical drinks. THE CONCEPT: Inspired by cassia bark, it’s a multisensory cocktail that can be enjoyed in the bar’s Vietnamese-style ‘jungle’ room, served in a noodle bowl. THE DRINK: Named Cassiblanca, it’s a jazzed-up G&T with cassia bark sugar syrup, Bombay Sapphire, coconut rum, Martini Bianco and tonic water. pandaandsons.com
SCIENCE AND INDUSTRY THE BAR: An experimental Manchester bar led by Massimo Zitti that leans on scientific technique to create its drinks. THE CONCEPT: Based around grains of paradise, and encapsulating the spirit of the Northern Quarter in Manchester. THE DRINK: Named The Blue Hive, it involves Bombay Sapphire, homemade honeycomb kombucha, lemon and rose aromatics, lemon and syrup infused with the gains of paradise botanical. caneandgrain.co.uk
THE BAR: A tiny, modern Dalston bar run by Mancunian brothers Noel and Max Venning, with a rotating line-up of nine cocktails and 25 covers. THE CONCEPT: Taken from two wishmaking acts: the Moroccan ritual of crushing coriander seeds and throwing them contrasts with the Western idea of throwing a coin in a river. THE DRINK: The Wishing Well is built around coriander-infused Bombay Sapphire and soda, served with a pound coin alongside, which will be donated to the Well Foundation. threesheets-bar.com
Photograph by ###
IN THE SPIRIT
So, you think you know gin? But do you REALLY know gin? Brush up on your knowledge – and discover some new varieties – at the Telegraph Gin Experience
F THE WORDS ‘private gin fair’ pique your interest – and, quite frankly, we can’t think for a second why they wouldn’t – head to the Telegraph Gin Experience at Kensington Roof Gardens from 1-2 August. At the two-day event, you’ll be able to explore all things related to the spirit du jour, from the history of the drink to its significance in the creation of classic cocktails like the negroni, martini and singapore sling. Hosted by The Telegraph’s spirit experts Susy Atkins, Neil Ridley and Joel Harrison, the event will feature world-renowned gin aficionados, masterclasses and more than 40 gins from 12 brands to sample. From Scottish distillers Edinburgh Gin and Highlands-based Caorunn, to London-
made D1 and No. 3 gins, there will be plenty of homegrown varieties to try, while from further afield, Aviation and Death’s Door will be the first American gins to attend the event. Susy Atkins comments: “Now in its third year, The Telegraph Gin Experience has a vast array of gins attending that I’m personally very excited to try. This year promises to be even more fun and inspiring than ever.” Fever-Tree is partnering the Experience, and hosting a masterclass exploring the simplicity of the perfect G&T, where guests will be guided through the world of gins, tonics and garnishes to find their perfect blend. Once you’ve cracked that, sit back and relax among the Roof Gardens’ lush foliage and resident flamingos. Yes, really. f
THE KEY INFO
The Telegraph Gin Experience takes place from 1-2 August at Kensington Roof Gardens. Two types of tickets are available – the Telegraph Gin Experience ticket, £60, which includes a welcome Caorunn and Fever-Tree cocktail, access to the fair, barbecue and engraved Glencairn Copa tasting glass. Alternatively, opt for the Masterclass Experience Upgrade ticket, £75, for all of the above plus a choice of one of the masterclasses. For more information and to buy tickets, see telegraph.co.uk/gin
Our round-up of the food and drink industry’s latest news
GET THE LOWDEN After a drink we all feel musically inclined every so often, but now one of Ireland’s oldest distilleries has launched a limited-edition guitar with luthier Lowden, that foggy dream has become a full-blown reality. Made from whiskey barrels and ancient bog oak, the Bushmills X Lowden F-50 guitars take more than 40 hours to build and are worth a staggering £8,500. lowdenguitars.com/bushmillsxlowden
MOMENTS OF REFLECTION
Shady British beer gardens might become a thing of the past if London brewer Meantime has its way. The brand’s new ‘smart mirror’ is designed to track the sun and channel the light down across the whole garden. The tech was trialled – ironically, at The Sun in Clapham’s Old Town – and might well be heading to a pub near you soon. meantimebrewing.com Photographs by (Meantime) John Nguyen/JNVisuals; (Carousel) Projoe Photography/Joe Okpako
ALL ABOARD The chef merry-go-round is in full swing as Marylebone event space Carousel announces its next round of chef residencies. Cookbook writer Olia Hercules, Tom Ryalls (formally head chef at Shoreditch’s Beagle) and rising star Francisco Castillo are just some of the names on the rota this summer, with Carousel’s homegrown chefs even putting in a stint in the kitchen. During the day, Carousel’s head chef, co-founder and Young British Foodies finalist Ollie Templeton and his team of talented chefs lead the lunch service, and there’ll also be the chance to take part in calligraphy workshops and yoga clubs. We’d advise giving the latter a while after dinner, though. For schedules, prices and other information, go to carousel-london.com
PICTURE PERFECT These days, you can’t seem to sit down for a meal without someone jumping up, thrusting their phone over the table and snapping a photo just as you’re about to tuck in. We’re partial to a bit of #foodporn, but whether you think Instagram is the worst thing that’s ever happened to restaurants or you’re a happy snapper who can’t wait to share a pic of the latest opening, the news that restaurant group Dirty Bones has launched London’s first ‘Instagram pack for foodies’ at its Denman Street site represents a first for the
restaurant industry’s acceptance of the app. The set comes complete with LED camera light, multi-device charger, clip-on wide-angle camera lens and selfie stick. This level of planning doesn’t just stop at the accessories, though: from the neon lights to the very snappable tacos and cheeseburger dumplings, pretty much everything at this NYC-comfort-food-inspired restaurant has been carefully curated with the photosharing social network in mind. Some could say this is excessive; others might just reply: you gotta do what you gotta do to get that killer shot. dirty-bones.com
FIND THE CURE
Earlier this month, H Forman & Son’s London Cure smoked salmon joined the likes of gorgonzola and champagne after it was awarded Protected Geographical Indicator status in Europe. This means that it can now earn the London Cure label if it’s made in accordance with strict principles and in the boroughs of Newham, Hackney and Tower Hamlets. Forman has been the choice supplier of smoked salmon for Selfridges and Harrods for more than 100 years, and this newly appointed status comes in recognition of the smokery’s century-long culinary heritage and commitment to traditional techniques. Fresh Scottish salmon and Scottish wild salmon are already on the list of European protected food, but H Forman & Son’s contribution is a first for the capital’s artisan food community. formans.co.uk
APP TO YOU Those who prefer to get down with the locals while they’re travelling will be pleased to hear that LocalBini, Europe’s first community platform dedicated to authentic travel and cultural experiences, has just launched in London. Forget pre-packaged holidays and chaperoned walking tours – LocalBini is all about seeing the city for what it really is. And it’s not just for tourists, either: the tour operator’s foodie experiences and tours are perfect for even the most-hardened Londoners. Curious? Download the app, and who knows – maybe you’ll discover (read: eat) something new. localbini.com
SET AND MATCH Byron’s hamburger specials bring creative flavour pairings together with expertly matched craft beers, and you could win a year of them
N YOUR TENTH birthday, you probably remember receiving thoughtful presents from all the people who’ve shared your journey with you. But, on Byron’s tenth birthday, it’s flipping the formula around, and giving its customers the gift of some of the best-loved burger specials from throughout its illustrious history. Since its first restaurant opened in Kensington High Street in 2007, the group has always served proper hamburgers, made every day from freshly ground British beef and freshly baked buns, without being afraid to explore out-there flavours – even as its total number of UK restaurants has grown to a whopping 71. What’s more, each special will be served alongside a specially brewed craft beer, all for just £13, and the rotating line-up of specials will be available for a whole 12 weeks over the summer period. You’ll be able to sink your teeth into the Miami Slice, with ’nduja, American cheese, crispy potatoes
and paprika ketchup, available until 31 July and served with Vocation brewery’s Pith & Love beer. Highlights after that include the Gizzmo, which includes a Welsh rarebit topping made with Barber’s cheddar and stout, specially paired with Beavertown brewery’s Little Furry Animal beer; and the Bunzilla, a Japanese-influenced burger made with miso-roasted bacon and wasabi mayo, served with Camden Town Brewery’s Black Lager. So, whether you want to toast Byron’s good health on its ten-year anniversary, relive a slice of its history, or tuck into a burger that’s packed with tasty (if unconventional) flavours and a beer that you might not have sampled before, it’s going to be one hell of a summer. ● Byron’s burger specials and paired beers are priced at £13; for more information, go to byronhamburgers.com, or @byronhamburgers to watch the story unfold on Instagram
WIN A YEAR OF HAMBURGERS
We’ve teamed up with Byron to offer one lucky winner a Byron meal for two every month for a year, plus a case of Byron Lager or Pale Ale and a brewery tour from Camden Town Brewery. To be in with a chance of winning, answer a simple question. To enter and for a full list of T&Cs, go to fdsm.co/byron
The Lakes have beauty and great food in abundance, and nowhere more than Gilpin Hotel, says Jon Hawkins Gilpin Hotel & Lake House The Lake District has been freshly minted as a Unesco World Heritage Site, but in recent years it's the Lakes' restaurants rather than its fells and meres that have been hoovering up the accolades. Gilpin Hotel & Lake House extracts the most from both the natural environment and the natural larder, with a setting in the pastoral southern Lakes, plus two restaurants, one of which boasts a Michelin star. That restaurant is Hrishi, named for its Indian-born head chef Hrishikesh Desai, whose imaginative, delicious and achingly pretty food puts a subtle subcontinental twist on modern British dishes made with ingredients sourced as locally as possible. The second – Gilpin Spice, also overseen
Keen to explore more of the UK's tastiest destinations? Go to foodism.co.uk for food and drink guides around the country, and further afield, too.
by Desai – goes even bigger on the Asian influence, with a continent-spanning menu in a relaxed and surprisingly funky space packed with guests and locals alike. The original Georgian house has 14 rooms, but the five cedar-clad spa lodges are the pick, each set over its own mini lake and looking out over rolling hills. Inside you'll find everything you need to hunker down for a night or several: a hot tub, fire, spacious bathroom and a combined bedroom and living area that converts into a treatment room. The latter's the perfect way to unwind after a big day in the fells – not to mention a big meal. Or, if you're doing the Lakes properly, both. f From £205 per night B&B (summer). Crook Rd, Windermere. thegilpin.co.uk
THE LAKE DISTRICT POPULATION: 41,100
AREA: 2,362km2 COUNTY: Cumbria Beloved of hikers, Beatrix Potter fans and poets, the Lake District is now a foodie mecca, and with good reason.
Direct trains from London Euston to Oxenholme Lake District take a little under three hours. Allow at least five hours to drive, though a car's a real bonus in the Lakes For more info: foodism.co.uk
THE LAKES DISTILLERY
Believe it or not, only one body of water in the Lake District is actually called a lake (the rest are meres, waters or tarns). Beyond this pub quiz-worthy titbit, northern Cumbria’s Bassenthwaite Lake is now home to something equally unique: English whisky. Follow the River Derwent upstream a few hundred metres and you’ll find the Lakes Distillery. Founded in 2012, it initially shot to prominence for an excellent gin, utilising locally foraged botanicals, but perhaps most notably for The One – a blend of whiskies taken from around the British Isles. Hiding within one of the restored 19th-century farmhouses, however, is its latest and most ambitious venture. Barrels of single malt whisky are undergoing the slow maturation process before a grand unveiling in late 2018. Watch this space. Setmurthy, Nr Bassenthwaite Lake, CA13 9SJ; lakesdistillery.com
If you’re the sort of person who can’t go away without bringing a piece of your holiday back with you, chances are you’ll probably quite like Lakeland’s gigantic flagship store, which sits on the edge of the quintessential Cumbrian town of Windermere. Not only does it stock pretty much every piece of kitchen gadgetry you’ll ever need (and some you didn’t know you did), but there’s also a kitchen space for product demonstrations and chances to get hands-on with some of the latest gear on the market. And even more interestingly, the shop stocks enough kitchen foil and clingfilm to stretch over the entirety of Lake Windermere, but we don’t recommend you try that. Alexandra Buildings, Thwaites Lane, Windermere LA23 1BQ; lakeland. co.uk/stores/windermere
It’s not often in these pages that you’ll see us recommend driving all the way across England to go to a service station, but this is one of those times. Run by the Westmorland Family – a group of farming businesses that’s spearheaded motorway-junction dining from the Cotswolds to Lanarkshire – Tebay is famous for its steady supply of fresh local food at the gateway to the Lakes. With an onsite butchery that prides itself on its nose-to-tail ethos, a sit-in restaurant and a farm shop selling food from more than 70 local producers including foragers and farmers from the fells, it’s well worth a trip en route to the Lakes, or for a final foodie pitstop before the long drive back to London. Westmorland Place, Orton CA10 3SB; tebayservices.com
SHAKE THINGS UP Grab a bag of crisps and raise a glass to adventurous snack matching: Burts Chips is leading the way in the savoury crisp cocktail trend, and you can get involved too
RISPS AND A pint is a tried and tested snacking occasion in the UK, but Burts Chips is encouraging Brits to think outside the crisp packet and enhance their snacking with the latest trend: savoury crisp cocktails. The artisan hand-cooked crisp company has created six ‘Burtender’ crisp cocktail recipes available on its website and across social media for fans to try out. You’ll never look at a humble packet of crisps in the same way again. Experts in adventurous snacking, Burts Chips know that a good cocktail is the same as a good snack – it has to have the right balance of ingredients and textures to be satisfying. Burts has teamed up with an expert mixologist, who selectively combined great cocktail ingredients with Burts’ distinct handcooked crisp flavours to ensure each cocktail carries its signature big bold taste, and that there was a drink for all palates, preferences and spirits. From the joining of two classics with Burts’ Vintage Cheddar and Spring Onion Martini, to a Margarita sprinkled with Burts’ Sea Salt & Crushed
Peppercorns crisps atop a sea salt foam, and Burts’ Smoked Crispy Bacon Manhattan, there is something to inspire everyone. For the first time, the crisps aren’t just the wingman to your favourite drink – these adventurous cocktails put crisps centre stage, where they belong. Dedicated crisp lovers should visit burtschips.com for the full recipes and
for more information on where to buy Burts Chips nationwide. Also, be sure to keep an eye on Burts Chips’ social media channels for tantalising images of the crisp cocktails and an upcoming exclusive competition, where you can win a mixologist to recreate them for you and your friends. ● burtschips.com
MIX AND MATCH Try out one of these inventive flavour pairings yourself with The Burtini cocktail – perfect when paired with Burts Chips’ Vintage Cheddar & Spring Onion crisps.
Ingredients ◆◆ 50ml gin
◆◆ 10ml dry vermouth
◆◆ 3-4 slices of spring onion, muddled
Shake and double strain into a chilled martini glass. Serve with cube of mature cheddar on a stick.
AIR OF DIPLOMACY
Diplomático Rum’s ‘Diplomats of a New Era’ are inspiring individuals who share the same strong values of entrepreneurialism with an air of modern-day diplomacy
HERE’S A CERTAIN quality to a modern-day creative; a sense of taking time and care about their job, even in a high-pressure environment. Be it bartenders, chefs, designers, writers, artists or any job role that involves a high level of detail, creativity and flair, there are always common traits: an exemplary level of skill, and a level of care for their craft that far exceeds the bare minimum of what’s required of them. That’s why, when Venezuelan rum brand Diplomático was looking for people who reflect what it is to be a diplomat in the modern world, it took inspiration from ‘the man on the bottle’ Don Juancho Melendez, a philanthropist who was a true adventurer and a pioneer
VENEZUELAN RUM BRAND DIPLOMATICO IS LOOKING FOR PEOPLE WHO REFLECT WHAT IT IS TO BE A DIPLOMAT IN THE MODERN WORLD
of his time, who dedicated his life to travelling far and wide to create the best rum collection he could find. Last year, in recruiting Diplomats to join their campaign, Diplomático rum celebrated the merits of chef Niall Davidson, menswear designer Henry Hales, garden designer Gaby Evans and leading coffee blogger Jess Ansell. They got the chance to promote their businesses as part of the campaign by co-hosting a stylish cocktail event at the Ace Hotel in Shoreditch, as well as having a bespoke cocktail created especially for them by some of the UK’s finest bartenders. They were also given the support of Diplomático rum for one of their upcoming projects. This year, Diplomático rum is back
BE A DIPLOMAT Think you’ve got what it takes? We’re looking for a new Diplomat this year, and it could be you. The ideal candidate will work in the creative industries and encapsulate the sense of originality, passion and craft that goes into Diplomático’s rums. The lucky Diplomat will have their very own cocktail created by a leading UK bartender, attend an exclusive Diplomático cocktail event, and receive stock to sponsor one of their upcoming events. Find out more and nominate yourself or a friend at fdsm.co/diplomatico
CLOCKWISE FROM LEFT: Diplomático Reserva Exclusiva ‘Bean to Barrel’ cocktail; Niall Davidson; Henry Hales; Gaby Evans; Jess Ansell
Photograph by Christian Banfield
on the search for four new Diplomats – people who dedicate their lives to their craft with the utmost care and passion. At the time of writing, the Diplomats will be on their way to being revealed for the 2017 campaign. But foodism is looking for one – and if it sounds like it could be you, get in touch with us and nominate (see right for details). From August to September, keep an eye on our website for exclusive interviews with the Diplomats of a New Era 2017. ● Find out about this year’s Diplomats and the campaign at foodism.co.uk; for more information, go to wearethediplomats.com
CLOCKWISE FROM TOP LEFT: A beautiful sea trout dish; a plate of moules marinière; Bradley Knight, head chef at the Goudhurst Inn
WINE AND DINE
For a top-notch food and wine escape just an hour from London, look no further than Kent’s Hush Heath Estate, and we’ve got a special prize for two people to give away
ET ACROSS 400 acres of gorgeous vineyards and orchards in the heart of Kent, The Garden of England, Hush Heath Estate is the perfect place for weekend staycations, corporate away days and year-round escapes from the confines of the city. Whether you fancy discovering the 500-year history of the estate or taking an in-depth look at how a state-of-theart winery produces delicious English sparkling wine, there’s no better way to do it than with a expert-led guided tour. Operating throughout the year, including Bank Holidays, from 11am5pm (subject to reservation) each tour takes in the sights of the estate from field to fermentation, culminating in a tutored tasting that’ll take you through the intricacies of each of the awardwinning wines and ciders Hush Heath has to offer, from brut rosé to pinot noir and crisp Kentish cider. Alternatively, if you’d rather go at your own pace, you can take a selfguided tour around the estate – all you
need to do is pick up a free map from the winery shop. What’s more, you can combine it with a complimentary tasting after you’ve got a feel for the place. Hungry? You’re in luck: as well as the excellent St Bart’s Smithfield and The Bull & The Hide in London, Hush Heath also owns two top-notch pubs within a few miles of the winery – The Goudhurst Inn and The Tickled Trout. Both country house-style gastropubs offer amazing menus of local food, and beautiful boutique rooms if you feel like extending your stay. Foodie bliss. ● For more information or to book, call 01622 832 794 or visit hushheath.com. Follow the brand on Instagram and Twitter at @hushheath, or search Hush Heath Estate on Facebook
WIN A STAY FOR TWO
We’re offering one lucky winner and a friend the chance to win the Full Hush Heath Experience. The Experience takes in a tour of the estate’s vineyards, orchards and winery, followed by a tutored tasting of some of the estate’s best wines and ciders, a paired threecourse lunch or dinner menu at the Goudhurst Inn and an overnight stay. Enter at fdsm.co/hush-heath
The Perfect Martini Expertly made with Plymouth Gin
Enjoy Plymouth Gin Responsibly
With the gin renaissance still in full swing, we’ve chosen some of the best bars in the city for a gin cocktail. Also check out the best gaming destinations, as well as pickled food, flowery terraces and Sunday feasts
In association with
Discover our unique style, true to us since 1793. plymouthgin.com
TELLING ’TAILS Sometimes, you just want to sit somewhere impressive and drink great cocktails. If there’s gin involved, even better
1 The Ivy 5 West Street, WC2H 9NQ
If you want to sip on cocktails built around the best-known alcoholic export of this historic city, it makes sense to do so in one of London’s oldest and most iconic restaurants. The Ivy’s bar has been frequented by drinkers great and good across its centurylong history, so why not stop by to prop up its marble bar and sip the likes of the Martinez Dispenser (pictured), a Plymouth Gin cocktail that comes in a giant blownglass vessel with its own tap. 020 7836 4751; the-ivy.co.uk
BEST OF THE REST 2 Rivington
4 Searcys at The Gherkin
178 Greenwich High Road, SE10 8NN
30 St Mary Axe, EC3A 8EP
As one of Greenwich’s must-visit destinations, Rivington boasts a particularly well-stocked bar menu, which includes a range of bloody marys and an eye-watering list of gins. This summer, you can take it outside, too: it’s hosting a dedicated, nautical-themed Plymouth Gin terrace, with its own menu dedicated to the historic British brand.
Whether you work in the City or not, this magnificent bar at the very top of one of the most iconic skyscrapers of London’s skyline is always going to be an impressive destination for a cocktail. Grab a friend (or a date), ride up the 39 floors to Searcys and bag a table that looks out onto across the city, while drinking one of its signature serves.
020 8293 9270; rivingtongreenwich.co.uk
020 7071 5025; searcysatthegherkin.co.uk
3 Punch Room
London EDITION, 10 Berners Street, W1T 3NP
129 City Road, EC1V 1JB
In many ways, the Punch Room takes care of pretty much every hallmark of London’s world-leading bar scene: it’s small, it’s underground, it’s in a beautiful hotel and, above all, it serves an incredible menu of carefully crafted cocktails, including the A La Romaine, one of its signature punches, made with Plymouth Gin, dry curaçao, lemon foam, whole-leaf green tea and Ruinart champagne.
There are a lot of reasons that the almost unassuming Nightjar (accessible only by an unmarked door on City Road) climbed to its highest position of third on the World’s 50 Best Bars list, but the most obvious is this: its drinks are some of the best and most creative in the city. If you can get a table at the bar, do so, and watch the bar staff work their magic on the Prohibition-themed menu.
020 7908 7949; editionhotels.com
020 7253 4101; barnightjar.com
Photograph (Swingers) by Paul Winch-Furness
1 Swingers 8 Brown’s Buildings, EC3A 8AL
FUN AND GAMES
Forget the “Keys in the bowl, everyone,” – this Swingers bar is strictly about golfing. But while you might associate crazy golf/mini golf with bumpy seaside courses, this one has a distinctly more elegant air, course-wise, and a bit of a rowdy one in terms of atmosphere. The setting is based on a 1920s bucolic club house set in the English countryside, although pumping music and killer cocktails mean it’s distinctly London at the same time. When you’ve completed your round, sink a drink on the gin terrace, and refuel with food from a rotating line-up of some of London’s best restaurants and food traders. 020 3846 3222; swingersldn.com
If you like your drinks with a side order of friendly competition, these action-packed bars are for you 3
BEST OF THE REST 4 Flight Club
121 Holborn, EC1N 2TD
55 New Oxford Street, WC1A 1BS
When it comes to ping pong, what you need is a table to yourself, and enough refreshment to enable you to play until you’ve exhausted your need to beat your mates. Enter Bounce, where you can conquer the sport with a paddle in one hand and a beer or a slice of pizza in the other. It’s located on the exact spot where Jean Jacques III designed and patented the sport, a fact you may or may not want to use to distract your opponents.
Ever wanted to play darts but worried that your skills might not match up to the locals, (or that you won’t be able to resist the urge to shout out “One hundred and eiiiiighty!”)? Either way, Flight Club is a great shout for a group outing: hone your technique within the comfort of your own ‘oche’ (a private area for up to 20 with your own dartboard) and order sharing pizzas, burgers, fries and cocktails too. Like your own mini pub. But better.
020 3657 6525; bouncepingpong.com
020 3019 3093; flightclubdarts.com
3 The Four Thieves
51 Lavender Gardens, SW11 1DJ
115 Chancery Lane, WC2A 1PP
Forget crap quiz machines, moody pool tables and unloved Jenga – this Battersea pub has an entire floor dedicated to gaming: think vintage arcade games, crazy golf, pinball, and MINI MOTOR RACING. Recover from the excitement with a beer brewed on-site and food including short rib tacos and ham croquettes. There’s a VR game station, too, so if you want to work up an appetite by fighting some zombies, you do that.
This chic cocktail bar serves drinks with a distinctly French flavour – expect plenty of pastis and absinthe – while food follows the Gallic trend, too. Complete the picture of an afternoon spent in Provence with a game of pétanque (a form of boules) on the UK’s only indoor pétanque court. As you’d expect, all of the wine is from France (with a focus on Provence and Corsica in particular), and drinking plenty of rosé is non-negotiable.
020 7223 6927; fourthieves.pub
020 7242 8373; baranis.co.uk
Photograph (Swingers) by Paul Winch-Furness
COMFORT IN THE FAMILIAR, HUNGER FOR THE NEW
Three unique restaurants, bound by the same values: excellence without pretence; inspiring rooms with a friendly welcome; and the next generation of talent led by an ambassador for British cooking
MARCUS Contemporary British food to evoke and create memories The Berkeley, Wilton Place, London SW1X 7RL
THE GILBERT SCOTT British classics in a grand English feasting hall St Pancras Renaissance Hotel, Euston Road, London NW1 2AR
Marcus Wareing Restaurants
020 7235 1200
TREDWELLS Relaxed excellence in a neighbourhood dining room 4a Upper St Martinâ€™s Lane, London WC2H 9NY
1 Rawduck 197 Richmond Road, E8 3NJ
PICKLE, YOU’RE FANCY Here’s where to get your chops round all kinds of wonderful pickles and ferments
Sweet, salty, tangy and crunchy: pickles are bloody delicious, so it’s no surprise to see them cropping up more and more frequently on our menus. And they’re good for you – winner. Rawduck, the second venture from Tom Hill, Clare Lattin and Rory McCoy of hit restaurant Ducksoup, has a focus on, er, raw foods, and you’ll find nibbles like sourdough with unpasteurised butter alongside daily ferments and pickles, as well as natural wines and drinking vinegars. This is the place to go for palate-bending, seasonal housemade ‘krauts, kimchis, kombuchas and kefirs (we’ll leave you to work out what those are), so you can expect to treat your tastebuds to everything from pickled tomatoes to fermented nettles. The team are due to set up another wine bar this autumn, too, called Little Duck The Picklery, where you’ll be able to both buy the picklers and ferments and learn how to do it yourself in its very own fermentation kitchen. Obviously. 020 8986 6534; rawduckhackney.co.uk
BEST OF THE REST 2 Counter Culture
4 Salt + Pickle
16 The Pavement, SW4 0HY
67 Westow Hill, SE19 1TS
Counter Culture actually started life as a deli linked to The Dairy, where cheffing duo Robin and Sarah Gill made all their own preserves and cured their own meat and fish. That project ended, but the team has put their knowledge – and equipment – to good use by turning it into Counter Culture, where they serve flavour-packed small plates featuring off-the-wall ferments like cocoa bean miso.
Pickling isn’t just reserved for the hipster East London set, y’know – it’s found its way to Crystal Palace, too, with new opening Salt + Pickle, from local duo Manish Utton-Mishra and Ian Haigh. It serves everything from New York-style salt beef sandwiches (with pickles, obvs) at lunchtime to dainty small plates of pickled mushroom bruschetta and gin-cured salmon come evening.
020 8191 7960; countercultureclapham.co.uk
020 8761 9739; saltandpickle.com
5 Bun House
26 Curtain Rd, EC2A 3NY
24 Greek Street, W1D 4DZ
Someone once said ‘where there’s Nordicstyle cooking, there’ll be pickles’. OK, no they didn’t, but pickles and ferments do feature strongly in the region’s cuisine – and one of the best places to try them is Rök Smokehouse, which melds top British ingredients with Nordic techniques. You’ll find all manner of fermented things on the menu here, from fennel to Swedish anchovies.
Prepare yourselves: there’s a whole new kind of bao for you to get addicted to, this time hailing from China rather than Taiwan. These steamed buns are closed rather than open, and are traditionally served with pickles. And that’s why Bun House has a whole menu of the things. For £2 you can scoff anything from a pickled fruit salad to pickled jicama – also known as Mexican turnip.
020 7377 2152, roklondon.co.uk
020 8017 9888; bun.house
BEST OF THE REST
2 The Green Room Café
4 The Ivy City Garden
113 Stoke Newington Church Street, N16 0UD
Dashwood House, 69 Old Broad Street, EC2M 1QS
You’d think a florist serving food would be all about edible blossoms, but this quintessential Stokey destination does much, much more, including a damn good shakshuka with chorizo. Walk through the bountiful flowershop and you’ll find a café that stretches out to a sun-dappled terrace out the back. It’s family-friendly but still cool, and does a great line in brunch and lunch.
Hiding deep within the concrete-riddled landscape of the Square Mile is an oasis filled with lush blooms… and tasty food, thanks to the team at The Ivy City Garden. Head here for British classics – hello, shepherd’s pie – and cocktails that use herbs from the garden. Rain? No problem – there’s a retractable roof that’ll let you enjoy the verdant surrounds even when it’s pouring down.
020 7923 1877; greenroomcafen16.com
020 3146 7744; theivycitygarden.com
5 Central Street Café
Somerset House, Lancaster Place, WC2R 1LA
90 Central Street, EC1V 8AJ
Among Petersham Nurseries’ highly successful alumni is Skye Gyngell of Spring, where everything from the name to the interiors and the cooking feels light and fresh. We particularly like the inner courtyard, where delicate trees and fairy lights set the scene for the utterly delicious food, largely sourced through Gyngell’s relationship with the Fern Verrow farm in Herefordshire.
This community centre is cleverly making the most of Clerkenwell’s avocado on toastloving tech and design boffins to subsidise high-quality meals for elderly locals. Exposed brick walls, antique light bulbs and rose-filled rooftop garden provide prime Instagram fodder, and all profits are fed back into local projects that work to support older local residents and those out of work.
020 3011 0115; springrestaurant.co.uk
020 7549 8187; centralstreetcafe.london
FLOWER POWER You might live in a city, but you can still stop and smell the flowers at these London joints 1 Petersham Nurseries Photograph (Little Duck) by Chiron Cole
Church Lane, TW10 7AB
The food at Petersham Nurseries has been coming up roses thanks to head chef Damian Clisby, formerly of Hix Soho. He uses the produce growing in Petersham’s greenhouses to create his inventive menus, made all the more delicious because you eat inside the bloom-filled glasshouses. Book yourself in for a gardening workshop, too, and you’ll be be growing your own veg in no time. 020 8940 5230; petershamnurseries.com
1 Petit Pois 9 Hoxton Square, N1 6NU
“A celebration of all things bovine” is how Hoxton’s Petit Pois Bistro describes its new Sunday meat club, ‘We Meat on Sundays’. And with dishes such as porthilly oyster with beef dripping panko, bone marrow or ox heart croquettes to start, it’s hard to disagree. Second course is a choice of steak sourced from The Butchery in SE23, and there’s chocolate mousse for desert (reassuringly beef-free. A line must be drawn somewhere). Not a fan of the cow? Don’t worry - menus will change every two months to celebrate a different meat that’s at its seasonal best.
020 7613 3689; petitpoisbistro.com
You won’t find Sunday blues at these restaurants – instead, you’ll find heaps of utterly delicious food
BEST OF THE REST 2 Pitt Cue
4 Giant Robot
1 The Avenue, Devonshire Square, EC2M 4YP
Crossrail Place, E14 5AR
Pitt Cue is all about meat, so it figures that it does a knock-out Sunday lunch. Start with oysters and mangalitza country ham, then hoover up beef rump that comes with bone marrow sauce... And then cancel your plans, as you won’t be going anywhere fast.
Sometimes there’s only one way out of a hangover, and that’s food. Lots of it. Thank goodness for Giant Robot’s Giant Sundays. Whether it’s an extra patty at BOB’s Burger, or double the dumplings at Yumplings, there’s more of everything, for exactly the same price as during the week.
020 7324 7770; pittcue.co.uk
74 Luke Street, EC2A 4PY
Sundays are all about friends and family, which is why sharing is the name of game at modern Turkish joint Oklava. Round up a crew and hunker down for a big ol’ feasting session, starting with traditional Turkish mezze and moving on to smoky kebabs that are grilled in the custom-built oven. 0207 729 3032; oklava.co.uk
020 7719 1325; streetfeast.com
5 Hawksmoor Various locations
The restaurant group’s Sunday lunch offering is a classic, but it’s pretty damn incredible: top-of-the-line slow-roasted rump (started over charcoal, natch) and served with all the trimmings. There are several sites in London, but booking is still absolutely essential. thehawksmoor.com
Photograph (Petit Pois ) by Addie Chinn
A True Original Batch distilled since 1793
Enjoy Plymouth Gin Responsibly
DRINK PINK THIS SUMMER
Eaton Square Bar eatonsquarebar.com @eatonsquarebar 020 7235 9696 17 Holbart Place, Victoria, SW1W 0HH
Infused with fresh British raspberries. Deliciously dry with a hint of fruit and an exceptionally smooth finish.Pop in for the Pinkster Club cocktail or our classic G&T, served with a sprig of fresh, well-spanked mint. @pinkstergin
check us out at.... @thecrazysingh @1crazysingh @TheCrazyGin
â—? To advertise in this section please call 020 7819 9999
There’s so much more to biscotti than keeping your coffee company We realized early on in our double-baked biscuit adventure that the moreish biscotti provides a sumptuous setting for all manner of magnificent savoury flavours to flourish. You might be surprised to discover that our generously proportioned ‘biscotti croutons’ come in an array of flamboyant flavours from Wild Garlic & Rosemary, Indian Spice and Parmesan & Fennel to Jalapeno & Cheddar, Sun-dried Tomatoes & Olives and Parmesan & Chorizo. In truth, whatever your personal ‘flavour persuasion,’ these magnificently moreish nibbles from deepest Dorset will bring a little extra ‘foodie swagger’ to any soup, salad, cheeseboard or canape tray.
M: 07715 322 868 | E: firstname.lastname@example.org
The perfect Bloody Mary every time. Make the best things in life simple. Cox’s Original Bloody Mary Spicer, simply add your preferred vodka, tomato juice, garnish and stir.
Available nationally in Waitrose within the Mixers aisle and Sainsbury’s within the spirits fixture. www.coxsoriginal.com | email@example.com cox’s original bloody mary spicer | @coxsoriginal
● To advertise in this section please call 020 7819 9999
FOODISM AND @NEWOPENINGS HAVE TEAMED UP TO BRING YOU 10 GINS YOU MUST TRY THIS SUMMER.
DURHAM GIN Durham Gin is made to a unique recipe of botanicals, infused with pink peppercorn and celery seed in one of the UK’s most traditional craft distilleries. Using only the highest quality ingredients, including Durham spring water, and a 400 litre copper pot still, this handmade gin is available in 70cl from £27.50 W: www.durhamdistillery.co.uk E: firstname.lastname@example.org
ANOTHER DRAMATIC MOMENT OF GINSPIRATION The self-titled Spirit of the Lakes, Bedrock Gin has won award after award for its smoothness, and its flavour. Which makes the launch of an export strength variant all the more welcome. At 46% ABV, it's an invigorating, dramatic addition to the drinks cabinet. W: bedrockgin.co.uk
WINCHESTER DRY GIN
A modern distillery specialising in botanical spirits, located on the iconic Tower Bridge. Victory Gin is distinctive yet utilitarian, distilled cold at 45ºC for preservation of aromatics. Victory has a commitment to sustainability. The first distillery in London to supply GIN IN A BAG! Refill pouches are available to buy online. @victorylondonuk W: victorylondon.co.uk
Packed with Medieval spirit is how best to describe this delightfully complex gin. Inspired by King Arthur & the Winchester Round Table, it features 25 medieval botanicals; one for each seat at the table. Best served over ice with fresh sprigs of thyme, rosemary and lemon wheel.
HAMPSHIRE SUMMER GARDEN
GIN FOR THE ENLIGHTENED MIND
Experience the taste of summer in a glass. New Forest strawberries, blueberries and a hint of mint characterise this gin, one of a seasonal limited edition range crafted by the Winchester Distillery. Serve over ice with indian tonic garnished with summer berries & herbs. W: winchesterdistillery.co.uk/foodism
House of Elrick gin is a light and incredibly aromatic liquid that is perfect with tonic or as part of an artisan cocktail. Distilled with Scottish heather, rose, pink peppercorns and water from Loch Ness it has all the makings of a classic. Wont you join us for a drink? Available in Store at Selfridges. RRP - £38.50 W: houseofelrick.co.uk
Hernö gin is an astonishingly smooth organic gin from Sweden made using the finest handselected botanicals from around the world. This super-premium gin has been the most awarded gin in Europe since 2012 including World's Best Gin for Tonic. Serve with a premium tonic over ice and a lemon peel for a refreshing Scandinavian twist to your G&T. Find it at Harvey Nichols and Amazon. @hernogin
Distilled in a tiny copper pot, Marylebone is the super premium gin from The Pleasure Gardens Distilling Company. Using 13 floral botanicals, including chamomile, grapefruit and lime flower, which were associated with one of London’s fashionable 18th Century pleasure gardens, Marylebone Gin boasts an unrivalled balance and complexity. Available from Master of Malt, £43.50.
CITY OF LONDON DRY GIN
As the name suggests, this super premium, organic liquid is proudly distilled in Liverpool, Merseyside. Handcrafted in a copper still, the artisanal gin combines a unique range of distinctive botanicals, resulting in an intense juniper and complex well-balanced botanical flavour with a bright citrus finish. Available from The Whisky Exchange, £45.55.
Handcrafted in The City of London Distillery, the award-winning super premium City of London Dry Gin is produced in the Square Mile’s first gin distillery for nearly 200 years. It’s a clean and characterful classic London Dry gin, flavoured with fresh orange, lemon and pink grapefruit, in addition to the finest juniper berries, angelica, liquorice and angelica root. Available from Master of Malt, £34.95.
GOOD GOING: These dudes taste good, and they do good, too – they can break down everything from paper to petroleum products, which is why they’re being used in mycorestoration, the process of using mushrooms to decrease pollution levels.
FUNKY FUNGHI: Oyster mushrooms are now found in supermarkets, but you can go foraging for them, too. You’ll find them growing on hardwood trees in spring and autumn – but we’d advise doing your research first.
Photograph by Alan Phillips / Getty
No, these weird things aren’t tiny aliens – they’re oyster mushrooms, prized in Asian cooking for their subtle flavour and delicate texture. Here are some surprising specifics
Foodism Magazine - Issue 20 - The Future Food Issue