L O N D O N , O N E B I T E AT A T I M E
PIONEERS IN DISTI
TRADITIONAL EN TASTES FROM ARO
I L L I N G S I N C E 176 2
NGLISH GINS, OUND THE WORLD
A world of flavours, one beer for them all.
Cobra’s brewed using a complex recipe to create a beer that’s smooth like an ale yet refreshing like a lager, which makes it the perfect accompaniment for any type of food, not just the kind you might expect.
And we’ve set off to prove it with a little road trip around NYC, where you can sample cuisine from anywhere in the world. Follow our journey at YouTube/Cobrabeer.
Grand Gold Winner 2018
Grand Gold Winner 2018
Spicy Sumatranâ€Ś nutty Brazilianâ€Ś sweet Colombian. Whatever the source, our master coffee roaster Bartosz Ciepaj knows his beans. He will be roasting and blending more than 30 types of coffee daily, which can be enjoyed in the new Art Deco-style Coffee Bar, or freshly ground to take home. Roastery & Bake Hall
FRONT COVER: Photography by Ian Dingle
Mike Gibson ISSN 2397-1975
Jordan Kelly-Linden EDITORIAL ASSISTANT
Lucas Oakeley TRAVEL EDITOR
Lydia Winter BEER EDITOR
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Victoria Smith CONTRIBUTORS
Amanda Brame, Clare Finney, Ian Dingle, Gareth May, Richard H Turner, Tom Hunt EDITOR-IN-CHIEF
DESIGN CREATIVE DIRECTOR
Matthew Hasteley DESIGNERS
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Ellen Cook, Izzy Hardie, Jason Lyon, Lewis McClymont, Matt Lincoln, Rhianne Cochrane MARKETING AND COMMUNICATIONS MANAGER
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ast New Year’s Eve, I made myself a very serious resolution. A sequence of events on the night reminded me I’d not been taking something as seriously as I should – in fact I’d been bitching about it for years to anyone who’d listen – and it took a small public gathering to make me realise the error of my ways. You see, I’d made a few espresso martinis for some of my guests. The recipe is incredibly simple: vodka (I used Ketel One), coffee liqueur (usually Kahlúa, although I used Mr Black) and espresso (I used a 1:1 ratio of coffee to water in a cafetière). Dry shake, then shake well over ice, and strain into a martini glass. I tried it before I served it (I’m not insane), and it was delicious. And so it should be: the story goes it was invented on the spot a couple of decades ago by the late, great London bartender Dick Bradsell, when a famous model and socialite sidled up to his bar and asked for “something that’ll wake me up and fuck me up.” He did his thing, and ended up creating not, as I’d lazily thought just because you can get it in any bar in London, something in line with the pornstar martini (which is actually, for real, a crap cocktail), but a genuine modern classic. On the stroke of 2019, I vowed never to underestimate it again. The reason I bring this up is that a beautiful marriage of coffee and booze is exactly what you’ll find in this issue. It’s nominally our coffee special – which is why you’ll find Clare Finney’s deep dive into London coffee’s Antipodean roots on page 36, as well as columnist Tom Hunt’s visit to a coffee cooperative helping Kenyan women find stability and equality on page 104, and more besides. But we’ve also taken the opportunity to debut a whole new section, Quench, which will bring you the best of London’s wine, cocktail and beer scenes every issue. After all, as Dick Bradsell knew better than anyone, it’s nice to shake things up once in a while...
L O N D O N , O N E B I T E AT A T I M E
WEAPONS OF CHOICE
LONDON IN THE SKY
THE CBD FOOD REVOLUTION
FOODISM X MONDO
FIVE DISHES: ROHIT GHAI
MIXOLOGY: DO NOT DISTURB
++ Foodism was highly commended for its covers in The Drum Design Awards 2018
++ Foodism won the Investigative Food Work Award at the Guild of Food Writers Awards 2018
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SOUVLAKI IN ATHENS
FAIRTRADE COFFEE IN KENYA
THE GETAWAY: PENSONS
RICHARD H TURNER
THE ITINERARY: PRAGUE
— PART 1 —
GRAZE “DESSERT TOOK MORE THAN HALF AN HOUR TO ARRIVE AND THE NIGHT WAS PUNCTUATED BY ONE AWKWARD NOSE BLEED” JORDAN KELLY-LINDEN ON A STRANGE NIGHT AT A POP-UP WITH POTENTIAL, 010
010 THE FOODIST | 012 THE ESCAPIST | 014 COLUMNS | 016 THE DIGEST 018 FOODISM 100 | 021 RECIPES | 028 WEAPONS OF CHOICE | 032 LONDON IN THE SKY
THE LONDON LARDER
This month: Minor Figures Double Origin Espresso
Pop-ups don’t always go right, but they’re essential to the health of London dining, writes Jordan Kelly-Linden
a few easily fixable faults. But, now, here’s the question: what should we really expect from restaurant residencies? Are they a bit of a playground, a place to learn and grow until running an actual restaurant seems feasible, or does everything have to be as slick as the latest openings, with thousands of pounds of investment, a Michelin-starred chef and enough staff to turn around any and every dish in 15 minutes or less? I think we all know the answer to that and it’s a resounding no. And to expect every pop-up to be polished and completely perfect would rob the joy out of a system that’s given us some of London’s best loved chefs – Stevie Parle and Asma Khan, to name a few. I’ve been to my ample share of stellar pop-ups and residencies. Carousel regularly plays host to a fair few of them, as does Great Guns Social in Borough. And although some of them may have had their hiccups here and there, everyone has to start somewhere… Maybe I’ll just start by refusing to ever let nutmeg grace the top of my drink again... f
A truly tasty brew – Minor Figures’ brand new Double Origin Espresso is a combination of two South American single origin beans (50% Brazilian bourbon and 50% Colombian cattura) that have been paired to produce an espresso coffee with flavour notes of caramel, lemon drops, dates and almonds. An ideal beverage for a morning or mid-afternoon pick-me-up that also works in a cafetière.
Who makes it?
Minor Figures is an East London-based start-up that was established in 2014. Typically specialising in nitro-brewed cans of coffee, the company makes sure it works with the best farms all around the world to source and roast beans that are guaranteed to produce the very finest blends.
What does it taste like?
Subtle and soft with a surprisingly rich mouthfeel. With every sip you’re given a sweet and easy ride through South America’s java scenery before being nudged by a satisfying caffeine hit that creeps up on you like your thirties. Expect an almost cake-like aftertaste that you won’t want to rid yourself of anytime soon.
Where can I get it?
You’ll be able to get your caffeinedeprived self some of Minor Figures’ Double Origin Espresso via Ocado, As Nature Intended, The Grocery or at minorfigures.com
Photograph by (The Foodist) Linda Raymond / iStock
COUPLE OF WEEKS ago I went for dinner at a supper club turned restaurant residency. And, as much as it pains me to say it: it was one of the worst dinners out I’ve had in a long, long while. I’m usually a very forgiving dinner guest, so let me explain: a two-course meal took two hours to come to a close. The next table arrived 20 minutes after us and were served our order not once, but twice. Dessert took three attempts and more than half an hour to arrive at our table. And the night was punctuated by one very awkward nosebleed – although this has more to do with me aggressively scrubbing my nose ring after being tickled by a heavy dusting of nutmeg over the top of my cocktail. It was all a bit much for a Wednesday evening, but here’s the thing: the food, if we don’t talk about dessert, was delicious, the atmosphere was fun and, if our waiter hadn’t fed the ‘enemy’ first, we’d have really got on with the people behind the pass. It’s a pop-up with potential, let down by
What’s the product?
LOCAL HEROES E AST ER EG G S
HESTON’S CHOCOLATE SCOTCH EGG
A scotch egg Easter egg? You have got to be yolking. This reinvention of the classic British picnic staple sees milk chocolate maple crunch replace the breadcrumb, smoked milk chocolate caramel ganache take over from the meat, and a mango and yuzu fondant where the golden yolk should be. Heston’s back. Back again. £6; waitrose.com
ROCOCO’S SEA SALT EGG
IKEA FLAT-PACK BUNNY
Once upon a time you’d head to Ikea for the meatballs and an easy excuse to break up with your ex; now you’re about to find yourself there in the name of this sweet flat-pack bunny. Worry not, though, this three-piece chocolate treat is as easy as pie to put together, so squabbling over the instructions is 100% off the menu. £2.95; ikea.co.uk
Shine bright like a metallic blue milk chocolate and sea salt egg by London chocolatiers Rococo, as the song goes. This egg is extra thick, extra decadent and made of ethical chocolate, too. Job done. £30; rococochocolates.com
How the call of ice-cold caffeine took Jim Cregan from MCing to coffee making
WAS BORN AND raised in the UAE. What a place to be in the 1980’s… Uni took me over to Dorset to study events at Arts University Bournemouth, where I also worked for Red Bull doing marketing stuff. After graduating I became a labourer in the winter and a mainstage MC at festivals in the summer. It turns out that’s a totally unsustainable lifestyle, so I pressed reset and went to Australia with my girlfriend, where I discovered the joy of iced coffee. Holy cow. After five months I came home and wondered what to do next. Make my own iced coffee? Sure. But how?
Determined, I recruited my sister and tested the patience of my wife (the same lady I went travelling with), found a contract packer, found a brilliant coffee supplier and some fairly local milk, employed some awesome people to help things along and set up Jimmy’s Iced Coffee. Now there’s 20 of us, and space to breathe – or to do silly things like make litre-bottles of iced coffee when iced coffee in the UK barely existed. We had to (temporarily) bin that idea. I also spent a while saying yes to everything. Don’t. It’s bad and a waste of time and money. But we’ve only ever grown
organically and that’s pretty badass. We have our FD to thank for that. Steve, you rule. We’ve done super fun marketing stuff like put on a hip-hop mic-drop throwdown at Bestival, produced our own merch, and once sent a care package of loo roll to a dude who thought our iced coffee was a laxative. We’ve run grooves up the M3 while making thousands of trips to meet clients, people and our customers. We’ve been to the Co-Op HQ six times (still no listing – help). And now we have nearly five products in our range. But if that wasn’t enough, we’re going to be plastic-free by 2020 and we even give 1% of our profits to charity. Oh, yeah. f For more information, including a full list of Jimmy’s flavours, visit jimmysicedcoffee.com
Photograph by (rococo) Ryan Sullivan; (Ikea) Niklas Carlsson; (Jim Cregan) Ryan Tabor
OPEN SEASON In the penultimate column charting ways to live wastefree, Tom Hunt tackles the business of the takeaway
batches and freeze takeaway-sized portions for those days when you are just too tired or too busy to cook. If you have nothing in the freezer, consider treating yourself to a meal out. Delivered restaurant meals cost more than eating out at the very same restaurant – because of the delivery charge applied by a third party, but also because portions can be less generous. If a takeaway is the only option and you have the energy, call the restaurant and ask them if you can collect it using your own containers. I sure they will be happy to oblige if you explain your mission to reduce waste. At home, whenever we cook curry or stew we make a little extra and put several portions aside. We look forward to having a selection of different dishes so that when we need to we can defrost, cook and combine them on the plate, to make a homemade hassle free Indian- or Chinese-style meal of our own. Cooked wet foods freeze particularly well and can be reheated from frozen in a saucepan. It’s likely quicker to prepare than a takeaway and faster to reheat than an oven ready meal. And if you’re after some home-cooking inspiration, check out fdsm.co/tom-hunt for a recipe for my homemade katsu curry with breaded cauliflower steaks. f Tom Hunt is a chef, sustainability campaigner and patron of the charity Plan Zheroes. Find out more about Tom on Instagram at @cheftomhunt or online at tomsfeast.com
Amanda Brame tells us how to make the most of a small city garden With a certain major political event looming, there are a few concerns about what might happen to our food supply. One alternative is to start growing your own veg – I was very fortunate to learn from my grandfather who himself was encouraged to Dig for Victory, and turned his garden over to the growing of vegetables. Summer Sundays would find us carrying out the kitchen table onto a tiny patch of lawn among the rambling runner beans and sweet peas. Here we would munch our way through raw vegetables dipped in vinegar before the roast arrived. Growing conditions should be just right now (if you see weeds everywhere, it’s a good sign) to sow some of your seeds, like carrots, chard, spring onions, beetroot, sprouting broccoli, and peas. Leave courgettes, pumpkins and kale until next month as they require higher temperatures. If you started your tomato and chilli seeds last month, make sure you keep them inside on a bright window sill until the last of the frosts. Then pot them on singularly into a slightly larger pot before they go outside. Do this when you see signs of root growth at the base of the pot. For an endless supply of tomatoes and chillies, they do need space to develop a good root system. Water regularly and feed weekly with a liquid seaweed fertilizer. Amanda Brame teaches bespoke horticulture classes at many different locations. For more information, email email@example.com
Photograph by [Tom Hunt] David Harrison; [Amanda Brame] Lewis McCarthy
HE TAKEAWAY INDUSTRY has boomed over the last decade, increasing by 73%. 179 million portions of Chinese takeaway were served last year, making it the nations favourite, closely followed by pizza, then burgers and curry. These takeaways usually come in an assortment of packets from polystyrene to paper – each both ingenious and deeply flawed in their own design. Polystyrene is very efficient to make but decomposes slowly into harmful chemicals. Plant-based plastics are arguably just as polluting as plastic and divert food from human consumption. Paper – which is usually heralded as the most sustainable option – takes four times more energy to produce than plastic and is a large cause of deforestation. So what should we eat our takeaways from? In Bristol there is a forward-thinking restaurant called Thali, which has won multiple awards for their delicious food and tiffin takeaway scheme. Tiffins are an ingenious Indian invention that supply many workers in cities from Dheli to Mumbai with a hot lunch each day. They’re a multilayered, stacking, cylindrical lunch box made from stainless steel that can be used again and again. If you bring your tiffin to the Thali cafe you will receive a discount. In order to avoid packaging when you want a takeaway, start by checking what you have in the freezer. Cook meals in bulk
THE URBAN GARDENER
ORASAY 31 Kensington Park Road, W11 2EU Ladbroke Grove
All the industry news and new openings you need to know, to keep you going for the spring months
Three’s a crowd… Except when it isn’t, like now, as Jackson Boxer and Andrew Clarke launch their third venue: Orasay, a stunning new restaurant in Notting Hill inspired by the western isles of Scotland. Fresh Hebridean shellfish is the name of the game here, with other fresh produce sourced from an organic farm in West Sussex and a fair few sustainably minded taps and kegs of wine available, too. 020 3984 0799; orasay.london
M IM O L ONDON 1 Cathedral Street, SE1 9DE London Bridge
A new all-rounder hits the streets of London this April in the form of Mimo; a cookery school, experiential dining and chef’s table. This is cooking straight out of the Basque Country, and if you head over to Borough Market, then you can experience it for yourself. Kids (as long as they’re pushing the grand old age of four) are very welcome to join in on the cookery classes, too. 020 3286 7777; mimofood.com
PEG E9 6LH
Tables made from recycled yoghurt pots, pastel tableware brighter (and much trendier) than that set your g-ma bought in the 1980s and tender skewers whipped straight off a yakitori grill, it can only be one of London’s hottest new restaurant openings: Peg. By the looks of the ‘gram, it seems like people are pegging it up to East London just to get a seat at the counter of this leafy Japanese-inspired restaurant and natural wine bar on Morning Lane. It comes from the team behind Bright in London Fields and Lower Clapton’s P. Franco, so there you go. 020 3441 8765; @peg.london
IT’S A YOLK NEWS
Once upon a time we thought reading was a chore; now you can’t get us out of the library. Specifically the British Library, where 1 April-31 May a whole host of talks, tastings and workshops inspired by the library’s extensive foodrelated collections will be going on. Events to look out
for include Yotam Ottolenghi exploring the role upbringing and genes play in shaping how we enjoy food; Grace Dent and Jack Monroe discussing food inequality and poverty in Britain; and GBBO winner Nadiya Hussain talking with Sara Cox about food and what it means to be a working woman in the public eye. bl.uk/events
If eating from a menu inspired by a painfully cute but also existentially challenged anthropomorphic egg yolk isn’t your idea of a good time, we don’t want to know you. That’s what’s happening at Shoryu, as the Hello Kitty character Gudetama (look it up, honestly) comes back to
town for a series of pop-up, ramen-heavy set menus at Shoryu’s restaurants this spring. We can’t wait. shoryuramen.com
GO S NE L L S U PSTAIRS AT C OAL R OOM S
J OLT C OFFEE 40-41 Great Castle Street, W1W 8LU Oxford Circus
Great things are brewing over on Great Castle Street: JOLT, a trendy coffee shop hailing from Saudi Arabia’s capital Riyadh, opened its doors to the caffeine-hungry people of Fitzrovia this month. Inside it’s all marble countertops, pendant-drop lighting and speciality serves of single-origin coffee from East London roaster Nude. joltcoffee.co.uk
11A Station Way, SE15 4RX
This buzzing new bar from London brewers Gosnells is entirely dedicated to honey-sweet mead. Placed above Coal Rooms in the old ticket office next to Peckham Rye Station, it’s open Wednesday-Saturday with small plates from the Coal Rooms kitchens and a regularly rotating list of experimental brews including pink hibiscus, salted, hopped, barrel-aged, gooseberry and nonalcoholic available alongside Gosnells’ original and vintage meads, too. 020 3289 9562; gosnells.co.uk
L ONG B OYS Boxpark Wembley, HA9 0JT Wembley Park
Longboys’ wares are a doughnut-eclair hybrid – they’re long, not round. Anyway, they come from the flour-dusted hands of Graham Hornigold, group pastry chef for the Hakkasan group, and Heather Kaniuk, former executive pastry chef at the Mandarin Oriental. Ingredients are sustainably sourced, and delicious. longboys.co.uk
MATCH MADE NEWS
Photographs by (Peg) Charlie McKay; (Shoryu) Steven Joyce
If you’re a fan of Radio Alice pizzeria, then you’ll also be a fan of the fact that it’s launched a whole magazine dedicated to all things pizza. 24 Hour Pizza People is produced by its Italian counterpart Berberè, in collaboration with Dispensa magazine, and the first ever issue is dedicated to the
people and producers of Bologna – the city that lays claim to the first Berberè. Our staff writer travelled to Italy with the team to celebrate the launch, and she’ll be the first to tell you how excited we are to see the London edition roll out soon. Pick up a copy at either of Radio Alice’s Hoxton or Clapham Common sites. radioalicepizzeria.co.uk
Food in bars across London is steadily improving, but it’s not every bar that has a two-Michelin-starred chef to call on. Enter La Maison Remy Martin, which has just put out a spring menu full of lip-smacking drinks, with pairing dishes created by the team at Claude Bosi’s Bibendum, where the
pop-up bar is based. Mojito Exotique with Morecambe Bay oysters, anyone? Consider us sold… remymartin.com
THE WINNERS... Welcome to Social Pantry Cafe, a social enterprise café on Lavender Hill in Battersea and worthy winner of the Best Café award in this year’s Foodism 100
BEST CAFE S P ONS ORE D BY
Social Pantry Cafe This lovely little café on Lavender Hill isn’t just a great place to grab a cup of coffee and a spot of brunch, it’s also a social enterprise, working with various charities across London, and a rentable supper club space. How’s that for an unassuming neighbourhood cafe in the heart of Battersea, eh?
from Bad Boys Bakery at HMP Brixton, and many of the staff come from the Key4Life scheme – a rehabilitation programme working to get ex-offenders back into work, for which Head works as a mentor. Oh, and alongside that, Social Pantry’s dishes are also made from of seasonal, sustainably sourced ingredients, and they taste all the better for it.
WHO ARE THEY?
WHAT’S ON THE MENU?
A café with a social conscience by chef and restaurateur Alex Head. Social Pantry might look like your average casual café; there’s plenty of coffee, cake and brunch bites to go around. But here’s the thing: the coffee is from Redemption Roasters at HMP Aylesbury, a social enterprise that skills up and employs young offenders, the cakes are
Where do we start? There’s all your classic breakfast and brunch bangers: from granola to avocado on toast to a roster of regularly rotating seasonal salads. But our go-to order is the chilli eggs with herb labneh, green harissa oil and toasted sourdough with a bit of Ginger Pig bacon on the side. Coffee is a must, of course. And maybe, if you’re feeling
particularly lavish (read: hungover), a bloody mary, too. No, your stomach’s rumbling... HOW CAN I FIND THEM?
Sandwiched between an estate agents and a… er, estate agents, up on Lavender Hill, is where you’ll find Social Pantry Cafe (and your next coffee fix). Head also runs the catering branch of Social Pantry’s empire and under that umbrella you’ll also spot Soane’s Kitchen, Social Pantry’s first ever restaurant in Ealing’s Pitzhanger Manor. Of course, the ethical ethos of the cafe extends across the business, so there’s plenty of options for conscious consuming – no matter which of Head’s venues you choose to visit. f 170A Lavender Hill, SW11 5TG; socialpantry.co.uk Clapham Junction
Stand L2 Bring your KeepCup Join the Reuse Challenge
y e l l a V o e Y l a e r e h t t i s i v e Com t e s r e m o S , n o d in Blag
But if you can’t, grab a spoonful in the yogurt aisle Here at Yeo Valley, we’re always happy to have people over. You can meet Kylie and Deborah (two of our cows), or even have a yummy lunch in our canteen. If you can’t make it today, we’ve made sure there’s a real taste of Somerset waiting for you in your local supermarket. It’s our natural yogurt, and it’s tasty with pretty much anything. yeovalley.co.uk/the-valley
The food of Russia and the surrounding countries is bountiful and vibrant in Alissa Timoshkina’s new book
PHOTOGRAPHS BY LIZZIE MAYSON
HERE ARE MANY cuisines that span national borders, bonded by shared languages, intertwining national histories and ancient spice trails. Take the Middle East: a vast and diverse group of countries whose modern relations may be complex, but whose food culture and its associated commonalities can be traced back to generations of shifting human geography. That’s something Alissa Timoshkina notes in her beautiful book Salt & Time, charting not only the food of her native Siberia, in Russia, but also the closely associated food
of Eastern Europe, Central Asia and beyond. She refers to historic Soviet recipes and food traditions and notes the region’s history as a closely tied bloc, giving due credit to the modern-day countries that still argue the ownership of their prized national dishes. It’s also a riposte to the lazy opinion that Russian food – or indeed Eastern European, or “Soviet” food – is unexciting, colourless or bland. One flick through this book – or a spoon of the bright red borsch we’ve previewed here – shows the region’s cuisine take form in dazzling vibrancy. f
F O O DISM RE CIPE S, IN ASSOC IAT ION W IT H Y E O VAL L EY Photograph by ###
Yeo Valley isn’t just a label, it’s a real place. You’ll find us in Blagdon, Somerset, on a farm that’s been run by the Mead family for more than 50 years. Every spoonful of our natural yogurt is 100% real, too – no added sugar or artificial flavours. And because organic farms support on average 50% more
wildlife and 30% more biodiversity, our yogurt is good for the valley too. Today, real food made by real people is becoming hard to find. At Yeo Valley, we’re proud to be real. And we’d love you to come and see it for yourself. yeovalley.co.uk
I N GREDI EN TS For the patties ◆◆ 2 large raw red beetroots, ◆◆ peeled and grated
◆◆ 4 tbsp fine semolina, plus a few
tablespoons for coating
◆◆ 2 garlic cloves, grated
◆◆ 2 handfuls of walnuts, roughly
◆◆ 2 handfuls of dill, finely chopped ◆◆ 1 egg, lightly beaten
◆◆ 2 generous pinches of salt
◆◆ Pinch of toasted and freshly ground
black peppercorns ◆◆ Sunflower oil, for shallow frying
For the horseradish cream ◆◆ 1-2 tbsp peeled and grated fresh
, for beetroot This recipe’s s for pe ci re s e’ but ther tato (both carrot and po the book in ) ed pictur
◆◆ 6 heaped tbsp crème fraîche ◆◆ 2 tsp white wine vinegar
◆◆ Finely grated zest and juice of
◆◆ Salt and freshly ground black pepper
There’s something beautiful about these crunchy purple patties dipped into creamy white horseradish, and that’s before you’ve even taken a bite
Preparation ◆◆ 10 mins
◆◆ 15 mins
Serves ◆◆ 4 -6
THESE ARE MADE in the size of a medium burger patty,” says Timoshkina, “but I prefer to make them smaller and serve on a platter as part of a sharing zakuskistyle (mezze-like) dinner.” Yum.
Method FOR THE PATTIES
1 Mix together all the ingredients for the patties (except the oil for frying) in a large bowl, and season with salt and pepper. Take a heaped tablespoon of the mixture for each patty, roll it in your hands into a ball and then flatten it slightly. Sprinkle each side with some semolina. 2 To shallow-fry the patties, you will need 4-6 tablespoons of oil, but the exact amount, of course, will depend on the size of your frying pan. Before adding the patties, make sure the oil is hot enough. Cook for 3-5 minutes on
each side until lightly browned, then lay out on kitchen paper to absorb the excess oil and cool down to room temperature. FOR THE HORSERADISH CREAM
3 Choose the amount of horseradish according to your personal pleasure/pain threshold and mix with the crème fraîche, vinegar and lemon zest and juice, then season to taste. 4 Serve the patties on a platter with a small bowl of horseradish cream placed in the middle, or individually plated with some bread and a simple green salad. f
Preparation ◆◆ 25 mins
◆◆ 80 mins
Purists, avert your gaze – this hearty borsch contains one or two new ingredients (you’ll love them, though)
F YOU’VE EATEN at a traditional restaurant anywhere from Russia to Poland, Serbia or Estonia, chances are you’ll at least know about this rich, warming, crimson-coloured soup. “Borsch to Eastern Europe and Russia is like hummus to the Middle East,” says Timoshkina. “We all eat it, we all love it, yet we simply can’t imagine that any other country owns the rights to it.” Timoshkina puts her own spin on it: “I am taking a bit (OK, a lot) of creative licence, offering my own take on the iconic dish, which consists of a rich red broth, raw sauerkraut, roasted vegetables and baked red kidney beans. Lovers of traditional borsch recipes look away,” she warns. “This one is pretty iconoclastic…”
1 Heat up a tablespoon of sunflower oil in a large pan and fry the onion and carrot for about 8 minutes until golden. Meanwhile, peel and grate 2 of the beetroots and core, deseed and thinly slice 1 red pepper. 2 Add the vegetables to the pan together with the tomato purée and a splash of water. Season and fry for a further 5-8 minutes. 3 Top with the measured cold water, add the bay leaves along with the peppercorns and all the seeds, whole garlic cloves and half the bunches of dill and parsley. Season with a tablespoon of salt and bring to the boil. 4 Reduce the heat, add the grated garlic and half the sauerkraut with its brine and simmer, covered, over a low heat for 40-60 minutes. 5 Turn off the heat and let the borsch rest for another hour, while you prepare the rest of the elements. 6 Preheat the oven to 160°C. Peel the remaining 4 beetroots, cut into wedges and dress with oil, salt and the pomegranate molasses. Peel the red onion, cut into wedges and season with salt and the brown sugar to promote caramelisation. Place on a roasting tray with the beetroot and roast together for 30 minutes. 7 Drain the kidney beans, then dress them with salt, oil and the smoked paprika. Core and deseed the remaining red pepper, then cut into thin strips and dress with salt and oil.
Roast the beans and pepper together, as they will need only 10-15 minutes. 8 When ready to serve, strain the broth through a sieve or a muslin cloth, discarding the solids. Reheat again if necessary. 9 Next, create layers of texture and flavour in each bowl by adding a heaped tablespoon of the remaining sauerkraut to each, as well as a handful of roasted beetroot, onion, kidney beans and red pepper. Top each bowl with the hot broth and add a dollop of soured cream and a generous sprinkle of the remaining dill and parsley, chopped. f
Serves ◆◆ 4
ING R E DIE NTS ◆◆ Unrefined sunflower oil, for frying
◆◆ 1 large onion, finely diced
◆◆ 1 carrot, peeled and grated ◆◆ 6 raw red beetroots ◆◆ 2 red peppers
◆◆ 2 tbsp tomato purée ◆◆ 2 litres cold water ◆◆ 2 bay leaves
◆◆ 1 tbsp black peppercorns ◆◆ 1 tbsp coriander seeds ◆◆ 1 tbsp fennel seeds
◆◆ 4 garlic cloves, peeled ◆◆ Bunch of dill ◆◆ Small bunch of flat leaf parsley ◆◆ 2 garlic cloves, grated ◆◆ 500g red sauerkraut
◆◆ 2 tbsp pomegranate molasses ◆◆ 1 red onion
◆◆ 1 tbsp brown sugar
◆◆ 400g can red kidney beans ◆◆ 2 tsp smoked paprika ◆◆ 4 tbsp soured cream ◆◆ Salt, to taste
gets its This borsch ur and lo deep red co r from ou av fl ic acid uerkraut sa d beetroot an
Come to the real Yeo Valley
Warming, hearty and fragrant, this dish sees rice and lamb gently cooked in golden a stock flavoured with garlic and cumin. Yep, it’s just as good as it sounds
Lovely views over the Mendip Hills
Preparation ◆◆ 20 mins
◆◆ 80 mins
Serves ◆◆ 4
HE FLAVOURS AND preparation of this classic dish tell their own story. “Originating in India and Persia, this fragrant meat and rice dish became widespread in Central Asia and the Caucasus and has myriad variations,” says Timoshkina. Think Russian biryani and you’re close.
We’re getting ready for lunch in the canteen
1 Wash the rice under tepid water until the water runs clear of starch, then soak in warm water while you prepare the rest of the dish. 2 Heat up the oil in a cast-iron casserole dish and fry the lamb over a medium heat until it’s golden on all sides, stirring occasionally. This should take 10-15 minutes. Add the onions
INGREDIE NTS ◆◆ 500g rice (traditionally devzira, but
arborio or basmati can be used)
◆◆ 100ml mild vegetable oil
◆◆ 800g diced boneless lamb shoulder ◆◆ 2 large onions, thinly sliced into
◆◆ 3-4 carrots, peeled and cut into
◆◆ 1 large garlic bulb
...with our yummy organic veg
◆◆ 2 tsp cumin seeds, toasted and
◆◆ 1 tsp coriander seeds, roughly
◆◆ ½ tsp chilli powder
◆◆ ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper ◆◆ 1 tbsp dried barberries ◆◆ A few saffron threads
◆◆ 1 tbsp salt, or more to taste
out of Turn the plov own de-d si up n pa e th for this onto a plate per dish real showstop
and carrots and fry for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Cover with boiling water so the meat and vegetables are fully submerged. 3 Place the garlic bulb in the middle of the casserole and add the rest of the spices, the barberries and the salt. Do not cover, but bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 30-40 minutes. This rich golden stock is called zirak. 4 Drain the rice and add to the casserole in a layer on top, without mixing the contents
of the casserole dish. Gently submerge the rice in the zirak using a flat slotted spoon. If there isn’t enough liquid, top it up with more boiling water so that the rice is covered with at least 1cm of liquid. Season if needed. 5 Firmly close the lid and cook over a low heat for 25-30 minutes. If you notice that the plov is only bubbling away in the centre, gently push the rice from the edges towards the middle. Serve upside down on a platter of seasonal vegetables and soft herbs. f
Enjoy our yummy natural yogurt
Or our delicious Greek style...
GET THE BOOK
Photograph by ###
We can’t wait to see you!
Salt & Time by Alissa Timoshkina is published by Mitchell Beazley (£25)
More culture this way
Semolina as a dessert can be pretty divisive, but semolina used in a cake? A guaranteed success story, if you ask us, as this simple recipe demonstrates
Preparation ◆◆ 20 mins
◆◆ 40 mins
Serves ◆◆ 8 -10
IMOSHKINA DESCRIBES SEMOLINA as “to Soviet kids what Marmite is to the Brits. The entire nation is clearly divided into those who love it and those who hate it.” This cake is inspired by her mother. “I particularly love how the coarse grain offers a lot of bite, while plenty of eggs and butter give it a moist, rich quality.”
1 Mix the semolina with the milk or kefir in a bowl, then let it soak for an hour at room temperature. Preheat the oven to 180°C and
grease a 24cm round cake tin. 2 Using an electric hand whisk, whisk the eggs, sugar and butter together in a large mixing bowl until creamy. Add the vanilla extract, baking powder and salt. 3 Mix the soaked semolina into the egg mixture and tip the cake mixture into the greased cake tin. Bake for 40 minutes. 4 Let the cake cool before serving. You can drizzle some honey or ginger syrup on top to add an extra level of moistness, if you wish. Serve with a side of berry coulis or poached fruit and crème fraîche. f
ING R E DIE NTS ◆◆ 375g semolina
◆◆ 375ml milk or kefir
◆◆ 80g unsalted butter, softened,plus
extra for greasing
◆◆ 3 eggs
◆◆ 150g caster sugar
◆◆ 1 teaspoon vanilla extract ◆◆ 15g baking powder ◆◆ Pinch of salt ◆◆ Clear honey or ginger syrup,for
Photograph by ###
? y e l l a V o e Y o t t i e k a m t ’ n a C
b a r g o t y a w W E N Here’s a t e s r e m o S f o l u f n o o p s a Kefir is new to Yeo Valley, but it’s been keeping tummies happy for centuries. It’s an organic, fermented yogurt that’s creamy and tangy. It’s also packed with billions of live bacteria from 14 different culture strains, for extra goodness. Kefir is originally from the Caucasus mountains, but we’ve given it some Somerset love. Why don’t you give it a try? Available in: Natural
Mango & Passionfruit
WEAPONS OF CHOICE Form meets function in these sleek coffee makers, plus a kettle with some serious design credentials PHOTOGRAPHY BY DAVID HARRISON
D OWN IN O NE SAGE BAMBINO PLUS, ÂŁ399.95 This tidy, sleek espresso machine from Sage does one thing, and does it beautifully: perfect espresso-based coffees and frothed milk. sageappliances.com
Photograph by ###
S IPHON SAYS KITCHENAID SIPHON COFFEE MAKER, Â£159 It might look like something from a Nordic chemistry class, but siphon filter is a great way to make coffee. This one from KitchenAid is a beaut. kitchenaid.co.uk
H O T HO T HE AT ALESSI PLISSE KETTLE, £79 If you want kitchenware that looks like it’s out of a sci-fi movie, Alessi’s your go-to. This sleek black kettle is designed by architect Michele De Lucchi. alessi.com
PICTURE THIS: [clockwise from left] Diners in the sky; cocktails and food on offer during flights; the sky table in session
Looking to raise your game when it comes to eating out? Look no further – here’s everything you need to know about London in the Sky’s 2019 summer series…
EADY TO GET high in the sky? Great, because London’s coolest culinary adventure is back and it’s about to take dining in the city to new heights. This summer London in the Sky returns to the capital with a spot right next to The 02. The Sky Tables (or ‘floating restaurant’ to you and us) seats up to 22 people and this time around there will be at least eight flights a day, ready to raise diners up to 100ft over the iconic London skyline. Experiences on the cards include everything from breakfast through to tea, lunch, dinner and cocktails from the
Breakfast What better way to start your day than with a sky-high breakfast? Choose from a menu with a range of accompaniments and drinks while the city stirs into life beneath you.
Lunch Sit back, relax and enjoy a delicious threecourse lunch and two glasses of sommelierselected wine, all while overlooking the city in the afternoon sun.
Dinner Beautiful city views and a spectacular threecourse dinner, served with two glasses of sommelier-selected wine.
Prosecco & cake A quintessential British experience with a twist… Expect prosecco, light bites, sweet treats and a breathtaking backdrop.
Cocktails Enjoy a range of exciting cocktail experiences with some of London’s top drinks brands, from gin and whiskey tastings through to cocktail making masterclasses – all enjoyed 100ft in the sky with views of the London skyline like you’ve never seen it before. Book fast. f
GET YOUR DISCOUNT
Foodism readers get 10% discount on London in the Sky tickets for weekday flights in May. Find out more and book at londoninthesky.co.uk with the code LITS-FoodismMay
Photograph by Events in the Sky Ltd
IT’S THE ULTIMATE AL FRESCO DINING EXPERIENCE
wonderful people at Social Pantry. It’s the ultimate al fresco dining experience, and one of the most thrilling ways to dine in London. Just look at the photo above – the selfie opportunities are ripe and if you book now, you can claim up to 10% off weekday flights throughout May. Yes, really.
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Tiptree, Essex, since 1757, and making quality
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— PART 2 —
FEAST “FORGET SYRUPS AND SPRINKLES – NOW WE DISCUSS WHICH PROVINCE OF GUATEMALA WE’D LIKE OUR BEANS FROM” CLARE FINNEY ON LONDON’S CONTEMPORARY COFFEE CULTURE, 036
036 LONDON COFFEE | 044 THE CBD FOOD REVOLUTION 050 FOODISM X MONDO | 056 FIVE DISHES: ROHIT GHAI
Photograph by Ryan Longnecker/Getty
FILTERING THROUGH: The Antipodean way with coffee has had a big impact on how we now drink it in the UK, from bean provenance to serve styles
Ask a Londoner and theyâ€™ll tell you our coffee scene is among the best in the world. But ask an Australian or a Kiwi and theyâ€™ll say it all started from there, writes Clare Finney
INGERBREAD LATTE.” THAT’S what I would have replied, if you’d asked me what speciality coffee was in the early 2000s. I was – not obsessed, but certainly partial to Costa’s concoction of coffee, flavouring, sugar and milk. I knew big coffee chains held questionable mores around the purchasing of both coffee and real estate, but I couldn’t fault their innovative, tooth-achingly sweet takes on a drink that back then, as a student, I regarded as foul but necessary. So ask me then what I thought the future of coffee looked like, and I’d probably have dreamily conjured up a billionaire’s chocolate shortbread latte. Fast forward ten years or so, and I’m partly right. The billionaire’s chocolate shortbread latte has (lamentably) come to pass. Yet alongside this obesogenic trend for “milkshake coffees”, as executive director of Climpson & Sons, Danny Davis, dubs them, has been a revolution in the way coffee is roasted, served and drunk in London and the rest of the UK. Those in the business describe it as the third wave of coffee culture – the first being the
exponential growth of coffee consumption thanks to the mass production of instant and ground coffee, and the second being the now ubiquitous high-street coffee shops. The third wave is characterised by the appreciation of roasting and serving coffee as a craft; of coffee as an artisanal product; and the significant influence of British-based Antipodeans. The truth is that behind almost every good coffee shop in the last 20 years or so there lies a New Zealander or an Australian – either explicitly or by extension, in much the same way as the French were once behind good restaurants in London. “Early players circa 2005-2010 include the guys behind Sacred Coffee, Nude Coffee Roasters and of course Cam McClure of Flat White in Soho. These guys all focused on quality and the Australasian style of service,” explains Sam Langdon, the head roaster at Caravan’s coffee roastery. “The next and consolidating moves were made by us at Caravan, bringing speciality coffee to the fore in an all-day restaurant environment, with roasting on show to the public in 2010.” Anyone who has visited Caravan’s ‘open roastery’ in King’s Cross will
THE CHOSEN BREW: [clockwise from above] Getting the blend right at Allpress; Climpson & Sons’ Broadway Market café; Caravan’s drip-filter
have smelled the roasting equipment before they’ve seen it: intoxicating cocoa and nut aromas emanating from a large stainless-steel machine behind a coffee bar at the back of the restaurant. Together with Sacred, Nude, Flat White and Volcano roasters, Caravan “opened the door for established New Zealand coffee companies Allpress and Ozone to join the party,” says Langdon – a party which, in 2019, still shows no sign of getting the last train. They’ve changed everything: “the whole shebang,” says Langdon. “Quality of bean, temperature of roast and quality of service.” Where once our coffee habits were defined by tall or venti, syrups and sprinkles, now we discuss which province of Guatemala we’d like our beans from and consider our lattes and cappuccinos incomplete without a creamy tattoo of hearts or ferns. “Latte art is a classic example of this new craft approach to coffee,” says Davis at Climpson & Sons,
THE KIWIS HAVE REALLY CUT IT WHEN IT COMES TO COFFEE
Photographs by (Allpress) Joe Woodhouse; (Climpson) Adam Weatherley; (Caravan) Zsuzsa Zicho
which after three years of operating from a stall opened its first bricks and mortar shop in Broadway Market in 2005, in an old butchers shop. “It takes time and attention, whereas the Italian coffee culture is more about knocking an espresso back.” The traditional Italian approach was “amazing,” acknowledges Langdon – it is, after all, the foundation of most coffee culture here and abroad – “but it left little room for flexibility or adaptation.” Their milky coffees rely on UHT, long life milk, which tastes “horrible” on its own and reacts very differently to being steamed than fresh does; and their baristas are invariably less interested in the technicalities of coffee than in the gossip-filled, smoke-wreathed social aspect of their role at the bar. Though coffee’s third wave would not have been possible without baristas from both the antipodes, it is the Kiwis who have really cut it when it comes to coffee culture in London. Agnes Potter, the Kiwi-born, UKbased general manager of Allpress Coffee, has several theories as to why her country has been so influential, from its robust dairy industry – a quality they share with Britain – to their frankly inspiring resistance to chains. “In New Zealand there’s a strong desire to support independent businesses. There’s not been much influence from chains” she explains – allowing budding baristas to thrive on their own, and set the standard. In addition, while Australia already had something of a coffee culture thanks to the number of Italian and Greek independents, the Kiwis didn’t ‘discover’ fresh coffee until they started travelling to Europe in the 1980s. Prior to that, says Potter, it was coffee essence or tea. “Those doing their overseas experience
– OE – brought the coffee culture back from Italy, and it evolved in isolation to that in Australia – or America, where filter was most popular.” It took on its own character: it was espresso-based, as it was in Italy, but the milk in New Zealand was fresh and of a high quality. “Steaming fresh milk gets a smooth velvety texture – not the big, stiff, bubbly drink you find with UHT milk,” says Potter. The sugar in the fresh milk caramelises as it steams, creating a naturally sweeter drink than one you’d find in an Italian or French café. The flat white was born of this refinement. One third milk, two thirds coffee, its creamy surface artfully swirled, it is “not as an intense as an espresso – espresso drinkers are in a different league”, says Davis of Climpsons – “but it shows more appreciation of coffee than a latte.” While espresso drinkers are likely to hang round the bar and geek out with baristas on beans and machines, flat white drinkers “will take a seat and linger,” he continues – their coffee being too long to shot, and too short to warrant taking away. “The rise of coffee in New Zealand was aligned with something of a food revolution. We were discovering good food as a means to relax and socialise, and coffee was part of that,” says Potter. Places making good food served good coffee; kitchens which cared about the provenance of their ingredients cared where their coffee beans came from. “New Zealand has always grown a lot of its own produce – it has to,” she continues, “so concern for the origins of coffee was there from the early days.” When Allpress landed here in 2010 having been going for 26 years in New Zealand, the “all-day dining culture”
that characterised New Zealand’s food scene was largely confined to the recently opened, Kiwi-owned Caravan and the Providores, coowned by Peter Gordon, one of their greatest culinary exports. “The Tapa Room downstairs at the Providores – that is such a New Zealand thing, to have a quality place where you can stay from breakfast to evening,” says Davis fondly. Miles Kirby, Caravan’s executive chef and co-founder, was the head chef at Providores for eight years prior to doing his own thing. “I was always a fan of the Tapa Room. I felt the vibe in there as something I’d always want to recreate.” Both The Providores and Caravan served quality speciality coffee: Caravan from its own roastery and The Providores from an independent, London-based, Kiwi-staffed roastery. “When we opened in 2001 I did have a dream of opening a roastery – but it never happened,” Gordon confides over an espresso martini, as his Tapa Room transitions seamlessly from afternoon flat whites into evening cocktails. Like Davis and Kirby, he sees the relationship between coffee and food in New Zealand as symbiotic, enabling people in both sectors to specialise and innovate while at the same time creating environments where customers want to linger: “ours is an entrepreneurial, confident, can-do attitude, but with an easygoing quality.” “Coffee was one of the first waves in Britain where you started to see care for the product and the customer experience,” says Davis. “Britain was famous for bad service, with its restaurants and cafés staffed by ‘creatives’ who just wanted to get out and be artists.” With quality produce, warm, →
BEAN COUNTER: [right] Monmouth Coffee in Borough; [below] a perfect cup at The Providores, one of the first to serve NZ-influenced coffee
→ informative staff and a relaxed ‘vibe’, the Kiwis echoed and vastly improved upon Starbucks’ ‘third place’ concept: the idea that going for a coffee was as much about overall experience as it was flavour; and that a café was a place to eat, rest and socialise in as well as get your daily caffeine hit. Being the big bad boys they are today, it is easy to dismiss the role Starbucks played in the growth of specialty coffee, and of coffee shops as an alternative to pubs or bars for socialising. One of the first coffee roasters in New Zealand was born as a direct result of the eponymous Michael Allpress travelling to America as part of his OE. “He saw Starbucks in Seattle when it was just a single café,” explains Potter. “Not the monstrosity it is now, but an independent coffee shop doing something that was different.” Back then Starbucks were one of only a handful of places in the entire country to be buying quality, single-origin coffee and shouting about where it had come from – a stark difference from the local diners stewing a watery soup of unidentifiable filter. “Michael was inspired and set up a coffee cart back in Auckland – then he started sourcing the beans and roasting them himself to get the flavour he’d loved in Seattle.” Naturally Starbucks is the subject of cynicism now – “it’s too big. Once you get to that size it’s impossible to control the quality” says Potter – but when it comes to the growth of the specialty coffee industry “they hacked a path for the rest of us.” Understanding where coffee comes from and how it’s produced is not just a hallmark
of good Antipodean coffee roasters, but the reason they’re good: “if you know where your coffee is from and how it’s been produced you have an idea of flavour profile and how it will react once you’ve roasted it,” says Potter. “You don’t want to cover the nuances of the coffee fruit. We don’t want to burn it,” adds Davis. “For each different bean you want to find the perfect developmental point between the temperature of the roasting and the time.” Like Caravan and Allpress, Climpson’s has gone beyond single-origin coffee to singleestate – even single-microplot: “one part of one farm, roasted and packaged separately,” enthuses Davis. It’s a far cry from the “black, oily things” you find under chains and big brands, which taste and look similar, but could have come from anywhere in the world. “Costa Rica, Brazil, Colombia, Myanmar – wherever they’ve come from, they will taste
Photograph (Providores) by Joanathan Gregson
MONMOUTH WAS ONE OF THE COFFEE GAMECHANGERS
like burnt coffee” says Davis, “and they’ll have been blended, so there’s no sense of place or origin.” Climpson’s does do an espresso blend – they all do, in fact, because coffee roasters and cafés need an espresso that works consistently with milk, and because it avoids changing the types of beans used in an espresso machine during busy service – but these consist of rarely more than two or three single-estate coffee beans, carefully selected. What’s more – while big companies tend to use blending to mask their beans’ lack of freshness, quality and provenance – Davis, Potter and their compatriots make a point of sourcing beans that are never anything less than green (shades range from sage to lichen, depending on the origin) and garden-fresh. Which brings us to Monmouth Coffee: the company without which no explication on London’s coffee scene would be complete, or even possible. Founded in 1978 by Anita Leroy, one of the several gastronomic gamechangers behind the rejuvenation of Seven Dials in Covent Garden, this small roastery and shop on Monmouth Street was sourcing, roasting and brewing speciality coffee when the third wavers were no more than a twinkle in their Antipodean eyes. “When I left New Zealand for London, everyone at home kept telling me, go to Monmouth for your coffee,” recalls Monmouth’s head of quality assurance, AJ Kinnell. Back in 2002 when Kinnell embarked on her OE, Monmouth was one of the only places that sourced their coffee fresh, roasted it, and sold it direct to the customer. “Everyone else bought it from a retailer →
AUSSIE ACCENTS RESONATE AROUND CAFES
HOT SHOT: Matt Randall, manager of the Climpson & Sons café in Broadway Market, where Antipodean coffee culture reigns supreme
the Antipodeans and their alma maters. “It’s taken a while,” Langdon at Caravan continues, “but speciality is becoming the norm in London.” So what is speciality coffee? For Kinnell there’s no fundamental definition, beyond “coffee with provenance, roasted locally and fresh. Ideally with the farmer’s name on it.” For Langdon, however, the journey of speciality coffee “does not start and stop with the bean. With the term comes an expectation at café level that the baristas preparing the coffee will grind, extract, pour and serve the coffee with care and a consideration for quality.” After all, he continues, “there is no point in spending money on great coffee, only to fuck it up at every subsequent stage in the process.” As for our changing experience of the drink – our move from the idea of coffee as fuel to coffee as something to enjoy, think about and socialise over, Langdon laughs. “Us Antipodeans are a chilled-out bunch aren’t we? I think – or hope – that the Brits are seeing that it ain’t cool being in such a damn hurry all the time. Chill out, drink your coffee, I promise, work will still be there when you get back.” I don’t ask him if adding gingerbread flavoured syrup counts as fucking it up. I don’t need to. In 2019, I’m a flat white convert, and I know what coffee means to me: not just a drink, but an expression of expertise, ethical values, community, provenance and time. f
Photograph by Adam Weatherley
→ who bought it from a wholesaler who bought it from a roaster who bought their beans from a wholesaler who bought their beans from the importer,” she laughs. “Anita really rocked the boat by buying beans fresh from the importer, roasting and selling them.” “It was all about Monmouth,” agrees Davis, who landed in the same year as Kinnell and with the same recommendation. “It were the biggest established independent roastery,” – and this was before Monmouth had converted the railway arches at Spa Terminus, he recalls. They were still roasting underneath their tiny shop in Covent Garden. To say Monmouth was ahead of the curve is to underestimate Leroy’s vision. “I don’t think we are even on the curve,” says Kinnell. “For us it is so much more about being a conduit for connecting coffee farmers and customers rather than looking to define trends or shape anything external to that vision. That’s been the same since 1978.” Monmouth was the first to put the farm’s name on bag; to talk about provenance to customers. All that has changed, in line with the third wavers, improvements in roasting machinery and further developing farmer relationships. “When I got to Monmouth 15 years ago, I was really impressed with the quality of green coffee they were able to access. At that time in New Zealand there was still a slightly longer chain – I guess because of shipping channels and the way business was done then – and I was struck by their roasting fresh green beans and selling them over the counter.” Their café upstairs in Covent Garden was, initially, a tasting room so customers could sample before purchasing. “They offered a genuine love affair with coffee,” acknowledges Davis – a relationship that is as unavailable in highstreet coffee shops now as it was back then. Yet Monmouth didn’t just serve the Antipodeans coffee. They hired them – right from the very beginning, Kinnell discovered.
“I asked Anita about the early days of Monmouth and she told me Kiwis and Aussies have been here forever.” Before the days travelling Antipodeans were allowed to work in any industry, hospitality was more or less their only recourse. It’s why their accents continue to resonate around cafés and restaurant kitchens; and why finally, after years of tired jokes about waiters and out-of-work actors, we are taking a leaf out of their books and offering better coffee, food and service. “There’s the flat white of course – you couldn’t get one for love nor money 20 years ago, even here. We put it on the menu – but the unseen impact is the level of the professionalism in the industry,” Kinnel continues. “Specialising in coffee – even specialising in food – was in its infancy when I first moved to Britain, but when I was growing up in New Zealand, being a barista was something you could do with interest and pride.” At Monmouth, it was “a two-way street”: the Kiwis and Australians brought their knowledge of espresso-based, milk drinks and in turn learnt from Leroy the importance of sourcing fresh green beans and highlighting their origin. “That’s exactly it!” Kinnell explains, when I ask whether she felt Monmouth was an incubator for budding Antipodean baristas. “So many who worked for us went home and set up their own business, or opened in London or elsewhere in Europe.” Other forces have since made their mark on London’s coffee scene – the Scandinavian penchant for lighter roasts, the refinement of filter coffee, the rise of micro-sourcing – but no one has a stronger claim to changing the ‘whole shebang’ than
Origin Coffee Roasters
SCORESBY STREET Southwark, SE1 0XN For shop opening times and menus visit bit.ly/scoresby_street
TIME TO RELAX... Forget about kombucha, step aside quinoa – it’s a cannabis extract that’s the new miracle superfood. With CBD oil popping up on food and drink menus around London and far beyond, Gareth May finds out why it seems to be 2019’s drug of choice
Photograph by Anton Petrus / Getty
TURN OVER A NEW LEAF: The latest way to ingest marijuana? On a fork or in a glass. CBD, a cannabis extract, is the new ‘it’ ingredient, and looking at the proposed health benefits, it’s for pretty good reason
HEECH AND CHONG. Harold and Kumur. Shaggy and Scooby. Cannabis has always had its double acts. Well, how about food and drink? Marijuana is undergoing a makeover, appearing on menus across the UK in the form of a plant extract, and while dope’s bong-less incarnation won’t get you high (wait, what?), it will make you better. The story of CBD oil starts as far back as the sixties, when neuropharmacologists, wearing rastacaps and hot-boxing the shit out of the laboratory (let’s imagine) wanted to find out how the seven-pointed leaf made people hippy-dippy. By the mid-1990s they’d cracked the “grass route” but they’d also discovered something
else: that while our bodies react to the psychotropic chemical compound found in the marijuana plant (tetrahydrocannabinol or THC) we also react to the 100-plus nonpsychotropic compounds, many of which have been proven to possess significant therapeutic properties, from alleviating anxiety, to boosting memory, to tackling insomnia, and it’s believed many more remain unknown or unproven. As a recent headline in the New York Times decreed, ‘CBD Is Everywhere, but Scientists Still Don’t Know Much About It’. In the UK, it has been legal to prescribe non-psychoactive cannabis-based products since November 2018, after the government caved to pressure in the wake of several highprofile cases, including that of a 12-year-old
THERE ARE SO MANY SYMPTOMS CBD HAS BEEN PROVEN TO HELP WITH
FARMACY SERVES CBDINFUSED TRUFFLES
Photographs by (Mr Moxey’s) Elijah Hoffman; (Maison Bab) Justin De Souza; (Hemp Water) Brook Fabling
NO SMOKING PLEASE: [clockwise from above] CBD-infused Mr Moxey’s Mints; Maison Bab’s Gin & Chronic cocktail; Love Hemp water
boy whose epilepsy was eased by cannabis oil. In turn, this paved the way for the sale of cannabis-based products in health shops and other outlets. Most notably cannabidiol, or CBD, as it’s more commonly known. Mixed with a base oil, like coconut, and sold as CBD oil, cannabidiol won’t make you laugh at cat videos or open and shut your fridge every 15-minutes like its cousin THC. But even if it doesn’t give you the giggles, it’s proving as popular as the Dude in The Big Lebowski. And since the law change in the UK, CBD oil has appeared, and continues to
do so, in all kinds of food and drink. Take The Canna Kitchen in Brighton, the UK’s first cannabis restaurant, which has a menu including sunflower seed pesto, dill coconut cream, and cranberry purée, all laced with CBD. A CBD-infused spring water, Love Hemp Water, launched last spring, too. Then there’s clean-eating hub Farmacy, which serves CBD-imbued truffles and croissants; while Hackney’s Plant Hub dishes up CBDsoaked granola energy bars, peanuts, and a dessert slice with a CBD coconut biscuit base, hemp caramel and chocolate ganache (now that’s a gourmet space cake!). Last year, vegan restaurant By Chloe, during a monthlong pop-up, served a CBD-infused peanut butter bone for dogs. Woof. Even canines have the hankering. The doobie has had its day, so it seems: long live CBD. Tim Moxey is the British-born founder of Botanica Seattle, a US-based ‘cannabis edibles’ company that makes everything from cookies to gummies to topicals (cannabisinfused lotions and balms). Moxey says CBD’s popularity is thanks to years of positive media exposure in the States, which has led to the subsequent public understanding that it’s “a safe, legal, holistic remedy” for a multitude of ailments. “It’s rare for a new trend to actually work,” says Moxey, who this year launched Mr Moxy’s Mints in the UK, “but CBD is different. There are thousands of everyday symptoms that CBD has proven to help with, meaning there’s a reason for almost everyone to give it a go. At worst, it just won’t work for you, so it’s worth a try.” Emerging technologies in recent years that have simplified the extraction of CBD from the plant and improved growing techniques – as well as legalisation efforts in the US and Canada to loosen the law on the wider use of cannabis, and ultimately boost development of new products and formats – have both contributed to the rise of CBD. But there’s more to this leaf than that. →
HOW DOES CBD WORK?
In the 1990s scientists discovered the endocannabinoid system (ECS), a network of physiological activators, including what are casually called “weed receptors” (nice), that regulate numerous organs in the body. The ECS is responsible for marijuana’s high (high-five ECS) but it also reacts to the 100-plus nonpsychotropic chemical compounds in cannabis (able to block or unlock certain biological and neurological processes) and it’s these that have led to the creation of cannabinoidbased medications, such as Epidiolex and Sativex, used to quell the effects of epilepsy and multiple sclerosis respectively. Research is ongoing. At the University of Nottingham academics are working on the benefits of cannabinoids for stroke patients, while others theorise cannabinoids are naturally found in human breast milk. Weed straight from the teat. Now you’re talking.
→ Maison Bab, the sister site of kebab joint Le Bab, say their best-selling cocktail is Gin & Chronic: a gin sour laced with CBD. Founder Stephen Tozer says the liquid-weed adds a “unique bitter, herbaceous and nutty” flavour, while others, like Camilla Fayed of Farmacy, say it brings a “subtle hint of earthiness.” “It’s similar to adding a new botanical to a gin. It works so well against the sweet profile of a simple sour,” Tozer says. “Customers love it. A lot of people say that it zens them out a bit. We like to think it makes an alcoholic drink a little more virtuous.” It’s also an incredibly low-cost ingredient to use. At gourmet ice cream brand, Yogland, in West London, the CBD frozen yoghurt is rotated on for the summer months, and is as easy to make as racking a bong. They add the CBD oil when mixing the custom froyo base with raw matcha powder. It’s the same process if they were including something familiar, like peanut paste. “It’s really that simple,” says director Omid Tehrani. Minor Figures, the 100% plant based coffee company, are also on the CBD trip, just not for the flavour. Their CBD Post Coffee Drops – flavoured with peppermint and dripped beneath the tongue and held there for 30 seconds – were developed after co-founder Stuart Forsyth sampled CBD in
New York. He admits the “tongue-in-cheek” marketing potential did entice him, calling it a “provocative concept”, a tincture that is a “rescue-type remedy following the over consumption of coffee.” CBD is proving to be hugely versatile but ask any kind of junkie – from surfing to baking – and they’ll tell you there’s always more you can get out of a habit. Jay Warden, of the Disco Picnic Collective, is one such believer. He infuses his bar snacks and sauces (and bloody marys) with a water-soluble CBD formulation, which he claims can be absorbed five times quicker by the body than oils. “I don’t believe you have to be vegan or eat a super clean diet to reap the rewards of cannabis extracts. Life is about balance and everything can be enjoyed in moderation,” he says. Amen to that. But it’s not all happy days. In New York this year a clampdown has resulted in CBD getting chopped from menus all over Manhattan, with the Department of Health arguing that it hasn’t been approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as a food additive. Similarly, in the UK, the Food Standards Agency is currently trying to reclassify the use of CBD to a ‘novel food’ (CBD products with a higher THC content than 0.2 are already under tighter regulation). This could mean the closure of
NEW HIGHS: [above] Minor Figures’ post-coffee drops; [below] Plant Hub’s dessert slices. Kind of like a grown-up – and legal – hash brownie
many CBD businesses. Tozer hopes it doesn’t come to that. “I'm a user and there seems to be growing evidence of enormous health benefits. It would seem crazy to try to crack down on it. But with the way politics is going these days, who knows?” Too true. So whose turn is it to skin up? Wait. Sorry. No. I mean: book a table… f
HIGH IN THE SKY
Photograph by (London in the Sky) Events In The Sky Ltd
You can find CBD-infused dishes and drinks all over London if you know where to look, and this summer, you can get properly high while you do it – by tucking into a flight of CBD cocktails 100ft in the sky. That’s right: as part of the return of the London in the Sky pop-up for 2019, CBD oil will make its way into the line-up in its cocktail flights. Flights will last 45 minutes, during which you’ll be served three CBD cocktails. It’s the only legal high you’ll ever need. Find out more, check dates and book tickets at londoninthesky.co.uk
CBD, CAFFEINE & CLASS A dual infusion of coffee and CBD giving you a composed energy kick that leaves you feeling chilled yet motivated and ready to tackle anything in your day. Our blend of CBD and cold brew coffee will uplift your mind, drive your focus and tease your taste buds. Vanilla pods are brewed into our Colombian roast coffee beans to give you a smooth and subtle flavour.
A New Era of Coffee Culture Coming April 2019
To get 10% off use code: HAMILTON10 www.hamiltonstreetcoldbrew.com hamiltonstreetcoldbrew hamiltonstreetcoldbrew
MAKING HISTORY When foodism approached our neighbours Mondo with an idea to revive the areaâ€™s brewing heritage, it ended up doing just that and a lot more besides, writes Tom Powell
Photograph by Tom Harrison
HEREVER YOU’RE STANDING, sitting or lying down right now, there’s a pretty good chance the space beneath your feet has a little bit of history in it. But it’s not very often you actually think about it, is it? The people that have walked across your train carriage, the things under your floorboards, the grass left to grow in your local park. Directly underneath the desk I’m sat writing this at in Battersea are a load of swooping arched vaults. They once housed barrel after barrel of beer ready to be shipped out from the yard at the back of my office by horse and cart. Although the vaults are now filled with vases and props for a floral display company, there are still a fair few barrel-shaped markings on the wall that show the past is
there, and that history as it’s told did happen. From 1801 to 1924, the site of foodism’s HQ on Wandsworth Road in Battersea was a brewery. First called the Clapham Brewery and from 1868 the Plough Brewery, it was a cornerstone of the local community, from which regular deliveries of casks and bottles would head out past the recently built terraces and the yet-to-be-built 1970s estate, giving beer to the people of London. From 1868 to its closure and sale in 1924, the brewery was operated by a Kenningtonbased brewer called Thomas Woodward, and later his son. While the railings at the front of the building still bear the initials of Woodward, the interiors of the brewery building he built have changed completely, and his history confined to a couple of old postcards, as well as some badges and pump clips that nod to the kind of beer that he
made. Until last year, that is. To commemorate 150 years of the Plough Brewery, the Clapham Society and the building’s owners (and our landlords) Marston Properties unveiled a green
THIS BEER CAN BE TRACED BACK TO THE 1840S
plaque commemorating the building’s history. Which got me thinking: why had I never noticed the brewery entrance I walk through every day? As a pretty enthusiastic beer drinker, and someone who writes a fair amount about it, too, why had I never connected my office’s address – 5 Tun Yard – with its beer-producing past? And as someone with increasing connections to some of London’s best brewers in the present day, why had I just let this history lie dormant underneath my feet? That’s when I decided to seek out our nearest brewer. And it was one I already knew well: Mondo Brewing Company. Located just half a mile from the old Plough building on Stewart’s Road in Battersea, Mondo is a little bit younger than T. Woodward & Sons (having been set up by American brewers Todd Matteson and Tom Palmer back in 2015, during the second wave of London’s craft beer boom). Early discussions with the gentle and personable Matteson didn’t prove difficult at all – he’d walked past the Plough Brewery many times, and had even thought it’d be fun to work up a heritage recipe to brew at Mondo. We were on. With the green light to get brewing, we used a primer on the brewery’s scant history alongside those old postcards, plans of the building and antique pump clips to work out what Thomas Woodward would’ve been BREWER’S SNOOP: [clockwise from left] Tom Palmer, Tom Powell, Todd Matteson and Ron Pattinson checking out the Plough Brewery; the beer’s specs; the label goes on the bottles
brewing in Battersea in the 19th century. The results were varied, and some of them quite recognisable to beer drinkers today: a bitter ale, an oatmeal stout, a light bitter ale and Parliament Ale – likely a strong, wood-barrelaged stock ale designed to be kept and drunk during the winter months. With stouts and regular bitters still a mainstay on pub taps all over the UK, and stock ales like Parliament being a huge, timeconsuming investment for a first-time project, we opted for the light bitter. The name Parliament, though, would remain: partly due to the tie to Woodward and London, and partly due to Mondo head brewer Tom Palmer’s love of the George Clinton-fronted American funk collective ParliamentFunkadelic, it was to become the name of our collaborative brew. So, with a style and a name decided on, we needed a recipe. And that’s where beer historian Ron Pattinson came in. From his home in Amsterdam, Pattinson devotes about 30-40 hours of his time each week to scouring brewing logs and historical records for beer recipes of the past. What distinguishes him from most beer historians, though, is that he researches the beers themselves, rather than the breweries that made them. As a result, he’s worked on heritage recipes with Fuller’s, Goose Island, Wimbledon Brewery and Truman’s to name just a few. “Light bitter ale can be traced back to the 1840s, when people were after a weaker, 4.5-5% alternative to the original bitters,” says Pattinson. “These beers would’ve used simple ingredients: pale malt, invert brewing sugar and flaked maize.” →
Photographs by (brewing team) Tom Harrison
→ “How do we approach a beer that’s both traditional and modern?” mused Mondo’s head brewer and co-founder Tom Palmer, who was charged with finding the requisite ingredients to create a modern interpretation of Pattinson’s recipe. “For the hop schedule, Ron dropped some more knowledge on us,” he continued. “Light bitters would’ve used very traditional English hops like Fuggles and East Kent Goldings for aroma, but most of them were actually bittered with a US hop called Cluster.” Luckily, Palmer could track down modern versions of all of the ingredients Pattinson advised, including “a heritage malt called Chevalier. It’s an older style of two-row barley, and was close to the kind of barley used back in that period.” Neither the brewing team at Mondo nor I knew this, but UK brewers had been using Cluster hops as early as the 1820s, and by Thomas Woodward’s era Cluster accounted for 96% of the hops grown in the USA. With the dependence on US hops for flavour and aroma in modern beer, there was something pleasing about two American brewers and one British writer discovering that the relationship between the US and the UK in beer is a hell of a lot longer-standing than just the last decade or two. With that in mind, we descend on Mondo’s brewery on a deceptively warm day in early February, Pattinson dropping in from Amsterdam, the rest of us sidling down the road in the dazzling sun just in time for mashin. Palmer slashes open the bags of malt, hauling them up and pouring them into the mash tun one by one. The day is a resounding success, and seeing the techniques and the ingredients up close only fortifies the excitement we all feel about the finished product. We all chew a sample of Chevalier malt, Ron pours the Cluster hops into the boil kettle and we talk about the recipe over a beer in the brewery’s taproom. The chat is a reminder, though, that
Photograph (bottles) by David Harrison
IT’S GREAT TO FIND OUR WAY BACK TO CASK BEER
Cluster’s fate is not so good as its other more popular US cousins like Citra and Mosaic: the hop’s acreage has seen a steady decline since the 1970s, to the point that Mondo had never heard of it or used it in all their time brewing. For me, this project suddenly shifted from being simply about rebirthing a modern take on a beer lost to history – it was now about a beer celebrating ingredients that had fallen to the wayside over time, too. That theme is repeated in the use of both Chevalier malt and Whitbread yeast – both of which were staples of brewing in the 19th and early 20th centuries, but which would have disappeared entirely without dedicated purists working to keep them alive, be it in a scientific lab or a few small fields in Norfolk. Meanwhile, a week or two after the brew day, I go and see our beer being put in casks – the first time a Mondo beer has been made this way in more than three years – and left to condition with priming sugar and finings. Two thousand litres of Parliament has been brewed overall, divided between bottles, kegs and casks (the latter of which is arguably the best fit for the style). And – perhaps due to the manic preparation of deciding with Mondo where those bottles, kegs and casks are going to go – the next couple of weeks flies by, and it’s not long until it’s time to make my way back to the brewery for bottling and, more enticingly, a first taste. This is where the scope of what we’ve done hits home. After we peruse the bottling line – the vibrant typographic label designed by my colleague Annie Brooks dazzling as it’s wrapped around each bottle before the liquid goes in – the delicate, bitter and slightly citrussy liquid is met with smiles as we taste it for the first time. Palmer can’t help but grin as
GLASS HALF FULL: [above] Mondo’s Tom Palmer (left) and Tom Powell tasting Parliament for the first time; [left] the bottle, with its striking label
he glances over the packaged kegs, casks and bottles ready for shipment to venues around London – at the taste, first and foremost, but over the sense of achievement, too. “The water is different, the ground is different, the air is different, so most certainly the flavours are going to be different from the 1800s,” he says, “but capturing that essence and doing it accurately and sincerely is what we did. It’s been a really great way to find our way back to cask beer as a brewery.” And having found their way back, Mondo is now looking forward: there are plans in place to put a certain amount of their beers in cask at the Battersea taproom each time they brew – flying in the face of declining cask beer sales across the UK. And that’s when I realise this isn’t the story of one brewery, but two: not just the historic one under my feet, but the relatively new one down the road, too. The mark of Woodward’s old brewery is now not only on a set of railings outside my office and a plaque that harks back 150 years or more, but the project it inspired is also immortalised with a painted brick on the wall of Mondo’s taproom. Despite being separated by more than a century of London history, T. Woodward & Sons and Mondo Brewing Company have found kinship in the present day. And a project that started off as an exercise in curiosity – of trying to map the history of the place I work – ended up as something much more meaningful. f Find out more and watch the accompanying documentary on the project at fdsm.co/mondo
Photograph by ###
A CAREER IN DISHES: ROHIT ADAM GHAI HANDLING 57
I WANT TO SHOWCASE THE DEPTH OF INDIAN FOOD Perhaps better known as the guiding hand behind many of London’s greatest contemporary Indian restaurants, Rohit Ghai has recently gone it alone with the openings of Kutir and KoolCha. Mike Gibson surveys his careerdefining dishes Photography by David Harrison
N THE KITCHEN at Tun Yard Studios, Rohit Ghai laughs as he remembers a recent conversation with a customer. He recalls the customer effusing about Kutir, Ghai’s recently opened contemporary Indian restaurant in Chelsea, putting it up there with the customer’s other favourite Indian restaurants. When Ghai asked him to list them, he did it off the bat: Trishna, Gymkhana, Jamavar and Bombay Bustle. Ghai told the customer with a smile that he’d headed up the kitchen at all of them. In the last couple of decades, the authentic flavours of India have found a perfect match with the curiosity and appetite of London’s diners. The result is a handful of modern Indian restaurants that have won Michelin stars and acclaim, and in turn made London rethink Indian cooking as a whole: no longer merely comfort food, but a national cuisine that can be truly aspirational. Atul Kochhar – who hired Ghai as a mere sous chef at Benares, after Ghai had already worked his way up to executive chef level at hotel groups in India – and Vineet Bhatia are
key figures, as was the midas touch of JKS restaurants, for whom Ghai worked at the the Michelin-starred Trishna and Gymkhana, and their more casual offshoot Hoppers. Ghai references all of these when asked who and what has driven Indian cooking to the upper echelons of London dining – but considering he also won Jamavar a Michelin star as head chef and launched Bombay Bustle to boot, he probably downplays his own importance. Nowadays, you can find him behind the pass at Kutir, his first restaurant as an owner, rather than an employee, and he’s also found time to launch an improbable venture: KoolCha, a street food-influenced, approachably priced permanent space in the Boxpark food market at Wembley. “I believe in trying to bring new dishes into the London market, rather than keep doing the same stuff,” Ghai says. “I want to showcase the depth of Indian food.” But he references his mother’s cooking as much as the chefs he’s worked with, and the result of his career is food that can be comforting, aspirational, but never anything less than totally loveable.
Photograph by ###
POORI BHAJI Poori bhaji is a very common dish in India. It consists of poori [a puffed, deep-fried flatbread] and aloo bhaji [a potato curry]. Most people in India prefer to eat this dish for breakfast. I can remember eating many
versions of poori bhaji – in fact I’d say I tried more than 50 different types – and still whenever I go to India I always try different versions. You can even find lots of different styles of this dish in the same food market. But my mum used to make a very nice one, so this is related to my childhood memories.
RARAH KEEMA PAO
Photograph by ###
A lot of the dishes I created are still on the menu at Jamavar and Bombay Bustle. Rarah keema is something different. People love to have a little more fibre and texture in their mouth when it comes to meat dishes, so
some people like keema as it is normally, and some people love to have keema with little chunks of lamb as well as the mince. That’s why I tried to invent this one. In India it’s a very common dish, but mine is a bit different: there, it’s a main dish, but here I decided to serve it as a starter with two bits of pao [white bread roll]. And people loved it.
SHAMI KEBAB WITH CHUR CHUR PARATHA
When I started my career, I used to go to dinner at a small but very nice shop. The owner used to make biryani, shami kebab and ulte tawe ka paratha – that’s all he used to cook. Normally people serve shami kebab with a mint chutney, but that guy used to serve it with a sauce. He made a proper meat sauce, and he served one piece of shami
kebab with a little sauce and one paratha. At that time I used to pay him 25 rupees – that was nothing. So the idea came from that. I’ve done so many projects, but whenever I do something new I always try to bring some freshness into the London market, so I believed it would work like that. My mother used to make paratha for me at home – very simple, carob seed inside, lots of butter – she used to make the paratha and crush it with both hands, so it became very flaky. That’s where the name came from: chur chur, meaning flaky or crusty.
TRUFFLE MUSHROOM KHICHURI
Photograph by ###
Khichuri is a staple food in India because it’s very good for the stomach, but it’s not very popular in the UK. I really wanted to familiarise the dish to diners here. In India people normally cook khichuri with green lentils, but my mother – again, I always give credit to my mother in my cooking – used to make it with yellow lentils, which is what I’ve done here. 60% yellow
lentils, 40% is rice – that’s the ratio for that particular dish. To make it more interesting, I tried different versions with different vegetables. I decided to go with seasonal wild mushrooms, so we do a stir-fry with mushrooms and a khichuri separately, and when we get the order we assemble it together. There was mushroom already, so I thought ‘Let’s try it with truffle as well’. I kept adding things to increase the flavour, and it really went well with mushrooms, shaved truffle and truffle oil as well. It’s now one of the signature items, and one of the best sellers, at Kutir at the moment.
People love seafood, and masala prawns are another one of my signature dishes. When I went to India recently I had vada pao [a deepfried potato dumpling in a bread roll] – which is on the menu at KoolCha, too. There’s a lot
5 Photograph by ###
of street-food preparations at KoolCha. The masala, the magic spice mix, which makes a tremendous change to the dish, has a lot of different spices in the powder: it has sesame, peanut, desiccated coconut and a little bit of tamarind, to make it properly balanced. It’s a standout dish, I would say. f kutir.co.uk; koolcha.co.uk
AVAILABLE NATIONWIDE IN WAITROSE, MAJESTIC AND 31DOVER.COM
AVAILABLE NATIONWIDE IN WAITROSE, MAJESTIC, 31DOVER.COM AND UK DUTY FREE
MOTHER OF COD... Caught wild in the icy waters surrounding Norway, Skrei is the ultimate sustainable fish. And you can learn to cook with it, too, with exclusive recipes from José Pizarro
ERE IN BRITAIN, we have a vibrant culture of ‘wild food’. As soon as game season approaches, venison, pigeon and more appear on restaurant menus, and diners get excited about the prospect of delicious native species being available at their best for just a short time. But the idea of seasonality – and the associated provenance and quality that eating truly seasonal, ethically sourced food guarantees – is sometimes lost when it comes to fish. In the UK especially, fish can tend to
be thought of as either bountiful yearround or desperately scarce. Skrei cod fits neatly in between these states of being: a migratory species of cod, it’s caught wild by line and pole, and it’s bountiful in the icy, clear waters of the Barents Sea off the coasts of Norway, but only from January to April. A staggering 400 million of the species make their way through Norway’s waters, but only 10% are caught, making it one of the most sustainable fish in the world. For this migratory cod to earn the
YOU CAN GUARANTEE YOU’RE EATING SOME OF THE MOST HIGHLY PRIZED FISH IN THE WORLD
SCALE IT UP: [clockwise from left] Simple pan-fried Skrei cod in Norway; José Pizarro holding a Skrei; a Norwegian fishing boat
COOK WITH JOSÉ José Pizarro has been one of the bright lights in London dining for years, with a brand of simple, authentic and delicious tapas that celebrates his home country of Spain. He’s given us three gorgeous recipes that make the most of beautiful Skrei cod, with videos alongside to show you how it’s done. See the three recipes and videos at fdsm.co/recipes
title of Skrei (which isn’t the name of the species itself), it has to pass rigorous inspection – meaning the name is an indicator of the highest possible quality. As well as being strictly restricted by location, Skrei fishermen have to present their catch fully grown, in immaculate condition, and packed within 12 hours of being caught, to name a few. All of this ensures that if you prepare and cook Skrei at home or order it in a top restaurant, you can guarantee you’re eating some of the most highly prized and delicious fish in the world. The cod’s lean, flavoursome and firm meat breaks easily into large flakes, and the flavour is delicate and clean – reminiscent of the seas it calls home during the months it’s caught in Norway. It’s also a model of sustainability in a world full of industrialised food – and not only in its catching. Everything from the packaging techniques used to guarantee freshness to the expertise passed down from one generation of Norwegian fishermen to the next means that Skrei is as carefully and respectfully managed as possible. It adds up to a significant part of the Norwegian economy, being exported to chefs and home cooks around the world who covet this superior seafood species. Whether it’s a haunch of venison sourced from a deep forest in rural England or a pristine Skrei cod fished by a vessel in the far, unforgiving reaches of Norway’s northern coastlines, truly seasonal food is always an unbridled joy to cook with and to eat. Finding produce that’s as sustainably and ethically sourced as the latter – available only when nature dictates, never farmed, and guaranteed never to deviate in quality – is something everyone should aspire to, from the world’s best chefs (like José Pizarro, pictured above at his Bermondsey restaurant) to keen amateurs, and everyone in between. ● seafoodfromnorway.co.uk
THE YOLK’S ON YOU Ramen specialist Shoryu is welcoming back Hello Kitty’s best mate, Gudetama the lazy egg, to London from 1-21 April for a set menu that’s nothing if not egg-centric
HIS EASTER, HAKATA ramen noodle specialists Shoryu is welcoming one of Japan’s most beloved characters, Gudetama the lazy egg, to London. To celebrate Gudetama’s arrival, Shoryu is launching an exclusive egg-themed pop-up menu at its latest New Oxford
Street and Shoreditch sites (as well as Shoryu Oxford and Manchester). The three-course menu will be available for three weeks from 1-21 April and contain a range of egg-centred dishes designed to make you feel as if you’re feasting on the flesh of Gudetama itself. Yes,
itself. Because Gudetama is an egg. And gender is a construct. The menu will offer firm Shoryu favourites, all with an added touch of Gudetama goodness. Start with Gudetama-coloured golden yellow Shoryu buns – filled with either char siu BBQ pork belly, chicken karaage
or pumpkin croquette – before diving into three different bowls of ramen made especially for the occasion. Choose from the ‘Shoryu Ganso Tonkotsu’ (featuring a Gudetamathemed nitamago egg), ‘Miso Wafu Chicken’ (also adorned by a Gudetamaesque egg), or the veggie-friendly ‘White Natural’ (garnished on the side by, you guessed it, a Gudetama egg). Dessert comes in the guise of yuzu, matcha or salted caramel chocolate flavoured mochi ice cream served in a Gudetama cup. Wash that down with mango iced oolong tea, a milk-based soft drink called Calpico, or a ‘Mojito Loves Calpico’ mocktail mixed with mint and
DIVE INTO THREE DIFFERENT AND EGG-CITING BOWLS OF RAMEN MADE ESPECIALLY FOR THE OCCASION lime. All of which come in a reusable Gudetama cup. You can get all that, plus a limited edition Shoryu Gudetama chocolate bar handmade by Creighton’s Chocolaterie (while stocks last), for only £24. For those that want to take Gudetama home with them, there’ll be a range of limited-edition merchandise to purchase in the restaurant as well as in-store at Japan Centre Panton Street, Japan Centre Westfield Stratford and Japan Centre Ichiba, Westfield London. You can additionally grab the merch online at japancentre.com. Japan Centre Ichiba, Westfield London will also be selling 250 Gudetama Easter eggs, handmade by Creighton’s Chocolaterie, throughout April. Speaking of eggcellent news, you can gp to that same venue on 6 April between 12 – 3.30pm (excluding 1.30pm) to meet and greet Gudetama itself. ● Find out more at shoryuramen.com
Photograph by Steven Joyce
Need more Gudetama in your life? Well, fortunately, you can enter a competition on Shoryu’s Instagram for the chance to win a huge Gudetama plush toy and a load of Creighton’s Gudetama chocolate! All you have to do is take a selfie with Gudetama and your set menu at one of Shoryu’s restaurants and post on social using the hashtag #ShoryuGudetama. To enter the competition, follow Shoryu on Instagram at @shoryu_ramen
— PART 3 —
QUENCH “THE ONLY DOWNSIDE TO KELLER IS THAT, BECAUSE IT’S UNPASTEURISED, YOU NEED TO DRINK IT FAST. WHAT A SHAME” THE INS AND OUTS OF KELLERBIER IN THE NEW-LOOK HOP CULTURE, 081
072 MIXOLOGY: DO NOT DISTURB | 078 SINGLE-ORIGIN COFFEE 081 HOP CULTURE | 086 BOTTLE SERVICE
BEHIND CLOSED DOORS Do Not Disturb doesn’t give much away from the outside, but there’s plenty to explore inside this speakeasy-style newcomer, finds Jordan Kelly-Linden QUENCH
T BARRELAGED NEGRONI This classic cocktail is aged for two weeks in a French oak barrel that’s been used to rest winemaker Maximin Grünhaus’s riesling.
ING R E DIE NTS • 25ml Bimber gin • 25ml Belsazar red vermouth • 25ml Campari Add the ingredients to a mixing glass over ice, stir and serve in an old fashioned glass with an orange wheel.
HE FROSTED FRONT door at Do Not Disturb’s entrance is nothing if not discreet. And while its name reflects that fact, it also gives a knowing nod to the operations of the brand-new, luxurious Vintry & Mercer hotel upstairs. That said, nestle in its dark, glittering, speakeasy-style room and rifle through the menu, and it’s abundantly clear that this is a hotel bar with its own agenda. Cosmin Tigroso heads things up behind the bar. A former head bartender at Bermondsey’s Nine Lives, Tigroso brings his own quirks and twists to a menu that takes in barrel-aged versions of American classics and flavour-rich contemporary cocktails alike. Sustainability – much like at Nine Lives – still rides high on his list of priorities, and you’re also likely to spot a whole raft of local London producers on the back-bar and the drinks list. You’d be hard-pressed to sum up the style of serve here. Take the divisive Lift Yourself, for instance: served in a precarious birdshaped flute, it mixes Ocho Blanco tequila, asparagus, coconut water and vinegar for a seriously grassy, savoury kick. Possibly not one for the spatially challenged (hello!) among us, but delicious nonetheless. Then there’s the Martina, built around muddled grapes, Don Papa rum and soy sauce – at first, it’s all sweet honeydew melon, but add the garnish to the mix and it’s another story. When it comes to simple serves, a negroni left to age in a riesling-seasoned barrel takes on a more mellow dimension, and the Average Joe – a deceivingly simple build of Bulleit Rye whiskey and house syrup in an art deco tumbler over ice – delivers a heady symphony of rosemary, banana, cardamom and spicy rye with every sip. Do Not Disturb is playful, quirky and – rather than feeling like an extension of the hotel – has bags of its own personality. Most importantly, though, it’s a damn good place to grab a drink. And if that includes a bed at one of London’s coolest new hotels? Even better. f
Vintry & Mercer Hotel, 20 Garlick Hill, EC4V 2AU; vintryandmercer.com
Photograph Photograph by Amyby Murrell ###
Photograph by Amy Murrell
LIFT YOURSELF This cocktail certainly makes a statement in its preparation, but it’s actually pretty simple in its construction, blending full-flavoured tequila with a house-made syrup.
ING R E DIE NTS • 50ml Ocho Blanco tequila • 50ml coconut and asparagus syrup Add the ingredients to a mixing glass over ice, stir well and strain into a custom-made bird glass.
EL PRESIDENTE This is another cocktail that benefits from barrel ageing, this time in a French oak barrel seasoned with white port. It’s a kind of rum manhattan, spiked with a little orange-peel note from Cointreau and sweet grenadine syrup replacing sweet vermouth.
ING R E DIE NTS • • • •
50ml Plantation 3 Stars 15ml Belsazar dry 15ml Cointreau Dash of grenadine
Add ingredients to a mixing glass over ice, stir and strain into a coupette. Garnish with orange zest. Photograph by Amy Murrell
3 2 4 1
For our coffee special, we run the rule over some amazing single-origin coffee beans sourced ethically from around the tropics
Photograph by David Harrison
1 ORIGIN MAMA CATA GEISHA, Boquete, Panama. An ultrapremium recent release from Origin’s Special Edition Series, which highlights the geisha varietal of coffee bean grown in a tiny plot in Panama by farmer José David Garrido Perez. Expect notes of citrus peel and fresh berry. 150g, £25. origincoffee.co.uk 2 BLUE COFFEE BOX NANO CHALLA, Oromia, Ethiopia. This washed, ethically sourced Ethiopian coffee has notes of tart pomegranate and juicy blackcurrant, with a little orange blossom, too. 227g, £7.99 p/m; bluecoffeebox.com 3 UNION HAND ROASTED GAJAH MOUNTAIN, Sumatra, Indonesia. Earthy peat moves to syrupy treacle and indulgent chocolate truffle in this dark roast, picked at high altitude and sourced via Union’s Direct Trade model. 200g, £5.75; unionroasted.com 4 PERKY BLENDERS SINGLE ORIGIN, Nejapa, El Salvador. The sweet pull of plum, smoothed through with vanilla and bitter dark chocolate swirls through this medium-roast, naturalprocessed coffee. 200g, £8.50; perkyblenders.com
Join Tom Kerridge and friends for the biggest celebration of great food, award winning pubs, Michelin-starred chefs and live music. Buy your tickets now at
H O P C U LTUR E BY
foodism B EER
C L UB
Whether you’re a complete beer geek or an enthusiastic amateur, the foodism BEER CLUB is a community we want you to be a part of. It’s free to join, and consists of a monthly newsletter full of recommendations, exclusive offers and competitions, plus invitations to London-based tasting events, parties and more. Like beer? Join the club at foodismbeerclub.co.uk
The brewery Canopy Beer Co may only have been turning out small-batch craft brews from its railway arch home in Herne Hill since 2014, but the old JJ Grandville-style animals on its bottles and cans have made it an instantly recognisable brewer. The beer art is just as attention-grabbing nowadays, taking the form of mythical animals inspired by the oldschool parlour game of Consequences. The fact that Canopy’s taproom – a bar and four trestle tables inside the brewery arch, plus a few outdoor tables – is just a few seconds from Brockwell Park makes it a perfect haunt for drinking come spring and summertime, too. Tasting flights cost a fiver, and locally made snacks like charcuterie and sausage rolls adorn the bar if the variety of beer on offer starts to go to your head a little.
CANOPY Arch 1127, Bath Factory Estate, SE24 9AJ Herne Hill
THE LONDON BEER MAP Whether you’re looking for new beers or a new place to try them, this is your guide to the best of London’s taprooms and breweries
Canopy’s core range includes the easydrinking 5.6% Brockwell IPA, as well as Snapper Session IPA, Sunray Pale Ale and Champion Kolsch. Seasonal specials are a little bit more experimental, though: there’s an amaretto imperial stout, a Belgian red ale made with sour cherries, and the rich and ever-so slightly saline Lloper Everyday Oyster Stout, which is brewed with Maldon oysters sourced from bivalve legends the Oystermen.
What else? If you don’t fancy sitting in, the brewery’s taproom sells all of its ten lines of draught beer to take away by the two-pint bottle or 1.8-litre growler. Selected beers are available in five-litre micro kegs while stocks last, too, meaning you’re only ever a few seconds from drinking an ice-cold brew in Brockwell Park. Good to know when the sun comes back. f canopybeer.com
STYLE IT OUT 1
Your guide to the complex world of beer styles, classic and modern. This month: kellerbier
B RAY BROOKE K ELLER LAGER
L OST & G R OUNDE D K E L L E R PIL S
Market Harborough, UK
This British keller lager is made with ingredients imported from the lagermaking region of Franconia in Germany. 4.8%, 330ml; braybrookebeer.co
Imported German pilsner malt and three traditional hop varieties make for one clean, pleasingly bitter lager. 4.8%, 330ml; lostandgrounded.co.uk
3 B REW BY NUMB E RS 23|01 KELLER PILS Bermondsey, London, UK Dry hopped with a big dose of Loral hops, this lager has crisp and floral notes and a fruity little kick. 4.8%. 440ml; brewbynumbers.com
Forget everything you know about lager: it doesn’t have to be perfectly see-through, and it certainly doesn’t have to be completely flavourless. Why? Because kellerbier (and its less punchy cousin zwickelbier) exists. This unfiltered, unpasteurised type of lager dates back to the middle ages, when beer was fermented in cold cellars (or kellers, if you’re German), then served super locally and super fresh. The naturally cloudy beer is packed with yeast and vitamins that make it cloudy but extra flavourful. The only downside is that because it’s unpasteurised, you need to drink it sooner. That, my friend, is a damn shame.
SHUCK & AWE
CRATE Brewery is crowdfunding to finance a major, £500,000 refurbishment to The White Building it calls home. The plan is to include a new experimental brewery, an affordable work space and an extended ground floor bar, as well as providing a London outpost to award-winning chef Douglas McMaster’s celebrated zero-waste Brighton restaurant Silo. Exciting news indeed. Pledge at cratebrewery.com
If you were going to give your stout a luxurious lilt, what would you add to it? Maple syrup? Cacao and orange? Bermondsey-based Brew By Numbers has done all that lot, and now it’s set its sights on oysters. Using bivalves sourced in Lindisfarne by Wright Brothers, this all-new oyster stout is available at BBNo’s taprooms, as well as the seafood merchant’s restaurants across the city. For more: thewrightbrothers.co.uk
4 M OE NSC HSAM BAC H ER L AG E R B IE R Burgebrach, Germany This OG German zwickelbier rarely gets out of the town it’s brewed in, and only lasts 28 days. If you can get it, get it. 5.5%, 500ml; moenchsambacher.de
SO FRESH Want to taste the freshest beer in London? You’ll probably want to head to our next foodism Beer Club event. On Tuesday 2 April at Beer Merchants Tap in Hackney Wick, we’ll be trying five brand-new brews, and Beer Club members get tickets for a discounted price of just £10. Past tastings have seen cans from Verdant, Garage, Pressure Drop, Cloudwater and many more. Book at fdsm.co/fresh-beer
THE ARTIST The artwork for Parliament was created by foodism designer Annie Brooks. The typographic label includes several references to the brewing heritage of the Plough Brewery (the building that foodism calls home): the three triangles in the centre are a nod to the windows on the building’s entrance arch, the crown-shape to the left is a take on the artesian well beneath the brewery, and the small ‘TW’ at the bottom right is an homage to Thomas Woodward, who brewed the original Light Bitter Ale at the Plough in the late 1800s.
Photograph by (Kellerbier) Gradyreese; (Parliament) David Harrison
Your guide to the artists and designers behind beer labels. This month: a very special collaboration between foodism and Mondo
THE BREWER Between 1868 and 1924, foodism’s offices were a brewery, so we teamed up with our neighbours, the Battersea-based Mondo Brewing Company, to make a modern take on a beer that would’ve been brewed there back then. The beer, called Parliament, is a 4.5% light bitter ale named after a brew that was made on-site at the Plough Brewery more than a century ago. Mondo is a little bit younger than that: it only opened back in 2015, but as our nearest brewery, it was the perfect fit to collaborate with on the project. With a little help from beer historian Ron Pattinson, we came up with a heritage recipe that speaks to the 19th-Century light bitter style. For more on the project visit fdsm.co/mondo
WHERE TO DRINK IT
Want to try beer super-fresh and packed with flavour, just like the brewery intended? Then give one of these tank bars a go next time that you’re at a loose end
HOW L ING HOPS TANK BAR Unit 9A Queen’s Yard, E9 5EN
Having started life as a brewpub in the Cock Tavern on Mare Street back in 2011, Howling Hops has always known a thing or two about pumping super-fresh beer into its punters’ pint glasses. But since opening the UK’s first tank bar at its Hackney Wick site in 2015, HH has been able to serve quality unpasteurised and unfiltered beer right from the source. Complete with ten tanks serving everything from dry-hopped kolsch to single-hopped pale ales, this is the king of fresh beer bars in the city. 020 3583 8262; howlinghops.co.uk
HAC K NEY C HUR C H B R EW C O
G E R MAN KRAFT Mercato Metropolitano, 42 Newington Causeway, SE1 6DR Elephant and Castle In a city full to the brim with upstart brewers, there aren’t many that just focus on their roots. German Kraft – found in a bar and rather large beer garden in Elephant & Castle’s Mercato Metropolitano – is a little different. Not only is it London’s only brewery focusing squarely on super-fresh, unpasteurised German beer, it’s also the only one with a large tank of sweet, fullbodied helles in its taproom, too. Yes to helles, yes to German beer, and yes to German Kraft. 07397 312 446; germankraftbeer.com
At St John at Hackney Brewery, head honcho Ryan Robbins makes his beer in one railway arch, then pumps it directly into tanks that sit above the bar in the adjacent arch. The list changes frequently, but there’s usually a session pale, a crushable lager and something a little bit darker. Pair that with live-fire cooking from Eat Lagom and a surprisingly large beer garden out the back and you’re sorted. 020 8985 3496; hackneychurch brew.co
4 L ONG AR M 20-26 Worship Street, EC2A 2DX Old Street Serving beer by the tank isn’t just about freshness and simplicity, you know: it can be about closing the loop on waste and emissions, too, and that’s why the Long Arm brewpub in Shoreditch serves a selection of its beers that way. By brewing downstairs and pumping beer directly into tanks upstairs in the bar, they don’t have to waste water and fuel by constantly sending off kegs to be washed, meaning they have a better carbon footprint and fresher beer. 020 3873 4065; longarmpub.co.uk
THE E A G L E 250 Ladbroke Grove, W10 5LP
You might know Truman’s from the hundreds of antique pub signs still on show across the capital, but the brewery has recently been reinvented for the modern day in a small lot in East London. As for Truman’s beer fresh from the tank? You’ve probably not met that just yet. Why? For now you can only get it at The Eagle in Ladbroke Grove. Get to know it: Truman’s RAW lager is a kolsch with some sweet biscuity flavour, delicate aroma and bitterness from Czech Hallertau Mittelfruh hops. 020 3757 8051; theeagle.co.uk
Photograph by (Howling Hops) Charles Hosea; (Hackney Church Brew Co) Nathan Pask; (Long Arm) Max Lacome; (The Easgle) Amy Sanders
17 Bohemia Place, E8 1DU Hackney Central
BARREL O’ LAUGHS Tick txoko, it’s wine o’clocko. Enter now for your chance to win a whole year’s supply of fantastic, award-winning wine from Rioja’s favourite wine producer Bodegas Beronia
N NORTHERN SPAIN, there is a longstanding tradition of gastronomic societies (or dinner clubs, to you and us). Known as txokos, these gastronomic societies are a place where friends meet to cook and Basque in their passion for all things food and wine. They are like big dinner parties, but much more fun and sometimes people burst into song. The history of txokos (pronounced: chock-oh) goes way back to the first of its kind in 1870 in San Sebastián, Spain. But the story you should really be interested in is the one which led to the creation of Beronia – your new friends and the people behind this wonderful competition. In the 1970s, the founders of Beronia formed a txoko of their own in the small town of Ollauri in Rioja Alta. Unsatisfied with the quality of wine they could get their hands on at the time, they decided to produce their own premium wines to pair with their delicious culinary creations. Out of this came Bodegas Beronia, a now multi-
award winning Rioja and Rueda winery, recently named the 2018 IWSC Spanish Wine Producer of the Year. That’s pretty cool and not a bad effort from a bunch of friends just looking for a good time, if you ask us. The winery still encourages big get-togethers through its Beronia Txoko Club, so after you’ve entered this competition to win a year’s supply of Beronia wine, why not hop over to beroniatxoko.co.uk to grab recipes and inspiration for organising your own Basque get-together? This sounds like the perfect kind of evening to us, and one we should do more often. In fact, we might just call up all our friends now and share the enjoyment of preparing delicious food together and wash it down with superb Spanish wine. Muy bien! ● For more info, including recipes and upcoming events, visit
WIN HOW TO WIN
Want to win a year’s supply of Beronia wine plus a Txoko kit of your own? Of course you do! Entering couldn’t be easier – all you have to do is answer a simple question. The prize includes 12 x 6 bottle cases of the finest Beronia wines plus everything you’d ever need to host an authentic Basque evening with friends. For a full list of T&Cs and to enter, go to fdsm.co/beronia
H UNGARI AN W I NES Perhaps best known for sweet wines made from furmint grapes in the famous region of Tokaj, Hungary produces some beautiful wines with nativevarietal grapes. Dry furmints are underrated, too. 1 HEIMANN KADARKA 2017, Szekszárd, Hungary. Point any pinot noir fan in the direction of this floral, medium-bodied kadarka and they’ll be more than happy, we promise. 12.5%, 75cl; £10.95, thewinesociety.com 2 GERE VILLÁNY KÉKFRANKOS 2016, Villány, Hungary. Spice and leather ride with notes of black olive and dark fruits in this fullbodied kékfrankos from the south of Hungary. 13.5%, 75cl; £10.95, thewinesociety.com 3 DOBOGO TOKAJI FURMINT 2015, Mád, Hungary. Baked apples and orange peel run riot in this dry, volcanic wine from the Tokaj hills in the northeastern corner of Hungary. 13.5%, 75cl; £23.70, hedonism.co.uk 4 ROYAL TOKAJI 5 PUTTONYOS 2013, Tokaj, Hungary. A classic syrupy sweet tokaji, bringing fig and orange peel with the amber spice of cinnamon to the table. 11%, 50ml; £30, majestic.co.uk 5 ST ANDREA ÁLDÁS EGRI BIKAVER 2016, Eger, Hungary. Cedar and bay bring balance to the smooth sweetness of dark cherry in this lightly oaked Bordeaux blend. 14%, 75cl; £11.95, thewinesociety.com
BOTTLE ROCKETS Pastries from Gail’s Bakery
Hungarian wine doesn’t end with tokaji – we’ve selected some bottles you may not have discovered yet, plus great new kombuchas and fine Irish whiskey PHOTOGRAPHY BY DAVID HARRISON
IRI SH W HI SK EY While whiskey (with the ‘e’) from Ireland is stylistically similar to scotch, it’s often made with just barley (single-grain). Otherwise, you can find brilliant expressions of both blended and single-malt whiskeys. 1 SLANE TRIPLE CASKED, County Meath, Ireland. Spice, caramel and dried fruit call out in this blended Irish whiskey that’s aged in a trio of virgin oak, refill-Americanwhiskey and olorososherry casks. 40%, 70cl, £30, waitrosecellar.com 2 THE SEXTON SINGLE MALT, County Antrim, Ireland. A modern Irish single-malt whiskey, aged in former oloroso sherry casks with nutty, honeycomb notes. 40%, 70cl; £30.50, masterofmalt.com 3 DINGLE POT STILL BATCH 3, County Kerry, Ireland. Marmalade and citrus peel run the rule in the third release of this small batch single malt from Dingle. 46.5%, 70cl; £80, thewhiskyexchange.com 4 GLENDALOUGH DOUBLE BARREL, County Wicklow, Ireland. Brown sugar and raisin bring out the taste of Christmas pudding in this double-barrel, single grain. 42%, 70cl; £33.45, thewhiskyexchange.com
Pastries from Gail’s Bakery
KOM B UC HA Kombucha is made by fermenting tea using a ‘scoby’ – or symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast, which results in a lightly sparkling and sour drink with a little residual alcohol, which is said to be good for gut health. It’s often flavoured, too. 1 RUDE HEALTH GINGER KOMBUCHA, Fulham, London. Sweet, sour and gently fizzy this unpasteurised green tea kombucha delivers a hit of ginger straight to your taste buds. 1.2%, 250ml; £1.99, waitrose.com 2 REMEDY RASPBERRY LEMONADE KOMBUCHA, Melbourne, Australia. The sweet flavour of nostalgia runs through this organic, unpasteurised kombucha. Think: pink lemonade and childhood memories of running loose in the park. 330ml; £2.99, planetorganic.com 3 NIRVANA ANANDA BUCHABEER, Leyton, London. Nirvana’s Tantra pale ale meets Japanese green sencha tea in this low-alcohol kombuchabeer hybrid. 0.5%, 330ml; £2.49, eebria.com 4 LA BREWERY STRAWBERRY AND BLACK PEPPER KOMBUCHA, Woodbridge, Suffolk. Sweet strawberry juice cuts through the bright spice of black peppercorn and tart vinegar notes in this lightly effervescent ‘buch. 300ml; £3.50, planetorganic.com
MERRY ’BERRIES Introducing Slingsby Gooseberry Gin, a brand new addition to the Slingsby Gin range inspired by the tart and tangy flavours of a New Zealand sauvignon blanc
E’VE ALL HAD inspiration strike after a glass (or two) of wine: I’ll join a gym; I’ll write a book; I’ll subtweet my ex via a thinly veiled meme to show them how I really feel. But have any of these ideas ever amounted
FRESH YORKSHIRE GOOSEBERRIES BRING TANGY SHARPNESS TO THE GIN 92
to anything other than a panicked social media clean-up the next day? Well, if you’re anything like the founders of Slingsby Gin, then you might just make a brand new spirit out of it. In 2017, Slingsby were the official suppliers to the British & Irish Lions on their tour of New Zealand and to celebrate Slingby co-founders Marcus Black and Mike Carthy hit the road. While over there, they took a shine to the same wine that’s probably been behind many of your great ideas, too: a New Zealand sauvignon blanc. Sauvignons from New Zealand are known for their tart gooseberry aromas and it was this flavour that left a lasting impact on the Slingsby Gin team. Enter: Slingsby Gooseberry Gin. It’s
made with the same botanical mix and citrus blend as the Slingsby London Dry Gin you know and love, only this time fresh Yorkshire gooseberries bring an unmissable tangy sharpness to the gin. Full of sweet, fruity flavour with a final zip of gooseberry, it’s perfect in a G&T or swirled through a spritz. ● Find out more at spiritofharrogate.co.uk
ROOT AWAKENING Rediscover the simple and smooth pleasures of potato vodka with Luksusowa Vodka – one of Poland’s oldest and most premium distillers of the popular spud-based spirit
RY ’EM, BOIL ’em, mash ’em… drink ’em? The potato is truly a versatile little thing, isn’t it? And, while it’s excellent at filling your stomach after a night out on the tiles, it’s easy to forget that the humble potato is a vital
COMPARED TO GRAIN-BASED VODKAS, POTATO VODKA HAS A RICHER AND MORE INTENSE CHARACTER 94
ingredient in a lot of premium vodkas. Vodka made from fermented potatoes is something of a Polish specialty – and, created in 1928, Luksusowa is one of the oldest Polish vodka brands available today. Taking its name from the Polish word for “luxury”, Luksusowa represents this through the high-quality grade of its potato production. Luksusowa doesn’t just use any potatos, either: all of the specially cultivated potatoes come from the western and northern parts of Poland and contain aroud 20% of starch compared to the standard 10% you’d find in a normal eating potato. What that means for you is that, compared to grainbased vodkas, potato vodka delivers a richer and more intense character along with a smoother mouthfeel and finish. Luksusowa is a standout example of that smoothness. It is, after all, the
only Polish vodka to be awarded the Gold Medal 10 times in a row at the annual International Monde selection competition in Brussels. Not just any old vodka can call itself Polish, either. Which is why each bottle of Luksusowa bears the official stamp of the Polish Vodka Association, signifying that it meets all of the rigorous criteria needed to be classified as a Polish Vodka. Making Luksusowa pretty pedigree stuff. To give Luksusowa a proper London test-drive, we’d recommended visiting your local Mother Kelly’s or Brewdog and ordering a Lukso Sonic vodka mixer. It’s a simple drink made from two parts Luksusowa, ½ part lime juice, and five parts tonic that lets the spirit’s native flavour shine through. ● Up for taking the spud life home with you? Grab a bottle at masterofmalt.com
The natural choice Peter's Yard sourdough crispbread is made in small batches with a sourdough that naturally ferments for 16 hours.
Available at Waitrose, Sainsburyâ€™s, Ocado and independent retailers. @PetersYard www.petersyard.com
Tailor made travels
— PART 4 —
EXCESS “PERCHED ON A RUSTY BISTRO TABLE AGAINST A BACKDROP OF NEON GRAFFITI, A GUY TUCKS INTO KONTOSOUVLI” HANNAH SUMMERS TRACKS DOWN THE BEST SOUVLAKI IN THE GREEK CAPITAL, 100
100 SOUVLAKI IN ATHENS | 104 FAIRTRADE COFFEE IN KENYA | 108 THE GETAWAY: PENSONS 110 RICHARD H TURNER | 117 THE ITINERARY: PRAGUE | 123 THE SELECTOR | 130 DECONSTRUCT
Souvlaki has been a staple in Greece for thousands and thousands of years, but what is it that makes the dish so enduring? Hannah Summers heads to Athens find out
CITY EATS: Athens, is a city rich in history both architectural – that’s the ancient Acropolis in the background – and also culinary, with tons of long-standing souvlaki joints dotting its streets
Photograph by Milan Gonda / Alamy Stock Photo
OSTAS DOESN’T DO smiles – he does souvlaki. His meticulously prepped row of pork skewers sizzle on a grill in front of me. I stand in his shop, which is barely two metres wide, and admire his workplace: rose-pink tiles covered with dozens of pictures of his grandchildren, sitting proudly beside his other great love, faded pictures of AEK Athens FC. Soon my snack is ready. I hand over €2.50, and carry my parcel outside with the care and precision of someone negotiating the manoeuvre of a £1,000 wedding cake. Inside, soft chunks of meat have been tucked into the plump, squidgy pita and smothered in a thick tomato sauce. I am in heaven. Athens is a city that’s bursting at the seams with history. No, not just the Acropolis – its columns and slippery vanilla-coloured marble stones gazing out over the city below – but souvlaki. Not only is it a big hit on the city’s streets today, but it proudly boasts the unofficial title of the oldest fast food in the world – so old in fact, that a souvlaki grill sits behind a glass cabinet in the Ancient Agora
THE BREAD IS ALWAYS A SECRET RECIPE FOR SOUVLAKI CHEFS
THE PITA END: [left to right] Meat at Hoocut is grilled and chopped; then piled into homemade pita; a tabletop of Greek snacking fare
museum; so old that souvlaki was mentioned in Homer’s Iliad way back in 762 BC. As a Londoner, my kebab experience is extensive, but sad. Not the cool new places – the Athenians and the Souvlaki Streets that have started popping up in London’s gentrified markets – but the cheapo places, the ones that taste like sirloin at 3am on Saturday night, but garlicky, raw onion and regret by 7am the next morning. From the grey curls of doner devoured outside Hammersmith Palais (RIP) in 2003, to the sauce-laden Cyprus Mangal in Victoria via £2 kebabs (with free chicken wings) on Mile End road last week – I’ve tried them all, and more. Don’t judge me. This fondness, to put it mildly, has led me on a pilgrimage – an entire weekend dedicated to Athens’ most-cherished souvlatzidiko, taking in the old-school holes in the walls that have been luring crowds with the same secret recipe for decades, to the jazzy new places that pair stuffed pitas with progressive house music. Yes, really. While I could happily amble from souvlaki shop to souvlaki shop, I’m apprehensive – of course I am – about missing out on the vital ingredients that only a native Athenian can communicate. So I enlist the help of Carolina Doriti, food writer, chef and guide at Culinary Backstreets. She appreciates the seriousness of my eat-all-the-souvlaki mission, and sprinkles in some historical facts that take the edge off the overindulgence. Kostas’s souvlaki, which we devour in the sunshine of Agia Irinis Square, are some of her favourite. Typically, souvlaki isn’t a saucy dish, but his concoction is clearly a big hit: dozens of people have gathered on their lunch break, tackling messy mounds of pork and sauce, while sitting beneath the
bruised walls and broken glass windows of Lord Byron’s former house. Today, a stencil drawing of the poet’s lover is drawn onto the faded pink tiles of Kostas’ joint – right beneath a plastic AEK FC clock. We walk on, soon arriving at Lefteris o Politis, a shabby little shop located in the shady back streets of Omonia Square. True to its name (which translates to ‘Lefteris who came from Istanbul’) the souvlaki here has a Turkish slant. This souvlatzidiko specialises in beef, served in its purest form with thick slices of tomato, thin slivers of onion and a sprinkle of parsley, bundled up in bread. The owners have been serving happy punters the same secret recipe since 1951, with the interiors, all retro peach and blue tiles, similarly unchanged. Judging by the customers – flat-capped gentlemen who come here for their breakfast – the clientele hasn’t changed much either. It’s a revelation. Forget the splodges of mayo and watered-down chilli sauces you find at home – this is straight-up juicy meat in the most addictive pita. “The bread is always a secret recipe for souvlaki chefs,” Carolina tells me, pointing to perfectly formed circles of bread which balance on top of the grilled meat, soaking up all their deliciousness. Resisting the urge to order another, we press on to our next stop. Kostas (note: a different Kostas to saucy souvlaki Kostas) is a small and simple joint two blocks from the famous Syntagma Square. The owner took over from his grandpa who opened the shop in the 1950s, and today a picture of them is in prime position on the wall, along with a couple of hundred passport photos of his friends. “Old Facebook!” young Kostas says, while prepping my dish. It has all of the makings of traditional souvlaki. Chunks of salted pork,
SOUVLAKI IS SPECIAL, AND IT DESERVES THE SAME RESPECT AS A MEAL
Photographs by (Hoocut) Hoocut/Dimitris Vlaikos; (Athens) Discover Greece
onion and tomato, this time dolloped with thick homemade yoghurt and cayenne pepper. It tastes insanely good, and unexpectedly healthy – so healthy I justify two. But for all the history, here in Athens souvlaki isn’t a dish that’s limited to retro family run joints. This is a city that’s changing, and changing fast; where elderly men and women sit beneath graffitied and bougainvillea-clad walls, clutching post-crisis worry beads, while beside them, the optimistic 20-somethings sip iced coffees and puff through cigarettes – the quick-fix remedy to last night’s 6am finish. On Athinaidos Street, old-school shops filled with colourful rolls of garish fabric and even more garish curtain tassels sit beside some of the city’s coolest street food joints. Hoocut, a few minutes’ walk away, is one of them. Inside, tattooed chefs tend to beef, pork and chicken skewers, while at the back, others work on homemade pita, which is baked, controversially, in an onsite pizza oven to give it extra crunch. Chef and owner Kleomenis Zournatzis, who also runs Cookoovaya, one of Athens’ coolest restaurants, is there serving customers: mostly millennials, but a few older folk who seem unperturbed by the house music that blasts out of the speakers and onto the streets. “Everyone has a memory of souvlaki,” Kleomenis says, sliding over a tray of chicken, lamb and beef souvlaki to me, plus an all-important beer, “This is fast food, not junk food. And we want to keep our food accessible to everyone – regardless of age or income.”
MEAT AND GREET: [this image] The team at Hoocut serve classic souvlaki in lively, contemporary surroundings; [left] work off the damage with a walk round Athens’ pretty streets
There’s a similar ethos at Tskinaboom, a battered little souvlaki joint I find the next day in the gritty, bar-crammed streets of Psiri. The neighbourhood used to be the go-to spot for kitchenware and cutlery, but today the family-run stores are mostly closed down, replaced with little bars and restaurants. Pasialis, a 100-year-old warren of flasks, clocks and every other household item you could hope to use, is still hanging on, its diverse contents spilling out onto the city streets. Nearby, perched on a rusty bistro table against a backdrop of neon graffiti, a guy tucks into kontosouvli – generous chunks of pork, spit-roasted over a charcoal grill and seasoned with salt, pepper, oregano and thyme. His dog, a wide-eyed staffie, lingers by his side, waiting for a taste. And who can blame him? I go for the rooster, which is bundled up with slices of tomato, onion, pickled cabbage and George, the
owner’s handmade yoghurt-mustard sauce. “Souvlatzidiko in Athens tend to specialise: the sauce, the yoghurt or the meat,” Carolina had told me at yesterday’s souvlaki session. “Here, the speciality is rooster.” It is, as expected, delicious. Sure, Athens isn’t an expensive city, but I’ve spent less than €15 eating not just some of the best souvlaki, but some of the most memorable dishes of my life. I think back to my conversation with Kleomenis at Hoocut. “Souvlaki is special. It deserves the same respect as a meal.” I can’t help but agree. One more can’t hurt. f
Wizz Air flies from Luton to Athens from £74, wizzair.com. Or try Aegean, British Airways, easyJet or Ryanair. For more information, visit discovergreece.com, and culinarybackstreets.com
DAILY GRIND: Growing Women in Coffee, a gender equality initiative, is providing women in Kenya with financial independence
In a special column, Fairtrade ambassador Tom Hunt heads to Kenya to see how a coffee-producing cooperative is giving female coffee farmers the chance to improve their livelihoods PHOTOGRAPHY BY CHRIS TERRY
’M SITTING IN a wooden meeting room at Kabnge’tuny coffee cooperative. It’s in the Kipkelion Hills, in Kericho County, due west of the Rift Valley in Kenya, and Zeddy Chepkemoi – a mother, coffee farmer and teacher – is describing her day. Dressed in a bright red and black polka-dot dress, Zeddy explains to us how she still gets up at 5am to prepare food for her family. Now, though, she has time to spend with her children – to make sure they get to school and can study and play afterwards. Zeddy tells us how most people still cook on open fires, describing how she, too, used to collect and chop firewood. This task takes three to four hours a day, even before lighting the fire and beginning to cook. She describes how collecting firewood each day also harms the environment and how it can be dangerous for women, who often have to go to protected woodland areas to collect wood. Women do the lion’s share of work in many indigenous cultures – looking after the children, cooking and household, often while working one or several jobs at the same time. In Kenya this is especially true: women do on average 70% of the farm labour. We are also told that men, according to tradition, own everything in Kenya, including the women, children, property and money. This inequality, poverty and financial mismanagement often leaves the family and especially the women and children destitute, without enough food to feed the family, or take the children to school. During my time here, though, I learn that the Kabnge’tuny cooperative is very much at the vanguard of positive change in Kenyan farming culture. In 2012, it launched a gender equality initiative called Growing Women in Coffee, alongside Fairtrade Africa, to give women ownership of their coffee bushes →
IN KENYA, WOMEN DO ON AVERAGE AROUND 70% OF THE FARM LABOUR 105
→ for the first time in history. In short, it’s changing the lives of not just the women, but the whole family. The local women’s new ownership of coffee bushes has brought so much pride and happiness – women are proving themselves to be better farmers and managers and are tripling coffee production and improving the quality of the coffee. This increase in income and more equal management of the family funds has brought stability and improved relationships, too. As part of the Growing Women in Coffee project, 296 biogas units have been installed into women’s homes, so they can cook at the flick of a switch. What seems like a simple change can save them hours each day, allowing them much-needed time to look after their family and their farms. The bio-gas units are installed between the house and cattle pen. Cow dung is mixed with water, and stored in an airtight container underground where it ferments and creates gas. This is then piped directly into the house/kitchen, plumbed into a gas stove which can be lit instantly. The benefits of this system are far reaching, improving the whole family’s health as they no longer have to breathe in the smoke from cooking on open fires. The manure left over (bio-slurry) from processing the biogas is a good fertiliser and reduces the need for chemical inputs on the farm. Biogas also means less trees need to be chopped down, helping to sequester more carbon, maintaining biodiversity and preventing erosion. Ownership of their coffee bushes has brought the local women much-needed financial independence. As Zeddy says, “Before we were left without a cent for the family. With nothing for food, clothing or even school fees. Becoming empowered is so good for us. Now we can sustain our families.” f
Each year for two weeks over February and March, Fairtrade puts a spotlight on trade through the Fairtrade Fortnight campaign. Together with the Fairtrade farmers and workers, and supporters up and down the country, Fairtrade ambassadors highlight the difference fair trading can make to lives and communities. For more information, visit fairtrade.org.uk
HELPING HANDS: For the first time ever, women in Kenya are being given ownership of their coffee bushes, a life-changing opportunity not just for them but their families too
Photograph by ###
On the Herefordshire-Worcestershire border, Jordan Kelly-Linden finds the definition of destination dining in the form of Pensons, a beautiful restaurant by Lee Wescott What’s the draw
Want to plan your own foodie adventure? Go to foodism.co.uk, where you’ll find loads of food and drink reviews, destination guides, ideas and more...
from the fires of its blacksmith Joel Black.
What to eat You’ve come a long way, so it’s only right that you go all out and indulge in the tasting menu. Dishes are driven by what’s in season, so we can’t tip you off on everything you can look forward to, but Wescott’s style of Michelin-baiting cooking does not disappoint. Standouts during our stay include a snowfall of Lancashire cheddar over a cep and potato tart with perfect, ready-tomelt pastry, and nutty Jerusalem
KEY INFO ◆◆ Address:
Netherwood Estate, Stoke Bliss, WR15 8RT
artichoke ice cream atop a pancake drenched in Netherwood Estate honey.
What else? Once you’ve made your way through Wescott’s offering, you’re going to want somewhere to lay your head. Just up the road, is The Hyde, a Grade II-listed medieval hall with an honesty bar, a hot tub and cosy nooks galore. The Hyde is available for exclusive use on weekends or by the room mid-week when you book dinner at Pensons. f A stay at The Hyde starts at £160pp; pensons.co.uk
◆◆ The Hyde sleeps 20 ◆◆ Getting there: the
Netherwood Estate is a three-hour drive from central London
Photograph by (dish) Patricia Niven; (dining room) John Carey
Kick the car into gear and prepare to enter a real-life episode of Escape to the Country, because Pensons – the latest outpost of the Typing Room’s former head chef Lee Wescott – is the kind of destination restaurant you’re never going to want to leave. Much on the menu has been foraged from the Netherwood Estate or picked from the kitchen garden behind the restored 15th-century barn that houses the restaurant. Even lampshades are made from willow cut from the estate and the walnut and recycled-steel knives are fresh
Who will you root for? The ‘Nation’s Favourite Organic’ Award VOTE NOW www.soilassociation.org/ BOOMawards
It’s not all about meat and whiskey for our columnist Richard H Turner – this month he’s been embracing wellness in Costa Rica, and it’s whetted his appetite for more
EGULAR READERS OF this column might recall that, in stark contrast to my usual meat- and-whiskey-loving persona, I’m a bit of a closet wellness junkie. After years of attending retreats like Kamalaya in Samui, Shambala in Bali and The Farm in the Philippines, I’ve developed a different approach to food and exercise, and alongside it an awakening to other meditative practices like yoga and even a return to martial arts. It’s had a snowball effect on my life and it’s an area of business I’m keen to explore. Which is why, in early March, I find myself on a recce of Costa Rica for Circle Haus, a new wellness retreat concept I’m involved in. Born out of a desire to encourage people to disconnect to reconnect, Circle Haus is a small collective that curates a select group of innovators and provides transformative experiences designed to foster self-discovery, inspire purposeful leadership and nurture personal intuition. As well as a holistic approach to health activities, such as sunrise yoga, meditation and sound-healing sessions – and yes even the martial arts – Circle Haus will host workshops taken by leading wellness practitioners and speakers from Fortune 500 companies. Our menus will be created from fresh local ingredients that energise body and mind and keep guests nourished, using carefully balanced recipes developed with the local cuisine in mind. Costa Rica boasts some really quite delicious food; fresh salads, tacos and ceviche, as well as some superb
Next day we drive to the beach town of Montezuma, where we catch a boat to nearby Isla Tortuga for a spot of scuba diving. Below the surface, whitetip reef sharks rest upon sandy banks next to the reef, and common rays and several species of sea turtle float by like otherworldly creatures. Octopus, langosta (a type of lobster), starfish, sea urchins, moray eels and puffer fish go about their business among the rocks. Afterwards, we crash on the beach with ice-cold beers and eat a simple scallop and oyster ceviche, thoughtfully supplied by a local fisherman from his boat pulled up on the sand. He opens the shells and washes the meat in sea water, before chopping and dressing with lime juice, onion and hot sauce. Served chilled, it’s light and fresh tasting – especially paired with the local Imperial beer I seem to be quaffing in some quantity – and just for a moment it takes the edge off the occasionally oppressive Central American heat. Costa Ricans traditionally use sea bass, red snapper or grouper, and at Product C Fish Market – a local bar and fishmonger manned by a pod of gnarly surf dudes – I eat exemplary ceviche made with a splash of ginger ale. This, it turns out, is a typical addition to the dish in Costa Rica, and the extra sweetness and the zing of the ginger really add something to the flavour. The local tacos are equally delicious and addictive, and I daydream about opening a live-fire taco bar on the beach, before remembering I’m supposed to be here to work. There’s still much to be done for Circle Haus, so it’s back to Santa Teresa to look at villas, recruit staff, film video and pose for a photoshoot. Who knew being a wellness junkie could be such bloody hard graft? f circlehaus.com
Photograph (Costa Rica) by Lena Wurm/Getty/iStock
SHORE THING: One of Costa Rica’s many beautiful beaches
beers and rums. This small Central American country also has some extremely progressive environmental policies. It is the only country to meet all five UNDP criteria established to measure environmental sustainability, with 98% of its electricity generated from green sources, and the government has committed to making the country carbon neutral by 2021. Due to its geographical position linking two large land masses, Costa Rica is also one of the most biodiverse countries in the entire world, containing more than 5% of the planet’s biodiversity while (with a total area of 51,100km2) only accounting for 0.03% of its surface. We fly into San Jose, or Chepe as it’s affectionately known, where we spend one night acclimatising: it’s only six hours behind GMT but the climate is warm and close. The following morning, after a breakfast of savoury tico beans, sweet plantain and eggs topped with pico de gallo and sour cream, all served with fresh tortilla chips, we head back to Juan Santa Maria Airport. Here we join a few more intrepid travellers heading west to Costa Rica’s Nicoya peninsula, on a singleprop plane operated by a small, carbonneutral domestic airline. We’re picked up on the other side by a 4x4, which takes a cross-country route through jungle and streams to Santa Teresa in Puntarenas Province; a small surf and yoga village, where zenned-out yogis wax their boards and surfers spend their mornings taming the powerful Pacific Ocean and their afternoons omm-ing to chilled-out tunes. On the beach, vultures pick at a washed-up sea turtle carcass, while surf boards rest against driftwood in the background. Nature, red in tooth and claw, is never far from sight here.
IT’S BEEN 5 YEARS SINCE WE MADE THE FIRST BOTTLE OF KARMA COLA. IN THAT TIME WE’VE MADE ANOTHER 3 GREAT TASTING, FAIRTRADE AND ORGANIC FIZZY DRINKS. WE CREATED 1 SUGAR FREE VERSION OF KARMA COLA. WE FORMED A COMPANY THAT’S GROWN TO 35 PEOPLE. WE’VE SOLD 12,000,000 OF OUR GOOD KARMA DRINKS IN 23 COUNTRIES. ALL THIS HAS ENABLED THE KARMA COLA FOUNDATION TO SUPPORT FARMING COMMUNITIES IN 8 VILLAGES IN SIERRA LEONE. WE’VE HELPED BUILD 1 BRIDGE. WE’VE PROVIDED BURSARIES FOR 75 GIRLS TO GO TO SCHOOL. WE’VE PAID 5 TEACHERS TO EDUCATE ANOTHER 265 CHILDREN EACH YEAR. WE’VE INVESTED IN 18 LOCAL ENTREPRENEURS TRADING THEIR WAY TO A BRIGHTER FUTURE. BUT THAT’S NOT ALL. WITH YOUR HELP THERE’S SO MUCH MORE WE CAN DO. PLEASE BUY OUR DRINKS AND SHARE OUR STORY. @karmacolauk karmacola.co.uk
— DESTINATION GUIDES —
THE WORLD ON YOUR PLATE IN ASSOCIATION WITH
Tailor made travels
HAYES & JARVIS Hayes & Jarvis has been creating bespoke holidays for more than 65 years, so it's safe to say they know what they're doing.
The team of experts work across more than 65 destinations worldwide, and can help you organise anything from a once-in-a-lifetime wildlife adventure to, of course, a delicious, food-focused getaway.
That's why we've enlisted Hayes & Jarvis to help us pull together guides to three of the world's best culinary destinations. For more information, call 01293 762404 or visit hayesandjarvis.co.uk
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A GREAT ESCAPE TO THE CAPE From whales to wines, South Africa makes for an utterly unmissable holiday. There's heaps to explore, but here are some of this incredible country's best bits...
F Photograph by (restaurant) SATourism
ROM ITS VIBRANT cities to the stunning coastline, South Africa ticks just about all the boxes for a holiday to remember – and it’s home to a brilliant food and wine scene, too. But with so much to do, how do you know where to start? Here are a few ideas for your holiday hit list...
Alfred Waterfront is home to more than 80 restaurants, 450 shops and more, making it the perfect place for an afternoon stroll. The Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa opened there last year, too – a must-visit to see the world’s largest collection of contemporary African art.
1. Visit the Cape Winelands
3. Table Mountain
The town of Stellenbosch lies at the heart of South Africa’s Cape Winelands, and it’s the place to visit vineyards and go on cellar tours, all set against a breathtaking mountain backdrop. With Cape Dutch buildings and oak treelined streets, it’s best explored on foot, stopping off at open-air restaurants and coffee-shops along the way.
There’s only one thing that trumps the iconic silhouette of Table Mountain, and that’s heading to its summit to take in the incredible views over Cape Town and the ocean. You can either take an aerial cableway to the top – or, if you’re feeling up to it, strike out on a day's hike.
2. Walk along the V&A Waterfront Cape Town’s revamped Victoria and
4. Boulders Beach Boulders Beach is home to soft white sand, warm water… and a famous penguin colony. You can amble down one
of three boardwalks, or go for a swim surrounded by penguins.
5. Whale watching To spot the incredible Southern Right whales in their breeding waters, head to the fishing village of Hermanus. You don’t even need to go out on a boat; a walk along the coastal cliffs makes for a good viewing point, too.
HOW TO BOOK YOUR HOLIDAY To experience the best of South Africa, book a bespoke trip with Hayes & Jarvis. Seven days from £2,159 per person. hayesandjarvis.co.uk
G O UR ME T
JA PA N
CULINARY COOL Japanese food is one of the most highly regarded cuisines on the planet. From tiny sushi joints to cookery classes, here's everything you need to know to truly discover it
APANESE CULTURE IS rich in tradition. Its vibrant cities are full of buzzing, relentless energy, so a tailormade itinerary is a great way to see everything you want to. Here are just a few of the highlights...
1. Take a Bento class in Kyoto A class will teach you (almost) everything you need to know about making sushi, tempura and miso soup – and you get to eat your creations after. For even more edible delights, you can visit the city's Nishiki Market, which is also known as 'Kyoto's Kitchen'.
2. Eat at Tsukiji fish market, Tokyo Tsukiji is the world's largest fish market, handling a whopping 2,888 tons of fresh fish and seafood each day. Its bustling stalls are a must visit, and, of course, it's
the place to eat super-fresh fish.
3. Explore Kyoto's temples Kyoto is home to beautiful shrines, temples and ornamental gardens, many of which are surrounded by stunning gardens. The Kiyomizu Temple – or pure water temple – has jaw-dropping views of Kyoto from its 13m-high veranda.
4. Visit Hakone The small town of Hakone is the gateway to Mount Fuji and its surrounding national park. It's also famous for its onsen, so you can kick back and relax after a day spent exploring.
5. Go shopping in Tokyo Tokyo is famous for shopping, and the place to go is Omotesando street, often referred to as the city's Champs-Elysées.
HOW TO BOOK YOUR HOLIDAY To experience the best of Japan, book a bespoke trip with Hayes & Jarvis. 12 days from £5,289 per person. hayesandjarvis.co.uk
PROMOTION V I E TN A M
C ULI N ARY
EXPERI EN CE
VIBRANT VIETNAM Vietnam boasts loads of local flavour – both when it comes to cooking and culture. From unique ingredients to cruises and floating villages, here's what not to miss
IETNAMESE INGREDIENTS AND cooking are so highly regarded that the country attracts top-level chefs from all around the world to discover its flavours. But there's plenty of culture to explore beyond the kitchen, too...
Natural Heritage site. Get a different perspective on its caves, islets, beaches and floating villages by heading out on an incredible overnight cruise.
1. Learn to cook pho
HCMC has loads of gorgeous French buildings, including the Gustav Eiffeldesigned Post Office and its own Notre Dame Cathedral.
Eaten for breakfast, the infamous pho noodle soup is one of Vietnam's bestknown dishes. Take a cookery class to learn how to recreate it at home.
2. Go on an overnight cruise Halong Bay is a UNESCO-listed World
3. Discover Ho Chi Minh City's French history
4. Visit a food market Visit the Chau Long Market in Hanoi and you'll learn about tradtional
Vietnamese produce, including ingredients like silk worms. This is a great place to take a cookery course, too – you can learn how to make green bean cake and prepare local fruits.
5. Explore Hue's beautiful tombs Hue's vast mausoleums are one of a kind. The tombs were constructed while the king was still alive to ensure his comfort in the next life, and they often have courtyards, temples, statues Tailor made travels and ponds. ●
HOW TO BOOK YOUR HOLIDAY To experience the best of Vietnam, book a bespoke trip with Hayes & Jarvis. Nine days from £2,279 per person. hayesandjarvis.co.uk
Hungry to get your taste buds around a new city? The Czech capital of Prague ticks all the getaway boxes, writes Mike Gibson. Here’s where to eat, drink and stay EAT
Forget the sleek interiors, forget the storied career of executive chef Marek Šáda, forget the seasonal Czech tasting menu complete with the likes of Prague-cured ham, sevenhour-cooked duck leg confit and apple tart. Why, you ask? Because fine-dining restaurant Mlýnec occupies just about the most picturesque of spots in central Prague: it sits directly over the Vltava River, and has a frontline view of the Charles Bridge from its vast panoramic windows. Novotného lávka 9, 110 00 Staré Město; mlynec.cz
CZECH THIS OUT: [clockwise from top] You’ll find a sophisticated, modern take on Czech cooking at Mlynec; Manifesto market is street food at its finest
Tempo Allegro For something a little more relaxed, try out Tempo Allegro. Based on a long street right next to the river, it’s a beautiful little oasis of calm in amongst the occasional revelry of the Old Town at night. The vibe here is Italian small plates and carefully sourced wine, so expect beautiful cold cuts, sliced to order; loads of interesting Italian cheeses; and a few pizzetti and hot dishes, too. While it leans Italian, there’s a fair bit of Czech wine and food as well, and service is friendly as you like. Karoliny Světlé 283/24, 110 00 Staré Město; tempoallegro.cz
If street food is high on your priority list when you go to a new city (and quite frankly, why wouldn’t it be?), Manifesto is a must. While Prague’s got loads of old-style European markets – especially during the winter months – Manifesto is definitely in the new-school model. Think a more compact version of Canada Water’s Hawker House, with a host of bars serving decently priced beer, wine and cocktails, and a great line-up of food traders dishing up restaurant-quality dishes. Highlights on our visit were a lobster roll from fresher-than-fresh seafood hawker Ryba je Ryba and gorgeous fries with hot homemade mayonnaise from Fæncy Fries. Na Florenci, 110 00 Prague-Nové Město; manifesto.city
On a quiet street near the Vltava river is one of the best drinking dens in the city. Hemingway Bar, named for the author and bon vivant it’s inspired by, has been in and around the World’s 50 Best Bars for years since it opened, and a couple of cocktails here will show why. We tucked into the Champs-Elysées No. 3, a drink built around coconut butter-infused Ron Zacapa 23, Frangelico and PX sherry with balsamic vinegar wash and a little coconut macaron on the side. And if that’s not enough of a ‘London cocktail bar’ vibe for you, there was even a collaborative menu with Hackney bar Scout on the menu on our visit. Karolíny Světlé 26, 110 00 Staré Město;
PRAISING THE BAR: Hemingway Bar has won accolades for its inventive drinks since it opened; [inset] rest your weary head at The Emblem
Dandy A little further out from the hustle and bustle of the Old Town – up the Václavské námesti road, past Wenceslas Square and a few banking buildings – and you start to hit the neighbourhood of Vinohrady, a pocket of great restaurants and bars in a noticeably less touristy area of the city. At Dandy – a gaudy, neon-drenched, LGBTQ-friendly cocktail den off a side street – you’ll find great drinks (try the Vegan Grindr, with Buffalo Trace, Luxardo, Laphroaig whisky and Punt e Mes vermouth) and an atmosphere that’s a world away from both the boisterous pubs of the Old Town and the intimacy of Hemingway Bar. Anny Letenské 936/18, 120 00 Vinohrady; dandyprague.com
Not far from Hemingway and Tempo Allegro is the Prague Beer Museum. “Museum” is a stretch, given that this is essentially just a mediumsized pub, but it does have one of the best beer menus in the city. As well as the range of pilsners you’d expect from a Czech beer emporium, there’s also a massive, diverse list of traditional and contemporary brews from some country’s best brewers. And don’t give in to thinking that a big list means loads more money – most of the beers on offer here are only a few cents more than a big old glass of Pilsner Urquell from the innumerable cafés littered around the Old Town. Sorted. Smetanovo nábř. 205/22, 110 00 Staré Město; praguebeermuseum.cz
If you want a little slice of contemporary Prague slap bang in the middle of the Old Town, give The Emblem a go. Located on a quiet street a two-minute walk from the clock tower in the city’s central square, this slick design hotel is packed to the rafters with artwork and furniture from local makers and designers. On the roof, you’ll find a spa and gym, while downstairs you’ll find one of the Czech
capital’s finest steakhouses to boot. Platnéřská 111/19, 111 00 Staré Město. Rooms from £158 per night; emblemprague.com
GETTING THERE British Airways flies direct to Prague from Heathrow and Gatwick from £75 return. britishairways.com
Tailor made travels
SEASONED TRAVEL Got an appetite for travel? Well, you've turned to the right place. Luxury holiday providers Kenwood Travel have enough on offer to fuel even the hungriest travellers
HEN THE WORLD is your oyster choosing the right kind of holiday for your taste in travel can be tricky stuff. Hard decisions are to be made: do you go full-blown Castaway, cash in on the bounty of a buzzing beachfront or join the city slickers in a super-stylish edge-of-the-city resort? Then there’s the food. If, like us, your appetite for travel is driven by… Well, your appetite, then there’s all the great food and drink you could be snaffling at your destination of choice to consider.
Tough, mind-over-matter decisions have to be made. Except, that is, when it comes to holidaying with Kenwood Travel. For more than 40 years, the brand has been behind some of the best escapes in the business. It's mastered the balance between luxurious food and travel holidays, and now it's here to show you a whole world of experiences you never knew existed. We hope you've packed an appetite, because a whole host of new drinking and dining opportunities awaits...
KENWOOD TRAVEL IS BEHIND SOME OF THE BEST LUXURIOUS ESCAPES IN THE BUSINESS
HOW TO BOOK Get yourself a luxuriously large slice of the action by visiting kenwoodtravel.co.uk, where you can peruse a whole world of holiday resorts putting food, travel and positive change at the heart of their operations. Or you can call 020 7749 9220 to book your next destination. Whichever way you do it, know that Kenwood Travel has options for every traveller's appetite – no matter how big or small they may be.
LEFT: Dubai in full view from Fairmont The Palm resort; blissful scenes at Saadiyat Rotana Resort & Villas; stellar sunsets over the Aleenta Phuket Resort & Spa in Thailand
Here are five incredible resorts and destinations for your next holiday:
Fairmont The Palm, Dubai Take a flavour-fuelled journey around the world without leaving the luxurious confines of the Fairmont resort (located on the Palm Jumeirah) with all 10 of the hotel's drinking and dining options.
SALT of Palmar, Mauritius This gorgeous Indian Ocean resort is known as the 'home-grown hotel with huge heart' thanks to its on-site farm. Talk about being field-to-plate, huh?
Saadiyat Rotana Resort & Villas, Abu Dhabi
Photograph by (main) Paul Thuysbaert; (Aleenta Phuket) AndoShah+LightWorx
With seven different dining destinations on offer, this lux hotel on the stunning Saadiyat Beach is a hard one to beat when it comes to food-fuelled travels.
Aleenta Phuket Resort & Spa, Thailand Nothing beats freshly prepared Thai food, but the best part about Aleenta is the chance to indulge in a spot of private dining in one of Thailand's most scenic areas. Get us to Phuket, stat.
Grenada The beautiful Caribbean Island of Grenada is famously known as the Spice Isle, and it’s home to a melting pot of culinary cultures. Enjoy an authentic Caribbean stay at one of Kenwood Travel’s eight resorts, from family friendly getaways to adult-only luxury. ●
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THE SELECTOR Winter’s behind us, April’s almost here, and a season of serious eating awaits, from dog-friendly coffee shops to London’s best Lebanese joints, BYO restaurants and some super supper clubs
E DON’T KNOW the exact science behind it, but we’re sure that caffeine and canines are a foolproof recipe for happiness. Who, after all, has ever encountered a cute pup and an excellent cup of coffee and not felt that soaring elation from the kind of dopamine rush that can only be achieved when two things meet in perfect harmony? Not us, for sure – unless, that is, you count honorary
foodism assistant and pastry-stealing menace Parker Slee. Then we might be inclined to agree. That, or ready to drown our pastry-related sorrows in an ocean of hummus and baba ghanoush at one of London’s best Lebanese restaurants. Or laugh away the pain at one of the city’s superlative supper clubs. Or grab a bottle and round up some mates for a trip to one of London’s best BYO restaurants. The choice is, er, ours.
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owner of Union Canal and Deli in West London
POOCHIN’ ABOUT 1 Watch House Coffee Various locations
You can always catch at least one or two good boys pottering around Watch House Coffee. This coffee house and café has welcomed dogs since day one. There’s free dog biscuits for your furry friends and some of the best floofs make their way onto the Watch House Coffee Instagram, but to really get a feel for how lovely this pooch-friendly spot is then we’d thoroughly recommend popping down to one of its three central London cafés. If you’re after a bite to eat, then the Tower Bridge café is your best bet. 020 7407 6431; thewatchhouse.com
Photograph by (Watch House) Zsuzsa Zicho; (Burr & Co) Tom Mannion
Our guide to London’s best and brightest speciality cafés, where caffeine and canines go side-by-side
“We have doubled in size in the past two years and we needed a system that would help us grow the business, while also maintaining very high levels of service and quality.”
BEST OF THE REST 2 Abuelo
4 The Gentlemen Baristas
26 Southampton Street, WC2E 7RS
Mother-daughter duo Lynette and Cloe de la Vega opened Abuelo in Covent Garden last year, and their Groodle Annie (aka assistant brand manager) is an important part of the team. This friendly golden retriever/ poodle-cross can be spotted hanging out at the Antipodean café taking in the sights and smells of all the Aussie brunch dishes and freshly roasted, South American arabica beans. Pats are encouraged and other dogs are, apparently, welcome to join in on the people watching, too.
Some people are cat people, some are dog people, and some – like the Gentlemen Baristas – are both. Their Shadwell roastery is home to Beanie, a well-mannered puss who lends a helping hand by taking long naps on the empty burlap sacks and keeping owners Ed Parkes and Henry Ayers company while they call in their beans from as far and wide as Honduras and Nicaragua. Head to one of their many cafés, however, and you’ll spot many a friendly dog hanging around overseeing proceedings, too.
020 7836 8476; abuelocafe.co.uk
3 Burr & Co
5 Ozone Coffee
Russell Square, WC1B 5BE
11 Leonard Street, EC2A 4AQ
Finance Director for Deliciously Ella
The doors of this bright and breezy sundrenched café are open to all – even your furry friends. With Caravan Coffee behind the bar and wine on tap, this Bloomsbury café makes the transition from weekday work space (with free wifi, no less) to late night small-plate spot seem effortless. Plus, should your pup need to stretch its legs, the grassy expanse of Russell Square is no more than a short trot over the road.
If dogs really are our best friends, this East London roastery and coffee bar has been widening its social circle since 2018. Ozone can’t claim to have a resident doggo, but Pushkin the basset hound has visited most days since he was a pup and that’s close enough. Ozone also roasts all its own coffee, and its food is created with sustainability in mind – think seasonal ingredients, fermented veg and produce from social enterprises.
020 7520 1808; theburrandco.co.uk
020 7490 1039; ozonecoffee.co.uk
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BEST OF THE REST 2 Al Waha
75 Westbourne Grove, W2 4UL
70 Mitcham Road, SW17 9NA
Al Waha literally translates to mean ‘the oasis’ – which, if you’ve recently found yourself in a bit of a food desert, is rather fitting. Open from noon till 11pm every day of the week, Al Waha is chef and owner Mohammad Bader-Alden Antabil’s ode to Lebanese cuisine. The express set lunch menu that runs till 5pm is a great way to taste a range of the region’s finest food. Available for £13.50 per person, it’s also an absolute bargain considering the quality of the spread.
Meza rather unsurprisingly specialises in meza (or mezze). So, stop buying those sad little pots of reduced-fat hummus and make your way to Tooting for an arsenal of Lebanese small plates that will put even the most doting teta to shame. Baths of hummus, labneh and moutabel are so soft you’ll want to slather them on just about everything, while tart salads of fattoush and tabbouleh provide the perfect hit of acid and sumac to cut through all that creaminess.
020 7229 0806; alwaharestaurant.com
020 8672 2131; mezarestaurant.com
76 Jason Court, W1U 2SJ
6-8 Kenway Road, SW5 0RR
Take a short detour from the tourist-laden Oxford Circus and you’ll find yourself a little slice of Lebanon on Wigmore Street. Levant’s signature feast menus are an affordable way to eat your way through the flavours of Beirut. Bring mates: here, it’s all about the shared experience of enjoying the food you love with those you hold most dear. Followed, of course, by a bitter fight to the death over the last piece of lamb kofta.
Orjowan is a family-run restaurant that knows how to make sure you have a good time. Even if your pathetic spice threshold means you usually tap out around lemon and herb, you’ll be well catered for thanks to the restaurant’s welcoming mix of milder and spicier menu items. It’s difficult to fault: how badly can things go wrong at a place where a vast selection of Lebanese wines and a karaoke lounge are both within such easy reach?
020 7224 111; levant.co.uk
020 7118 9595; orjowan.co.uk
LEBANESE-Y DOES IT There’s much more to Lebanese food than latenight shawarma. Here are some of the best venues for this vibrant Middle Eastern cuisine
1 Abd el Wahab 1-3 Pont Street, SW1X 9EJ
Abd el Wahab, which originated on a street of the same name in Lebanon’s capital of Beirut, is all about Middle Eastern feasting: expect bountiful mezze, grilled meat and a lengthy list of Lebanese wines. You’d be a fool not to get the lamb shank ouzi somewhere near your table: tender lamb meets parsley and allspice, while the accompanying rice is lifted with toasted pistachio and almond. This isn’t complex or purposefully fancy dining, it’s straight-up Arabic comfort food – the kind of cuisine that you can eat in spades. 020 7235 0005: ghiaholding.com
1 The Waterhouse Project 67 Vyner Street, E2 9DQ
LET’S GET SOCIAL From food and film to dinner in an East London furniture shop – here are some of London’s coolest supper clubs. Hungry? Draw up a chair and tuck in
Fine dining with none of the usual stuffy attitude (or hefty price tag), The Waterhouse Project is a sociable, monthly supper club in East London. It’s headed up by Gabriel Waterhouse, a philosophy graduate turned chef who’s has made his way around a fair few of London’s Michelin-starred kitchens, including the three-star kitchen of Herbert Berger at Innholders Hall and the one-starred kitchen at Galvin La Chapelle. All things considered, £75 for an all-in, eight-course tasting menu with paired wines ain’t a bad deal, especially considering all the old-school Dock Kitchen vibes you’ll be inundated with in the stylish but laid-back setting of the Bert & May showroom on Vyner Street. thewaterhouseproject.com
BEST OF THE REST
Photograph by (Abd el Wahah) Elie Abi Hanna; (Mam Sham) Riya Hollings
2 Fat Macy’s
4 Mam Sham
This isn’t any old supper club: Fat Macy’s is also a social enterprise working to help young Londoners find their feet, and has spent the last three years dishing up incredible food with an equally incredible mission. It trains up aspiring chefs, giving them the life skills and qualifications to move from hostels to homes. Each supper club consists of a threecourse meal designed by the trainee chef of the night, so they get hands-on experience, too. This truly is dining with a difference.
Maria K-Georgiou and Rhiannon Butler – the duo behind cult supper club Mam Sham – are queen s of the immersive dining scene. The supper club’s tagline is ‘good grub and lols’, and while that might seem mercilessly millennial, it’s certainly no lie. Each event sees Mam Sham team up with a chef (and often a charity partner) to deliver a bold and boozy banquet that could end up with guests doing anything from laughing along to standup comedy to dancing on the tables with a glitter-fuelled drag act.
3 Malaysian Nyonya Supper Club Various locations
Another day goes by, another banker leaves the City to make the leap into the world of food. Guan Leong Chua – a one-time finance analyst turned Le Cordon Bleu-trained chef – is cut from the same cloth: Chua is the host of the popular Malaysian-Nyonya Supper Club. Held at pop-up venues or in Chua’s house near Aldgate East, his supper clubs are friendly affairs, with a BYOB policy, and all the food is inspired by his Chinese and Malay heritage with twists influenced by his classical training at the iconic cookery school. theboywhoatetheworld.com
5 Local Heroes Various locations
Did you know that foodism has its own supper club? Well, you do now. Local Heroes is a roving supper club which launches in April. The first sitting will be held at foodism HQ in Battersea, where Social Pantry will be serving delicious dishes made from produce sourced from local businesses such as Bad Boys Bakery and Growing Underground, and the veg will be ‘seconds’ provided by Natoora. Don’t miss out, join us and our local heroes for the first of many nights to remember. foodism.co.uk/events
1 Tayyabs 83-89 Fieldgate Street, E1 1JU
Tayyabs – a Punjabi restaurant that’s been feeding Whitechapel locals and away-day hipsters since 1972 – is not only exceptional value for money, but exceptional fun, too. Order enough curry, grilled meat and naan bread to fell a fully-grown shire horse and you’ll have the makings of a real good night on your hands. The service is wonderfully awful and no corkage fee means any trip to Tayyabs is an inevitably messy affair. But, honestly? We wouldn’t have it any other way. 020 7247 9543; tayyabs.co.uk
JUST BRING IT These quintessential BYO restaurants make for a great (and cheap) night out if you can navigate the corkage conundrum
BEST OF THE REST 2 Hawksmoor
209 Westbourne Park Road, W11 1EA
Hawksmoor is a far-cry from your typical BYOB establishment – mainly because it’s not that sort of place 90% of the time. Come Monday, however, you can find Hawksmoor’s wine club running at all of its London restaurants. Corkage will set you back a mere £5, so get that meaty Bordeaux out of the rack and give it a worthy dinner companion in the form of a juicy bone-in rib-eye.
Providing even more value for money on top of the reasonably priced three-course ‘Spontaneous Lunch Menu’ (a snip at £39), Emily Roux and Diego Ferrari’s Caractère has introduced a BYO offer on Tuesday and Wednesday lunchtimes. Simply bring your favourite bottle from home to go along with your lovely weekday lunch for a corkage of £10 per bottle or £20 per magnum.
117 Benwell Road, N7 7BW
5 KaoSarn Holloway Road
Toeing the line between cramped and cosy, this tidy little Chinese restaurant specialises in Shan Xi street food and serves what are likely the best hand-pulled noodles in London. Be warned: it’s cash only and they don’t take reservations. But, with £4.50 corkage and an atmosphere that borders on the aggressively familial, once you’re inside the premises, you won’t ever want to leave.
The generously portioned dishes at KaoSarn’s three London restaurants are exactly the kind that you’d fight for first dibs over at the dinner table. The ability to ordered an entire fried sea bass as you drink a six-pack of cold ones brought straight from your own home? Priceless. The charge for bringing those beverage? Also priceless. As in, there isn’t any extra cost. Get yourself down to KaoSarn. Stat.
020 3441 0191; xianimpression.co.uk
Photograph by (Hawksmoor) Piotr Kowalczyk
3 Xi’an Impression
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ART-BREAKER: Artichokes were once thought to boast aphrodisiac properties, and as late as the 16th Century many women across the globe were prohibited from eating them – in case, you know, they became too ‘hysterical’…
GOLDEN GLOBE: In 1947 Marilyn Monroe (known then as Norma Jean) was crowned Artichoke Queen in the town of Castroville, the self-styled Artichoke Capital of the World.
LEAF IT OUT: Cynar, the popular Italian bitter liqueur that’s most often enjoyed mixed with soda with a fresh slice of orange to garnish, is made from 13 different herbs and plants, but the main ingredient in the liqueur is the leaves of the artichoke plant.
by ### Photograph byPhotograph Bruce Block/Getty
An artichoke – much like your loveable but immature housemate – is technically a flower bud that has not yet bloomed. Unlike your housemate, however, artichokes always taste utterly delicious steamed and then dipped in thick, extra salty butter…
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A SMOOTH CRISP TASTE OF THE MEDITERRANEAN SUN
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Foodism Magazine - Issue 32 - The Coffee Issue