22
May

dinings-scallop chip copy

So, I went back to Dinings again for lunch today and I have to say it was not as perfect as yesterday. I am not sure why. Perhaps it was because my brother wasn’t so impressed. He prefers Defune and was slightly annoyed that we hadn’t gone there — he is a little bit of a traditionalist as far as Japanese food goes and we have been going to Defune for nearly 40 years. At least I have. He came to London a few years after me. Anyhow, we still enjoyed our lunch and I will definitely go back although not in a hurry as it is not quite the cheapest place in town. Here are a few snaps of what we ate. Yet again, I failed to snap my toro hand roll. I am always in a hurry to eat these before the nori goes soggy. I will make sure to snap it next time!

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22
May

fatty tuna chips copy

It has taken me years to get there but I finally did, and yesterday I had lunch at Dinings after a diabolical 5 hour delay flying back from Houston which meant I had to go there straight from the airport. But given its location off the Edgware Road, it was no big deal –  a super fast ride to Paddington on the Heathrow express then one station on the tube to Edgware Rd. And I loved my lunch so much that I am going back today with my brother to try the rest of the menu! Of all that I had yesterday my favourites were the fatty tuna chips above, the eel (unagi) with sautéed foie gras, the seaweed salad and the very unusual black sesame dessert (all below) not to mention the prawn tempura hand rolls which I greedily ate before remembering to snap them. Everything was so pretty to look at, which is not surprising in a Japanese restaurant and supremely delicious. Can’t wait till lunchtime when hopefully I will remember to take a few more snaps to either add here or to a new post!

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4
May

agape substance-mushrooms copy

Every now and then I go to a restaurant which I adore. It happened at Noma last summer and at Dabbous this winter. And yesterday, it happened again at Agapé Substance. A tiny space decorated with perfect taste including the most beautiful bouquets of strips of wood from Vacherin boxes. As for the cooking, it is meticulous without being prissy with fabulous ingredients and perfect seasoning. Some have described the chef, David Toutain, as a culinary genius and I have to say I totally agree. He is exceptionally talented and supremely creative. If you are visiting Paris, you have to eat there. I am only sorry we didn’t take my group on the culinary weekend with Francois Simon but we had an amazing degustation dinner at le Comptoir and another cooked by the great critic himself. So, we didn’t do too badly.

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4
Apr

dabbous-beautiful tartare copy 2

When Fay told me to go to Dabbous before it became impossible to book a table, I listened to her and went with Francois Simon who was visiting London for a reportage. It was a total revelation. Ollie Dabbous’ cooking is just brilliant. Elegant without being pretentious. Fussy without being irritating and perfectly exquisite. And not expensive which is a miracle given the level of excellence. And of course Fay was right. It is now impossible to get a table except for weeks or even months ahead which is too bad as I would love to eat there on a regular basis!

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