Category Archives: London

Union Street Cafe, Southwark

For my work leaving lunch recently we decided to check out Union Street Cafe in Southwark. Conveniently it was just a short walk away from our office and it had been on my list to vision for a while. Union Street Cafe, by Gordon Ramsay, opened about a year ago and has an Italian inspired menu that changes daily.  I loved the warehouse/chic industrial fit out and feel of the place. Modern but cosy at the same time. I know this style of design is super trendy these days and all seen all over the London restaurant scene, but I am definitely not sick of it just yet.

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Because it was my leaving lunch and my last day at work we decided it was definitely appropriate to order a bottle of wine (or two) to enjoy. The menu looks very pretty as it’s all scribbled in this lovely hand-written font, but it does make it a little hard to read. Anyway, the menu is definitely more Italian then Mediterranean (as they describe it on their website) with sections like Antipasti, Primi and Secondi. They have a set lunch menu that offers two courses for £19 or three courses for £25 – or you can order a la carte.

Once the orders were placed we were served white and brown sliced bread. It was still warm and came with a dipping dish of super delicious olive oil. So so good, we devoured this in seconds; I am such a sucker for warm bread!

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I got a starter of ‘Porcini fritti with parmesan fonduta and hazelnut pesto’ which basically was pan fried mushrooms which was simple but tasty.

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A lot of us on the table ordered the ‘Ravioli of beetroot, ricotta, raddicchio with 4 years aged balsamic’ which was gorgeously presented and very good – only not a very big portion. I got the ‘Risotto with italian veal sausage and taleggio’. It was rich and creamy and went down a treat (even after all that bread). Not sure I was that wowed by the presentation of it, just blobbed onto a big plate like that but it did taste good.

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After finishing our lunch we decided to order some more wine – just to procrestinate on having to return to the office haha. Which meant by the time we did actually return (uhhh 4pm) we were rather tipsy. But as it was my last day it didn’t really matter anyway!

I enjoyed Union Street Cafe, I think it’s perfect for a work lunch or group dinner. The service was friendly and efficient and the food good. It’s nothing new and exciting but it’s a nice place to visit if you’re in the area. There’s also a bar in the basement which looked very cool and would be a great spot for after work cocktails or to hire out for a birthday party.

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I also took a sneaky outfit selfie in the bathrooms! Wearing: H&M leather mini skirt & ZARA silk tunic top. You can’t beat a simple black on black outfit sometimes.

Union Street Cafe
On the Corner of Great Suffolk Street & Union Street
47-51 Great Suffolk Street
London SE1 0BS
www.gordonramsay.com/union-street-cafe

  
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Brunch – Grind Coffee Bar Putney

Grind Coffee Bar in Putney had been on my brunch to-visit-list for a long time. Many of my (SW London) friends had raved about it, plus it’s kiwi (as in NZ) owned so that pretty much means it’s guaranteed to have great coffee and delicious food! ;)

Originally a coffee cart outside a music shop in Putney, they soon became overrun with customers lining up for their excellent coffees  so they decided to move into permanent premises in Putney and open a full cafe which has become a popular local favourite (meaning it gets busy, so get there early..)

I finally went to Grind Coffee Bar recently with a friend, who lives in Putney, for a long overdue chat over coffee and brunch – my favourite kind of catch-up’s!

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We got there around 11am on a Saturday morning and the place was buzzing with people. The coffee bar from the counter proved popular (they roast their own coffee at Grind) and there was a small line to get a table but the staff was efficient and friendly so we only waited for about 15 minutes before we got seated. I loved seeing the NZ memorabilia bits and bobs around the cafe – L&P, Pineapple Lumps…ahhh brought back a lot of memories from my years living in New Zealand. Anyway back to brunch, we ordered some tea and coffees while we explored the menu. And yes – they lived up to their reputation – great coffee!

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For brunch I decided on Poached Eggs on Sourdough with a side of Avocado and Chorizo. My friend Georgie had Scrambled Eggs on Focaccia bread with a side of Mushrooms. You feeling hungry yet?

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The eggs were great (runny yolk yummm) and the was chorizo crispy and super tasty. The avocado side at Grind Coffee Bar is mixed with cucumber and I think poppy seeds. It was nice but think I prefer my avocado plain or with chilli – but hey that’s just my personal preference.

We demolished this breakfast and finished up brunch with some more tea. Actually I have one tip for Grind; add fresh mint tea to your menu – peppermint tea just doesn’t cut it for me. Sorry I must sound like such a tea snob haha.

I’ve been back to Grind since my first visit and had the scrambled eggs which were absolutely winning and think their lunch menu also looks rather appealing, think Rainbow Superfood Salad, Ricotta Bake and Hummus and Haloumi Wrap or the Grind Beef Burger if you’re feeling a bit more naughty!

Have you been to Grind Coffee Bar yet? I recommend a visit and afterwards go for a walk along the Putney Towpath (to burn those brunch calories…)

Grind Coffee Bar Putney
79 Lower Richmond Road
Putney, London, SW15 1ET
www.grindcoffeelondon.com
Insta: @grindcoffeebar
Twitter: @grindcoffeebar

  
Leave a comment | Posted in Brunch, Food, Lifestyle, London, Restaurants

Swingers – A crazy golf club

Looking for something different to do on a night out in London? Fun going-out places where you can play ping pong, bowling, sing karaoke or go roller skating seem to be all the rage in London these days. And this winter there’s another fun option for you fun people out there; crazy golf!

Located in a 7,000 sq ft warehouse, Swingers London opened this month in the heart of Shoreditch and it contains a 9-hole crazy golf course plus two cocktail drenched Clubhouse bars, and a diner serving street-food from some of London’s most exciting vendors.

Me and a friend decided to check out this funky new hang out in London last week for a game of crazy golf, a few drinks and hopefully plenty of laughs.  Swingers is hidden away in a little street between Liverpool St and Shoreditch station and after trying to navigate our way there on a wet and windy evening we were glad to step inside the warehouse finding a warm, cozy and buzzling mini golf course!

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First up – drinks at the bar! At Swingers they have a DJ playing tunes every night until 12.30am to get you pumped plus a constantly rotating roster of street vendors to fuel your tummy before or after a game of crazy golf. We got some wines from the bar, and after a quick catch up headed to the start of the course to collect our score card and golf clubs.

The course itself – a sporting paradise of wood and plants will take around 45 minutes to complete and includes water features; extreme dog legs; tunnels; a bridge; a loop-the-loop; plus marshalls on hand to deliver you drinks (and give you handy tips) on the course. GAME ON!

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We had such a laugh making our way around the course, some holes going better than others. Overall we were both pretty happy with our scores; Me 29 – Chrissy 32. But really it wasn’t a competition (I won, I won!!) Sorry the competitiveness in me sneaked out for a second there haha ;) After the crazy golf ‘work-out’ we felt pretty hungry so we decided to check out the street vendors on offer that night; When Mac Met Cheese and Pizza Pilgrims.

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Pizza Pilgrims won and we ordered the Portobello+Truffle and Nduja pizzas, made fresh from their small street van complete with pizza oven! Can we have some extra truffle oil with that please, ooooommmmggggg…

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Best pizzas I’ve tasted in a little while! Aside from their street vans, which can often be found at food markets and festivals, Pizza Pilgrims also have two restaurants near Soho. I’ve been to the one on Dean Street and can definitely recommend a visit!

We had a great night at Swingers and I also think it would be a perfect place to go on a date; have a few drinks, enjoy some delicious food and play crazy golf to break any possible date awkwardness (plus it gives the guy, or you for that matter, a chance to show off his sporting abilities haha).

There are two ways to buy tickets for Swingers:
1. Advance golf tickets – which you can buy online £10 // These tickets allow you to buy your entry (£3) and golf (£8) in advance and get a £1 early-bird discount!
2. Ground passes – which can buy in advance online, or on the night £3 // Swingers isn’t just for people who want to play crazy-golf. You can come to soak up the fun atmospthere, for good times and yummy food, plus if you change your mind or get tempted by the course, they do hold back golf tickets every night for walk-ups.
For more detailed booking information click HERE.

Swingers
7-11 Hearn Street (Off Curtain Road)
London EC2A 3LS
http://swingersldn.co.uk
Twitter: @SwingersLDN

Swingers will be around for just three months (until the 20th December) and is open Wednesday to Saturday from 6pm until 12.30am. So book now to ensure you don’t miss out!

  
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Lucky 7 Diner in Notting Hill

Burgers are quite the it concept in the restaurant and foodie industry at the moment. Diners, burger joints and street stalls have pretty much popped up all over London in the last few years. However one burger place that’s had a cult following for years is the Lucky 7 Diner in Notting Hill.

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Lucky 7 Diner part of Tom Conran’s restaurant empire, with the others being Crazy Homies (one of my favourite mexican places), gastropub The Cow and Tom’s Deli – all of which are located in Notting Hill. Lucky 7 is a great little diner that’s actually very authentic to how they are in the USA. It’s pretty tiny and only has 6 booths, each seats around 4-6 so that means you will need to share if you are 2 or 3 people. They are known for their great American- style breakfasts (by that I mean delicious pancakes and huevos rancheros) plus their kick-ass 100% Aberdeen Angus Burgers!

Here some pictures from a recent (late night) visit to Lucky 7 after a few too many drinks at the Westbourne! We’d had a friends leaving drinks at the pub and decided we really needed food and by that I mean of the greasy kind ;) I got the Kalifornian Burger which comes with bacon, cheese, roasted tomato and sour cream. Plus lots of sweet potato fries of course. And ohmigosh it definitely hit the spot….

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Oh and while you’re there,  definitely do check out their milkshakes, which can also be ordered “super thick’ and with extras such as peanut butter and oreo cookies blitzed in!! Ahhh dreaming of a peanut butter milkshake now, damn ;)

Lucky 7 Diner is a proper American looking and tasting  diner in the heart of Notting Hill and I recommend a visit for either breakfast and/or dinner! Plus it is conveniently situated right next to Crazy Homies. So after you finish your burger, you can stop by next door for some super strong margaritas?

Lucky 7 Diner
127 Westbourne Park Road
London, W2 5QL
Phone: 020 7727 6771
www.lucky7london.co.uk

  
1 Comment | Posted in Food, Lifestyle, London, Restaurants

Brunch at Daisy Green, Marble Arch London

I recently discovered a great new brunch spot in London – Daisy Green in Marble Arch! This quirky little cafe was recommended to me by a friend of mine. And it turns out that quite a few of my friends actually know the Aussie born owner Prue Freeman. Prue gave up her legal career to follow her foodie dreams to set up Daisy Green. I truly admire that kind of courage, because really it’s secretly my dream too – to one day open my own cafe….

She actually started Daisy Green originally in a 1975 Ford Transit called “Pinky”, selling frozen yogurt on the streets of London & at festivals and events. But now she’s got a great cafe in Portman Village / Marble Arch, plus also a smaller versions called ‘Beany Green‘ serving artisan coffee and treats from funky ‘hole in the wall’ locations based in Paddington/Little Venice and Southbank.  In her cafes Prue’s aim is to bring quality, health, personality and love to the streets of London.

This weekend after our Saturday morning Running Club session we all made our way to Daisy Green for a post-exercise brunch. I love the quirky design and features of the cafe – it definitely looks like a happy place don’t you think?

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We started with coffee and juices while we all tried to decide what to order from the Aussie Brunch menu – I mean it all sounded so damn delicious. And while we waited for our food to arrive, some of us just couldn’t resist entertaining joking around with the wwabbit head in the cafe! ;)

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OK enough silliness…..Let’s eat brunch shall we?

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Some of the dishes that we ordered: AVOCADO w labne & lime on dark rye + with an added poached egg (that was me, an easy guess right?) // Broccoli and corn fritters with avocado and a poached egg // The summer salad with quinoa, samphire, cucumber, sun blushed tomatoes, avocado and seeds + with added bacon and a poached egg // two organic free range eggs (poached in this cafe) with tomato on sourdough + side of avocado and bacon.

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Other dishes on the menu I will have to try next time at Daisy Green are the Shakshouka baked eggs (PS: check out my two of my personal winning baked egg recipes HERE and HERE) and the homemade Maple granola w thick yogurt, seasonal fruits & coconut flakes – yummy!

Daisy Green is also known for it’s own homemade Banana Bread so we couldn’t resist also ordering ‘Marco’s Famous Banana Bread Sandwich’ to share. Think delicious freshly baked banana bread with honey, whipped cream and fresh berries! Oeh la la it was gooooooood.

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We had a great time at Daisy Green and loved the food, vibe and super friendly service. I will definitely be back :) Will you go and check it out?

Daisy Green of Portman Village
20 Seymour Street
W1H 7HX, London
Phone:0207 723 3301
http://daisygreenfood.com
reservations@daisygreenfood.com
Or follow Daisy Green on Instagram HERE or Twitter HERE

  
1 Comment | Posted in Brunch, Food, Lifestyle, London, Restaurants