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Oyster happy hour - London

Two ideas:

(1) Hix restaurants (certainly oyster and chop house) do done kind of pre-fixe champagne and oyster deal before 7. Top quality guaranteed.

(2) Though I've never had them, there's a stall in the small streets around Columbia Road flower market that sells cheap oysters on Sundays (the streets north of the market near brawn - incidentally brawn is a great restaurant). The Sunday flower market is generally a great place to go esp when staying in shoreditch. Have lunch at brawn or the royal oak after your oysters

Jan 23, 2014
chief1284 in U.K./Ireland

Buckwheat Flour recipes from back of Dove's Farm Buckwheat Flour?

relizabeth, I have a pack with what lookslike the recipe you want. It is for New England Griddle Cakes and goes as follows:

200g Buckwheat flour
75 sugar
Pinch salt
1 tsp quick yeast
300ml warm water
1 tbsp molasses
50 melted butter
2 tbsp oil
2 tbsp maple syrup

- Mix together buckwheat, sugar, salt and yeast
- Dissolve molasses in the water and stir into the flour mix, leaving the bater for 1 hr
- Melt the butter and beat in
- Oil a griddle pan and heat well
- Cook 1 tbsp at a time of the batter on medium heat
- When bubbles dry out and bottom is brown turn over
- Serve with maple syrup

I hope that's it and it's helpful!

Feb 18, 2013
chief1284 in U.K./Ireland

Large dinner party, around £25 a head excl drinks, Chinese restaurant

I admit, you may have trumped me here. I always consider central london a no-go with a car and parking prohibitively expensive. Of course the original poster should note that the car parks round there are an option.

If venturing that way the best I've been to have been bar shu, ba Shan, golden day and empress of Sichuan (ie. the obvious). The rate of change in Chinatown these days means there's prob one or two places I've missed.

On the subject of parking, I actually wasn't thinking but angel could also be a problem for parking. If you go on a weekday I bet there's parking restrictions round there up until a certain time, and on a weekend perhaps more difficult. Essentially it'd be worth checking this out.

All things put together (price, quality, service, atmosphere) yipin china is actually my favourite Chinese in london anyway.

Jan 26, 2013
chief1284 in U.K./Ireland

Large dinner party, around £25 a head excl drinks, Chinese restaurant

If you want somewhere with parking options you may as well forget about the best central options around Chinatown/soho. If personally suggest yipin china in angel which has fantastic hunanese and Sichuan food. In particular the hunanese stuff is top drawer. The dry wok dishes are the best things on the menu I'd say and I always order dry wok duck.

Whatever you do, resist the set menu/Cantonese sections which are standard fare uninteresting anglicised dishes.

Jan 26, 2013
chief1284 in U.K./Ireland

Dumpling Legends, Chinatown, London

It's great to hear DTF's praises being sung here. I lived in Shanghai for a bit and I've never had xlb like I had there. Sure loads of the little vendors had some nice stuff, but nothing anywhere near as refined. It seems a la mode to say the best are to be found in a impossible to find stall here or there, but from my experience that simply isn't true. That said, I don't like Xintiandi at all really and did probably have a more fun experience at smaller joints.

Never been to any outside Shanghai, so I can't comment on consistency. I would say that that the xlb at Dumplings Legends don't even come close for my money.

Feb 19, 2011
chief1284 in U.K./Ireland

UK Mexican restaurants

The best Mexican food I've had in London by a country mile was from a food stall on Lower Marsh called Buen Provecho. Have alook on facebook (sigh - I hate facebook):

http://www.facebook.com/home.php#!/gr...

I had a taste of an excellent adobo beef dish, and some great carnitas type pork dish. It's all served with rice, black beans and a help yourself to a variety of salsas and guacamole. I'm sure this doesn't sound too exciting, but it's damn good stuff.

Jan 25, 2011
chief1284 in U.K./Ireland

Delhi Grill in Islington [London]

Yes, yes. Fear not. They also have a Streatham branch. They list them all on the entrance in Wood Green. Either that or they trying to pull off one of the biggest passing offs ever.

It looked nice too.

Jan 13, 2011
chief1284 in U.K./Ireland

Delhi Grill in Islington [London]

In related news, I went to the cinema in the mall in Wood Green last night and they've only gone and opened another Lahore Kebab House in it. Will visit soon to see if it lives up to its older brother, but nice to have the option. And this Delhi Grill, sounds brilliant.

Jan 12, 2011
chief1284 in U.K./Ireland

1st time in London, please Help!

As stated 'reasonably priced' needs further definition. But, although all those restaurants so far listed do have good lunch deals, they wouldn't be the first names that jump to mind when thinking of 'reasonably priced'. I mean RHR and Dorcehster are possibly the two most expensive restaurants in London!

That said, both Maze and Claridges aren't eye-watering for lunch especially. But how Wild Honey? I'm pretty sure they do a £15 or £16 set lunch near to your hotel. Very nice place it is too.

Jan 06, 2011
chief1284 in U.K./Ireland

London, trip report...

Do you know what...I'm really not all that bothered. I certainly thought it took some inspiration from St John on my visit, perhaps it was that particular day. I even mean it as a compliment, I love St John. Any way you dice it, there's only food I like and don't like, the origin of culinary movements is moot. St John provides high quality English food, so does Great Queen Street, therefore I think they are comparable.

PS. I really enjoyed Anchor and Hope too!

Jan 05, 2011
chief1284 in U.K./Ireland

London, trip report...

Ok, I accept that might have been out a little. I had only come across it very recently, both by word of mouth and walking past. In fact I find it amazing I didn't know about it earlier given that I've spent a lot of time walking down that street over the past 5 years or so. I assumed it was no more 1 or 2 years old (which I would personally consider new) because of that, my mistake.

As for whether its a St John reincarnation. Well I suppose that was a poor turn of phrase, its more part of the St John family. Whatever the historical roots of the "gastropub" movement, or English food re-renaissance etc. etc., its most associated with St John. In fact, I've never read a review of Great Queen Street, but I'd imagine you struggle to find one which didn't mention St John.

Jan 04, 2011
chief1284 in U.K./Ireland

London, trip report...

Thanks so much for giving me the impetus to FINALLY try Kappacasein. Seen it on TV and been meaning to for ages. Boy...that cheese sandwich was the best sandwich I've ever eaten (no hyperbole). If they had a shop open all night in a boozy part of town they would become millionaires.

Also good report all round. Might try a few more of your little finds. I arrived a little late to Borough the other day and missed Artisan du Chocolat, but that salted caramel discovery is a real gem. Here's a couple of my favourite recommends to return the favour (obvious to those in London but hopefully not you):

- Great Queen Street - a fantastic new place off Covent Garden, a more tradtionally atmosphered St John reincarnation. Having said that, if you've never been to St John, Bread and Wine is my actual favourite restaurant. You also may want to try Rochelle Canteen, run by Fergus Henderson's wife. It's only open on weekday lunchtimes, so I've never been able to go, but if you're visiting I suspect you can.

- Terroirs - just the perfect informal bistro/bar combination. Great natural wines, great charcuterie, great atmosphere, good prices. New sister restaurant heading East called Brawn is getting generally good feedback too.

Jan 03, 2011
chief1284 in U.K./Ireland

London: Seafood-free restaurants?

Sorry this is basically really unhelpful but I'd be amazed if you find a suitable place without going vegetarian. One option may be Itadaki Zen in King's Cross which is a vegetarian Japanese people talk highly of. I almost went, but a last minute lust for pork saw me go to nearby Camino instead.

Other notable vegetarian places?

Dec 23, 2010
chief1284 in U.K./Ireland

Where to buy a Falafel Scoop in London?

No its a metal thing you hold like a microphone with a scoop thing at the end. Heck, this description isn't going anywhere...(google images)...

http://homemade-recipes.blogspot.com/...

And while you're at it...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bMgrNG...

Oh and if you want to save yourself the hassle of making it, I strongly recommend trying Maoz out on Old Compton Street.

Dec 20, 2010
chief1284 in U.K./Ireland

Pubs near Waterloo Station - London

^^^ This thread need not go further ^^^

Dec 20, 2010
chief1284 in U.K./Ireland

Sanxia Renjia - Chinese on Goodge St. [London]

Nowhere to lunch? Depending on budget, how about Salt Yard, Barrica, Ragam (close to free), Nizuni, Koba? To be honest it's not far from Koya and then Chinatown too. I've never had a problem finding a decent lunch or dinner around Goodge Street. That said, this place does sound interesting.

Dec 17, 2010
chief1284 in U.K./Ireland

Restaurant Supply Stores in London?

Stupidly, I've decided to buy twice! But I'm ok with that. Might eye up what exactly I want before investing big.

Dec 16, 2010
chief1284 in U.K./Ireland

Restaurant Supply Stores in London?

Thanks everyone for your help. I've bottled any big decision and am going for a £10 one from Dentons, here:

http://www.dentonscatering.com/index....

Just thought, what's the worst that could happen? And it'll give me time to plan a replacement (or supplement) should it come to it. Might even save up for that Le Creuset. Also wanted to get all sorts from Dentons - a piping bag, a silicone mat, a madeleine pan and a silicone scraper for....wait for it...34p!!!

Always too tempted to get a dessert at St John I never have the appetite for their amazing madeleines. Now I'm just gonna bloody make them at home.

Dec 16, 2010
chief1284 in U.K./Ireland

Restaurant Supply Stores in London?

Yes I have seen ones like those listed. My concern is, as you said, the lower priced ones being unsuitable or even useless on the stove. The Le Creuset one does seem a certain winner, but over £100 for a roasting tin?! Unless I'm sure its going to last forever and I'll love it to death, I can't justify that. This seems the most likely winner to me:

http://www.pagescatering.co.uk/s-540-...

I'm just surprised this isn't a more commonly discussed problem for people. What I was really praying for is for someone to come in and say, I had the same dilemma, this is the one you have to get...

I might take a cheeky punt on a £10-30 tray somewhere out there.

Dec 14, 2010
chief1284 in U.K./Ireland

Restaurant Supply Stores in London?

Ok I have a simple cookery supply question. I have been looking for a simple heavy duty roasting tin for what seems like forever. One which can be bashed about, used on the stove, abused etc. The type professional kitchens usually have. I don't want non-stick or anything fancy. Where can you get these?? Seriously I've been looking forever and all I ever find a flimsy stainless steel ones or non-stick.

Dec 14, 2010
chief1284 in U.K./Ireland

bashan, hunanese in soho [London]

Actually all of their restaurants - Baozi Inn, Bar Shu and Ba Shan have completely revamped their menus. Baozi Inn now has loads of small dishes on the menu. Bar Shu has got a lot more adventurous (more offal and daring stuff). Ba Shan has turned Hunanese. I'm surprised this wholesale change hasn't been more publicised/recognised. I haven't been to any of them since this change though - so my opinion means nothing. My previous experiences have been along the lines of:

- Ba Shan - overpriced very nice dumplings. But very overpriced. Obviously its now completely different.

- Baozi Inn - a great place to get a reasonably priced bowl of handmade noodles. Dumplings also have requisite delicate skins that you rarely see in this country. Just not a fan of the decor or environment. But good cheap food (other than the ironically poor baozis).

- Bar Shu - overpriced, and slightly lamentably toned down Sichuanese food. BUT...I can't help but get away from the fact that I think this place has been a ridiculous victim of its own success and the online community turning against them. The food there has always been top notch in terms of pure quality of cooking. I imagine with their new menu its a fantastic place to go, as Ba Shan sounds too. Been too bust scouring other cuisines of late, think I may give one of the aforementioned a try sooner rather than later.

Dec 13, 2010
chief1284 in U.K./Ireland

Anyone tried Brawn in Columbia Road yet? [London]

A lot of the comments are disagreeing strongly. I have to say I am doubting the review somewhat. (1) I love Terroirs and refuse to believe this place could be so much worse (2) So much of the menu is uncooked/pre-prepared I think the criticism is too harsh (though that potato doesn't look great) (3) I've had some fantastic well-priced wines at Terroirs.

Already booked in for St John B and W this weekend, otherwise I wanted to try this place out. Think it'll be a priority post-xmas.

Dec 13, 2010
chief1284 in U.K./Ireland

Best Kitchenaid mixer available in UK for bread making

I didn't know about this cooking chef!! Ooh, very exciting. Finally a widely available alternative to a Thermomix. Though having decided a Thermomix was just a silly investment from an amateur like me I too got a Kenwood Chef Titanium. Shazam! V v happy with my purchase. Lacks that little bit of style of the Kitchen Aid but beats in hands down in every other way in my opinion. ie. I second your recommendation.

Dec 12, 2010
chief1284 in U.K./Ireland

St Johns doughnuts, eccles cakes and bread, the best in London?

I'd also add Paul Rhodes (Greenwich) and Le Pain Quotidien (multiple locations) as very nice bakeries. That said I have to agree with the OP, St John bread is my favourite in London, there's just something about it which taps into my psyche of what bread should be. I have known people to not be fans nevertheless.

On a tangent, visited The Sportsman not long ago - best bread I've had in a restaurant I'd have to say. Disregarding St John, as they are in some part a bread shop!

Dec 01, 2010
chief1284 in U.K./Ireland

Critique my list please! Montreal chowhounds in London for a week

I like a bit of fine dining in my life, and set aside money to do it now and again, but in a way I think you may be right with this idea. Michelin places can be very very good, but they are for the most part homogenous all around the world. If you want to really experience something particular to London, ethnic or good British food is probably what you ought to be seeking.

PS. No I've never worn a string vest to either restaurant above! But I do regularly go to Dotori wearing my retro Arsenal shirt which has been worn to every game I've been to in the last 12 years. Suffice to say, its seen a lot and would be best off in a charity bag if I weren't so attached to it. Back to the point, Petek and Dotori are very unpretentious places with no concept of a dress code.

Nov 22, 2010
chief1284 in U.K./Ireland

Critique my list please! Montreal chowhounds in London for a week

Dotori or Petek would allow you to dine in a string vest and long-johns. So no, no problem with that. I would reserve for either though, they get pretty packed on weekends.

Nov 22, 2010
chief1284 in U.K./Ireland

GOOD KOREAN IN LONDON

I think the purple rice comes from cooking normal rice with some sort of seed or fruit which stains everything. Had it a number of times.

Nov 22, 2010
chief1284 in U.K./Ireland

Moving to London

Yep, I do agree with these criticisms of Greenwich for the most part. There are only a few gems in amongst rafts of rubbish food-wise. BUT, it is a very nice area with good access to Canary Wharf and indeed London Bridge!! Also, head into Blackheath and you have Home Made Food (good pre-prepared foods), Boulangerie Jade (very good patisserie), Chapters (excellent Bib Gourmand restaurant), and a Sunday farmers market. I think a foodie can live a good life living in Greenwich.

Nevertheless, 100% agree, London Bridge/Bermondsey is the place to be if food is your only factor. I don't want to be presumptuous about your income, but seeing as you'll be working in Canary Wharf I'm sure its not meagre. In which case, having money in Central London you can quite literally eat like a King.

Nov 21, 2010
chief1284 in U.K./Ireland

London cheap eats dining report

Yeah I know, I was a bit quick wasn't it!

I'm gonna flip between Koya and Noodle Bar for my noodle fix depending on mood from now on.

Oh actually I did forget one other good noodle place - Baozi Inn. Their noodles are handmade and excellent too (sorry not much use to you now!)

Nov 21, 2010
chief1284 in U.K./Ireland

Critique my list please! Montreal chowhounds in London for a week

The Jerk chicken stand opposite the North Bridge on the way to the Emirates is indeed fairly good. Nevertheless my pre or post-match meals nearly always center on Dotori at Finsbury Park (great bibimbap) or Mezbaan Kebab House on Stroud Green Road (good mutton curries in small cafeteria type place).

Petek is pretty nice too.

Nov 21, 2010
chief1284 in U.K./Ireland