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Howard V's Profile

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Montreal food writer in London for one night

I'd plump for Magdalen (http://londonfood.typepad.com/stuff/2007/02/market_leader.html). It claims to be doing French food but I think it's actually New English now. They do a similar thing at Arbutus (1 Michelin star in Soho) but I think Magdalen's definitely better. If you haven't eaten at St John (http://londonfood.typepad.com/stuff/2...) that might be worth a look as it's where the current style has its roots.

Jun 13, 2007
Howard V in U.K./Ireland

Fresh vegetarian Indian homecooking in London

That's not at all what I'm saying and I trust you when you say that the home cooked stuff tastes better. That's why someone should open a restaurant selling it and knock Rasa Sumadra into a cocked hat. Maybe the Gujarati Rasoi saw exactly this gap in the market. I don't buy your argument about how why this kind of restaurant wouldn't emerge and thrive in London.

Jun 09, 2007
Howard V in U.K./Ireland

Fresh vegetarian Indian homecooking in London

But if the food's just so delicious why on earth wouldn't it find a market in London . . I don't necessarily think you need an audience that would demand correctness - if what you're saying about they way the stuff tastes is true then it would easily beat Rasa Sumadra etc.

Jun 09, 2007
Howard V in U.K./Ireland

Fresh vegetarian Indian homecooking in London

I second the Kastoori - very good banana and tomato dishes I remember.

By the way, Howler, which are the actively nasty places?

Jun 09, 2007
Howard V in U.K./Ireland

Fresh vegetarian Indian homecooking in London

Maybe it's not a lost cause . . . maybe there are places out there!

I've had pretty good meals there (I'll try and recall the names of the places as it was a couple of years ago that I explored the area). Having said that my judgement on this kind of food is probably not as good as yours as you've had the benefit of trying home cooking and also this food in India.

Time Out seems to rate Cocum for Keralan too: http://www.timeout.com/london/restaur...

Jun 09, 2007
Howard V in U.K./Ireland

Fresh vegetarian Indian homecooking in London

Thanks.

Have you been to any of the Keralan restaurants in Tooting Bec?

Jun 09, 2007
Howard V in U.K./Ireland

Absolute BEST restaurant in London (fine dinning)

Good comment.

Jun 08, 2007
Howard V in U.K./Ireland

Absolute BEST restaurant in London (fine dinning)

The Fat Duck is not in London.

Jun 08, 2007
Howard V in U.K./Ireland

Best hip dinner options near the Strand

Try the Savoy Grill. In many ways it is traditional, but behind the scenes you will find the use of modern technique and an exciting menu by Marcus Wareing. It's expensive a la carte but there are cheap ways to eat there (Set lunch at £30, the weekend menu at £18 for 2 or £25 for three courses, theatre menu for £30). Check out the menus here: http://www.gordonramsay.com/thesavoyg... . Also, when we started our blog it was one of the first places we went to londonfood.typepad.com/stuff/2006/09/i_was_slightly_.html

Jun 08, 2007
Howard V in U.K./Ireland

Fresh vegetarian Indian homecooking in London

In your view, what are the restaurants in London that sufficiently well express the cuisine of these regions . . . or is it just a lost cause and I'm going to make some friends with roots in those places?

Jun 08, 2007
Howard V in U.K./Ireland

Hot smoked salmon

I noticed a good new stall selling this at Borough Market today. I'll try and get the name tomorrow. Not cheap, but very good.

Jun 08, 2007
Howard V in U.K./Ireland

Searching for Great Hot Chocolate in London

I second Chocstar - Petra serves two kinds of hot chocolate, both excellent.

I've also had very good hot chocolate from L'Atelier du Chocolat at Borough Market, though I'm not sure if they still do that. Also in Winter Maison du Chocolat also do hot chocolate.

Jun 07, 2007
Howard V in U.K./Ireland

Delivery options in Shoreditch/Hoxton

I found out recently that Maida will deliver. That's good news as they're rather good. There's a Jay Rayner review in the Observer + I wrote something up up recently:

http://londonfood.typepad.com/stuff/2...

Jun 07, 2007
Howard V in U.K./Ireland

whole foods, london

It's also worth visiting The Crown, on the south side of Victoria Park. The pub, as a whole, has organic certification. The food's pretty good, nice selection of wine and Pitfield beers.

Jun 07, 2007
Howard V in U.K./Ireland

whole foods, london

They're called Gujarati Rasoi and they don't just do Broadway Market.

http://londonfood.typepad.com/stuff/2...

Jun 07, 2007
Howard V in U.K./Ireland

Nice Mid-Range Afternoon Tea Spot in London?

Interesting. Looks comparable to TeaSmith.

Jun 07, 2007
Howard V in U.K./Ireland

London fishmonger for sashimi quality fish?

I second Atari-Ya. I had a look at the branch in Acton after visiting Sushi-Hiro which they supply . . . here's a picture I took, which may give you some (small) idea of the quality of the tuna.

Jun 06, 2007
Howard V in U.K./Ireland

The Best Bacon Sandwich?

I don't know if Spitalfields is too far East for you but I've had very good bacon sandwiches at St John Bread and Wine and also at The Rivington Grill. The St John sandwich is made using smoked Gloucester Old Spot and is made with their own bread.

Jun 06, 2007
Howard V in U.K./Ireland

Bistros near the Tower Bridge, London

I don't think you can beat Magdalen . . . it's our favourite place in London at the moment (http://londonfood.typepad.com/stuff/2007/02/market_leader.html). I would give the Garrison a miss (http://londonfood.typepad.com/stuff/2007/05/more_rolls_royc.html). At the south end of Bermondsey Street there's also the Bermondsey Kitchen, which I've had pretty good food at before, not been there for a couple of years though . . . http://www.bermondseykitchen.co.uk/

Jun 06, 2007
Howard V in U.K./Ireland

Recommendations near Hackney and other food advice needed!

I guess how we answer gltsoi's question depends whether he means Hackney the borough or Hackney the Hackney, if you know what I mean?

If the latter then all the Vietnamese places on Kingsland Road come into view as well as Broadway Market with Santa Maria Buen Ayre etc.

EoI - I've only been there for Sunday lunch and that was reasonably priced, I'll take a look one week night evening . . . you're probably right given that it's owned by the same people as The Gun.

Jun 03, 2007
Howard V in U.K./Ireland

Estonia

The local blood sausage is called verevorst and is the traditional Christmas food. I'd definitely try and find somewhere that does pancakes (pankoogid).

It might be worth checking out Pille's blog as she lives in Estonia. She has a review of Stenhus here: http://nami-nami.blogspot.com/2007/08/tallinn-restaurants-fine-dining-at.html . . . I've had a meal there too and thought it was pretty good, especially the strawberry gazpacho.

There's a good snapshot here too: http://thepassionatecook.typepad.com/...

Jun 02, 2007
Howard V in International Archive

London Must do's for 1st timer

Re: the inconspicuous entrance . . . I thought that too for ages and then discovered the proper, easily noticeable entrance on the other side of the pub.

Jun 02, 2007
Howard V in U.K./Ireland

London Must do's for 1st timer

I'd give Ye Olde Cheshire Cheese a miss, the beer's horrible (Sam Smith's - yuck) and it's all a bit soulless. Walk five minutes north to Ye Olde Mitre where not only is the beer better (Adnams + guest ales) but it's an interesting, characterful pub with a lot of history. It's in a bit of London that was/is actually part of Cambridgeshire, strangely enough.

Jun 02, 2007
Howard V in U.K./Ireland

Recommendations near Hackney and other food advice needed!

The Fat Duck is in Bray. You can take a 45 minute train from Paddington to Maidenhead and then a five minute cab from there. The price of the cab will be the least of your worries, that is if you can even get a reservation.

For Hackney try the Empress of India - a reasonable gastropub more at the restaurant end of things. Bistrotheque is definitely worth a visit. There's more good stuff further towards the Old Street end of things. Bacchus is worh a go if you like the scientific/adventurous style of cooking (http://londonfood.typepad.com/stuff/2006/10/sous_vide_local.html

)

For fish and chips, I haven't been there but I've heard good things about the Golden Hind. The Fryer's Delight on Theobald's Road is pretty good too. Dos Hermanos have reviews of both as well as other chippies: http://majbros.blogspot.com/

Jun 02, 2007
Howard V in U.K./Ireland

Any recs near Old Street, London

The Hoxton Grille? You've got to be kidding . . . haven't heard a good word about it from anyone.

May 17, 2007
Howard V in U.K./Ireland

Delivery options in Shoreditch/Hoxton

Cafe Spice Namaste (http://www.cafespice.co.uk/) delivers in this area. Good South Indian, expensive, but a cut above.

May 17, 2007
Howard V in U.K./Ireland

London Recommendations for a Brooklynite?

Even better than Clifton, go round the corner and back round the back of East London Mosque and try out New Tayyab's best food from the Subcontinent (actually Pakistani) around there - grill food to die for.

Mar 07, 2007
Howard V in U.K./Ireland

Fat Duck - anyone been?

Well, yet again, you haven't responded to my last post, i.e. what's wrong with his aims or methods. But that's not altogether surprising . . . throughout this entire dialogue you shifted to a new criticism whenever I questioned your last one, from allegations of inappropriate and incorrect use of science and technology, to questioning the use of theatricality in cuisine. You then moved to an ad hominem attack on the validity of my opinions and then got a bee in your bonnet about marketing. Given the temporary and flimsy nature of your arguments and their essentially adolescent nature ("Why?") perhaps you would be happier over at the Robbie board. Actually I do think that discussions can change viewpoints . . . I wouldn't bother otherwise and I wasn't so much interested in defending HB as finding the source of your dislike . . still not sure really.

Mar 07, 2007
Howard V in U.K./Ireland

Fat Duck - anyone been?

Have you read it? Really? In pages 8-12 of 'In Search of Perfection' he acknowledges that perfection is subjective, he says that for most people perfection is found in humble dishes rather than rather than 'fancy restaurant food' and that his *search* for perfection is to do with seeking the best artisanal products and experimenting to make dishes better. What on earth is wrong with any of that?

We've all had the 'imagine your perfect meal' and 'imagine your perfect version of a particular meal' conversations haven't we? It was just a book and series based on those . . .

Mar 07, 2007
Howard V in U.K./Ireland

The Sight and Sound of Taste

Savoury candy floss . . . because when he gets it right it might taste really good?

Mar 06, 2007
Howard V in Features