Monthly Archives

March 2013

Food, Things to do in london

Langmeil Wine Supper at The Gilbert Scott

March 28, 2013

I’ve been wanting to visit Marcus Wareing’s newest restaurant the Gilbert Scott since it opened two years ago so I was very excited to receive an invitation to a 4 course wine supper by Langmeil wines last week. During the night, various other bloggers and writers and myself had the opportunity to hear the history of Langmeil Wines from Barossa born and bred, European Export Manager, Emma Shaw. To prepare the supper Emma had worked with Nick Shaw Head Chef of the Gilbert Scott to match a selection of Langmeil wines to each of the 4 courses of chef’s menu.

The Barossa region is one of the most famous wine regions in Australia and Langmeil has been making serious Barossa wine since 1996, and is now owned by fifth generation Barossan family, the Lindners. They own one of the oldest known surviving Shiraz vineyards in Australia, and possibly the world, from which the team create The Freedom 1843 Shiraz.

Langmeil’s winemaking philosophies are to produce world-class wines, through their own individual style, while maintaining the distinctive hallmarks of the Barossa, as such they have been awarded 5 red stars in the James Halliday Wine Companion eight years in succession placing them in the top 5% of premium Australian producers.

The evening started with us being welcomed to a beautifully laid table in the Gilbert Scott’s private dining room.

 

gilbert-scott-private-dining room

Private dining room at The Gilbert Scott

Wine Supper Menu

Wine Supper Menu

emma-langmeil

Emma Shaw of Langmeil Wines

We mingled with other bloggers while being served some delicious canapes of smoked salmon and Rye bread, this was served along side a glass of Langmeil’s Eden Valley Riesling, which had a delicate and refreshing taste.

Canapes

Canapes and Eden Valley Riesling

Next we were served our first course of Kedgeree, which I understand to be a traditional British dish that was cooked in colonial India. This was served alongside a glass of Eden Valley Chardonnay, which had a lovely zesty citrus and aroma.

Kedgeree

Kedgeree

For the main course we had a confit shoulder of lamb with white beans, braised carrot potatoes and greens, served with a glass of 2009 Valley floor Shiraz   The portion of lamb was generous! It was so  lovely and tasty that I felt bad leaving part of it but I knew I wouldn’t be able to eat dessert if I ate it all!  The Langmeil Valley Floor Shiraz  was a perfect pairing for the lamb and had lovely hints of chocolate and vanilla.

onfit shoulder of lamb with white beans, braised carrot potatos and greens

Confit shoulder of lamb with white beans, braised carrot potatoes and greens

For our third course we were served cashel blue with malt loaf and pickled pear, which my Irish friend excitedly devoured. I found the cashel blue a bit heavy after the other courses but it was lovely and creamy. With this we were served a glass of 2008 Blacksmith Cabernet Sauvignon.

Cashel Blue Cheese and Malt Bread

Cashel Blue Cheese and Malt Bread

langmeil-wines

Cabernet Sauvignon and Valley Floor Shiraz

wine-supper-guests

Langmeil Wine Supper Guests

Dessert was a delicious vanilla pannacotta, blood orange, passionfruit and a slice of orange garibaldi. A lovely end to amazing menu, I finished every last morsel. We had this with a a lovely glass of 2011 Live Wire Eden Valley Riesling.

Pannacotta and riesling

Pannacotta and riesling

I don’t pretend to be a wine expert but I definitely will be looking to buy a couple of bottles of Langmeil’s Eden Valley Riesling to serve at my next dinner party. Langmeil gets a big Lanky Girl thumbs up!

Having also finally visited The Gilbert Scott I know that I will be back, the building in which it is housed is beautiful and full of history. The standard of food we ate was very high and the service impeccable.

Click the links for more information about Langmeil Winery and The Gilbert Scott.

London, Things to do in london

Mastercard Priceless London Night at The Natural History Museum

March 25, 2013

av_mg_0130_big_nat_lon_2013-MIf you have read any of my previous posts on Mastercard’s Priceless London events you will know that I am quite the fan. Who said owning a credit card was that bad. A couple of weeks ago I was invited to Mastercard Priceless London’s Natural History Museum Cockney themed event. The theme for the night was the Natural History of London. Lead by four of the museum’s specialists we were treated to interesting facts about London and were able to get up close and personal with prehistoric fossils and bones.

When we arrived we were treated to a lovely glass of gin and tonic as well as some mini canapes before being split into teams to start our journey of learning.

On the first stop of tour of the Museum we were given a talk by one of the specialists who explained how the Natural History Museum prepared for WWII. It seems that The NAtural History Museum played a very inmportant role during the war and many of the Museums specialists were employed by the government in the war effort. One interesting fact that we learned was that there used to be a statue of Adam (the first man) on the front of the Museum pre-war but in 1940 a bomb blew off the upper part of the nude statue smashing on to the front steps below. The remainder of the statue was then removed and stored somewhere at the back of the museum for the rest of the war. The crates holding the statue later mysteriously disappeared. However, there is a rumour that the most intimate part of Adam’s anatomy was used as a paperweight by a member of staff at the museum!

A map of where the Natural History Museum's collections where sent to during WWII

A map of where the Natural History Museum’s collections where sent to during WWII

The next part of the tour involved looking at bones from the dinosaur era. Did you know that mammoths used to roam free on trafalgar square?

Prehistoric bones - natural History Museum

Prehistoric bones – natural History Museum

After looking at this we were treated to some lovely small bowls of food and glasses of wine. My favourite was the Mini fish and chips and mushy peas.  Delicious!

Fish and chips

mini Fish and chips – yummy

The third part of the tour we went to visit The Natural History Museum’s Treasure’s Collection. It was here that we were introduced to Guy the Gorilla. London Zoo’s best-loved resident Guy the gorilla has been preserved.  Scientists have learned by studying Guy the effects of keeping endangered animals in captivity. Learning that Guy suffered from arthritis and was unable to interact with the female species made me a little weepy.

Guy the Gorilla

Guy the Gorilla

2013-03-04 22.09.50

Natural History Museum

To finish the evening we were also treated to entertainment from a funky cockney band and were given kazoo’s to sing along. “Oh my old china!”

2013-03-04 20.49.29

To find out more information about Mastercard Priceless London Events visit: https://www.priceless.com/priceless/london/Home

Hotels, Things to do in london

Mad Hatter’s Afternoon Tea at The Royal Horseguards Hotel

March 25, 2013

Last Wednesday I found myself at The Royal Horseguards Hotel, which is part of the Guoman Chain for a sneak preview of their Mad Hatters Afternoon Tea.

The evening started off  us being welcomed into The Cellar of the hotel which was filled with Mad Hatter treats. Pastry and sweets lined the tables and we were plied with many glasses of pink prosecco.

A tray of Mad hatter cakes and sweets

A tray of Mad hatter cakes and sweets

It was hard to contain my excitement when confronted with all the lovely cakes and sweets. I felt a little like Augustus Gloop scoffing my face with chocolate pastries and guzzling on prosecco.

drink me-bottles

“Drink me” layered bubble shot

Candy floss made by hotel's pastry chef

Candy floss made by hotel’s pastry chef

Lovely Madhatter cakes

Lovely Mad Hatter cakes

madhatter Mini-Cakes

“Eat me” passion fizz cake

Madhatters Afternoon Tea

Madhatters Afternoon Tea ( Pocket watch “thyme” torte, Jam tarts with hearts)

After gorging on Mad hatter treats we were split into groups in order to go on a tour of the hotel. The Royal Horseguards is a 5 star luxury hotel which certainly exceeded my expectations, the hotel has so much character and many beautiful features.

First stop on our tour was a trip to the beautifully furnished Equus Bar, which I definitely think I will be heading back to again.

equus bar

Equus bar

The Tower Suite-rhg

The Tower Suite – RHG

Next we were shown two types of rooms that are available in the hotel. The Tower Suite which is at the top end of what is available and a standard room. The Tower Suite  is on two levels and provides 180 degree views of the river. Beautifully furnished and available for 1500 pounds a night!

royal-horseguards-suite

The Tower Suite living room

royal-horse-guards-bedroom-suite

The Tower Suite Bedroom

royal-horse-guards-suite

The Tower Suite Bathroom

standard-room-royalhorseguards

Standard Bedroom

Next stop on the tour was the The Gladstone Library room which was once part of One Whitehall Place and was originally built as the home of the National Liberal Club.

The Gladstone Library

The Gladstone Library

liberal club steps

Beautiful One Whitehall Place stairs

Next we got to check out the Terrace which I can imagine gets very busy in the summer season.

Royal Horseguards

Royal Horseguards – Terrace

cocktail-making

Cocktail making demonstration

Also part of the night involved us having a demonstration of some non-alcoholic berry cocktails. I have to try to make these a home!

berry-cocktails

Berry cocktails

One of the chefs also made use some lovely aubergine and tomato canapes which were delicious, I must have  eaten at least 10 of these.

IMG_0752

Aubergine and Tomato

aubergine-canapes

Aubergine and Tomato canapes

My favourite part of the night was when the cream scones came out for us to try, they tasted heavenly!

Freshly baked scones, Cornish clotted cream and homemade strawberry preserve

Freshly baked scones, Cornish clotted cream and homemade strawberry preserve

The last part of the evening consisted of an Easter egg hunt in the hotel’s cellar. We each had three minutes to find over 400 mini eggs that were hidden around the cellar.

my-easter-eggs

My hoard of eggs

I didn’t win but I came home with a lovely bag of goodies and quite a few eggs.

The Royal Horseguard’s Mad Hatters Afternoon Tea will be available from the 31st March until 7 April and is sure to be a great Easter Treat!

For more info please visit: http://www.guoman.com/en/hotels/united_kingdom/london/the_royal_horseguards/hotel_offers/mad_hatters_afternoon_tea.html

Things to do in london

Things to do in London 22nd March – 30th March 2013

March 22, 2013

It’s nearly Easter folks! Although the weather isn’t at its best at the moment, here is a summary of things to do in London that are worth checking out in the next week. Just make sure you bring an umbrella!

Check out H&M’s New store & Other Stories in Regent Street

OtherStories_Atelier_highres_low

The new fashion brand & Other Stories will be offering women a wide range of shoes, bags, accessories, beauty and ready-to-wear to create their personal style, or story. The lines are diverse, ranging from masculine tailoring to feminine chic and are designed to provide endless styling choices.

w600_3032822_sh_summer_series_enews_600x240_2013

Summer Series at Somerset House returns

Summer Series at Somerset House returns with a stellar line up of open air concerts, Basement Jaxx, Goldfrapp and newcomer Lianne La Havas are just a few of the the amzing artists that will be playing at Somerset house in July.

Book tickets to see how the Olympic park is being transformed

Now that the Olympics are over, lots of work is being done to convert the Olympic site into a public space, housing and the first set of events will be happening this June.

To book a seat on the tour bus visit: http://noordinarypark.co.uk/events/?yr=2013&mo=4

Attend a private view of winning artists from The Other Art Fair

ArtSpaceInvitationV4

 

 

Visit the Wellcome Collection’s  new Exhibiton – Souzou: Outsider Art from Japan Thursday 28 March 2013

The Spring exhibition brings together more than 300 works for the first major display of Japanese Outsider Art in the UK. The 46 artists represented in the show are residents and day attendees at social welfare institutions across Honshu, Japan’s largest island. The wonderfully diverse collection comprises ceramics, textiles, paintings, sculpture and drawings.

 Check back this weekend to find out about special Easter themed events in London!

Bars, Things to do in london

London’s Most Surreal Bars

March 20, 2013

This is a guest post

Credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/dalston/5902339403/

If you’re looking to go for a strange night out in London, a visit to one of these madcap drinking spots should be just the thing to set your evening on a suitably bizarre footing…

 Dalston Roof Park

There are plenty of oddball places to go for a drink in fashionably gritty Dalston, but none are quite as surreal as the Dalston Roof Park. This Astroturf roof garden is situated just across from the overground station, and is only open during the summer months. It’s members only, but membership is free and anyone can apply by filling in an online form or collecting a members card at reception. As well as being a surprisingly pleasant spot to go for a drink, it also doubles as an occasional outdoor cinema and gig venue.

Callooh Callay

Callooh Callay

Some bars set out to be surreal, whereas others are simply surreal by default. This bar and restaurant in Shoreditch definitely falls into the former category, having been themed around the famous Lewis Carroll poem Jabberwocky. However, even the most jaded of visitors would find it hard not to be impressed by the sheer amount of effort and attention to detail that has gone into making this bar seem as dream-like as possible, from the Narnia-style wardrobe door that leads into the second room to the collection of odd props and features that surround you at every turn.

Tiroler Hut

Even if you think you’ve been to a few odd places in your time, nothing can prepare you for the sheer onslaught of insanity that awaits you at Notting Hill’s Austrian-themed Tiroler Hut restaurant and bar. Sit yourself down with a two-pint stein and a meat platter, and you’ll be treated to the in-house entertainment, provided by the owner himself. An adept multi-instrumentalist, you can hear his take on a wide variety of popular music favourites (with a strong emphasis on Abba and songs from The Sound of Music) on keyboard, saxophone, accordion, and a table orchestra of cowbells! He’s been doing it every night for about 40 years, and he’s even been on TV a couple of times, most recently on the Paul O’Grady Show.

Icebar

Most bars go out of their way to create a warm, comfortable atmosphere where you can settle down for a few drinks with friends. Icebar, in central London, takes exactly the opposite approach, being the only permanent bar in the UK to be made almost entirely out of ice. Not just any ice, either – this is super-fancy ice made from imported Swedish water that gets re-sculpted into a new layout every year. Even the glasses are made out of ice, so make sure you bring gloves with you!

Whichever bar you choose why book a night stay at a hotel located in the centre of London and make the most of your night out. The Holiday Inn London Regent’s Park hotel is a great option as it is located less than a 10-minute walk from bustling Oxford Street.

restaurants, Things to do in london

A trip to visit Maille’s ‘Le Drunch’ Pop Up with Helene Darroze

March 18, 2013

If you read my last post you will have heard that Maille Mustard has opened a pop up restaurant with Michelin Star chef, Helene Darroze in Spitalfield’s Market. Last Thursday I was lucky enough to get invited to a preview of the Maille Boutique. I also got to meet Helene herself and taste some of the dishes that will be on offer.

Michelin chef Helene Darroze at the Maille Boutique pop up

Michelin chef Helene Darroze at the Maille Boutique pop up

Speaking to Helene I asked her where the inspiration for the dishes came from, she said that she liked the idea of small dishes that people can share.

IMG_0673Lucky diners are in for a treat, I tasted a lovely tomato gazpacho with wholegrain mustard chantilly, slow cooked lamb parmentier and caramelised apple with vanilla ice cream (my favourite). Each diner will get a set of recipe cards so that you can go home and try to recreate ‘Le drunch’ for yourself.

Gazpacho

Tomato Gazpacho

On offer to purchase are Maille’s various mustard flavours. I took home a jar of their delicious honey mustard which I have been told goes very well with pork medallions.

Maille Mustard

Maille Mustard

Pre-booking for the Maille Boutique is now full, however visitors to the Maille boutique will be able to taste some of the dishes at the bar.

Maille's Le drunch restaurant

Maille’s Le drunch restaurant

The Maille Boutique Pop up will be open for 2 weeks until the boutique will be open between 15th and 24th of March

music, Things to do in london

Singing Masterclass with J Marie Cooper from ‘The Voice UK’

March 13, 2013

Fancy yourself as the next Jessie J? Well fans of the ‘The Voice’ will be able happy to know that on Saturday 23rd March, singing superstar and ‘The Voice’ finalist J Marie Cooper has joined forces with City Academy to launch a one day singing masterclass at Sadler’s Wells.
If you watched ‘The Voice’  you will remember how J Marie Cooper wowed Judges Will.I.Am and Jessie J when she sailed through her blind audition for her appearance on the BBC’s show.

The workshop is a rare opportunity and invites students to discover their vocal potential, enjoy performing and gain stage confidence.

This jam-packed day will involve a thorough warm-up focusing on breathing and technique, working on harmonies, practising performance and improvisation techniques, as well as a Q&A session on the industry.

Covering popular music by the likes of Rhianna, Jessie J and Jason Mraz (with a live pianist), this one-off class is suitable for both aspiring vocalists and those who want to try singing for the first time.

For more information please visit: http://www.city-academy.com/singing-masterclass-with-j-marie-cooper#-TimetableBooking

 

restaurants, Things to do in london

Forget about Brunch, it’s all about Le Drunch

March 13, 2013

ledrunch

This March Londoner’s will get the chnace to experience ‘Le Drunch’. This is the latest foodie trend emerging from the culinary capital of Paris. The institution of Brunch has now found itself a new rival as more Parisians are choosing to eat later at the weekend, at a time that sits between lunch and dinner. Commonly known as “Le Drunch”, this new dining occasion is being enjoyed across the city, both in bistros and Parisian homes.

French brand Maille is introducing Le Drunch to London this March by opening a Pop-up restaurant with two Michelin-starred Chef Hélène Darroze. Created exclusively for Maille, Darroze’s Le Drunch menu has been designed for those wanting to share delicious French-inspired cuisine that is easy to re-create at home.
Helene Darozze is the Chef patron of 2 michelin starred restaurant Helene Darroze at The Connaught. Food lovers can now book a Le Drunch session by visiting www.maille.co.uk. Sittings are available between 3pm-6pm for a maximum of four people. All six dishes created by Hélène Darroze will be available to sample.
Alongside serving Le Drunch, visitors to the Maille Boutique will have the opportunity to sample and buy Maille’s extensive range of mustards, condiments and sauces
Le Drunch will launch at the Maille Boutique on 15th March. 
Things to do in london

It’s a Ping Pong Pop Up – Saturday March 16th 2013

March 6, 2013

Ping Pong pop up

Pop Up Ping Pong is a fun event in London filled with ping pong, street food, drink and music, popping-up at unique settings in London. The first is to be held at a disused pub in Kensington on Saturday March 16th 2013 and promises to be a fun night out of Ping pong partying!  Join them for a night of ping pongin’, boozin’ and finger-lickin’ food.

Entry to the event costs £5, entitling you to unlimited games of ping pong. Quench your thirst with a selection of drinks starting from £2. Burgers will be provided by the legendary #BRGR (www.hashtagbrgr.com). Music plays all night long.

Purchase a ticket here: http://www.designmynight.com/london/pubs/54-russell-gardens/pop-up-ping-pong

Pop up menu

Things to do in london

Nike Flyknit Experience Tuesday 5th March – Wed 6th March – Somerset House

March 4, 2013

NIKE FLYKNIT

From Tuesday 5th – Wednesday 6th March, Nike is bringing the perfect fit to runners across London. The unique Nike Flyknit Experience will be housed in the iconic courtyard of Somerset House, where visitors can trial the very latest Nike running shoe, the Flyknit Lunar1+, and have it steamed to their feet to create a perfectly fitting shoe for every run. Once your Nike Flyknits have been steamed to your feet, runners will then embark on a Flyknit Nike+ Run, which will explore the city in a whole new way.

The revolutionary construction of the Nike Flyknit’s is the result of 35 years of innovation, triumph and the relentless pursuit of providing athletes with what they need and nothing more. The Nike Flyknit Experience will showcase landmark innovations in Nike’s running heritage that resulted in the invention of Nike Flyknit. The Nike Flyknit Experience will be open 9am – 6pm on both Tuesday 5th and Wednesday 6th March.

To find out more and to get involved visit: www.facebook.com/nikerunninguk

The Nike Flyknit Experience
Somerset House (Courtyard)
Strand
London
WC2R 1LA