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September 15th, 2013

FERNANDEZ & WELLS (South Kensington)

 FERNANDEZ & WELLS (South Kensington)

Category: Budget (£)  FERNANDEZ & WELLS (South Kensington)

South Kensington is not exactly a culinary destination.  In fact it’s a sad collection of chain places with only very few restaurants and cafes that stand out.  So I was all the happier to discover that an outlet of Fernandez & Wells has opened a mere stone-throw from South Kensington tube station.  Fernandez & Wells, which started as a tiny and incredibly charming tapas bar in Soho, has also two more joints in Soho and another in Somerset House and I just love it.

September 9th, 2013



Could this be London’s spiciest dish? @ Janetira Thai

Category: Budget (£) JANETIRA EAT THAI (Soho)

Janetira Eat Thai is a refreshing exception in the Soho dining scene.  It doesn’t serve burgers, hot dogs or Southern fried chicken.  It’s not a pop-up and no famous chef is involved.  There are no queues (in fact it seems empty most of the time I walk past), it is inexpensive and totally unpretentious.

September 8th, 2013

Eating in Berlin (Mitte): BORCHARDT and LUTTER & WEGENER

Borchardt and Lutter & Wegener are both in Berlin Mitte, South of Unten den Linden at the Gendarmenmarkt, a decidedly uncool area.  Our apartment hotel was close and because of my 8 months old we chose to dine at these two traditional places.  I wasn’t taken by either of them.


September 3rd, 2013

Eating in Berlin: PAULY SAAL

 Eating in Berlin: PAULY SAAL

Wachau apricot dumplings @ Pauly Saal

Category: Bistro (££) 

 Eating in Berlin: PAULY SAAL

On Auguststrasse in Berlin Mitte, among independent galleries and exhibition spaces, edgy boutiques and little cafes, is Pauly Saal – a restaurant serving elegant and satisfying German, Austrian and Eastern Europe-inspired comfort food.  The location is not only historically interesting but also very cool (we are in Berlin after all!) – it is on site of the former Jüdische Mädchenschule (Jewish Girls’ School) which was built in 1835, and closed by the Nazis in 1942 (read more about the history here).  The building has been newly refurbished and now also hosts the Michael Fuchs Gallery, the Camera Work Contemporary Gallery, a Kennedy Museum and the Deli Mogg & Melzer.

August 19th, 2013

BISTRO CASSIS (South Kensington)

 BISTRO CASSIS (South Kensington)

 sea bass  (23) @Bistro Cassis

Category: Brasserie (£££+)   BISTRO CASSIS (South Kensington)

I had been to Bistro Cassis once before, around Christmas time last year, and I didn’t like it very  much at all.  The dining room was freezing cold and didn’t feel welcoming and I found the food to be overpriced and mediocre.  I gave Bistro Cassis the benefit of the doubt and didn’t write a review at this stage (I thought maybe the head chef was on Christmas leave) and returned for another meal in August 2013 with slightly better outcome.

August 1st, 2013

PATTY AND BUN (Marylebone)


 PATTY AND BUN (Marylebone)

Patty and Bun

Category: Budget (£ )

 PATTY AND BUN (Marylebone)

I just find it difficult to get excited about burgers.  A burger is a burger is a burger, right?  While I do enjoy an occasional one (particularly when I’m hungover), and I appreciate that there are huge differences in quality and taste between the various burger restaurants in London, I nevertheless don’t understand what the hype is all about. For me, this hype has been going on for far too long already and with 2 American burger chains having just opened branches in Central London (Five Guys and The Shake Shack) and drawing in the masses, burgers seem to be here to last!

July 11th, 2013




Carolina’s Tiramisu

I learned this recipe for Tiramisu from Carolina, an Italian and excellent cook.  What I like about Carolina’s version of this quintessential Italian dessert is that it is comparably light and not too sweet while still fulfilling all important factors – creamy, delicious and an instant (and easy to prepare) success for any dinner party. 


Carolina’s TIRAMISU

Preparation Time:  at least 4 hours (30 minutes to prepare, 3.5 to 24 hours to chill before serving)

June 29th, 2013

BAIWEI (Chinatown)


 BAIWEI (Chinatown)

Green beans with pork (6) @ Baiwei

Category: Le Budget (£)   BAIWEI (Chinatown)

Ba Shan, the Sichuan / Hunanese restaurant in Soho, is one of my top 10 places to eat in London.  So I was very excited to hear about the opening of Baiwei, which belongs to the same group that also runs Ba Shan, Bar Shu and Baozi Inn.  Fuchsia Dunlopthe well-regarded food writer and expert on Sichuan cuisine, is consultant to all four restaurants. 

June 25th, 2013

HVAR – Where to Sleep (and where not to)

 HVAR   Where to Sleep (and where not to)

 View from The Adriana

We have some friends who live in Split, Croatia, and they recommended the two 4 star hotels Hotel Amfora and Hotel Adriana operated by the Suncani Hvar Group as the best accommodations the island has to offer.  Initially, we planned (and booked) to spend our first 7 days at the Amfora and move to the Adriana for the remaining 5 days of our holiday.  But things didn’t quite turn out as expected…

June 20th, 2013

HVAR – The sunniest place in Europe

 HVAR   The sunniest place in Europe

Hvar, Harbour

I am writing this, sitting at the terrace of the Adriana Hotel in picturesque Hvar Town (the most touristy spot on Hvar island), with a glass of local beer in hand and a sleeping baby next to me while the sun sets over Hvar harbour.  It’s early June, shoulder season, which is perfect. It is pleasantly busy, but far from overcrowded and also the temperature is very agreeable, hovering around the low to mid twens, which is comfortable for talking a walk, sitting at the pool/seafront, having an occasional refreshing dip and reading.