My version of Persian Khoresh – Stew recipe

IMG_20150207_190536There’s been a glut of new recipe books focusing on the flavours and spices of Persian cuisine recently, and who could fail to be bowled over by the brilliant “Persiana” by Sabrina Ghayour ?

I claim no expertise on the region, nor it’s cuisine, beyond a love of discovering it and eating it. So this is my humble, easy-to-make and relatively loose interpretation of a Persian Khoresh – or stew. Continue reading

A Torre – Portuguese Restaurant in Crystal Palace

Espetada a Porto

Espetada a Porto

In the dead of winter, when the wind and rain lashes at your face like so many serrated knives and you immediately ditch all tentative plans to become a running/kick-boxing/Yoga-loving beach body babe that your brandy-fuggled mind thought was a good idea on New Year’s Eve, your mind veers straight to holidays. Balmy summers, cold beers, and in our case – usually – a trip to Portugal’s Algarve coast, where the other half’s amazing cook Mother resides. Continue reading

Kavaklidere Çankaya – Turkish Wine from Anatolia

Cankaya - KavaklidereI came across this wine at Sofra Turkish restaurant on St. Christopher’s Place (there are several other branches of Sofra in Mayfair and Covent Garden) – a delicious and great value for money eatery with a menu focused on colourful fresh vegetables, pulses, wholegrains, nuts and spices and the flavours of the Eastern Med – in the spirit of it’s renowned Turkish owner Hüseyin Özer. Continue reading

Chix & Buck Wine Parlour – Brixton

Chix & Buck BrixtonA relatively new and very welcome addition to Brixton’s bustling Atlantic Road is Chix & Buck’s Wine Parlour. Run by a charming duo who also manage Chix & Buck’s niche wine importing and distribution business, The Wine Parlour is both a shop, a tasting room and an “Enoteca-style” hangout open every day except Tuesdays. Continue reading

Wine Bar – The 10 Cases, London

The 10 Cases - Covent GardenLocated in rather an unassuming corner of Covent Garden, tucked at the Freemason’s Hall end on leafy Endell Street is the 10 Cases – effectively two locations; a Bistrot a Vin, where you can eat a full dinner (in tiny but cosy surrounds) and enjoy a myriad wines by the glass and the Cave a Vin – which showcases a range of wines which have proved most popular from the menu next door or are simply carefully selected and which include a good choice under the £10 bracket. Continue reading

Toasted, Wine Shop and Restaurant – East Dulwich

Wine Vats

Wine Vats

The lovely Toasted opened to rave reviews from the likes of Fay Maschler and blogger Cheese & Biscuits back in 2013. Chef Michael Hazelwood was previously in the kitchens at emminently, consistently high quality French Man and Green Horn and Soif restaurants – both rustic, cosy temples to French wines and seasonal small plates, with a heavy penchant for the organic and biodynamic. Manager Alex Thorpe still answers the phone for reservations and bustles around the tables fussing over diners – like a proper host should. Together, they have brought a real gastronomic Christmas stocking heaving with lip-smacking treats to this little corner of East Dulwich’s vibrant Lordship Lane. Continue reading

Ognisko Polskie – The Polish Hearth Club

Champagne vodka cocktails

Champagne vodka cocktails

Being ushered in through the Georgian townhouse doorway of the Polish Hearth Club feels a bit like joining an intellectual’s literary soiree in mid-19th century Warsaw. I felt bereft without a cossack hat and furs as we entered on a cold December night, but the warmth within fully made up for it, as we were greeted by a towering, glittering Christmas tree and a fireplace sideboard for a reception desk. Continue reading