Category Archives: Restaurant reviews

Reviews of restaurants from a foodie with a keen interest in cuisine from around the world.

Celebrating ‘Viva Oliva’ at Vapiano, London

I was recently invited to try out a local Italian restaurant, Vapiano in London. Whilst they usually supply a range of exquisite pizza and pasta dishes, I would be visiting on the first day of ‘Viva Oliva’ (meaning ‘long live the olive’), a 15-day olive festival to focus on a range of meals and dishes featuring olives.

On first appearances, the restaurant has a vibrant, busy atmosphere with a constant flow of visitors. Whilst waiting for my friends, I counted at least twenty groups of customers in the space of five minutes. I couldn’t believe the footfall and was even more amazed that I had never heard of the restaurant despite this location being open for over four years. Don’t let the active environment put you off, there always seems to be space for customers with a relatively short turnaround and a shared seating layout. If you spot a space on an occupied table, feel free to help yourself to the space. Continue reading Celebrating ‘Viva Oliva’ at Vapiano, London

Foodie heaven in Brooklyn, New York

For my first visit to New York I had arranged to stay in Brooklyn – and was so pleased that I did. Not only was it a lively, culturally diverse part of the city, but it also had some fantastic restaurants to satisfy the foodie in me at non-Times-Square prices.

During the visit, I found three fantastic restaurants that I needed to share. Each one offered fresh, quality food, great flavour and a range of appetising drinks, along with friendly service and welcoming atmospheres. They all seemed to be consistently busy, always a positive sign in my opinion.

Continue reading Foodie heaven in Brooklyn, New York

Bento and cocktails at Spice Market, London

I recently won a competition courtesy of Leicester Square Films which entitled myself and one other to a meal at Spice Market in London.This has always been a place that I’ve admired on my regular jaunts to the far less pricey Wong Kei’s in London’s Chinatown.

On a cold evening after a full day at work, I decided that this would be the perfect time to go, especially as I had just returned from Berlin. Continue reading Bento and cocktails at Spice Market, London

Brunch for two at Cafe Massena, Paris

imageWhilst en route to the Marie Curie Museum in Paris (which turned out to be closed), we were seeking somewhere that would provide satisfying food at a reasonable price. We hadn’t eaten yet as breakfast at our hotel, Oceania Paris, was costly. So a stop off at Cafe Massena was much needed.

We found the restaurant purely by chance, it happened to be our stop on the T3 before switching to the metro,  so it suited us by being right by the station. Also, given that it was a little before lunchtime, it looked busy and the menu was extensive so we decided to try it. We didn’t look back. Continue reading Brunch for two at Cafe Massena, Paris

Lunch at Manneken, Grand Place, Brussels

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Mussels in white wine sauce

On a recent trip to Brussels, my friend and I were pretty hungry after wandering around Grand Place doing a spot of sight-seeing for most of the morning. Whilst looking for somewhere that offered a good place to appease our appetites, my friend spotted Manneken, a rustic-looking restaurant that is well situated in this lively spot.

Upon entering the restaurant, we were promptly greeted, shown to a table near the bar and offered the menus. We were grateful to have a few minutes to defrost and feel more comfortable, especially as the weather was particularly cold before placing our orders.

Within a few minutes, our drinks were served and we waited just a few minutes more for the lunches to be served – soup for myself (which was delicious) and moules-frites in white wine sauce for my friend which she commented were very tasty and well prepared.

Continue reading Lunch at Manneken, Grand Place, Brussels

“Shabby Chic” at Chooks Chickens, Muswell Hill

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‘Take Me, I’m Yours’ at Chooks

Chooks Chicken in Muswell Hill is a fantastic little place that my boyfriend recently stumbled upon. As we love to try new places in and around our home in London, we decided to opt for Chooks as it was close to home and their website offered a great looking menu of what I can only describe as ‘gourmet chicken’ – a tasty and flavoursome variation of a top favourite dish – fried chicken.

If you didn’t think that it was possible to have a delicious, casual-dining experience of fried chicken in a retro-American atmosphere, well, it is. Continue reading “Shabby Chic” at Chooks Chickens, Muswell Hill

‘Wandermania On Tour’ hits Caribbean Scene Royale, Docklands

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Open-kitchen at Caribbean Scene Royale

As part of my plans to attend World Travel Market 2012 at the Excel Centre, London, I made plans to meet up with the travel bloggers that are part of Wandermania On Tour.Wandermania, founded by Tracey Friley is a series of travel blogger meet-ups in cities around the world, aimed at inspiring multi-cultural attendees to take their work to the next level through creative marketing and social media campaigns.

The evening provided a fantastic opportunity to meet up with travel bloggers that, to date, I had only been virtually introduced to through social media. Having a get-together on my home turf in London was not a chance to be missed, especially when the venue was announced as Caribbean Scene Royale by the Docklands, an award-winning restaurant  bringing a slice of Caribbean culture to the diversity of London. The evening consisted of an intimate chat, giving us all a chance to be heard and find out more about each other throughout the evening. An in-depth, fun and structured evening in excellent surroundings. Continue reading ‘Wandermania On Tour’ hits Caribbean Scene Royale, Docklands

Pizza Vesuvio, Champs Elysees, Paris

We were recently visiting Paris for another chance in a city that we simply… adore. Amongst highlights like the Louvre and Notre Dame, we were bound to find a foodie treat.

However, whilst strolling arm in arm along Champs Elysees, we were stuck by hunger pangs. Our Eurostar train back to London was due to leave in a couple of hours (which we ended up missing), so we considered that we had enough time to spare, and followed the calling of our stomachs to Pizza Vesuvio. Continue reading Pizza Vesuvio, Champs Elysees, Paris

Eating out at Thai Pacific, Paris

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In December 2009, I visited Paris with my boyfriend for a new years’ break. Whilst we were away, we decided to indulge our craving for Thai food and try Thai Pacific, a fabulous little restaurant that served incredible, tasty food at very affordable prices. The memory of the delightful menu stayed with us so strongly, that three years later in September 2012, we followed the direction of our noses and hoped that we would be able to remember where the restaurant was located. Not to be disappointed, we were fortunate to find the restaurant as perfectly tucked away as we had recalled.

Continue reading Eating out at Thai Pacific, Paris