Le Cafe Du Marche in London

I was taken out of London and into a very culinary focused village in France, when I stepped through the doors at Cafe du Marche. The interior is warm and friendly, coats tidied away, tabled white clothed, exposed brick work and wood working together harmoniously to bring a bustling and relaxing environment.

The French provincial menu changes every 5 weeks, with a strong focus on seasonal ingredients.

Some items are consistently available (for the routine monster in you), one worth of note is the 2 person Cote de bouef with béarnaise.

I tucked into a Moules mariniere starter- very generously served, with a lovely balance of herbs in the pots, so much so that I considered drinking from the bowl (serves me right for dining with ladies- I had to miss out on that!). Others had the
melanzane parmigianna, a delicate layering of aubergine with parmesan, and ate their way through it with full smiles.

For mains I had pheasant, which was a first for me, so this comparison is purely about taste. There was far too much for me, cooked perfectly, seasoned softly, and served on an apple choucroute. There was an odd addition though, a lone sausage. I assume this is a tradition of some kind, but I wasn’t even close to half way through my dish before I was full, so sadly I can’t say what it added to the meal.

One of the other girls had the poisson du jour, and for this day the fish was bass. She cleaned her plate, praising the a subtle flavour, and well prepared dish.

Somehow we managed dessert. My eyes lit up for the dessert du jour, a baked alaska. Having had this is dubious restaurants as a child I was really keen to see how the professionals do it. Pipped meringue crowned the dome of still cold ice cream, sitting atop of a perfect pasty base, with raspberry coulis spilling over the surface. I may never be able to eat it elsewhere!

Also worthy of note was the more sophisticated bavarois du jour. It is basically “made in a hermetically-sealed mold that was plunged into salted crushed ice to set”, as it was created before electric refrigeration. So really it’s pre ice cream, ice cream? Anyway it was tasty and well worth a try. Perfect for a romantic evening or a lazy lunch with friends.


The Hansom Cab in London

I rarely find myself in this area without a destination in mind, and in the past it’s been all about activities nearby, facials, nail salons, and more recently… indoor golf.

So as we wandered the streets post game we were all at a bit of a loss for where to have a drink and a bite, until we stumbled upon the Hansom Cab.

Quite a cute little pub, with nooks and crannies about, friendly staff and what looked to be pretty good food (my friends were eating their dinners like little orphaned children!).


Giant Robot in London

Word on the street was that this was a pretty decent joint, so I took the plunge on a Saturday afternoon and trekked over. I say trekked because you all know that Clerkenwell is like a shut down zone of London outside of Monday to Friday (tube works don’t help).

Naturally I arrive tuckered and thirsty, to a welcoming bar, with some great options. I know a lot of the staff left the burnt out husk of the East Rooms to work here, and with that kind of high level of cocktail experience you know you can relax without worrying that you’ll be served some kind of adult slushie masquerading as a cocktail.

We decided to settle in and have Bellinis, and then the magic happened. Instead the three of us got a bottle of bubbly and our own little squeeze bottles of peach puree to make a table mix, cheaper and more fun :)

They seems to have a fab food menu, and I would be keen to try out a few of those dishes I saw coming out.

All in all a fab experience, now I have to seek out their new venture… Tiny Robot!


Princi in London

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I’m reviewing the cakes alone, because although I think the dining area looks lovely in the past I have struggled to, queue, find a space, and eat off a stone pillar.

So today’s review is all about the cakes. Now if you can make an Italian buy your cakes, esp your tiramisu I think you’re onto something amazing. That is what happened today. My lovely fellow Qyper susana_cri trotted off to Soho to get a box of heaven. Creamy cheese cake, pear and chocolate bits in a crumbling muffin, sour cherry and ricotta? Genius.

Check out my review of Princi – I am rachelle_thompson – on Qype


The Houses Of Parliament in London

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While uniquely ornate and impressive a moment itself, I love the Houses of Parliament for its quirks.

Gems such as no eating in the chamber unless you are the Chancellor of the Exchequer, delivering the budget when clearly you will need an alcoholic beverage!


Ripping Yarns in London

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I’m shocked this incredible book store doesn’t already have a review or twenty. I guess it’s unassuming size and non descript exterior that stops people finding out what an amazing collection exists inside.

They specialise in childrens literature, but have a massive selection of politics, travel and poetry- with giggly titled shelves like ‘Definitely Dead Poets’.

For those into Beano they have them, Children’s Annuals from the 150’s? All there, newspapers telling you what time the latest Beatles gig begins? Those too.

What I would call a hidden gem, and with most of their antique books for under £20 it’s the perfect gift store.

Check out my review of Ripping Yarns – I am rachelle_thompson – on Qype


Altitude 360 London in London

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Opening to the ticket purchasing public for one month only, this is a view to be snapped up while it is still on offer. Normally a corporate venue, they have transformed the space into a sleek 360 degree view of the city.

Graphics line the windows so you know which major buildings are on the horizon, and a the whole experience comes with a limitless time period (closing at 1am) and a nice glass of bubbly. The hosts are sweet and accommodating, looking to help out where ever they can (and very keen to help out if you are thinking of proposing apparently- but not for this fish in the sea just yet thanks!)

I really enjoyed this experience, the groovy little binoculars very sci-fi, the views unlike any I have seen in London- plus it’s fun spying on Buckingham Palace trying to see which flag is flying!

Check out my review of Altitude 360 London – I am rachelle_thompson – on Qype