Pin Stripes & Palm Trees

Photography by  Roz Alcazar

Photography by Roz Alcazar

Three months in being an east londoner and I must admit, I LOVE IT.

There's a paramount of places to discover, both food-wise and culturally, which I am really enjoying. If there is one thing I enjoy having is good coffee and a nice atmosphere. Thankfully Dalston/Hackney is full of places like this.

So, if you are out and about in my hood you should check out the following hot coffee spots:

  • Palm Vaults for an LA-esque cafe in the heart of Hackney Central. This newbie has all the colourful lattes every instagrammer would wish for: matcha (green), beetroot (pink), turmeric (gold)...you choose. Of course you can get a regular tasty coffee, but why not try something colourful while you are at it? They've also got a small but yet delish selection of home-made cakes and toasties, make sure you grab one!

  • Cafe Oto and Subtitles Cafe for coffee, film and records - Total winners.

  • Mouse & De Lotz for a cozy cafe where to read a book and have delicious pancakes.

  • Coffee is my cup of tea for the perfect working spot. Bring your laptop and enjoy a quiet day while sipping great coffee.

I think with these you'll have cafeine for days, so let me tell you about my day at Palm Vaults the last Friday. Before my travels to Seville I had a few meetings around the area, which is why I was pulling this power yet sexy woman outfit you see here, preety kewl? I should say, it was fun. 

TCB xx

WHAT I WORE:
WAH London x ASOS Blazer Dress
Chanel Necklace
Maria Pascual Jewellery
Maria Pascual x Collage Vintage Rings
Elvio Zanon Shoes

Peruvian Memories

Where? I went to Andina in Shoreditch, but they also have a smaller version in Soho called Casita Andinita.

What? A good mix of Mediterranean and Peruvian food - 2 for 1 kinda deal! Here you'll find a all those raw goods that are so quintessential in Peru (quinoa, ceviche) but with a twist. 

Why? Because I was missing some of the food I had on my journey through Peruvian soil! Though I must admit this was quite different from what I had then, I liked the modern take on traditional Peruvian dishes. And GOOD NEWS! You can make reservations which is quite unlikely in any hotspot in London, right?

TCB suggestions: Pulpo Chancon (octopus), bistec escabechado (steak with choclo, their typical corn smashed) and of course, ceviche (their 'clasico' is pretty good)

One last plus:  they also do masterclasses! Cooking workshops for those who would like to impress at home too...

Buen Provecho Amigos :)

TCB xx

Petiscos Para Todos

Chef Nuno's own place Taberna do Mercado is definitely a MUST in any Londoner's foodie list. You can easily book a spot, it is easily accessible (in the heart of Shoreditch, Commercial Road) and the food could not be more yummy. I usually don't repeat restaurants (there's far too many in London to stick to one and one only) but I would happily come back here again.

Why? For starters, the service was so nice! Most of them were Portuguese and a bit too relaxed to my #LondonLife pace (I am always in a hurry) but it is always good to be reminded that you need the time to sit back, relax, chat to your friends and enjoy a great meal. 

Most importantly, the food is TO DIE FOR. Every single petisco (Portugal's take on tapas) was so unique and so flavorsome, I couldn't stop thinking about it for days.

What to have? Obviously anything with COD, it is a Portuguese specialty! And Pasteis do Belem for dessert (the Portuguese egg tart is definitely my fave dessert, right after Ottolenghi's Passion Fruit Meringue Tart). I am not gonna give you more specifics on what to have, as this is meant to be a meal for sharing  and we actually had more of the daily specials than anything else. The fresher the better, right? God, my mouth is watering thinking about it. 

Where is it again? It's on one of the sides of Old Spitalfields Market, in 107B Commercial St, London E1 6BG

Spice World, The Movie

I'm sorry guys, it's not a Spice Girls-themed restaurant (we wish?) but rather a VERY spicy thai restaurant: Som Saa. Those who don't like spice should really stop reading, otherwise WELCOME! You've landed at the right place, and you should definitely try this new hotspot in Shoreditch.

I've been meaning to come here for a while but the long-waiting had put me off few times. Just so you know, we arrived here 10 minutes after we opened to get a table and we got it only 10 minutes before 8PM. That is about 1,30-2h wait. But hey, it is TOTALLY worth it. I just thought you should now what you might be facing before you get to enjoy your meal. 

As one of our many girly celebrations, we decided to stick to the waiting line, and thankfully grabbed a spot by the cocktail bar, where we got to enjoy a great bottle of prosecco and some of their snacks. OH MAMA, the snacks are GOOOOOOD! 

Okay, but where is it? 43A Commercial Road (E1 6BD)

What we tried and LOVED: 

  • gai yaang - thai style grilled chicken leg with tamarind dipping sauce

  • yum makeua yao for the veggies - a delish grilled aubergine salad with egg and prawn floss

  • mu parlow - not one but FIVE spice soy braised pork belly with chilli vinegar sauce, DANG SPICY MA'AM!

All accompanied with some jasmine and sticky rice (my fave!) - I wish they had sticky mango rice for dessert! They have it everywhere in America but for some reason I haven't seen it anywhere else...

But never mind, they did have another awesome dessert: salted palm sugar ice cream with fried banana, YUMMM.

Why should I go there, though? As I said before, this is THE place for those who love thai (and spicy) food. The venue is also a plus, it is very well put and its location is prime for east Londoners.

Burn My friends, Burn!

TCB xx

Mouthwatering Birds

2nd of January, and I am still hangover; what can I say, folks. I am IN SERIOUS NEED of some powerful food (that is fried chicken) and one of my new favorites for that is Chick'n'Sours, which conveniently is only a 15-min walk from my new home in East London.

Where? Its original branch is in East London, more specifically in 390 Kingsland Road E8 4AA. However, if Haggerston is too far for you, they have now another restaurant in Soho, in 1a Earlham St (WC2H 9LL), to be exact :)

What? Free range chicken cooked til its crispy, just how we like it. There are few options for you to try their kitchen: on its own (boneless, drumsticks, thighs, ...) or in a bun. Of course we wanted to try a bit of everything so we had one of each. Now if you are looking for suggestions we highly recommend you the following:

  • Pickled watermenlon for starters (I know, it sounds weird but the mix is seriously delicious)

  • K-POP Bun if you like spicy food - Gochujang Mayo and chilli vinegar, I mean!

  • Tenders (boneless chicken) - if you like spicy continue with their Xian Xian option, otherwise the seaweed tenders are pretty damn good too.

I am always IN for the dessert, I love to get a bit of sweet after a heavy meal. However, I must admit we went a bit overboard when we went so I am afraid there are no recommendations for dessert this time! I've been told their Salted Milk Chocolate Pot is awesome, though.

Also, don't miss out on having a cocktail there! Tequile seems to be a favourite, so have a margarita for us?

Why? Because if you like junk food, you'll die for this. It's a fresher take on anything you've tried before. There's no need of having shame on having a high-calorie meal, but at least have something good, and fresh. 

More over, the service at this place is great. The guys are very helpful, always keen on giving you suggestions on what to have; needless to say the venue is very modern and has a very young vibe! 

Have some wings guys, you'll feel like flying after this meal!

TCB xx

Girls Gotta Eat - Manhattan Edition

Breaky, Brunch & Cafes ($$)

that are worth tones of insta pics

(I mean, why else would you eat THAT much?)

Breakfast, the most important meal of the day, should be served in style. And that is why you should head for a cup of coffee (or a cold brew, if you like) at Ralph's Coffee, located on the second floor at Ralph Lauren's flagship store on Madison Avenue. Kick start your morning before heading to your shopping spree downstairs!

P.S.: Check out their adjacent teeny tiny merchandise store, that's the sort of souvenir your friends will keep. 

 

If you are not a morning person, then brunch is certainly your thing; and if you've been in Manhattan for a while, you know that best insta-meals are Downtown. 

Vegan lovers have By Chloe on the ever trendy Bleecker St, serving juices, baked goodies and cocktails in funky digs. You know I ain't no veggie but everything on their menu is so yummt! My personal fave were the sweet potato fries and the veggie burger.

Jacks Wife Freda, on Lafayette St, serves a meal for champions. Curated with cutesie-healthy drinks like watermelon tea, this bistro is an american fare share mixed with Middle Eastern cuisine, my old time favourite.

Lupe’s LA East Kitchen on 6th with Broome St, certainly takes me back to LA style. Great for those who love proper mexican and a good selection of drinks. 

Egg Shop serves everything with EGGS, of course. Their service is amazingly friendly, and despite being quite a small spot, it is definitely worth the wait. Their classic B.E.C. is the perfect hangover cure.

 

Like a good spaniard, italian or french, coffee is needed after a meal, or anytime, really. So if you want to take some snaps while enjoying one of those little cups (or rather large one), then you should try:

  • Cafe Henrie for all things pink, or Cha Cha Matcha for the same reason, though Matcha is all you'll find here, or all you should try, at least!

  • Spreadhouse has amazingly great coffee, and their "Turn Me On" logan on the toilets is definitely a must.

  • Least, but not last, The Doughnut Project or Clinton St Baking Co., for a great afternoon snack (that is doughnuts or waffles) before dinner. Make sure you've got space on that belly!

Dinner ($$$)

 If you are one of those people who love people watching, the first three restaurants are definitely ticking your box. 

•    Dirty French is FABULOUS. From stylish people at reception to the barman everything is cared to detail. Not only that, the food is also delicious. WATCH OUT: Oysters on the menu. 

•    Budakkan, aka that dinner place on SATC, yes! The Pan-Asian restaurant is defo a must visit. Specially if you love japanese/chinese/thai and all those cuisines.

•    Polo Bar is certainly where you want to be seen, regardless of eating or not.

Lombardi’s Pizza is one of the classic pizza spots in the city. Not for people watching, or for being glam, but because their pizzas are pretty damn good. And you gotta have pizza, right?

After-party treats ($)

Living in NYC makes it quite difficult to actually indulge dinner sometimes. Not because there aren't enough options to dine, but because a liquid meal usually falls more into place. Afterwork rooftop drinks, tinder dates, working til late followed by that party on that hotel, and last thing you know its 1AM and you are no longer hungry but drunk. 

Do not worry! The answer to all your queries is called Artichoke Pizza. There's no way around it!  

King Balthazar

Ever wondered where to go for a good quick bite around soho? Cause I certainly have. 

You all know this is probably one of my favourite neighbourhood and therefore I hang out a lot around the area. That leaves me always questioning myself about where should I go for a sweet treat where I am not going to be ripped off. BINGO! Balthazar. 

I've heard their brunch menu is off the charts, though I haven't got my hands around it just yet. I have been at their café-boulangerie, however, and that was REALLY good.  

French patisserie with an english touch and at very decent prices AND by Covent Garden Market. I mean, what else could you ask for? 

TCB xx

Let's Be Barbarians

Let's Be Barbarians. If that's what it takes to indulge into these treats, you can count me IN.

I can honestly say that this is THE best restaurant I've been since I moved to London two years ago. Discovered by luck while passing Neals Yard Place with a dearest friend, we first saw The Barbary due to its loud music pimping us in.

The set up of this place is fantastic: a cozy little restaurant with only 24 seats for the lucky guests who will make it that day for either lunch or dinner.

There are no proper tables but a dining area set deli-style (eating by the counter), which I particularly love. The idea here is to share, and to share everything, even who you sit with! Some may not like the idea but I think that interacting with the amazing cooking team while they prepare your Middle-Eastern (with Mediterranean and/or North African twist) delicacies is great.

Every little dish we tried was an explosion of flavors, but if I had to choose my dream meal here, I'd say the following:  Arayes, a pita bread sandwich with minced lamb and lots of spices, and the Jerusalem bagel with some dips as a starter. If you are a veggie lover, then definitely try the aubergine and the cauliflower Jaffa as some of your mains; and if you are a meat lover, you REALLY need to try Pata Negra. You'll die of pleasure. 

 

As usual, we were last finishing our meal, but thanks to that we got to talk to the friendly peeps working there, even Chef Navob, owner this terrific place, was there for the first opening weeks. He totally got us into trying desert even though we were quite full, but man oh man was he right to force us...

The hash cake is meant to be the star of the menu but I particularly liked the Knafeh better, a cheese pastry soaked in sweet, sugar-based syrup. NOM.

In any case, I think I made myself pretty clear here, but if you haven't got why you should try this place out yet, I'll summarize it for you: BEST Food (though minimal selection of drinks, for those who need them), BEST ambiance, BEST music, and of course, BEST service!

My motto is to never repeat restaurants, and I've been here twice in the last month.

What is it this place called again? The Barbary, Palomar's little sister.

Where is it? 16 Neal's Yard Place, WC2H 9DP

When should you go? Tuesday to Sundays from 12,30 to 3,30pm and from 5 til 10pm. You may be put off by the long cue, and even more so since you can't have a drink until you are by the bar counter. But, my friend, don't despair! If you hate q's just try to make it for lunch or have an early dinner or rather quite a late one.

YES, YES, YES. I am hooked to this place, but so will you once you try it.

TCB x

P.S.: As I was very into my food, I kinda forgot to take many pictures (oops!). The gallery you see here today is a mixture of my own pics and some taken from my google research. Thank you to those who remember to take such fantastic shots!

Parisienne Foodie

 
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One thing is for sure: if I lived in Paris I would definetely be in trouble. There are so many great options to wine and dine EVERYWHERE! At every single corner, wherever you are and whatever the time, you’ll always find a café, bar, or restaurant open. A place with those cute seats outside, people watching, smoking, enjoying life passing by…

Bloody hell, what’s not to like about it? 

I was very lucky to be in Paris with my boyfriend recently. We decided that the best way to get to know the city was by trying as much french food as possible. After all, isn’t Paris meant to be one of the greatest cities for it?

So, with a bit of help from my Parisien friends, I got to know where we should head to. Question is now, what are you looking for?

Looking for fashion?

Then Café Kitsuné is a must for you. Located in the gardens of the Palais Royal, this stand-up coffe bar is the best way to start your morning. Here, fashion, music and design reunite for you to have an incredible experience. Not the mention how excellent the coffee is!

Looking for trendy?

You are talking about le Kong bar. Does that ring a bell? Well it probably does if you are a Sex and the City fan, cause this is the place where Carrie meets Mr Petrovsky ex-wife. Yes, I am geek like that! But that image clicked the moment I walked into this rooftop bar.

Known by its famous interior design (and the transparent 3D chairs) and its beautiful view of central Paris, this place is the perfect fuel-stop for brunch loverss or for having drinks afterwork.

Looking for sweetness? O-M-G. We might have a problem here! The options are literally endless. Macarons, Éclairs, Chocolates, Cakes, … it was so tough to decide where to go and what to try.

But I guess my choice today will go to Galeries Lafayette. Just head to their Gourmet building (yes, you heard right, building) and you’ll find a bit of all the delicacies from Paris. Here you’ll find Éclair de Génie, where I tried THE best éclairs ever; Sadaharu Aoki and his incredibly beautiful edible creations; or macarons from Pierre Hermé, among others.

However, if you want something more peculiar and not so massified, then I would probably suggest you to go to Saint Germain des Près. You’ll find the cutest Ladurée shop (and less crowded than the one on Champs Elysées) or alternatively you can have macarons from Le Maison Richart. The latter is not so known but they have the yummiest macarons I’ve tried so far.

Looking for BOBO? Then stick around Saint Germain des Près. The neighborhood is known for its Bourgeois and Bohème (so called BO-BO) atmosphere and it is just charming to wander around the area.

In here you’ll find the infamous Café de Flore and Les Deux Magots, both known as the rendezvouz of the literary and intellectual élite of the city (like Sartre, or Beauvoir) during the post-war years.

Looking for edgy?

Listen to me, you need to go to Miznon. Located at Le Marais (one of my fav neighborhoods), this local restaurant will make you feel you are rather in Tel Aviv than Paris. Filled with the cacophony of Hebrew voices and Israeli music, Miznon serves fusión dishes of Israeli and french cuisine in a pitta.

Looking for views?

And you don’t mind splashing the cash for once? Then head to Monsier Bleu at Palais de Tokyo. This bankers spot is perfect to impress whoever you are going with. Brilliant food (and desserts) and the most amazing view of the Tour Eiffel while having your meal.

So I guess you are in for a treat?

Happy travels,

TCB

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Craving for Pizza

Photo credit: Paul Winch-Furness

What? Pizza Pilgrims. Where? All the action happens between Soho and Carnaby. I personally prefer the restaurant in Dean St in Soho, as it was their first opening. However, you can also dine in Kingly St in Carnaby.

Why? First of all, who doesn't like italian? And more over, who doesn't like pizza?

Having said that, I think finding a good pizza is key, and sometimes tough. I am quite happy by having Domino's from time to time (don't you?) but that is not what a proper italian pizza tastes like. And the guys from Pizza Pilgrims now it.

The story behind Pizza Pilgrims starts with two brothers who went on a pilgrimage around Italy to improve their cooking skills. After their visit to Italy, they came back to London and decided to start their own business...with a van! The couple started the pop up restaurant on Facebook telling Londoners where they would be for the day. They would park their van and start cooking and serving their delicacies! BRILLIANT.

I never managed to see the van myself, but the it is still going on tour from time to time. Currently, you can find it parked at Swingers in Shoreditch.

But let's cut to the chase. Once more, the menu is not vast, which for some would mean disappointment but to me means excellence. You don't need to have a massive menu to run a great restaurant. If anything, less is more. Their pizzas are done from scratch, which means you are in for a treat. And the options are pretty damn good. The crust is perfect and all the food in the pizza is simply delicious.  They've also got some starters while you wait for your pizza (I suggest you try the artichokes with ham!) and if by the end of it you are still not full, they've got an amazing range of desserts.

I didn't manage to get any desserts (sadly, I was too full). And they've got a Nutella & Ricotta pizza ring that it is to die for. The guys at the table seating next to us had it and I was so jealous. But oh well, it just means I will have to go back.

When? They are open Monday to Sunday, although opening times vary depending on the restaurant. The kitchen closes at 10,30pm in Soho, which to me is quite soon (spaniards start having dinner at that time!) and the restaurant in Carnaby closes by 11pm.

But in any case, if you fancy a good pizza, and you are out and about in town, this is your place.

TCB x

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Contemporary Cuisine - Ottolenghi

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What?Ottolenghi.

Where? It depends. If you don't mind splashing the cash, I'd say go to his high-end restaurant Nopi, near Picadilly Circus.  If you are a bit tight with your budget but still would like to try something new, then you've got 3 more options to choose: Islington, Notting Hill and Belgravia. They first one is a restaurant and the other two are a deli, which is an excellent option for lunch time.

Why? Oh  dear, where to begin. For those who are not living in the London Bubble, you need to know that Ottolenghi is God over here. A renowned israeli chef that has brought to England a contemporary way of cooking. His style, known by mixing Middle Eastern cuisine (including Sirian, Turkish, Lebanese, Iranian, Israeli and Armenian) with Western style food, is great. A perfect combo, as I say.

As a newbie in the City, I went to Ottolenghi few months ago, completely unaware of the relevance of my dinner. But the minute you get into one of his restaurants, you clearly see you are going to have more than just a meal. It's a whole new experience. The restaurant in Islington (which is the one I went to) has a deli counter at the front, welcoming you to see what you can indulge for supper.

The menu is not vast but is more than enough. I like things kept simple. I suggest you to go with few friends so that you can to try as many dishes as you can. Since the portions aren't super big, I think sharing plates is the way forward. Although it took us a bit too much to be served, the wait was SO worth it.

My top 3 from the kitchen where the braised octopus with kalamata olive puree, mustard seeds, harissa and cavolo nero; (ii) the seared fillet of english beef with sweet coriander-mustard saucethe and (iii) the Seard duck breas with red cabbage puree, pickeled celeriac, date & walnuts. My mouth is watering just thinking about it!

As for my veggie favs I'd definitely go for the roasted aubergine with walnut yoghurt, herbs and spicy walnuts (see picture below) and the couliflower, onion, turmeric parsley and coriander fritters with chilli jam yoghurt.

Don't forget to have some bread with your meal (there's an excellent range) and eventhough you might be full by dessert time, you HAVE TO have dessert.

O.M.G. Desserts. I keep dreaming of them. But if you have to go for one, please try the passion fruit meringue tartlets. I wish I could have one of those everyday for the rest of my life. SO GOOD.

When? They are open Monday to Sunday, although opening times vary depending on the restaurant. Both Nopi and Ottolenghi Islington close their kitchens by 10,30-11pm (Mon-Sat), while the delis in Notting Hill and Belgravia usually close by 8pm.

So regardless of the timing, don't forget: BOLD.BIG.DELICACIES. A complete cultural explosion in the kitchen that is not to be missed.

TCB x

P.S: the pictures have been edited by me but have been collected from Ottolenghi's site and other sources, as I was unable to take pictures when I went there!

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RAmen!

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What?Shoryu, it's called Shoryu.

Where? Luckily, you've got three opportunities to try this restaurant, as it has three branches: Soho, Regent St, and Carnaby. Perfect locations if you get hungry while crazy shopping!

Why? If you are a Ramen lover, you'll get hooked to this place. I haven't tried many other restaurants that serve this japanese dish but one thing got me attracted. It's full of locals dining there, and that is always a good sign.

With it's perfect location, this japanese-style restaurant serves one of the best Tonkotsu Ramen I've tried for a while. Eventhough some of the other dishes, specially the starters/sides, are a bit of a fusion between continental and asian food (e.g.: Hirata Buns with fried Halloumi) the Ramen does not deceive. That rich, fat broth, filled with nitamago egg, lots of pork, and lots of veg! Mmm, I'm getting hungry just thinking about it.

When? That would be my only drawback. The kitchen closes at 10,30pm! Coming from Spain, that is something very difficult to understand for me.

However, I wouldn't miss the opportunity to try it. Because once you go, it is certain you'll come back.

TCB x

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Hirata Buns. I saw them at the table next to us and couldn't resist ordering them. They buns are very peculiar, with a sweet taste. If you get one, make sure you don't take the halloumi one.

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I played safe and tried the their signature ramen: Shoryu Gonzu Ramen, which comes with tonkotsu pork broth, nitamago egg, kikurage mushrooms, spring onion, sesame, ginger, nori & mayu (caramelised black garlic oil) and fried shalots. But next time I'll be more adventurous and probably try something more spicy!

Guilty Pleasures by Magnum

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And once more I am amazed by the different afterwork activities London is offering. This time, Selfridges has united with Magnum for their 25th Anniversary celebration and opened a pop up bar at the department store. What are they offering?

To celebrate Magnum's 25th birthday, Selfridges is exclusively hosting the Make My Magnum experience. Which means you will have the chance to create your very own personalised ice cream at their Make My Magnum Bar.

You'll have to pick your favourite ice-cream flavour (vanilla or chocolate-caramel), a chocolate coating and a choice of 17 toppings (of which you will have to pick 3) to design your ultimate Magnum.

For thos into Facebook, Twitter, Instagram...you'll have a change to get an extra topping if you create your own virtual Magnum while you wait to get yours in store (through the Make My Magnum App). Also, by uploading a picture of your creation through any social media platform and writing #MagnumXselfridges you'll automatically enter into a draw to win a year's supply of Magnums and a £250 to spend on Selfridges! How good is that?

Why would you go there?

1.  #TreatYourself

2. It's only 4,5o pounds to create you own magnum and you get to experience something quite unique. The staff is very friendly and the location is marvellous. The Pop Up Bar is full of golden ballons and everything magnum, which you'd never get to see anywhere else.

3. Do you need more reasons?

When can you go there?

You'll have a chance to create your own magnum all summer long at The Concept Store  in Selfridges, until the 30th of August.

Don't miss out!

TCB x

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My Magnum creation is made of: Chocolate-Caramel icecream, whice chocolate coating and 4 topings: sea salt, koji raspberries, smashed meringue and crashed biscuits!

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I'm Wearing S/S 14 Zara dress and Topshop necklace (oldie). Olivia is wearing necklace and tote bag from Zara as well.

Tea Delights with The Mad Hatter

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Maybe it is because I am not a tea expert (I love coffee, what can I say), but when I think of a country with good tea traditions England certainly comes to my mind. As you all know, I’ve been living in London for quite a while and I wanted to make sure I am experiencing all the english traditions.

But then a lot of questions pop into my mind: where should I go? what should I expect? how much should I pay?

Thank God there’s a majestic website to assist you through the whole process and help you out finding the best offers and spots for afternoon tea in the City. It is quite an expensive tradition, so it is always good to have some guidance.

You would be quite surprised to know that afternoon tea is THE thing in terms of deluxe experiences. And because of that, you will need to book your package in advance (up to 3 months!) to have a spot at the best places (usually hotels) serving afternoon tea.

I’ve heard about a lot of hotels where you could have amazing afternoon tea. However, my three personal picks go for the Mad Hatters Tea at the Sanderson Hotel, the Prêt-à-PorTea at The Berkeley Hotel and Afternoon tea at The Ritz. Of course there are many other places where you could enjoy this high-end tea experience, but I’d say this three are a classic. Having that in mind, I’d like to tell you about my experience at the Sanderson Hotel.

It is funny because when you are spending about 30 to 50 pounds on such a delightful and exciting experience, you would think you are going to a very fancy/ good looking place, but that was not the first impression I got when I stood outside the hotel.

However, that changed as soon as I went in. The Hotel has been redecorated into a very modern style, with clear chairs haging from the ceiling to lips sofas (very comfy, I must say) where you could chile while waiting for your table. The hotel also counts with an amazing bar and a lovely terrace, where we had our afternoon tea.

Another thing that surprised me is that it is called “afternoon tea”, but you could actually go from 10am in the morning until 7pm in the evening. Which pretty much means you can do it whenever. However, considering you are about to indulge some serious amount of food, I think the best timing to do it is between 12pm and 4pm.

The experience at the Sanderson hotel was quite unique. As soon as you enter the terrace it feels you are on a fairy tale. This particular afternoon tea is inspired in Alice in Wonderland, so everything was themed to make you feel as if you are one of the Mad Hatter’s party guests.

The menus are hidden in antique books of Alice in Wonderland and the tea selection comes in little bottles for you to smell and decide which tea you are goning to have.

All the cutlery and plates are themed and your napkins come with riddles to entertain you while you are waiting for your food.

Oh, and the food. As I said, I’m not an expert on tea delights but I think the food trays are the cutest thing. Piled in different tiers, you’ll get a wide range of savory and sweet delights that will make you feel you are in food heaven.

All sorts of sandwiches, little cakes, lots of scones…that is what you should always expect to get out of your tea experience. However, there is always much more stuff.

Once you’ve managed to eat it all, you can end your stay sipping your tea and digesting the food that you’ve just eaten. Or you could ask for a food refill for those of you that ae still hungry ;)

In conclusion, I think it is a fantastic idea to embark yourself in such an experience with you girlfriends. I say girlfriends because I can hardly think of any guy who would be up for paying such an amount of money for feeling like a princess while drinking tea and eating cucumber sandwiches, as my boyfriend would say.

But it is not only the great tea and extraordinary food that you are after when going for afternoon tea. It is the idea of self indulgence, of treating yourself, of dressing up and having a good time with your friends while in an amazing hotspot in the City.

TCB xx

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Wearing light pink topshop dress by Jones+Jones, &Other Stories Spiral ring, and Louis Vuitton Speedy bag while at the Sanderson Hotel Mad Hatters Afternoon tea

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The food tray included: carrot meringue and mushroom shaped marshmallows on the 1st tier, victoria sponge cake and mango cheesecake on the 2nd tier and passion fruit and coconut creme "Drink Me" potions, Green Tea chocolate cups, and a selection of savoury and sweet scones on the 3rd and last tier.

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The savoury treats included a selection of the following finger sandwiches: Smoked Cumbrian Ham with whole grain mustard on sun-dried tomato bread, Cucumber and Chive Cream Cheese on Spinach Bread, Cold Smoked Salmon and Lemon Butter on Dark Rye Bread, Egg Mayonnaise With water cress and smoked sea salt on lemon bread and a mini quiche.

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