Mr Fogg’s Tipsy Tea

Last weekend Catherine and I headed to Mr. Fogg’s  for afternoon tea. If you’ve already read Catherine’s post you’ll know that this is somewhere we’d both been planning to go to for a while. But given that we’ve both had the busiest year, we’ve never managed to fix a date until now.

Mr Fogg's Tipsy Tea

After wandering off-piste in gorgeous Mayfair, you find yourself stepping inside one of the most charming bars I’ve been to in a long while.

The details of Mr. Fogg’s journey around the world in 80 days are imprinted on every piece of the bar’s interior. From the clock to the hint of the hot air balloon as well as various other clues that demonstrate an impressive attention to detail that makes you believe Mr. Fogg could have actually been here.

Foggs - Interior

Mr Fogg's Tipsy Tea

Mr Fogg's Tipsy Tea

Mr Fogg's Tipsy Tea

As for Catherine and I, we were here for Mr. Fogg’s Tipsy Tea and if you’ve been to Barts or Bunga Bunga, you’ll know that you shouldn’t expect the norm from the guys behind this place. And wonderfully so.Mr. Fogg's Tipsy Tea

The Tipsy Afternoon Tea starts as it means to go on, with a delicious cocktail served in a tea cup – as an aperitif. Mr Fogg's Tipsy Tea

There is a range of cocktails to choose from the menu and I had to go for the Belvoir Castle tea, simply because I loved the idea of Champagne arriving in a milk jug. That’s right, I could dictate how strong I wanted my cocktail to taste by how much Champagne I poured into my cup.

Mr Fogg's Tipsy Tea

My idea of heaven.

Mr Fogg's Tipsy Tea

The Belvoir Castle included jasmine tea infused Tanqueray No.TEN gin with rose liqueur, pomegranate juice and a splash of cherry purée, topped with Ruinart Blanc de Blancs champagne and a mist of Harry Brompton’s London Ice Tea.

Whilst catching up and sipping cocktails, the festive cake stand arrived. The cakes and pastries were all very good but …
Mr Fogg's Tipsy Tea

… what really won me over were the sandwiches. With afternoon tea, I’m used to my expectations being met or sometimes let down. But in this case they were surpassed. The fig and walnut sandwich was a clear favourite for both of us. Outstanding.Mr Fogg's Tipsy Tea

And I couldn’t help but sneak in one more cocktail before leaving, the Catherine of Braganza as a nod to my present company. ;) This cocktail had Green Tea infused Tanqueray No.TEN gin, steeped in a teapot with Cointreau liqueur, crème de apricot and orange marmalade. Another good choice.

Tipsy Afternoon Tea is available on either Fridays or Saturdays and we were there on a Saturday. The room had a great buzz in a lounging around and drinking delicious cocktails kind of way. All the seats were taken and by 5pm the bar was already starting to get busy.
Mr Fogg's Tipsy Tea

If you’re looking for an afternoon tea with character or a good excuse to drink delicious cocktails or enjoy tasty cakes and sandwiches, I have no hesitation in recommending Mr. Fogg’s. It’s a refreshing change.

 Mr. Fogg’s,  15 Bruton Lane, London W1J 6JD.

Disclaimer: The afternoon tea was complimentary but without a doubt my opinion hasn’t been swayed. This is a great spot to try and I enjoyed every minute of it.

Stelle di Stelle at Harrods

Last week I was invited to try the latest menu at Stelle di Stelle in Harrods. The concept behind this wondrous pop-up involves five of the best restaurants in Italy which take up residency at Harrods for a month each from September 2014 until January 2015. The restaurants have 13 Michelin stars between them and I was lucky enough to be able to try Giorgio Pinchiorri and Annie Féolde’s menu from Enoteca Pinchiorri which has 3 Michelin stars.

So what did Julie and I have for our delicious catch up?

We started with some beautiful cheese and ham, paired with a glass of Ferrari Maximum Brut Trento Doc. Light and tasty, this was a perfect start to the meal.

stelle di stelle at harrods

The next course included chestnut mousse with pancetta, pine nuts and rosemary along with a glass of Ferrari Maximum Brut Trento Doc. This must have been the lightest mousse I have ever tasted. Its airy texture matched the deep flavours of the other ingredients. Pure sensation for my tastebuds. Even the olive oil danced around my mouth as I savoured each spoonful.

Stelli di Stelli at Harrods

Another fantastic dish followed. Octopus cooked in olive oil with pumpkin cream, coffee pearls and watercress sprouts which was paired with a glass  Rosso di Montalcino Doc San Polo 2012.

The coffee pearls were an elegant touch to this sumptuous dish. Apparently the octopus had been cooked three ways by the time it had reached the table and again, each mouthful arrived with a depth of flavour and texture that could only be the result of careful preparation.

We were both very much enjoying our meal.

Stelle di Stelle at Harrods

Poached egg with Alba white truffle and Grana Padano cheese fondue was next on the list, with a glass of Giulio Ferrari Trento Doc 2002 to go with it.

Stelle di Stelle at Harrods

I don’t think I have a favourite dish on this menu as they were all sublime. But if I had to pick, this would come close because poached egg, white truffle and cheese fondue prepared so delicately. I really tried to take my time with this one …
Stelle di Stelle at Harrods

The next course – and at this stage with three more courses to go – I didn’t feel overfed but instead excited to experience the next adventure. The next course involved fusilli al ferretto with artichokes, scampi and liquorice powder, paired with a glass of not wine but Birra Moretti la Rossa.

Stelle di Stelle at Harrods

To translate, a delicious glass of beer. I’m not a real beer drinker and would never think to pair my pasta with a glass but this totally worked. There was so much flavour in this glass of beer as there was in each glass of wine we had tried so far. There were layers and depth, just as there were with each dish too.Stelle di Stelle at Harrods

The penultimate course included a rack of lamb topped with garlic and thyme, accompanied by polenta and Cavolo Nero and paired with a glass of Poggio Al Tesoro Mediterra Igt Toscana 2011.

Admittedly I have never been a fan of polenta and I really don’t think I would ever order it in a restaurant. But by now I completely trusted the menu and I knew if there was a time when I would enjoy it, it would be now. And I was right.

The lamb was also something to savour, cooked perfectly and full of flavour.

Stelle di Stelle at Harrods

Finally the dessert came along with bread, chocolate, oil and salt and a glass of Giovanni Allegrini Recioto Della Valpolicella Classico Doc 2010.

This dish is apparently based on a popular children’s favourite in Italy but obviously this more refined and sophisticated version arrived with a few surprises such as the soft chocolate pouring out of the chocolate casing as well as the taste of the olive oil upon the crispy bread. This isn’t your nuttella sandwich idea of a dessert. It’s something more delicate and if you especially enjoy sea salt chocolate, you will enjoy this.

Stelle di Stelle at Harrods

Julie and I were amongst the last to leave Stelle di Stelle which you can find on the lower ground floor of Harrods, next to the fine wine section. So I had the opportunity to snap this photo to give you an idea of the beautiful design of the restaurant.

Stelle di Stelle at Harrods

The whole evening was a real delight and whilst we dined in Knightsbridge, I really did feel like I had embarked on a culinary adventure. Always my favourite kind of meal.

Chelsea Theatre: Stacy Makishi’s Vesper Time

The latest SACRED season has kicked off at Chelsea Theatre and on Friday 28th and Saturday 29th, this King’s Road theatre sees the return of Stacy Makishi with her world premiere of VesperTime.

Vesper Time – Stacy Makishi

What strikes me about VesperTime is the influences of Moby Dick, Hitchcock and Bjork’s album Vespertine that apparently create a striking performance where rock concert meets subversive sermon.

If you’ve read my previous reviews on productions at the Chelsea Theatre, you will have noticed that the element of surprise is very much at work when you walk through their doors. And each time you leave feeling moved.

VesperTime was developed with the support of the National Theatre Studio and commissioned by Chelsea Theatre and Colchester Arts Centre.

For more information and tickets, see Chelsea Theatre’s website.

Cupcake Family Club

Last month I visited Cupcake Family Club for their Special Cupcake Halloween Afternoon, which included baby and toddler classes as well as special treats such as stylish family photos, playtime and face painting.

Nestled in a side street off New King’s Road, Cupcake Family Club is much bigger than I had remembered when I first visited a couple of years ago to try their gym. Now returning with a confident one year old who is very much his own little man, this place has taken on a new meaning: somewhere for little ones to roam around, learn through play, and all in a fun and safe environment.

Cupcake

Admittedly, Little Man did turn off the music during the sensory class which involved plenty of musical instruments and playing with toys that light up. What is it with toddlers and plugs? ;) Thankfully a little girl fixed the matter of the class being without music when she subsequently toddled over to the speakers and pressed a few buttons, much to everyone’s surprise.

But away from buttons and switches, safe in the soft play area, Little Man also enjoyed exploring and curiously climbing onto new toys.

Sadly I didn’t get to talk to any of the mummies. It was surprisingly very busy and there was so much going on. Little Man moves around so quickly nowadays and is so wonderfully curious, I couldn’t take my eyes off him.

But on a normal day, I imagine this place would be great for both kids and parents alike. There’s a café open to non-members which has a juice bar. Non-members also get to enjoy afternoon activities for an hour with a guest pass, if your child is between three and seven. And the £5 guest pass includes a hot drink.

There are day passes with more activities for the kids to enjoy and of course, you can also become a full member.

To get a better idea of Cupcake Family Club, here is a short video.

I visited Cupcake Family Club as a guest and if Little Man wasn’t at nursery, I would definitely consider it as a place for him to go for classes and just to hang out. Little ones need activities, stimulation and most importantly other little ones around. And this place offers a great sanctuary for mummies to go to.

Dinner at Goat

This wasn’t my first visit to Goat. I had initially visited it when it first opened. But for a few reasons, I didn’t feel comfortable writing a post on my experience because I’d rather say nothing than something bad.

Goat on Fulham Road, Chelsea

So I carried on, on my merry way, and hoped that the issues were teething problems. Flashforward to about a year and a half later and finally I thought, I’d better go back inside – especially given that I walk past Goat everyday.

And in short, I really enjoyed my meal.

Goat on Fulham Road, Chelsea

To start with, I had the Redcliffe Martini as a nod to the days when I used to live on Redcliffe Square. Those were the days.  ;)
Goat on Fulham Road, Chelsea

OH started with the calamari fritti, which he liked whilst …Goat on Fulham Road, Chelsea

… I had the tuna tartare, avocado and wasabi mousse, which I enjoyed too.

Goat on Fulham Road, ChelseaFor main, OH had one of their tasty pizzas which was a turnaround from his initial experience. He loved it.

Goat on Fulham Road, Chelsea

I had the pan fried monkfish with asparagus risotto. I love a meaty fish and everything was cooked well.

Goat on Fulham Road, Chelsea

As for dessert, I decided to keep it liquid and have a White Negroni which sadly isn’t on the menu anymore but because it was the waitress’s favourites, I was able to try it for the first time. I love it more than I love a regular Negroni, definitely.
Goat on Fulham Road, ChelseaAll in all, we had a lovely evening. And I’m so glad now Goat is one of my locals. Most importantly, I can’t wait to try their Kids Club on Sundays, which sounds fun for both Little Man and the grown ups.

Goat on Fulham Road, Chelsea

It took me this long to return to Goat. I hope it doesn’t take me just as long to get to their upstairs bar which has a great looking cocktail menu. Win!

Goat, 333 Fulham Road, London, SW10 9QL

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