Cocktails

London-Cocktails

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.

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

I have to admit when it comes to Indian restaurants, I do have a couple of firm favourites which makes it very difficult for me to go off-piste and try something new. After all, once you’ve found something you like, why look around?

Recently, I was invited to try Kishmish on Fulham Road. Goodness knows how many times I’ve passed it over the years when heading towards Fulham Broadway. It’s always been there but because I know what I like, I hadn’t thought about venturing inside.

To my surprise, inside was bigger than expected. The restaurant isn’t just what you see from outside. There’s a whole other area that makes up more than half of the restaurant.

Kishmish Fulham Broadway

Kishmish Fulham Broadway

Kishmish Fulham BroadwayAfter we sat down and ordered, we were given an amuse-bouche which I enjoyed so much, I watched with great interest as OH finished his.

Kishmish Fulham Broadway

For pre-dinner cocktails, I ordered the lychee and rose petal martini … Kishmish Fulham Broadway

… whilst the OH ordered the Mumbai’s Tipple which involved lime, brown sugar and fresh pomegranate along with Bombay Sapphire Gin and pomegranate liqueur. Kishmish Fulham BroadwayFor starter, OH had an Onion Bhaji which came with aubergine chutney …

Kishmish Fulham Broadway

… as I enjoyed the Seafood Platter, which included king prawn marinated in peppercorn and cheese, salmon infused with dill, grain mustard and a hint of honey, and Goan style Devon crab cake with coriander mayo.Kishmish Fulham Broadway

For OH’s main, he ordered the Goan Jhinga Curry, which included king prawns gently poached in red curry sauce, finished with okra, and steamed basmati rice.

Kishmish Fulham Broadway

And I had the Nariyal Ka Gosht, which involved diced lamb cooked in lime leaf Masala and baked in a fresh young coconut, served with steamed basmati rice.

My curry was quite hot and so I had some of OH’s dish, which I enjoyed. What I found refreshing about my curry is that despite finding it quite hot, I still could taste the flavours of the dish. This I’d not experienced before. I usually go for mild curries but should I happen upon a hot one, they just tend to burn my mouth and that’s it. But with this dish, sensation and flavours were merged.

Kishmish Fulham BroadwayKishmish Fulham Broadway

If by now you haven’t grasped the concept of this Indian restaurant, you will do with the desserts. The chocolate samosa and carrot halwa, which I really enjoyed but I didn’t think my photo showed it off in its best light – are clues to Kishmish’s Innovative Indian Cooking concept.Kishmish Fulham Broadway

Kishmish’s recently appointed chef, who comes from
Zaika and Ginger restaurants, endeavours to be both creative and adventurous with his menus. And it shows.

I had a very pleasant evening but I was more interested in what the OH thought, given his love for Indian food. He really enjoyed his meal and gave it a thumbs up.

We were guests of the restaurant but this hasn’t affected my opinion. We also had a very early dinner because we had Little Man with us, who enjoyed his curry dish very much. And by the time we left, there were other diners around us and more coming in.

Kishmish, 448 – 450 Fulham Road, London, SW6 1DL.

As the temperature starts to dip and winter nips at our ankles, I can’t help but think back to Bumpkin’s winter menu tasting and feel warm inside. Bumpkin Winter Menu

Except, our evening didn’t take place inside but outside in Bumpkin’s beautiful garden with pretty lights and a welcoming warm ambiance.

The warmth also came from a couple of delicious cocktails which kicked off the evening. This one here is the Plum Pudding, which includes fresh plum, plum liquor, Vanilla Vodka and Disarono Amaretto. It was heavenly and so I took my time with each sip to savour the flavours. Bumpkin Winter Menu

For my starter, I had the Sloe Gin Salmon with English caviar and cucumber which I very much enjoyed.

Bumpkin Winter Menu

And for my main I had the Highland Venison, Savoy cabbage, crispy bacon and game chips which was tasty all over. I tend to fear that food envy may strike me at any point but during this evening, I was very happy with my choice.

Bumpkin Winter Menu I was also pleased with the mac and cheese, which I’m sure I’ve already written somewhere that I don’t normally order. But if it’s there on the table, in front of me, how could I resist? 😉 Bumpkin’s mac and cheese is definitely worth trying, for the record.Mac

Bumpkin Winter MenuAlong with my main, I enjoyed a glass or few of this lovely Pinot Noir. I wish I could wax lyrical about the merits of this fine bottle of wine but sadly for my limited knowledge, the sound of my tastebuds doing a fine dance was too loud for me to take in any of the sommelier’s expertise.
Bumpkin Winter MenuAs for the other dishes on the table, they included this fine looking burger … which apparently passed The Mayfairy test.

Bumpkin Winter Menu

These scallops, which were available as a starter or main, almost triggered my food envy … Bumpkin Winter Menu… as did this Salmon Wellington.

Bumpkin Winter Menu

To complete the meal, I thought I’d end on a cocktail note and so I ordered this Apple Crumble, which included 8 Pampero Rum shaken with apple juice and butterscotch schnapps. It was so good and it felt like I was sipping a dessert …

Bumpkin Winter Menu

… but of course, I couldn’t resist pudding itself and so I tried this Warm Vanilla Sponge with gooseberry jam and toasted almond ice cream.

Bumpkin Winter MenuThe evening was delicious and the company was divine. And yet again I left Bumpkin with that warm feeling inside.

BUMPKIN CHELSEA, 119 Sydney Street, London, SW3 6NR.

I attended a bloggers dinner at Bumpkin. My words are all true. The dinner and drinks were delicious. 

Last week I met up with a friend to try Hakkasan’s Dim Sum Sunday winter menu. The afternoon was wonderful and a chance for two busy mummies to catch up. If there was one thing I took away from it, apart from the memories of a very delicious and fantastic menu, it is how important a little me-time is, especially with girlfriends.

Hakkasan was busy on a Sunday afternoon, buzzing with a mixed crowd of couples, friends in pairs or in groups. Glasses of Champagne were being delivered on trays and the hum of chatter in this beautifully designed restaurant felt good as I made my way to the table where my friend was waiting for me.

We looked at the Dim Sum menu which is available from 12pm until 5pm and picked the signature set menu which included six courses, a cocktail to start with, a bottle of Louis Roederer Brut Premier NV Champagne for two people to share (the whole menu is based on two people sharing) and a dinner cocktail.

To start with, my friend had the Winter Sour, which included apricot, gingerbread, Rittenhouse 100 rye whiskey, lemon, nutmeg and Elumakule Tiki bitters. Perfect for someone who was coming down with a slight cold. (I’m a firm believer in the powers of whiskey. 😉 )

Hakkasan - Dim Sum Sundays

I had the Morello Collins, which included cherry, almond, Tanqueray No. Ten gin, lemon, soda and Peychaud’s bitters. A delicious start to the menu!

Hakkasan - Dim Sum Sundays

For our first course, we had the crispy duck salad …Hakkasan - Dim Sum Sundays

And for our steamed course, we had celery prawn dumplings, har gau, scallop shumai and Chinese chive dumplings with prawn and crabmeat. I loved the crispy duck starter and was looking forward to the rest of the menu but I could have easily spent the afternoon eating just dumplings. Just beautiful.

Hakkasan - Dim Sum Sundays

At some point, the Champagne arrived. I don’t think I had read the menu properly and had assumed that we were having a glass each. But the menu includes half a bottle per person, which really felt like a treat.

Hakkasan - Dim Sum Sundays

The fried and baked course included seafood glutinous seaweed roll, baked venison puff, crispy smoked duck and pumpkin puff, and golden radish crab meat pastry.

Hakkasan - Dim Sum SundaysAnd for our small eats dish, we ordered the salt and pepper squid whilst all along our Champagne glasses were being filled.

Hakkasan - Dim Sum Sundays

Finally for the main which we both loved, we chose the grilled Chilean sea bass with honey. Succulent and tasty, I’d never had sea bass like this.

Hakkasan - Dim Sum Sundays

Even though this menu is available until 5pm, we had easily passed this evening hour by the time we arrived at dessert. And whilst my friend and I were feeling very satisfied, in the name of research and because the menu also included a choice of desserts with  cocktail recommendations for each dish, we went along and ordered the apple tartin … Very lovely!
Hakkasan - Dim Sum Sundays

Chocolate and Kalamansi ganache which was heavenly and came with the Fitzrovia Plum cocktail, which included Suntory Hakushu 12yrs whisky, plum sake, limoncello, gingerbread and Burlesque bitters. You can see this cocktail next to the macarons below.

Hakkasan - Dim Sum Sundays

Hakkasan - Dim Sum Sundays

The cost of the signature menu is £58 with the Champagne or £48 with tea instead of bubbles, which is truly an amazing deal. Hakkasan’s cocktails are reason enough to visit this Michelin starred Chinese restaurant, not to mention the food and with Champagne thrown in? The whole afternoon was delectable and if you’re looking for an excuse for some quality time time with a favourite person, I would recommend trying this.

The menu is available at Hakkasan Hanway Place, 8 Hanway Place, London, W1T 1HD and I was invited to try the menu as a guest. But this truly hasn’t affected my opinion. Anyone who has experienced Hakkasan can testify to their sumptuous delights.

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