Mercato Metropolitano

Mercato Metropolitano is a vibrant new market in Elephant & Castle which celebrates Italian food and drink. Housed in a disused paper factory, this covered market covers 45,000 ft, with brilliant Italian producers and chefs selling regional delights.

Mercato Metropolitano

Choose from irresistable pizzas at ‘Pizza Napoletana’, fresh handmade pasta from ‘Tortellino’, or indulge with an ice-cream from Gelateria Badiani, Florence’s award-winning gelato makers. Within the market you can find everything from artisan coffee roasters to butchers, a juice bar, a bakery and a decadent mozzarella bar.

Also onsite is Prezzemolo e vitale, a family-run Palermo supermarket who sell every Italian ingredient you could ever hope for, including premium cured meats, cheeses, and a wonderful range of olive oils. The founders hope this will become a hub for locals and professionals working nearby, within the complex there is a boxing gym and a coworking music space.

As well as providing delicious food, MM hope to educate and raise awareness of food sustainability, and will be hosting events and live demonstrations in the coming months.

As a South Londoner I couldn’t be happier to have this tasty new market on my doorstep.

Find Mercato Metropolitano at: Borough Triangle, Newington Causeway, SE1.

More information here: www.mercatometropolitano.co.uk

September Beauty Favourites

At the start of a new season I always review the new beauty products, keen to give my skincare routine a refresh for the change in climate. This year there are more lotions and potions than ever to try, wrapped in beautiful new packaging and smelling heavenly.

beauty products

I’ve selected my favourites from the amazing array above to tell you about…

YSL

There is something instantly alluring about the YSL branding… perhaps it’s the slick and simple design, or the luxurious golden packaging. Now that the sun is retreating I have been using the YSL bronzing powder religiously to keep a balmy glow for as long as possible. The ‘sunstone’ shade gives a very natural colour to the skin, and the powder is so fine it makes you look as though you are bare-faced but perfectly bronzed. Priced at £35.

Perricone

I am a big fan of the Perricone MD skincare, so when they announced a make-up collection I was excited to try the products. Immaculately packaged in chic, minimalist bottles, this brand looks as good as it feels. These lovely products are designed to add a touch of colour to the face whilst also offering healthy benefits. I particularly love the blush and eyeshadow which are creamy and silky on the skin and give a beautifully radiant boost to the skin. Priced at £29 each.

DHC

DHC is a popular skincare brand from Japan. I am an addict of make-up remover wipes even though I know they dry out the skin, so I was relieved to discover this natural option. The DHC Make Off Sheets are made from 100% cotton and remove all make-up and dirt whilst keeping the skin’s moisture. Perfect when you are feeling lazy before bed. Priced at £7.95.

Kerastase

I have always loved the Kerastase ranges, and love it when the hairdressers I visit use the haircare products. The ‘Specifique’ range is specially good for oily roots and sensitised lengths. I have a sensitive scalp and I find this shampoo soothes the skin and nourishes my hair leaving it extra shiny and soft. Priced at £17.90.

This Works

I try to avoid fake tan, but loved the effect of the ‘this works’ gradual tan lotion. I used the skin miracle product every day to even out skin tone and then every few days added a coat of the ‘Perfect Legs Gradual Tan’ which gives a streak-free natural glow. Both products give the skin Vitamin C and E whilst adding moisture. Priced at £38 each.

Essie

Essie have recently had a rebrand, the bottles are now a funky twist shape. Pick a pretty pastel shade like ‘fairy tailor’ or ‘touch up’ for sophisticated nails, or just put a layer of the high quality top coat to add strength and shine to your nails. Priced at £8.99.

Stila makeup

The Stila ‘perfect me, perfect hue’ is a lovely palette for eyes and cheeks. The hues are carefully chosen to complement each other with five eyeshadows and two blushes, in matte and shimmer finish. I tend to use the paler colours during the day, and the darker shadows for evenings out. It is great to have all the colours in one palette, saving space in your make-up bag. Priced at £28.

Paul & Joe

The Paul & Joe packaging makes me smile, with bright colours and cute cartoon patterns, it stands out on a shelf of skincare. The sun protection body mist is extremely useful for warm days on the go. The refreshing spray is easy to use, and includes SPF20 so will keep your skin protected from the sun. I find the bottle a very convenient size as it fits in any handbag and the bright colour means I can always find it quickly. Priced at £12.

La Roche Posay

I have only recently discovered the French brand, La Roche-Posay. The products are perfect for acne-prone skin, but also great for normal skin types. I am always on the lookout for the perfect moisturiser, and have fallen in love with the ‘Effaclar Mat’, it has a gel texture so isn’t too heavy on the skin, but still feels luxuriously rich. The formula is also brilliant at reducing pore sizes, so I use it particularly round the t-zone area of my face. I can also highly recommend the ‘Effaclar Duo’ range, which aim to combat spots and red skin whilst also hydrating the skin. For more coverage try the new ‘Effaclar Duo Unifant’ which acts as a subtle concealer whilst also healing the imperfection. Priced at £9.67 and £11.

Dermalogica

After warm weather I find my skin is dry and stressed. The Dermalogica skin hydrating fluid gives skin a boost, and is particularly good mixed in with your daily moisturiser. I used this magic little bottle before bed for 3 nights and immediately noticed a difference in how my skin felt in the morning. This product should also help reduce fine lines. Priced at £39.90.

Liz Earle

Liz Earle has been a favourite of mine for a while, natural products which smell delicious. The ‘cleanse and polish’ is an award-winning cleanser which removes all dirt and make-up whilst also moisturising the skin. I found it is best used with a muslin cloth, both morning and night. The best thing about this product is the delicious smell, flavoured with rose and lavender, it leaves you feeling refreshed and smelling amazing! Priced at £15.50.

Yauatcha Signature Dim Sum Menu, Soho

Yauatcha is a restaurant which suits every occasion. Stylish but fun, with reasonably priced Chinese cuisine of the highest standard. I recently went along to the original Soho branch to try the Signature Dim Sum menu, a feast of some of the most popular Yauatcha recipes.

Yauatcha Soho

As I now know, the Yauatcha menu makes it difficult to resist ordering one of everything. To avoid the lengthy process of choosing from the list of irresistable items, opt for the Signature dim sum menu, which has a nicely balanced selection pre-picked, to share as a table.

It includes:

Blue swimmer crab salad

Venison puff

Seafood dumpling soup

Poached Peking chicken dumpling

Har gau

Pork and prawn shui mai

Three style mushroom cheung fun

Fried chilli squid

Crispy aromatic duck 1/4

Chinese vegetables

Dessert

Yauatcha Soho

The joy of dim sum is that every mouthful is different, but when you find a dumpling that you really love, you just want to eat it again and again. From the signature menu my favourites were the rich and luxurious venison puff… velvety meat encased in a buttery pastry parcel and the slimy but moreish mushroom cheung fun which Yauatcha coat in the most delicious marinade.

Yauatcha SohoYauatcha Soho

Crispy duck is a classic Chinese dish which Yauatcha excel at. Their version has plenty of crispy skin and the pancakes are extra thin, avoiding a floury aftertaste in the mouth. At every Yauatcha restaurant they will provide you with three circular dishes of sauces, I like to keep the sweet chilli sauce for adding to my duck, for an extra spicy kick.

Yauatcha Soho

Vegetables feel very much like an afterthought, brought along to the table after a decadent feast of far more interesting dishes! I found the baby bak choi a little bland, though the fresh vegetables did give a palate cleansing effect after the rich meal.

Yauatcha SohoYauatcha SohoYauatcha Soho

The desserts are displayed immaculately in a beautiful cabinet which I always ogle at on the way in. It is worth saving space for these sugary works of art, or ask for a box of the colourful macarons to eat on the journey home.

More information and book a table at Yauatcha Soho here.