Taste of London 2016, Regent’s Park

London continues to grow as a food capital of the world and this year Taste of London seemed bigger, better, and more popular than ever before. I went along on opening night to eat my weight in food and wander round the culinary stalls.

taste of london

The list of restaurants exhibiting included some of my favourite London establishments: Duck & Waffle, Jose Pizarro and Ember Yard. Each eatery offered four dishes for hungry visitors to choose from, and with over 30 restaurants at the festival there were plenty of cuisines to choose from. Each day special guest chefs attended Taste to offer exclusive tasters of their signature styles, and iconic masters of the kitchen gave talks and demonstrations to enlighten the crowds about their cooking techniques and secrets.

taste of london

It was almost impossible to decide which dishes to try from the never-ending list of tempting recipes. My favourites included the Cappelletti di vitello – handmade pasta stuffed with slow cooked veal and pancetta with porcini mushrooms, the addictive and spicy Aloo Chat from Trishna and the Lamb Cutlets with korean spices from Roka.

taste of london

After sharing about 10 plates the four of us decided to take a wander round the stalls. We had the opportunity to taste sensational British Jubilee strawberries, learn about sponsor AEG’s kitchen equipment and admire handmade pottery and plates at the Sytch Farm Studio stall. When we needed a drink there was plenty of cocktail, beer and cider bars to choose from. It was particular lovely to discover the Fishers delicious gin which makes a great g&t.

taste of london

For dessert, the Duck & Waffle Golden Grahams soft serve with toppings was unmissable. Luckily we got to the queue earlier in the evening, as apparently later on the ice-creams ran out. With a subtle taste of breakfast thanks to the cereal infused milk and topped with indulgent caramel sauce and chocolate flakes this decadent ice-cream was the perfect sweet ending to a brilliant evening eating at Taste.

More information on Taste of London here.

London’s Best New Restaurants 2016

When I returned to London, after travelling the world for 5 months, there were a lot of new restaurants to catch up on. After weeks of feasting I’ve tried and tested many of the city’s top new eateries… Here’s my pick of the bunch, and which dish not to miss at each.

Padella Pasta

Padella Pasta

This Borough Market newbie is the little sister of neighbourhood Italian, Trullo in Islington. Pop in for a reasonably priced plate of pasta and a slice of seasonal tart.

Don’t miss: Pici cacio e pepe (hand-rolled noodle-like pasta with cheese and pepper).

Best for: Quick lunchtime sustenance, post Borough market shopping.



This elegant dining room in Farringdon is receiving five star reviews from every food critic who steps inside. Chef Mark Jarvis presents an understated seasonal menu that showcases his flair and confidence in the kitchen.

Don’t miss: British strawberries with lemon thyme and burnt meringue.

Best for: Quiet lunches with grown up family members.



I’ve never been to Sri Lanka but I’m keen to visit after tasting the vibrant cuisine at Hoppers. Located in the heart of Soho, there is always a queue so head there on a weekday lunch for a shorter wait.

Don’t miss: Egg Hopper (pancake) with Lamb Kari.

Best for: Pre-show dinner.

Morito Hackney

Morito Hackney

A more spacious branch of the popular original on Exmouth Market, serving moreish cuisine from Southern Spain to North Africa. Arrive hungry and order as many tapas plates as you can fit in.

Don’t miss: Crispy aubergine, whipped feta and date molasses.

Best for: Gathering up all your friends and ordering everything.

The Woodford
The Woodford

It may be nearly in Essex but it’s only a few stops further than East London on the central line. Chef Ben Murphy presents beautiful plates of food, and many predict a star for this stunning restaurant.

Don’t miss: The reasonably priced set lunch.

Best for: A special meal worth the journey to E18.


Located at the top of Pop Brixton’s temporary structure is the unassuming tiny Indian eatery, Kricket. Offering small plates of Southern Indian food with big flavours, I have already been back twice.

Don’t miss: Keralan Fried Chicken with curry leaf mayonnaise.

Best for: Friday night feast nights with anyone.

Banh Banh
Banh Banh

Vietnam has come to Peckham with this family-run, cosy restaurant. Minimalist modern decor and a brief but tasty menu has already made this new eatery a no-fuss, neighbourhood favourite.

Don’t miss: Beef in betel leaves.

Best for: Quiet and casual date nights.



The Parisian favourite comes to Covent Garden bringing classic French dishes and charismatic waiters. Sit at the bar to chat to staff about their favourite dishes.

Don’t miss: Seasonal specials.

Best for: Celebratory meals.

The Barbary

The Barbary

The new venue from the highly successful Palomar team, The Barbary (hidden in Neal’s Yard) offers small plates inspired by Berber flavours. There are only 24 seats round an intimate bar, so arrive early to avoid a lengthy wait.

Don’t miss: Pata Negra neck.

Best for: Catch up with your closest friends.



A petite but powerful modern Indian restaurant tucked round an unsuspecting corner of Spitalfields. This home-style restaurant has no reservations and is always busy with locals in the know.

Don’t miss: Sigree grilled mustard broccoli and venison doughnuts.

Best for: Indulgent work lunches.


This stylish new Thai restaurant aims to present London with an authentic taste of Thailand, and the dishes are unrecognisable compared to your average takeaway. After a successful stint at Climpson’s Arches the Thai team continue to thrill diners with confronting flavours and memorable recipes.

Don’t miss: Whole Deep Fried Seabass with roasted rice and Isaan herbs.

Best for: Dinner with a group of friends.



Fantastic food in a no fuss eatery in Islington. Tom Oldroyd is a genius in the kitchen creating dishes that are seasonally inspired and inventively thoughtful.

Don’t miss: Spinach and ricotta malfatti with broad beans and crispy sage.

Best for: Intimate lunches and dinners.



A renovated garage is now the home to Primeur, one of North London’s most exciting new restaurants. The delicious menu changes daily to reflect the produce available and guests sit round communal tables.

Don’t miss: Whatever the waiter recommends that day.

Best for: Weekend meals with your favourite people.

Santo Remedio

Santo Remedio

The most authentic Mexican yet to come to London. A colourful joint in the centre of Shoreditch serving up vibrant food and great cocktails.

Don’t miss: Guacamole and Elote.

Best for: Feasting with friends.


Both the space and the plates at Ellory scream contemporary cool. Normally full of Hackney hipsters, this modern restaurant serves stylish seasonal dishes that wow.

Don’t miss: Matching wines with your meal.

Best for: Lovely summer lunches with friends and family.


Jason Atherton’s latest restaurant, inspired by the izakaya eateries of Japan. Make sure you save space for cocktails in the underground 7 Tales bar downstairs.

Don’t miss: Tempura, almost as good as the real thing in Tokyo.

Best for: Business lunches and date nights.

Good Egg

The Good Egg

My new favourite breakfast stop, despite the fact that it’s a trek over to Stoke Newington. A Jewish style cafe/deli that is open all day but particularly busy for brunch.

Don’t miss: Shakshuka – baked eggs with tomato and peppers, preserved lemon yoghurt, sumac and a challah roll.

Best for: Long weekend brunches with friends.

The Ninth
The Ninth

The sophisticated first solo venture from brilliant chef Jun Tanaka. The menu features French inspired dishes that taste irresistibly good.

Don’t miss: Pain Perdu with vanilla ice-cream.

Best for: Weekday lazy lunches with mum.

Rok Smokehouse

A Nordic eatery championing the trend for smoked meat and pickled vegetables. Particularly reasonable at lunchtime.

Don’t miss: Nduja scotch egg.

Best for: Foodie friends meet up.

Marksman Public House

Most of my Sundays are spent at Columbia Road Flower Market so I am more than delighted to have a delicious new lunch place to stop off at, laden with blooms. A relaxed Victorian pub serving wholesome British dishes. Have a look upstairs too at the wonderfully-light redesigned contemporary dining room.

Don’t miss: Brown butter and honey tart.

Best for: Long Sunday lunches.

Black Axe Mangal

Black Axe Mangal

A posh Turkish kebab parlour with psychedelic decor and seriously tasty food. They have just started serving weekend brunch.

Don’t miss: the Reuben sandwich.

Best for: Weekend gorging with friends.

Blog post coming soon… the best new cocktail bars in London.

Best Food in Sydney

Sydney lives in the shadow of Melbourne when it comes to food and coffee. Though recently with the Noma stint, there is much more to talk about when it comes to eating and drinking in Australia’s most iconic city. With a warm climate and surrounded by the plentiful sea, Sydney’s restaurants range from casual seaside hang-outs to fine dining inside the magnificent Opera House.

Master – One of the hottest openings of 2015 this Surrey Hills eatery is run by John Javier (former intern at Noma). He creates modern Chinese dishes with flair and finesse. Try the jowl peking pork with pancakes and cucumber and a side of special cabbage with fish butter.

Ms G’s – an amusing play on words (MSG) this lively thai eatery serves vibrant and moreish dishes in a reimagined multi-story building. Order mini banh mi bites to start and intensely flavoured lamb ribs.

Reuben Hills – a hip brunch spot in the trendy Surrey Hills area serving delicious coffee and tasty South American recipes.

Sake – a glamorous contemporary Japanese chain serving great seafood and high quality meat. Visit the popular branch on The Rocks.

10 Williams Street – this cute wine bar is a great place to meet friends and enjoy a glass of organic, orange Australian wine. If you are hungry the succinct menu offers a range of tempting Italian dishes and nibbles.

Bennelong – a smart new restaurant in the iconic Sydney Opera House this eatery is already garnering a lot of attention. Favourites from the Cured and Cultured menu include the suckling pig sausage roll with black garlic and the decadent cheese and truffle toastie.

Cho Cho San – a chic and minimalist modern Japanese restaurant with delicious small plates and inventive cocktails. I loved the addictive chicken karaage and the refreshing lychee & pineapple slushie.

The Shop – After an early morning surf on Bondi beach head to this tiny café for coffee and a hearty breakfast. Try the ‘breakfast bowl’, a lovely combination of quinoa, halloumi, avocado, poached egg, pickled cabbage and sunflower seeds.

A Tavola – Get your pasta fix at A Tavola, where they make all the pasta fresh in house each day. There are two branches, with regularly changing seasonal additions to the standard menu.

Ester – A creative contemporary restaurant in a dressed-down industrial space. Much of the menu is cooked in the wood-fired oven and features some quirky clever recipes by chef Mat Lindsay. The roast duck with burnt honey sauce is a must.

Acme – The name comes from the initials of the four friends who opened up this fantastic little restaurant. Reasonably priced with a great vibe, it was one of my favourite restaurants in Australia. Don’t miss the pig’s head and egg yolk macaroni and coconut rice cream with white chocolate for dessert.

Edition Coffee Roasters – There is always a queue for brunch at this Nordic – Japanese fusion café. Enjoy their premium artisanal coffee and matcha hot cakes with mascarpone and passionfruit.

Farmhouse – It’s almost impossible to get a space at this rustic communal dining experience. With just 20 seats the intimate restaurant is always full. Try to book in advance for Sunday lunch and let the knowledgeable team feed your stomach and soul with delicious homely fare.

Chat Thai – Cheap and cheerful this Thai institution now has many branches around Sydney. Head to the original eatery and choose from the vibrant and lengthy menu of Asian classics.

Bourke Street Bakery – this neighbourhood bakery first opened in 2004 and has since expanded all over the city. The unique ginger crème brûlée tart is unmissable.

Fratelli Paradiso – a lunch favourite with locals, this friendly Italian restaurant serves classic Mediterranean dishes in a convivial environment. Always full, the eatery often spills out onto the street. Order the lasagnetta bolognaise for a comforting lunch.

Aqua S – Visit this instagrammable ice-cream parlour for their bright blue sea salt flavoured soft serve topped with fairy floss and caramel popcorn.

Billy Kwong – This long-running venue is a favourite with locals and tourists. Combining Chinese recipes with unusual Australian ingredients the food is a hit and the service is very attentive. The signature crispy duck with citrus sauce stands up to its famous reputation.

Da Orazio – For a brilliant Bondi lunch option head to this Italian bistro for their huge focaccia con porchetta sandwich (marinated pork from the rotisserie, grilled eggplant, lettuce, mayonnaise and served in pizza bread). Share one between two, or maybe even three!

N2 Extreme Gelato – Dramatic and delicious this daring ice-cream café offers indulgent and extra creamy flavours.

Mr Wong – A great place to eat in the CBD, Mr Wong serves great dim sum and cantonese favourites, served in a lavish French colonial setting. Most memorable was the aubergine with fish fragrant sauce.

Spice Alley – A new street eat sensation offering all kinds of Asian cuisine. Cheap and authentic this outdoor market is a great place to go with a group of foodie friends.

Automata – Part of the sophisticated Old Clare Hotel this modern eatery is the first solo restaurant from talented chef Clayton Wells. The tasting menu showcases the kitchen’s imagination and creativity. It is well worth adding the optional wine pairing, as sommelier Tim Watkins really knows his stuff.