Olá Lisboa! Eating in Lisbon.


Topshop shorts / Givenchy bag / vintage sunglasses / H&M slider sandals

When shopping for a city break which itinerary reads something like 'Eat. Sleep. Eat. Repeat' it is recommended that one buys clothing at least two sizes up. Belt and knot tightly when needed ie. when taking outfit photos such as above, and let out after one decadent meal too many.

I've already covered touristy must-dos in Lisbonan off the beaten track-journey south to nudist beach Praia do Meco, and a couple of restaurants; John Malkovich's sleek three floor riverside warehouse behemoth Bica do Sapato and the colourfully cozy hidden gem that is Casa de Pasto. So as far as Lisbon restaurants reviews go I've presented two very different places rather on opposite ends of the gastronomical spectrum. But what about everything in between? Here, I offer all of Lisbon's edible delights that Henry and I got to sample during our three (four?) day stay. Our diet consisted mostly of seafood---I read somewhere that the key to the Portuguese's contentment is hot evenings whiled away with friends and huge pans of clams swimming in garlic white wine sauce---and of pudding, blitzing our way through tarts and ice-cream.
August 29, 2014

Olá Lisboa! Eating in Lisbon.

Topshop shorts / Givenchy bag / vintage sunglasses / H&M slider sandals When shopping for a city break which itinerary reads s...

East London eats: DF/ MEXICO


Ee by gum...I have just come to the realisation that I haven't used my Oyster card in over two months.  Shall I analyse why? One, I no longer need to be physically present to do any of my shopping not when the delights of Oxford Street and beyond can be perused from the comfort of my favourite online portals ASOS, Selfridges, and The Outnet. Two, anytime I venture further than twenty minutes walking distance from my home I call an Uber. In fact I rely so much on Uber when I'm abroad (Lisbon, Paris, Rome) that when Uber launched in Kuala Lumpur I exploded with excitement only to remember that I drive in Malaysia anyway. Three, I live in Shoreditch. Everything I could ever want is just outside my doorstep; the art galleries of Vyner Street, Redchurch Street, Whitechapel Gallery, Hoxton but to name a few, Shoreditch House, and eateries for the intrepid gastronomical trend-followers (Byron Burger, Bukowski Burgers, and Honest Burger are all but thirty seconds from each other on Shoreditch High Street). I'm lucky to spend my twenties living in a vibrant, creative, and diverse neighbourhood and am determined to make the most of it by exploring more of it. By more I mean gastronomical offerings, and today I present to you my new favourite East London Mexican diner du jour DF/ Mexico.

August 25, 2014

East London eats: DF/ MEXICO

Ee by gum...I have just come to the realisation that I haven't used my Oyster card in over two months.  Shall I analyse why? One, ...

Hadleigh Farm


I may not know what I'll be doing tomorrow nor what I even want for my birthday yet somehow I've already worked out a vague idea of what I want to do when I'm in my mid-to-late-thirties. By then, God-willing (and by my best efforts) I've become so established and successful in whatever it is I'll be doing then that I have the luxury to work from my home in a leafy London suburb, while raising my three children (two twin sons and a girl) as well as running a nearby city farm. On my city farm will be a cafe using only organic produce and free range eggs from the farm (that you can buy), a dwarf hamster colony, a huge open aviary where birds can come and go as they please, a butterfly house, and of course pigs, goats, sheep, alpacas, rabbits, poultry etc. that you can sponsor and adopt. But most of all there will be a petting zoo for children with BESD (Behavioural, emotional and social difficulties). Having volunteered and worked with children charities, as well as charities for the less fortunate I do believe that our true calling is to help others in need, give back to the community, and on a whole enrich each others lives. Wouldn't it be wonderful if I could do that for a living while combining my love for children and animals? So I told Henry about my dream to set up a city farm with a childcare centre for children where they could, under the watchful and encouraging eye of their teachers, bond with the farm animals while learning about responsibility and respect for living creatures. He said he knew just the sort of place I was talking about, and took me to Hadleigh Farm so that I could see my dream in action.
August 22, 2014

Hadleigh Farm

I may not know what I'll be doing tomorrow nor what I even want for my birthday yet somehow I've already worked out a vague id...

Camping in Hadleigh castle.


I've always known that I'm 'chronically blessed' (I'd count my blessings but I have only so many fingers and toes) and that my life is somewhat charmed. My rose tinted life was especially evident yesterday, on my birthday, by a) the flood of well-wishes I received despite making myself very hard to get hold of and b) being asked, constantly, 'What do you want for your birthday?' and never having answer for anyone. True, I have a shopping list as long as my arm and I want many things; all of them expensive, immoral, addictive, impossible etc. but when it comes down to it I don't truly want anything. Nothing especially material anyway! I think, that in my old age, anything that I can buy for myself isn't especially exciting for me (Don't especially like clothes or cars, and can't afford private islands yet, but property...! I love buying apartments and doing them up) and what I'm really after are experiences.

"What do you want to do for your birthday, darling?" asked Henry, "Shall I take you camping in the ruins of an English Heritage castle perched on a hill, overlooking miles of Essex marshes and out to the Estuary?" Oh, Henry my love nobody understands my thirst for adventure like you do! "And then I'll take you to stay in a tree house...and a yurt...and..." Alright, slow down, one outdoor bed at a time. So the day before my birthday (Tuesday!) we packed up and made the ascend to Hadleigh Castle.

August 21, 2014

Camping in Hadleigh castle.

I've always known that I'm 'chronically blessed' (I'd count my blessings but I have only so many fingers and toes)...

BEDROOM UPDATES. NEW ADDITIONS, NEW EDITION.


Frame from Brick Lane market. Poster was a gift from Henry.
August 18, 2014

BEDROOM UPDATES. NEW ADDITIONS, NEW EDITION.

Frame from Brick Lane market. Poster was a gift from Henry.

East London eats: Oysters and beers in Bethnal Green.


I'm certain that most couples in employment (self or otherwise) have a post-work rendezvous point where either, being too lazy to cook and having exhausted every option on Just Eat, meet for a spot of supper and flirtation. Myself, I like to pick a corner and snuggle up shoulder to shoulder with my boy, holding hands under the table, giggling and trying to flirt with him. Mostly he likes to meow and curl up like a cat, initiates fisticuffs with other gentlemen, sing (loudly) and do impressions of other people but sometimes he'll grab me, throw me down onto the sofa and voraciously kiss me (eat my face) while everyone else in the establishment pretends not to notice. Henry works on Brick Lane and I work from home in Shoreditch, so this little gem on Bethnal Green road is our perfect halfway point. You will probably find us there on weekends devouring the seafood platter and engaging the table beside us in discussion about whether or not Tom Jones is the Welsh Elvis. Avert your eyes to my favourite pub, mine and Henry's rendezvous point Well & Bucket.

August 16, 2014

East London eats: Oysters and beers in Bethnal Green.

I'm certain that most couples in employment (self or otherwise) have a post-work rendezvous point where either, being too lazy to ...

My sartorial archive of 2014 thus far.


I disable tagged photos on Facebook, deleted my Facebook account and created a new one three years for one very simple reason---wanting to spare myself the embarrassing evidence of my sartorial gaffs of years past. Of course some of it still exists here and there on others' Facebook photos but as far as I'm concerned, out of sight, out of mind. How telling that almost everything high street in my wardrobe at the moment is less than a year old. Anything that was 'on-trend' or at least descriptive of who I wanted to 'project' at the time has been relegated to the charity shops and locked away in the Pandora's Box of my sartorial archives. I say, without shame, that my personal style is still very much a work in progress and that until I 'nail it' I'll be reminiscing, perhaps not fondly but with some amusement, on my outfits of the year past (and forget everything else from before then!). In the meanwhile, here's a recollection of some of my less embarrassing sartorial moments of 2014. The brief for this was to pick them from Instagram photos only so I was a bit lacking for choice, but here it is anyway.

August 15, 2014

My sartorial archive of 2014 thus far.

I disable tagged photos on Facebook, deleted my Facebook account and created a new one three years for one very simple reason---wantin...

Até mais Lisboa, Olá Meco!


By our third day in Lisbon Henry and I could no longer bear the stuffiness of the city. Tired of wilting in the heat like the dregs of a London flower market at the end of a summer's Sunday, we cancelled all our plans for the day and escaped 40 kilometres south of Lisbon to the seaside town of Meco. What transpired was an epic journey; first an hour bus ride through the city of Lisbon including an elevated, breathtaking view of the city's aqueducts, then rumbling over the Tagus river on a bridge as we crossed into southern town of Sesimbra. At Sesimbra we waited for another bus to take us to the picturesque mountain town of Santana where we got lost and spent a very pleasant hour wandering through the Portuguese countryside enjoying the fresh mountain air, walking downhill and following the unmistakable scent of the sea breeze as it carried itself to us from Praia do Meco (Meco beach).
August 08, 2014

Até mais Lisboa, Olá Meco!

By our third day in Lisbon Henry and I could no longer bear the stuffiness of the city. Tired of wilting in the heat like the dregs of...

Olá Lisboa! Casa de Pasto

Back to the very protracted affair that is my Lisbon blog posts. While I did spend some of my Lisbon city break doing things of a touristy nature, most of the trip was devoted to the pursuit of gastronomical delights. What else could we do, really, the languid heat of summer makes one want to only eat, sleep, and go to the beach. And go to the beach we did, but that's a blog post for another day.  In the meanwhile Henry and I sought out Lisbon's best restaurants, from the fashionable Bica do Sapato to family-run seafood and beer taverns to two-hundred year old pastry shops. One of my favourite discoveries, and also the most creative and most visually stimulating is Casa de Pasto.  

August 06, 2014

Olá Lisboa! Casa de Pasto

Back to the very protracted affair that is my Lisbon blog posts . While I did spend some of my Lisbon city break doing things of a tourist...

Lazy dressing.

Mother of all fails...so a couple of weeks ago, Battersea Power Station sent out emails to everyone who's bought a property there, yours truly included, inviting us plus one as VIP guests to a movie screening of our choice at Everyman Cinema at Power of Summer, Battersea Power Station.  I RSVP-ed with my choice of movie (Grand Budapest Hotel) and made a note of it in my Google calendar. But for reasons unknown to man (and aliens) my calendar moved the event 3 rows up to 'August 3'. Completely overlooking the glitch, I rocked up to Everyman Cinema wondering why the movie listings of the day had no mention of Grand Budapest Hotel...then I checked the email on my phone...then I checked that day's date...ohhh. I turned to Henry, embarrassed, and said "I have good news and bad news. The bad news is that the movie is off our itinerary. The good news? We're going to eat burgers and hot dogs!*"

*Sunday's my gorging day, don't you know?


HEY HEY HEY, here's a must have sartorial piece for anyone who wants to comfortably sail through life's mix ups and organising fails, and binge on burgers and hotdogs without snapping their belts. The humble jumpsuit, although often veering dangerously into the realm of unflatteringly shapeless hence making one look like a giant baby, will conceal a multitude of sins while showing off the features that never bloat---the collarbone, shoulders, and arms. Suppose you are blessed with slender stems, good for you, do what I'd never dare (or at least shouldn't have dared to. Nobody should have to see my 'chicken drumstick' legs.) and go for a playsuit. 

My blue floral jumpsuit is from ASOS and down from £50 to £37.50, bargain. 

I was a bit iffy about the style at first but any shapelessness can be easily negated by belting the waist, and besides if you can't dress like a giant baby in summer when can you ever? I paired mine with my 'hospital sandals' sliders from H&M, By Invite Only amethyst pendant, and vintage CHANEL purse.




Gorging outfits! 

And now, subject of said gorging---


Le Bun burgers. You must visit this pop-up at Battersea Power Station and order the signature beef, brioche is to die for. 


The very salacious looking hotdogs from Dogtown.



See? This is the aptly named Big Kahuna. Oh hello mango toppings, so juicy that you soaked through the bun and made everything collapse into a big, delicious, ugly mess. Happily that day I wasn't terribly shallow nor discriminating (I was wearing a jumpsuit after all, I can't talk) and just picked everything up with my fingers. Should have added some relish, like I did with the Chilli Cheese...


...now that's a hot dog. I shan't bother to describe nor say more except...go forth and gorge.


Ending this blog post with Henry pretending to be a cat.

x
August 05, 2014

Lazy dressing.

Mother of all fails...so a couple of weeks ago, Battersea Power Station sent out emails to everyone who's bought a property there, yo...

FEAST

On Thursday evening FEAST food festival returned to Tobacco Dock in East London for its third edition since its highly accoladed inception in 2012. FEAST has been lauded by The Independent for 'taking the food revolution a step further' and by Hello! for being '...at the forefront of a deliciously democratic movement, bringing new concepts and flavours at affordable prices'. I have a confession to make---despite the red 'press' wristband I flaunted yesterday evening as I swanned from stall to stall, I'm no fancy-pants food critic like Homer Simpson so I shan't even pretend to be a gastronomical savant. I'll let my photos, and FEAST's blurb do the talking---
Fancy duck confit for lunch, northern Chinese street food for seconds and rainbow-tastic meringues for dessert? Or does drinking at London’s only absinthe bar, sampling alcoholic penny sweets and taxidermy tutorials sound more appealing? 
This summer, FEAST returns with an energetic, all-encompassing food experience. Wine and perfume pairing, butchery and cocktail-making masterclasses are served up alongside London’s most exciting restaurants and best-known street food vendors. 
Established in 2012, FEAST has welcomed over 30,000 food lovers and showcased more than 150 of London’s finest food purveyors. 
Learn, consume and enjoy - this edition of FEAST promises to be the biggest and best experience yet.

Food porn 'photodump' time...!

August 02, 2014

FEAST

On Thursday evening FEAST food festival returned to Tobacco Dock in East London for its third edition since its highly accoladed inceptio...

Ping Pong Summer menu and competition!

This morning I woke up with the most glorious and resounding food hangover, the sort brought on by the epic combination of one too many cocktails and a food coma comparable to melatonin before bedtime. Yesterday evening the lovely people at Ping Pong invited myself and other bloggers to sample their new summer menu, and also for a cocktail masterclass very much like the one I attended last Sunday at Power of Summer. One would think that having learnt and competed in the very same masterclass I'd have a distinct edge over the others, but no, apparently I haven't learnt anything in the way of cocktail making or even grace and decorum. Witness the elegance of my face---

August 01, 2014

Ping Pong Summer menu and competition!

This morning I woke up with the most glorious and resounding food hangover, the sort brought on by the epic combination of one too many co...