The hills are alive with the sound of...gin and sushi

May 28, 2015
VII Hills gin tasting at Mr Fogg's, Mayfair London

A London date night from West to East, with a VII Hills Gin tasting at Mayfair and dinner at SushiSamba.  

If clothes maketh the woman, my uniform of late is a very telling story of diligence - or at least that's what I want my lived-in khaki boiler suit to say. Truth is, my military overalls - Henry's thoughtful gift to me for when I first got my artist studio - makes two kind of statements. One, a fashion statement (soooo Summer '15! Don't even get me started my new culottes); two, that I've just been too damn lazy to slip into something far less comfortable and be sociable. Bank Holiday was spent neither at London's en vogue watering holes nor at the studio, but rather on the virtual version: Pinterest. Internet life! You sly, slow and sure substitute for human interaction. Not today, you wily temptress. I slammed my Macbook shut, headed out (the boiler suit stays on. Baby steps) to make up for lost social time. Henry and I hauled ass for a date night (with a bit of work thrown in) - first to Mr Fogg's for a tasting with VII Hills Gin, then to SushiSamba for a spot of Peruvian-Japanese-Brazillian dinner.

Mr Fogg's, Mayfair London

Mr Fogg's, Mayfair London

Back to the scene of the crime - exactly a month ago, Henry and I were at Mr Fogg's for an evening with David Harper, The Great Antiques Expert. It was reassuring to see that little had changed - the ambience was as dizzyingly eclectic as ever, the waitresses were as pleasant as I remembered, and a certain red-striped trouser wearing member of staff was still as bemused (almost abrupt) to me like I was a naughty schoolgirl beneath any false pleasantries he was obliged to extend toward me. 

Mr Fogg's, Mayfair London

Mr Fogg's, Mayfair London

Mr Fogg's, Mayfair London

VII Hills gin tasting at Mr Fogg's, Mayfair London

VII Hills gin tasting at Mr Fogg's, Mayfair London

VII Hills gin tasting at Mr Fogg's, Mayfair London

You all know I can't drink the way I used to - back in the day I could knock back up to three glasses of champagne before falling asleep (I'm a cheap date. Cheap, but never easy) - but lately I've almost completely eschewed libation, but for the occasional celebratory glass of bubbly or a scotch in the evening for when I've got that silk robe and smoking slippers feeling. I am the kind of date you love to hate - I will order the prettiest cocktail, 'gram it, then barely make my way to the bottom of the glass before breaking out the Asian red-face. Needless to say, I avoid drinking whenever I can - but for the dryness of VII Hills Gin and its tantalisingly rich yet sweet blood orange taste I could, I would, and I did make an exception. As evidenced by my declining Uber rating...is this why two of my drivers cancelled on me today? Time for a new account and a clean slate...

VII Hills gin tasting at Mr Fogg's, Mayfair London

VII Hills gin tasting at Mr Fogg's, Mayfair London

VII Hills gin tasting at Mr Fogg's, Mayfair London


With my intoxication bordering on obnoxiousness, it was clear that I needed to soak up the gin with some food, so the only way was East London...for a late dinner at SushiSamba. Before I knew any better, I thought Brazilian/Peruvian-Japanese fusion food was a unique concept invented by SushiSamba. Only later did I realised that it was an actual movement brought to South America in the early 20th century by Japanese diaspora. Still! Any restaurant that serves both of my favourite raw fish styles - ceviche and sashimi - is a winner in my books. Winner, winner, fishy dinner.


Dinner at Sushi Samba, London

Dinner at Sushi Samba, London

Dinner at Sushi Samba, London

For the vegetarian (Henry) - a starter of green bean tempura with truffle aioli. How can something so seemingly healthy be so delicious and moreish?

Dinner at Sushi Samba, London

TOKYO SKY TREE - spicy bigeye tuna, tempura crunch, lotus root, aji panca, spicy mayo. So good - and that's not the gin talking.


My lobster taquitos were everything - a fresh and flavourful mouth party of avocado, aji amarillo, jalapeno, lime, maize, morado in a cripsy shell, with a liberal sprinkle of lime.

Dinner at Sushi Samba, London

My tuna ceviche was a tad too tart, but the sweetness of the pomegranate leche de tigre and basil kept the flavours balanced. The wasabi peas were a delight to discover, I only wished there were more in the dish.

Dinner at Sushi Samba, London

The standout dish of the evening was the MUSHROOM TOBANYAKI - the most moan-inducingly runny poached egg topped with japanese mushrooms, truffle oil and garlic chip. Henry ordered one, I took a bite, and was so smitten I asked for one of my own. You all know how Duck & Waffle's duck egg en cocotte was my favourite dippy egg dish in London? Well, as of 2014 I noticed a change - the gruyere cheese is thinner and more watery than I remember and the truffles not as distinct. Ever since I've been desperately searching for another dish with my perfect ratio of mushroom to egg. And I've found it - just two floors below in the same tower. Take my heart, SushiSamba - TAKE IT.

Dinner at Sushi Samba, London

JUST LOOK AT IT. Oh God stop. I want another one, right now.

An evening well worth putting on makeup for, I think. I'll drink to that - now excuse me while I pour myself a little glass of VII Hills Gin, and make another reservation at SushiSamba...x

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26 comments:

  1. Yum! I wish I was in London just so I could go to this place! I've never had Brazilian/Japanese food but it sounds fantastic!

    COOCOO FOR COCO

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  2. I love the food at Sushi Samba!! I'm sorry not to join you for gin, it looks like it was a fun night!
    Lots of love,
    Angie
    SilverSpoon London

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  3. Looks like such a great night! Loved a good gin, and well, who can say no to that food?!


    Lauren xx
    The Lifestyle Diaries

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  4. Was so lovely to finally meet you Jasiminne! Sushisamba looks fabulous, could've done with that myself after the gin...!!

    Rosie xx

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  5. Catherine LuxMay 28, 2015

    Now I'm craving SushiSamba. Dammit Jasiminne! :'(

    C x | Lux Life

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  6. Luxy, if you could brave the hipsters and pretentiousness enough to live in Shoreditch you could pop over to SushiSamba ANYTIME you want ;) SushiSamba next week? x

    Jasiminne | Posh, Broke, & Bored

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  7. Lovely to finally meet you after all this blog time, Rosie! How did the cheese biscuits turn out? x

    Jasiminne | Posh, Broke, & Bored

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  8. Lauren! You NEED to go to SushiSamba and try the mushroom tobanyaki. Seriously, the egg will change your life! x

    Jasiminne | Posh, Broke, & Bored

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  9. Angie you should've been there! But I did flake out on the picnic, so now we're even ;) When am I next seeing you? x

    Jasiminne | Posh, Broke, & Bored

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  10. Colleen you should definitely make a trip down to London, and have SushiSamba on your list of places to eat! x

    Jasiminne | Posh, Broke, & Bored

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  11. *grabs wallet and runs* ;)

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  12. Biscuits turned out well thanks, though more to make! So much to do!!!!


    Rosie xx

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  13. Cake & WhiskyMay 28, 2015

    It was loving seing you again yesterday, and love seing the pictures today! Love seing both sides of the process!

    Sandra x | Cake + Whisky

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  14. I've always loved the decor at Mr Fogg's and those gin cocktails look pretty tasty. As for Sushi Samba, I need to return after seeing your pics. We missed you at the picnic!

    Suze | LuxuryColumnist

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  15. I know, I'm such a flake, I'm terrible! Can we all go out for a girly night, soon, please? x

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  16. Lovely to see you again Sandra! Lemme know when you're next in Shoreditch! x

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  17. Yes let's do it - am drowning in a sea of emails/Twitter messages/Linkedin/FB etc etc. so shall we do via email (Suze@luxurycolumnist.com) as I can just about keep on top of that!

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  18. Nancy WildeMay 29, 2015

    OH MY GOD! Epitome of Paradise. Woah. Loved the photos! x


    nancywilde.blogspot.com

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  19. Nancy WildeMay 29, 2015

    OH MY GOD! Epitome of Paradise. Woah. Loved the photos! x

    nancywilde.blogspot.com

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  20. The cocktails looked so pretty and I'm drooling looking at the food. That yolk porn on the last picture.....

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  21. YOLK PORN! I'm going to hashtag that on my next Eggstagram! x

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  22. Wow the food and drinks look amazing! And what an interesting venue! Looks like you had a great time xx

    Jasmine Talks Beauty

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