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Erin



Joined: 18 Oct 2004
Posts: 1654
Location: Within view of Elliot Bay, The Olympics and every ship in the Sound

PostPosted: Tue Feb 21, 2006 11:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Talking to people on planes is one of my least favorite things to do, thank goodness I have Phil there as a deflector. I will talk occasionally like the cute little old man on my last flight home from Seattle, or the one to Chicago that was a lot like my dad.
I try to avoid the stranger next to me most of the time and here's why;

Flying back from Seattle a year ago I was seated next to some college student from Indiana. I had brought a book to read, but wanted to wait until we were airborne and I had some coffee to start reading. The kid asked if he could read it for the flight. I politely said, "no I would be reading it", He kept talking about the most mundane s*#@ so I pulled out my music and pretended to sleep. The weirdo actually shook me awake. He wanted me to see the clouds. It goes on from there and gets worse. This is the reason I bring ear plugs now.
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Erin



Joined: 18 Oct 2004
Posts: 1654
Location: Within view of Elliot Bay, The Olympics and every ship in the Sound

PostPosted: Tue Mar 14, 2006 11:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well I am back, and here to give you my take on London and other parts of England I visited.
I really enjoyed everything, until the second time in London where I caught Phil's cold. I found London to be a hip, classy city, with friendly people and very effecient. I was so surprised to see people making way for others and being polite, not the NY way which was a relief.
I enjoyed the countryside emmensely, and was happy to have all of my preconcieved notions fulfilled. One thing I had in the country was my English breakfast....shiver. We went to Stones Cafe in Nottingham which was voted number two in the entire country for their breakfast to sample this delight. The whole thing was wonderful except for one big, huge thing, the black pudding. Many of you already know how excited I was to test out this Fear Factor challenge, what a mistake I made. I partially blame my friend for what transpired, seconds before it entered my mouth she said the words "coagulated blood", and it was all over. It was the goey duck sushi all over again, gag reflex kicking in as I grasped for my tea, hoping to wash it away along with the memory.
I remember someone saying to try it in the North country but when the time came, I couldn't go through with it again.
All in all I really enjoyed England and can't wait to go back.

Oh and for anyone who is going don't stay at the places we did. The first was a tad 'bijou' if you will. The second was nice, but the bathroom had mold and it really freaked me out. It was right at Hyde Park which was nice, we had several romantic strolls through it. On one we stopped to gaze at some gardens at Kensington Palace only to be interupted by a mentally unstable woman screaming at pigeons. Ahh, romance!

Last thing, after being deprived of Indian food we were surrounded and I was in heaven. I kept myself stuffed with allo gobi, tikka punjabi, naan and lime pickle. MMMMMMmmmmm!
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"It's watery....and yet there's a smack of ham."

"It's hot ham water."
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Erin



Joined: 18 Oct 2004
Posts: 1654
Location: Within view of Elliot Bay, The Olympics and every ship in the Sound

PostPosted: Thu Mar 16, 2006 12:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

English treasures I brought back;

kippers
jam and Bakewell tarts
brown sauce, it costs like four times as much out here
biscuts
haggis soup, Phil's doing not mine
jam
marmite, still haven't tried it
tikka masala sauce, I always make my own, but this was really rather good
Harry Potter cupcake mix, yes I know I am an idiot.
Bueno wafer, hazelnut chocolate snacks, addicting!
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"It's watery....and yet there's a smack of ham."

"It's hot ham water."
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swan



Joined: 23 Nov 2004
Posts: 450
Location: a Dutchie in HongKong

PostPosted: Wed Mar 22, 2006 8:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

hi guys, I'm bringing out the 'london' thing again as I'll be going for a few days next week.
Any tips for dining? (It'll be just me but I don't mind eating out alone at all). I'll stay around Piccadilly, so could go in either direction...Tea? I have been to Browns, the Claridges and F&M, what would be a good 'next one'?Also...love books, food and shopping for foodie-things. Anything that's not mentioned here yet ? I thought of exploring the Notting Hill area, as that never got much of my attention before. And: what would you recommend to do on a sunday morning? I have to leave for the airport around 2:30pm.

Thanks!
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Erin



Joined: 18 Oct 2004
Posts: 1654
Location: Within view of Elliot Bay, The Olympics and every ship in the Sound

PostPosted: Wed Mar 22, 2006 9:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I wish I could be of more help to you as we were very close to Notting Hill. We were actually sick as dogs when we were in London. We mainly hit Indian restaurants, but I was too sick to care about the names.
Have fun!
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"It's hot ham water."
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BookGirl



Joined: 27 Feb 2006
Posts: 13
Location: Atlanta

PostPosted: Wed Mar 22, 2006 9:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

One place that might be nice for tea is the British Museum-- as a student I spent a summer in London and one of my profs took us to tea there. Its a little more modern and less fussy than more traditional afternoon teas, but definitely delicious. Plus, you're already at the museum, so it's basically killing two birds with one stone!
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simona



Joined: 11 Mar 2005
Posts: 696
Location: israel

PostPosted: Wed Mar 22, 2006 10:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

In Notting Hill you can find the best cook-book shop I know. It's named , of course " Books for Cooks". It's very famous,has a liitle restaurant where you can get food cooked on the premises by somebody different each day ( or only on week-ends, I don't remember). It's just across the street from the famous Travel Books book-store, the on made famous in the movie "Notting Hill' ( how original!!), that movie with the handsome but boring Hugh Grant and the one and only "pretty woman" - Julia Roberts.
I think it might be open on Sunday morning, but check that.
Hope you'll have decent weather
Bon Voyage,
Simona
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DivineMissN



Joined: 24 Mar 2006
Posts: 1
Location: London

PostPosted: Mon Apr 03, 2006 10:51 pm    Post subject: London Reply with quote

swan wrote:
hi guys, I'm bringing out the 'london' thing again as I'll be going for a few days next week.
Any tips for dining? (It'll be just me but I don't mind eating out alone at all). I'll stay around Piccadilly, so could go in either direction...Tea? I have been to Browns, the Claridges and F&M, what would be a good 'next one'?Also...love books, food and shopping for foodie-things. Anything that's not mentioned here yet ? I thought of exploring the Notting Hill area, as that never got much of my attention before. And: what would you recommend to do on a sunday morning? I have to leave for the airport around 2:30pm.

Thanks!


Hi Swan, I hope I'm not too late making recommendations, I'm sorry I only saw this thread just now and am afraid you might already have gone to London.

In London, one of the streets best for food shopping is Marylebone High Street, not to far from Selfridges on Oxford Street (which in itself is a great foodie destination, their food halls are not as impressive architecturally, but have a great selection. And once you're there, it's one a short hop across the street to the food section of Marks and Spencers). Marylebone High Street is home to such shops as Rococo chocolates, le Pain Quotidien, Paul, Divertimenti (sells cooking utensils) and on Sunday between 10 am and 2 pm there's a farmer's market behind the Waitrose supermarket (you can find information on the farmers' market here: http://www.lfm.org.uk/mary.asp).

Here's a website that will give show you which shops are on which major shopping streets in London including Marylebone High St, I use this very often: www.streetsensation.co.uk.

If you're in London, try and get hold of one of the two guides that are published on food in London (if you're in Marylebone High St, Daunt Books will have them), and use them as your guide. I love the one that is published by Metro Publications best, since that one specifies the shops according to cuisine, there's another one (sorry, don't know the title, Amazon should be off help) that specifies according to region in London.

Hope you have/had a great time in London,
DivineMissN Very Happy

[edit: how could I forget to mention La Fromagerie, just off Marylebone High St on Moxon Street, see http://www.lafromagerie.co.uk/ ]
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Donna



Joined: 14 Oct 2005
Posts: 827
Location: Oakland, CA

PostPosted: Thu Apr 06, 2006 11:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, we are off to Dublin and London tomorrow morning, so I won't be posting for a couple of weeks. Cool I just wanted to thank everyone for the GREAT ideas of places to go and eat while we're there! I am looking forward to eating oysters in Wicklowe and visiting Cork and Kinsale - the heart of the artisanal food movement in Ireland. In London, I have three places to try for chocolate tasting and lots of suggestions for restaurants there!

Laughing Thanks a lot to everyone! C&Z is such an enriching place to visit! I will fill you all in upon my return! Laughing
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Donna



Joined: 14 Oct 2005
Posts: 827
Location: Oakland, CA

PostPosted: Mon Apr 24, 2006 7:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Very Happy Well, we're back from our Irish-English trek! We had two fabulous weeks with some amazing food!

In Ireland, we ate buckets of fabulous cheeses, smoked salmon, crunchy, chewy brown bread, magnificent Irish stew made with Guinness (what else!) roasted duck and potateos prepared in every way imaginable! In Cork we ate at Boqueria - a tapas bar using artisanal locally produced ingredients - smoked salmon from Frank Hederman, for example. We bought ingredients for a picnic at the lovely Georgian era market hall and sat in a park and feasted. We drove down to Ballymalloe house in Shandgarry - east of Cork and had a five course dinner made entirely of locally produced ingredients. This place was started by Myrtle Allen, now considered the Alice Waters of Irish cuisine, and is well known all over the country. We had roasted chicken that was so succulent it melted in your mouth, a braised lamb that melted in your mouth, smoked salmon on a delicate whole grain pancake with dill & capers and clotted cream, mackeral & scallops with a mouth wateringly rich hollandaise, baby greens, duch confit, a huge variety of Irish cheeses - Cashel blue, Gubbeen, Coolea, and yes - a cheddar, home made ice cream with Irish coffee sauce, meringue roulade with raspberry and vanilla mousse filling... there's more, but I can't remember right now. there were three of us and we shared EVERY dish! Laughing

In Dublin we ate at Gruel on Dame St. , a small cafe with EXCELLENT moderately priced food. Very casual but fine quality. One night we wandered into Chez Max, a French resto my son had had his eye on. What a TREAT that was. Again, excellent, locally produced ingredients marvelously prepared. We had scones and clotted cream at Queen of Tarts. We ate our full Irish breakfast with blood pudding and then marched right out for scones! (I didn't know it was blood pudding, I thought it was a type of scrapple and I didn't care for it, so I asked for rashers the next day!) Another find was Cornucopia (On Exchquer St., I think). Lovely simple vegetarian fare.

London was a brief trip. We got in on Sunday the 16th and hooked up with friends from France who had come over to join us. We ate at a punjabi resto near the Whitechaapel tube on Fieldgate St. called Tayyab. Just bloomin' brilliant! We ordered probably 8 dishes for 6 of us and each one was better than the one before! We ended up spending $60 for 6 people and it was not remotely schlocky the way inexpensive Indian food can get - where every dish tastes a little like every other dish. And it was filled with Asians! The next day we visited the National Portrait Gallery - which I had never even heard of and was delightful. It is right around the corner from the National Gallery and just across the street from St. Martin's in the Field. In the crypt of St. Martins is a little cafe which I heartily recommend. Very simple, excellent quality, reasonably priced food. Loved it! I believe it serves lunches, tea and suppers. We also visited the Tate Modern and the Tate Britain - and there is a boat that shuttles museum goers from one to the other. What fun!

And of course we did the Harrods Food Halls. We conducted an informal chocolate tasting by going from one chocolatier to the other in the food hall and tried a little of everything! We had a cheese sample platter with Irish, English and French cheeses and my favorite - in a blind test - was the Irish Coolea!

Finally down to Dorset, where the wheels fell of the gourmet wagon. However we were with friends who live there - so if every meal wasn't packed with delicacies, they WERE full of the warmth and camaraderie and love that a 29 year old relationship provides. Recalling our sons tumbling around like puppies many years ago and now watching them relate as adults was a joy. Laughing

Well, I've gone on and on and need to get back to work - lunch is over! I am happy to be able to add some different ideas of places to eat in Dublin, Cork and London!
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bainst



Joined: 07 Aug 2005
Posts: 151
Location: Baghdad, Iraq

PostPosted: Mon Apr 24, 2006 10:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Swan,
You should try the tea at Harrods. Very classy and great cakes.

Tamar
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David



Joined: 30 Sep 2004
Posts: 1855
Location: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

PostPosted: Tue Apr 25, 2006 3:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Donna---thanks for the culinary tour!! My my but Irish cuisine has come a long way since my tour there nigh on 25 years ago!!
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Feuilledeviolette



Joined: 09 Jul 2006
Posts: 5
Location: London, UK

PostPosted: Sun Jul 09, 2006 3:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

For an unusual afternoon tea in London, try The Parlour at Sketch on Conduit Street. It isn't cheap, and I haven't been there since it was refurbished. Here is a link for you
http://www.london-eating.co.uk/4061.htm
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