Newsletter 19 October 2011

Beer Festival, Experimental Food, Diwali Ideas and the latest openings and foodie news…

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News & Events…

Experimental Food Society Spectacular @ Truman Brewery, E1, 21-22 October

1239 Newsletter 19 October 2011A must-see for any food lover, the Experimental Food Society exhibition is a spectacular display by Britain’s most talented gourmet artists.  The inspiring assemblage will include everything from butter sculptors, sonic food artists, food magicians, cake artists, food futurologists, conceptual food artists and food model-makers.  Featuring installations, demonstrations, samplings and talks, the event offers guests a sensory feast designed to challenge the perception of food and show that there is more to it than just eating!  Tickets are £5.


London Brewers Alliance Beer Festival @ Vinopois, SE1, 22 October

For the chance to experience the best of British brewing, head down to Vinopolis’s this weekend.  Dedicated to celebrating the resurgence of London brewing culture, the evening is all about the great range of beers that London produces. The London Brewers Alliance will be showcasing some of the best loved beers from old and new style recipes as well as offering visitors the opportunity to sample and enjoy some of the best kept secrets in British brewing.  Tickets are £20, including 7 beer tasting tokens.


Diwali Special (26 October)

1240 Newsletter 19 October 2011Diwali, the Hindu festival of light, is marked by colourful celebrations, joyous family gatherings, laughter and delicious feasts.  Check out these restaurants for a couple of fun ideas to spend it:


Shayona Restaurant, NW10

Located right next to the stunning Neasden Temple, Shayona will be serving up a delicious vegetarian feast that is traditionally eaten during this time for just £11.99


Dishoom, W1

On 23 Ocotber, Dishoom will team up with the DSC South Asian Literature Festival to celebrate the wonderful stories behind the festival with a fun-packed day of facepainting, pavement art, storytelling and film. Moreover, from 18-30 October, the Covent Garden restaurant will also provide a special vegetarian menu for £22.50.

New Openings…

Fornata, W1

1241 Newsletter 19 October 2011The owners of popular Mayfair Italian restaurant Babbo have set their sights on the Soho crowd with the opening of Fornata. The name Fornata derives from the Italian word ‘forno’, meaning oven and the restaurant’s exposed kitchens will be a focal point for the restaurant.  Spanning two floors, Fornata boasts a long cocktail and dining bar, where lone diners can choose from the full food and drink menus or simply antipasti or post-work Negroni.  The menu sees an emphasis on oven-cooked dishes from southern Italy that lend themselves to sharing, including a variety of grilled meats and fish dishes alongside the traditional southern Italian cuisine.  Fornata also provides a breakfast menu from 8am, whilst the bar stays open until 1am for a few late night cocktails.


The Balcon, SW1

1242 Newsletter 19 October 2011Having cooked at some of the most renowned restaurants in Paris (including Café Faubourg and Le Pré Catelan), Head Chef Vincent Menager has taken the helm at London’s latest grand-brasserie.  The all-day menu provides a range of French and British classics, as well as afternoon tea and a charcuterie Bar.  The Champagne Balcony, the inspiration for the name of the restaurant, is a key feature overlooking the main room where the Champagne will be stored and is framed by two spiral staircases.  The St James’s Bar at The Balcon takes inspiration from the interiors of Coco Chanel’s 1920′s Paris apartment and follows the current trend of providing classic cocktails from bygone eras.


Palm Beach Bar & Kitchen, W1

With the UK gaming laws having been relaxed to allow anyone to enter a casino, some of London’s most exclusive venues have become open for us all to enjoy.  It’s not all about frittering your money away though; with many staying open until the early hours, they will also provide a great place for a spot of late night/early morning dining.  Palm Beach Casino has recently opened a new restaurant to provide a dining option for those after some proper food at all hours of the day.  Open from breakfast through to 3am, the internationally inspired menu includes everything from Mediterranean mezze platters and steaks to Asian inspired dishes.

Try This Week…

1243 Newsletter 19 October 2011Penn State Pretzels

Love them or hate them for their culinary contributions to the world, the Americans know how to make a tasty snack.  Mix their creativity with a spot of European health-consciousness and what you have is something that is not only ridiculously moreish but also low in calories.  Produced in County Durham, Penn State Pretzels are a great alternative to crisps, especially when you’ve got a few friends round and you want something to nibble on with your drinks.   Flavours include Original Sea Salted, Gammon & Mustard and our favourite, Sour Cream & Chive; and because they are baked not fried, they’ve only around 105 calories per bag, making them impossible to resist!  Widely available for around 60p for 30g bags.

Cryotex Knives

1244 Newsletter 19 October 2011Heston and his science brigade have ensured that the use of liquid nitrogen has become near enough as ubiquitous as salt and pepper in modern cooking.  It now appears that this trend has moved into utensils too, with this new range of knifes.  Using cryogenics, the science behind preserving bodies and many a creaky science fiction plot, Cryotex Knives have been shown to be twice as sharp and three times more resistant than most household blades.  I’ve been using the paring knife for a couple of months and it has continued to effortlessly slice through everything I’ve put in its way.  Costing £39.99 for a set comprising of a chef’s knife, a fillet knife and a paring knife, they are great value too.  From




1245 Newsletter 19 October 2011Suda, WC2

Created by the people behind the highly regarded Thai restaurant group Patara, Suda takes a more specialised approach to their native cuisine by taking its influence from Siamese ‘rice bars’, a term which aims to evoke the Thai culture of eating rice, “the bread of Thailand”, with every meal.

Click here to read full review…

Bistro du Vin, W1 & EC1

Bistro du Vin provides a dining option for every occasion, serving everything breakfasts and afternoon tea to hearty dinners and even night caps until 3am for late night dwellers.  The emphasis of the menu is locally sourced seasonal produce from a 30 miles radius, with simple dishes including Josper-grilled meats and fresh seafood.

Click here to read full review…