Newsletter 6 March 2013

Feast Festival, Whisky Pairing Menus, New Rums, plus the latest foodie news and new openings!

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News & Events…


1577 Newsletter 6 March 2013 FEAST Food Festival @ Tobacco Dock, E1. 7-10 March

Following some brilliantly organised events last year, FEAST has returned to take over Tobacco Dock in Wapping.  With the venue’s 200 year history, guests can expect dramatic basement vaults and atria, traditional glass lanterns a quayside space and Harry’s Bar.  The foodie line-up has remained as impressive as ever, with some of London’s most popular restaurants on hand to feed the masses, including Dishoom, HIX, Caravan, Disco Bistro and Mishkin’s.  And as always, live music will play a big part of the 4-day weekender.  For those not inclined to walking around whilst stuffing their faces, you can even hire a private room for your culinary enjoyment.

Caskstrength Whisky Pairing Menu @ Moti Mahal, WC2

Moti Mahal and whisky experts Caskstrength Creative are set to dispel the myth that whisky should only be sipped on at the end of a meal with the launch of their Whisky Pairing Menu.  The innovative five-course menu sees cleverly constructed whisky cocktails matched to the restaurant’s renowned Indian cuisine to provide a thought-provoking and taste-bud tingling dining experience.  Highlights from the menu include a ‘Grand Trunk Road Sour’ using Cutty Sark Storm served with Truffle & Cheddar Naan with Gold Leaf, and a barrel aged Old Fashioned style cocktail using Paul John Single Cask Indian whisky, served with a Wild Mushroom Biryani & Warm Game Pickle.  The complete menu costs £120, but the dishes can be enjoyed individually too.

The Singleton Sensorium, W1. 20-21 March

Responsible for Heston’s famed ‘Sound of the Sea’ dish, Professor Charles Spence and Condiment Junkie have teamed up with Singleton Whisky for the world’s first multi-sensory science experiment into the effect of environment on the taste of whisky.  Visitors will be invited to enter three different worlds to experience how the different sounds, smells and visuals in the spaces enhance flavours in the whisky.  They study requires 300 participants. To get involved, email

Mile High Supperclub: Destination Göteborg. 13-16 March and 20-23 March

An innovative new series of immersive events has launched combining creative inspiration from the golden age of 1950s air travel with music, cocktails and great food from ex-Moro chef Oliver Templeton.  Diners can enjoy ‘check in’ Campari cocktails from air hostesses in Pan-Am inspired attire, before embarking on Mile High’s first foodie destination: Gothenburg. Access to the departure lounge bar will be available from 9pm for non-diners to enjoy cocktails and tunes spun by one of Mile High’s talented guest Djs.  Tickets are £65 from


New Openings…


Master & Servant, N1

Matt Edwards, previously of St John Hotel and Hix Soho, has come to Hoxton Square for the launch of his first solo venture, Master & Servant.  Inspired by dining trends in Manhattan, Matt has created a seasonal menu which focuses on a charcoal grill and spit as well as their own smoked meats and home-made charcuterie.  The look and feel goes down the New York industrial route too, with exposed bricks, walls decorated with mirrored tiles, distressed oak floors and reclaimed dairy lights.  Cocktails should be great too, having been designed by the drinks gurus at neighbouring bar, Happiness Forgets.

1579 Newsletter 6 March 2013

Wax’s Hogo Shake Up @ The William IV, N1. Until 1 May

After 4 years of wowing Islington locals with their rum bar, Wax Jambu is no more.  However, the first steps of the bar’s rebirth are taking place in the shape of their pop-up Wax’s Hogo Shake Up.  Drinks will be lovingly prepared just as they always have been, while taking on a more whisky and bourbon influence than before.  Furthermore, they will also be hosting cool booze based weekly events, ranging from cocktail competitions to tastings and samplings.


The Clove Club, EC1

Having been voted 50th Best Restaurant in the UK’s Top 100 for their restaurant ‘Upstairs at The Ten Bells’, Daniel Willis, Johnny Smith and chef Isaac McHale have opened The Clove Club.  Housed within the atmospheric Shoreditch Town Hall, the restaurant and bar continues their winning formula of great music, elegantly crafted food and fun vibes.    The spacious bar is ideal for a few delicious nibbles and creative cocktails whilst diners in the restaurant will be treated to an ambitious five-course seasonal British menu served from the open kitchen.

Radio Rooftop Bar @ ME London, WC2
  1578 Newsletter 6 March 2013

Overlooking Somerset House and offering panoramic views of the capital, from the heights of the city to the West End, Radio at ME London has opened to provide London’s latest rooftop destination hangout.  Open from noon visitors can relax in the cabanas and terrace seating or move up a gear to the sounds of live DJ’s playing until 3am.  Mediterranean-inspired menus are available throughout the day, including light bites and lunches, whilst cocktails take a playful approach on fun classics such as Margaritas and Long Island Iced Teas.

The Port House, WC2

With bars in Ireland and New York, Irish brewery The Porterhouse Group has come to The Strand for the opening The Port House.  The restaurant and bar offers a reasonably priced menu inspired by Spanish and Portuguese cooking paired with an extensive selection wines from the same regions.  The venue also houses a Spanish inspired Gin Bar where the gins have all been matched with a specific tonic.  As the name suggests, fans of port can also experience something new, with a selection tasting flights available.


Try This Week…

1575 Newsletter 6 March 2013 Brugal 1888 Rum

As one of the Caribbean’s most popular rums, it’s no surprise that Brugal has recently made a big splash in the UK.  Brugal is the only rum distilled, matured and bottled in the Dominican Republic, with all the ingredients sourced from local farms.  Available in a wide variety of styles, the dedication to their craft can be seen even at their base Blanco white rum, which actually starts life as a golden rum before being filtered and distilled to its purer state.  On the other side of the spectrum sits 1888, a truly special spirit that has been twice distilled and aged in American oak before a finish in Spanish oak sherry casks.  The result is a stunning depth of classic rich rum flavours, including caramel, Demerara sugar, a few perky spices and even a touch of smoke.  Mainstream range available from Sainsbury’s starting at £20. 1888 available from specialists for around £38.

1576 Newsletter 6 March 2013
M&S Caribbean Plantation XO Rum

Own label spirits have really come on leaps and bounds over the last few years and one of the most impressive of all is this absolute blinder from M&S.   This combination pot/column Bajan rum from the Foursquare Distillery in Barbados is matured for 8-10 years in bourbon casks before being transported to Cognac in France.  Here it is blended and then left to finish in Grande Champagne cognac casks for a minimum 6 months, during which time sugars and water is gradually introduced to bring it to bottling strength.  The result is an outstanding sipping rum, with rich notes of honey, candied orange, a touch of coffee and an irresistibly chewy mouthfeel.  At just £22, this is one to seek out before the word gets out!

Willie Harcourt-Cooze Desserts at Waitrose

1580 Newsletter 6 March 2013 Some of you may remember Willie a few years ago off the TV as the posh bloke with a borderline insane quest to transform our chocolate eating habits from the sugar laden stuff pumped out by Cadbury’s/Nestle et al to something altogether more pure.  Whilst he hasn’t quite succeeded to kill off our Kit-Kats, he did manage to launch his own range of chocolate treats. With names including Molten Dreams, Paradise Found and Heaven’s Gate, the latest to join his range are these outrageously decadent puddings.  As you’d expect, the luxurious desserts are the first on our supermarket shelves to be made using only the best single estate cacaos which explains the purity and richness of the flavour. Droooool…Around £3.79 from Waitrose