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28 July 2014

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Blog Reviews from Whistle and Bango

(menu)

Whistle & Bango's official blog, reporting on everything that contributes to their love for London


  1. The passion behind Notting Hill Kitchen is driven by two experts in the field of food; Luis Baena and Filipa Texeira. Excitingly, this is award-winning Baena’s London debut, who’s 28 year career has seen him training with top chefs all over the world from Belgium to the States and Hong Kong. In Portugal he is an absolute food hero, he’s the guy that has travelled and worked with a lot of high profile chefs. He has written books, been on TV and also consults for large hotel groups. You could almost describe him as the Jamie Oliver of Portugal. Who better to appoint for head chef of Notting Hill Kitchen?...

  2. I'm not the world's greatest cook, but I try my best. My favourite cuisine has always been Indian, which as we know it here in London can often be high fat, high sugar and loves to send cholesterol into overdrive. But Indian food can be both flavourful and healthy, and actually quite easy to prep. When I discovered that the Jamie Oliver's Recipease restaurants offered cooking classes, I headed to Notting Hill to learn the art of South Indian street food. Something both new & constructive in one of my favourite London locations - for only £45...

  3. Manuka Kitchen was born in October 2012 as a celebration for ‘A love of food, wine, friends, and a knack for putting the three to­geth­er in a way that’s un­for­get­table.’ – How refreshingly simple. With only 22 covers it’s a thimble-sized room of happiness. Wooden tables, terracotta tiles and whitewash walls make Manuka Kitchen naturally calming. Daily newspapers and magazines are scattered about, it feels as comforting as a restaurant popping up in your own sitting room...

  4. Balthazar London, his twelfth restaurant opening manifests his creative talents. His objective was to attract custom with the way his restaurant made them feel at the time, rather then being the ‘in’ place to be seen. A current example of the opposite being Chiltern Firehouse. Nigella Lawson sums him up well “he has a passion for authenticity and aesthetic perfection. Decent food and bloody good service.” Based on my experience last week, I agree...

  5. The White Horse is an icon of Parsons Green which I frequent at least bi-weekly particularly in the summer. It’s a bloody reliable pub with a fantastic beer garden overlooking the green; you always get service with a smile and there’s never any drama from ill-behaved customers – it’s a happy pub. The White Horse pride themselves on an impressive list of ales for the crowds of lads. It’s a sweaty beer-drinking sporty pub during the week, yet fast forward to the weekend and it's sprinkled with a blond harem of pretty girls delicately sipping on Pino Grigio politely awaiting Spencer Matthews. When the White Horse say they 'strive to create an environment that everyone can enjoy’, you’ll see for yourself that they have achieved it...

  6. The Lockhart gifts London with this southern cuisine presented in a way that is uncommon around here, and one that is previously untouched by myself. For me, it is an example of exactly what makes the food scene in London so exciting. With Brooklyn born chef Brad McDonald taking over the kitchen in January this year, the Lockheart has become tremendously popular. After a few drinks at the close by Home House, we headed over to Seymour Street, a brilliant location for a good mixture of restaurants. In fact, The Lockhart is sat just next door to my favourite London based Basque restaurant Donostia. The beaten-tin ceilinged dining room is kitted out with mismatched vintage china, smartly scrubbed up tables and old railway benches. It’s very inviting with just a touch of buzz and energy yet not too much. We were fortunate enough to be sat on the only table overlooking the reassuringly calm and collected kitchen...

  7. Published : Wednesday, 7th May 2014

    East Street Restaurant | East Street – Lunch

    I don’t know about you but whenever I exit Tottenham Court Road tube station famished and fed up of battling human traffic, I take the first side street I find to escape the hell for a brief moment. Now it just so happens that this side street (AKA Rathbone Place) is home to the perfectly marketed East Street, and like a hungry bee to sweet nectar, i’m hopelessly sucked in. In my eyes, the sole purpose of Pan-Asian (or any) ‘street-food’ diner is to capture you when you’re starving beyond belief and easy to please. All diet rules are MIA and you’re desperate for a quick cheap fix. It happens us all, and East Street is certainly cashing in on the weak...

  8. Published : Wednesday, 23rd April 2014

    Locale Fulham | SW6, Locale – Dinner

    Locale has become a Munster Road landmark frequented by families, couples and young fresh faced Fulham-folk. It’s an authentic Italian dog-friendly restaurant owned and run by a delightfully Scottish man called Douglas. I love how (my insight comes from chatting with Douglas) Locale’s fresh produce is sourced from London’s Borough Market, the meat from a fine Italian importer, and cheeses direct from a meticulously sourced family-run Italian contact – solid groundwork for colourful fresh recipes...

  9. Published : Monday, 14th April 2014

    Koya Bar | W1, Koya Bar – Breakfast

    The petite Koya Bar has stuck a big udon finger up to the mainstream London breakfast offering with it’s hard-core, no nonsense Japanese menu. As long as you are in London, you will not find a remotely similar breakfast to the menu served at Koya, it wouldn’t be an millimeter out of place in the heart of Tokyo. My breakfast here was certainly a unique experience! Seating only 25, it’s an intimate space. Everyone has a view of the ferociously efficient kitchen, where dishes are made fresh from scratch. It’s fascinating watching the chef’s at work...

  10. Published : Wednesday, 5th March 2014

    La Famiglia | SW10, La Famiglia – Dinner

    I truly believe La Famiglia is the hidden gem of Chelsea restaurants. Having heard mutterings of its greatness from my family, expectations were high. It’s in a strange location – that no-man’s land area between Beautfort House and Embargoes (close to World’s End, so get a cab for goodness sake...

  11. Published : Thursday, 27th February 2014

    Five Guys | W2, Five Guys BURGER and FRIES

    U.S. born Five Guys is all about straight up fast food, and people are going NUTS for it. The process: 1. Queue, queue, QUEUE! How the Americans love the hype of a queue 2. Peruse the menu. 3. Freak out 4. Order...

  12. Published : Tuesday, 4th February 2014

    Amico Bio Holborn | W1, AMICO BIO, Lunch

    I watched a horrendous documentary about the meat industry and for 3 whole days I turned vegan – have you ever done that? It would have lasted longer but chocolate came along, and cake, and silky delicious lattes. I should try harder I know. During this recent vegan episode I met with a veggie friend (no-one else would come with me – vegetable discriminators!) and headed to Amico Bio, the Italian Vegetarian Organic Restaurant in Holborn. Aside from the staff the restaurant was 100% empty, which you’d think might put us off but we endorsed it. We wondered about, chatted with Antonio (charmer), and just generally made ourselves very comfortable indeed...

  13. Published : Tuesday, 28th January 2014

    Burger and Lobster Mayfair | W1, BURGER AND LOBSTER – Dinner

    For those who haven’t yet heard about Burger & Lobster (you have been living on another planet) – it’s a no booking set up where you choose either a beef burger or a whole steamed lobster. That’s the entire menu. Or if you want to be peculiar there’s a lobster roll in a brioche bun...

  14. Published : Thursday, 23rd January 2014

    Granger & Co | W11, Granger & Co.

    I have gleefully upgraded my hero brunch venue from Breakfast Club (i’m fickle, SHOOT me) to Aussie chef Bill Granger’s ‘Granger & Co’, W11. Just look at the address – 175 Westbourne Grove. It takes a seriously slick establishment to survive on this uber classy area and Granger & Co is flourishing, and making it look effortless.