Posts Tagged ‘London’

Back from London! (Day 4)

March 20, 2010

I was really sad to leave London. I missed the company and the fun that London has to offer. I’m sure there are more nooks and crannies to explore!

Yes. Impressions do count. I was wowed by King’s Cross St Pancras Station. They had a big Marks and Spencers Supermarket with an amazing array of sandwiches, salads, fruits, sweets and drinks! I had a hard time choosing! Btw, did I mention that London is big on organic food. I was glad to see every ingredient labeled with ‘Pasteurized eggs, pasteurized cheese, free range eggs, organic bread’ etc. After our grocery shopping in M&S, we took our breakfast in LePainQuotidien cafe and had a really nice scrambled eggs on toast! A nice end to our short London trip!

A big THANK YOU again to J and G. You had been wonderful hosts and we loved your company! We look forward to making your stay wonderful too if you do decide to drop by France!

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Back from London! (Day 3)

March 20, 2010

Another Big Breakfast but a BIG disppointment this time. 202 located along Nottinghill, was overpriced and the food was bad. My bacon and sausage were burnt and it was worst than the humble Carluccio’s that we went yesterday. W’s bagels and smoked salmon was so-so. It looked promising with ‘Timeout London’ writings, a crowded cafe and cool interiors. But I guess this is like our PS Cafe in Singapore where the food cannot justify its cost! Sigh.

Tom’s Deli (should have tried this instead!). Read reviews here and more pics here. Apparently Tom is Terence Conran’s son.

Portobello Street Market was packed with people on a Saturday morning! It was selling lots of antiques and vintage items. Dotted along the street were cafes to rest your feet. We chanced upon Hummingbird Bakery and was wondering what the fuss was about. CUPCAKES in creamy turquoise, pink, baby blues, pale yellow and chocolate sprinkled with colorful hearts and stars! So pretty! I got the ‘Red Velvet’ and it was lovely!

We met up with our friends at Paddington and made our way to Pearl Liang. Dim sum for lunch! I had been craving for dim sum and was delighted to find authentic food and soft egg tarts! Thank you guys for bringing us there!!!

After lunch, it was back to Oxford Street for W and me. It was crazy. Oxford Street was packed with people on a Saturday Weekend! After a nice chat over tea with QT and XH at Marks and Spencer’s Cafe, we parted. W and I made our way to St Martins in the Fields to meet J & G to catch Vivaldi’s Four Seasons. By the time the wonderful performance had ended at about 9pm, our tummies were growling and we ended up near our apartment for some award winning Lebanese Food at Alwaha Restaurant. We were fortunate to catch the last order for dinner. I was hungry and the food was so good that I forgot about taking pictures!

Back from London! (Day 2)

March 20, 2010

London is big on breakfasts! I love it! Both me and W walked towards Nottinghill area and settled on this breakfast place, Carluccio’s. Concept Stores seem to be popular in London where they have a retail/lifestyle shop in front and the cafe at the back. Our breakfasts were good. I loved the mushrooms and bacon. Wonder how they cooked it. Hmm.

After a hearty breakfast, we walked along Westbourne Grove in Nottinghill. Burberry Kids, Paul Smith, Oxfam, Aesop and several upmarket boutiques line the street in a predominantly residential area. This is pretty unique. Well then again, if a townhouse costs $4m pounds, it may be sustainable for these expensive brands to be located here and away from main shopping streets.

Borough Market is awesome! So much to see and taste! Award winning sausages, cheeses, chorizo sandwiches and baked goodies. The list goes on!

Lots of Food and Drinks!

W bought me a slice of brownies from Cinnamon Tree Bakery (owls and gingerbread man pics). Thank you W! One of the best I’ve tasted so far!

Other sweet treats! Argh I should have bought the Burnt Sugar.

I finally got to try the fish and chips in London and Fish! is recommended (avoid the restaurant). I was surprised when they sprinkled vinegar over the fish and chips. I stopped the guy but he went ‘trust me, it’s good’. It really is! It is the adult version of eating chips with ketchup.

Our last stop was Monmouth Cafe. It apparently serves the best coffee in London. Nice interiors too with a large communal table for sharing bread and jam (you pay of course!). Despite the long queue and crowds, we managed to score a seat by the window.

After the market, we continued on to the Big Ben and took a stroll along the River Thames. We saw the London Eye and rested at the SouthBank Centre where there were free performances (we caught the rehearsals). We went on to Trafalgar square where the National Gallery and St Martin in the Fields were located, toured the place and enjoyed the rehearsals (Mozart’s Eine Kleine Nachtmusik) due for a performance that night. It was ethereal hearing the orchestra music fill the chapel. The baby tickled me! Hence, we decided to purchase the tickets for tomorrow’s performance – Vivaldi’s Four Seasons. Haha.

Feeling hungry. We took a train to Oxford Street and walked to Marylebone Street to sample the Crepes at Cafe Creperie. (Golden Hind, a famous Fish and Chips Cafe is just next door. Also, if you access Marylebone Street via James Street, you would chance upon Atari-Ya sushi which I heard, is fantastic). We ordered the Pesto Crepe (savoury) and Banana Walnut with Maple Syrup Crepe (sweet). It was crispy and delicious!

Back from London! (Day 1)

March 19, 2010

It was an awesome trip. I had been to London twice but this is the best experience ever! I loved every minute of it. Despite my growing tummy and shifting centre of gravity (backaches!), I was bouncing with energy. Helps too that the weather was great. We had 2 sunny days and another day with just occasional intermittent showers. YEAH!

I woke up feeling like an excited kid looking forward to my 1st school excursion. Not sure if its the hormones! I made ourselves sandwiches, roasted some nuts and we’re off to catch the 8.30am bus! I was real glad to have prepared the sandwiches. It was yummier and cost just a fraction of the ones sold in the Eurostar!

We arrived at Gare de Lyon and took another train to Gare du Nord where Eurostar is located. The customs process to board the Eurostar was quick and efficient. I was ecstatic to hear the English language! No more ‘Bonjour’ or ‘Merci’! It makes a huge difference when you could understand what the world was talking about!

There was no itinerary and we were bunking in with our friends in Central London. (Thank you so much J and G! You are so kind to put us up!) Our sole objectives were to relax and meet up with friends. After a comfortable 2.5hr ride to London’s Kings Cross St Pancras Station (Central London). We arrived at 12.30pm (London Time). Since we are meeting our friends at 7.30pm, we decided to grab some lunch before catching the musical ‘Hairspray’ at Holborn.

We were glad to find these cool sandwich shops in Britain. EAT. It was the ‘pies with mash and gravy’ advertisement that drew us in. But I preferred the Chicken and Leek soup. Heh.

Hairspray was my first musical and I was bowled over. Coordinated dance moves and beautiful stage sets. Not to mention the powerful singing and marvelous acting. The entire crowd was standing, clapping and shaking their booties at the end of the show! If I could dance, I would have loved to join! Apart from the boisterous fun, there were sweet moments in the show too. I was touched when a white girl and a black man were apprehensive about their relationship due to racial segregation, the black man’s enlightened mother reminded that ‘Love is a gift from above, but people forget that’. Yes indeed. The opportunity to meet someone you can live with for the rest of your life is a gift from above. Beautiful.

We finally met up with our friends at dinnertime and they brought us to an amazing cafe, Bonda Cafe, that serves Malaysian food. We had Fried Rice and Char Kway Teow and the dishes indeed have ‘wok hei’ (fire from the wok)! We would have ordered more food if not for the long wait.