Monday, 21 September 2020

The Quality Chop House

Chop life 


Mangalitza pork steak

Quality Chop House, the iconic British chophouse and wine bar is a proper institution in Farringdon. The restaurant takes British chops and steaks in a serious manner while retaining the essence of British cuisine. Recently, it also has launched a wine bar next door with more casual small plates offering. Quality Chop House's kitchen is run by Shaun Searley, you can see plenty of steaks on the menu, as well as traditional offerings such as game terrine and black pudding. For my 3rd visit to Quality Chop House, I secured an evening in the private room, which offers a feasting menu with a selection of sharing starters, a main, and a dessert.

Blacklock

The best value meaty joint in London


Meat is good

I am a super fan of Blacklock, the mini-chain is a meat temple for serious chops and steak lovers. Spreading across 3 sites, Blacklock is famous for its core signature offering: All In. The All In offers you a selection of nibbles, followed by a mountain of chops and a side dish, all for just £20 person. On Sunday, it follows a similar manner but switched to serving you a pile of roast meat instead of chops. The Sunday All In roasted dinner has since become such a cult dish, and now you have to book months in advance to try. The below captures my 2 recent visits, one on a regular evening, and another one for its legendary Sunday roast.

Pique Nique

Cozy French cooking in Bermondsey


Raspberry mille feuille


France is not too away from the UK, and there are many French chefs working in London. However, this doesn't mean that London is blessed with many high-quality French restaurants. No doubt, there are a few at the very top end, the contemporary French-themed, Michelin starred restaurants, like Club Gascon and Le Gavroche, but I do found it hard to find classic, mid-range level French restaurants in London. However, Pique Nique in Bermondsey is one of those rare gems, at least according to many foodies and the press. Operate by a team of French with a menu also written in French, it has an open kitchen and the food is all about rustic French cooking, with mains are designed to be shared so best come in a group.

Casse Croûte

 Old school French bistro


Girolle on toast

I would say Cassa Croute is one of the 'better' classic French restaurants in London. The low key tiny French bistro has been around since 2013 and has since become one of the best kept dining hot spot secret for the locals. It is a very 'French' venue with the wine list and food menu written in French only on a blackboard, with an ever-changing daily menu, depending on what is available for the kitchen. The food is in the mood of old school French with items like foie gras terrine. The dining room itself can sit around 20 people, so getting a table is not an easy task, do book ahead and ensure to go on a very empty stomach...

Sunday, 6 September 2020

Imperial Treasure Fine Chinese Cuisine London

 The hallmark of fine Cantonese dining


Dim sum feast


Thanks to Government's Eat out to Help out support, to offer diners 50% off (up to the value of 10 pounds) for any eat-in meal in August, I have taken the advantage to dine more often than usual. In August, I visited Imperial Treasure twice, once for its dinner for its legendary Peking duck, and the second time for a full-on dim sum lunch experience. On the back of COVID 19, I wanted to dine in a restaurant that can ensure safety and enforce social distancing. As much as I love some of the venuses in China Town, it just doesn't seem safe for now with tables so packed to one another, the no booking policy for lunch hours is also a minus for me. I was willing to pay a little more and Imperial Treasure fits my requirement perfectly. Below are some of the highlights from my 2 visits.