Friday, 28 November 2008

This week I have been......

Listening to Pete and The Pirates ‘Blood Gets Thin’, there’s a clip on their myspace, it’s brilliant!

Reading ‘Revolutionary Road’ by Richard Yates which has been adapted for the big screen by Sam Mendes. The trailer is available to view on apple trailers and the music is provided by Cat Power with her version of ‘Sea of Love’. The movie is being hotly tipped for Oscar nominations and will have it’s big release in the UK in January with Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet at long last reunited after ‘Titanic.’

Eating mostly meatballs, thai green chicken curry and tuna sandwiches with one superfood salad from Leon thrown in. I adore Leon!

Shopping in advance of a party in Maida Vale on Saturday night. I purchased a new outfit yesterday. The event is titled ‘Ich Bin ein Berliner’ on account of all 4 of the hosts being German. Hmmm, hence no theme for outfits. Anything goes. So I got a dress and some boots which I love and they were reduced from £80 to £25 at Topshop, bargain!

And being very excited about brunch tomorrow at Lantana, finally! I’ll report on Monday.

Wednesday, 26 November 2008

Vampires and Nigella

Finally, after fighting against technical and transatlantic issues, my boyfriend and I were able to watch the True Blood season finale last night!!!!!!!!! Whilst eating Thai green curry, what better way to spend an evening? (The curry btw, was a slightly adapted version of Nigella’s curry in a hurry from Nigella Express and we both agreed was a great success).

Back to television, it was hugely entertaining; there were even tears (from me of course, but there often are to be honest so that’s no measure of quality TV). The only disappointment being that we are left with soooo many cliffhangers. Where’s Lafayette? Did Bill feed on him? What’s with Maryanne? Is she a shape-shifter and how does she know Sam? Why does Sam have a stash of cash and was he making a hasty getaway? Has Jason really become a born again Christian? How annoying is Jessica and what will Sookie make of her return to Bill?
The closing credits promised the new series will air next summer, how will we bare the wait? It will be torturous. However, it could have been an awful lot worse I suppose.

General consensus on message boards and the like is that as grand finales go, it was a bit of a disappointment and I will concede that more could have been made of the main event where the killer was killed by our heroine. I mean, Bill was melting! Picture this if you will: A vampire, attempting to save his human girlfriend from the clutches a crazed murderer, in a graveyard, whilst at the same time being reduced to cinders because he’s ventured out of his coffin and braved the sunlight. It was very intense but in conclusion could have been even more dramatic.
One of the initial attractions to the programme are the opening titles. Jace Everett’s ‘Bad Things’ is a rousing song which kick starts each episode with its infectious riff. The official soundtrack to the show, when released, is set to be amazing. Roll on summer 2009!

Tuesday, 25 November 2008

True Blood

This evening my boyfriend and I will be watching the season finale of True Blood a new HBO show adapting the 'Sookie Stackhouse' series of novels by Charlaine Harris.
Anna Paquin is brilliantly cast as the innocent Sookie and the result is another fine show from the genius writer/director Alan Ball.
As exciting as it is to watch the finale, it is somewhat bittersweet when thinking of how long it will be until season 2 airs in the US. We shall be concentrating on The West Wing until then and looking forward to the UK premiere of the pilot episode.

Boo in Kent - The Hare

Over the weekend I trekked back to the motherland of Kent and stayed with relatives for a couple of nights. The reason for the trip was to head to a much loved and trusted pub with the girls and have a hearty lunch to combat the big freeze.

The Hare is a Brunning and Price establishment, a brewery with classic English pubs in, somewhat randomly, the South East and the North West exclusively.
The menu consists primarily of classic English dishes like Toad in the Hole, Fish and Chips, Ploughman’s, Ham, Egg and Chips and Sausage and Mash. These had always been perfectly presented with very generous portion sizing meaning that reservations were advisable due to the popularity of the place.

A firm favourite from the menu among our group was always the 4 Cheese Baked Macaroni. This dish was gargantuan in size and earned the nickname ‘the trough’ due to the vessel in which it was served and to it’s guilt inducing nature. Not for the feint hearted it often got the better of us but was a welcome mainstay on the menu.

That said, our eager foursome ventured to Langton Green at 1pm on Saturday and one of us inevitably opted for the trusty old mac and cheese. However, after waiting for more than an hour what arrived was a bowl of pasta (chiocciole, - not macaroni) with barely a hint of sauce and a thick layer of breadcrumbs sprinkled over the top making the whole dish virtually unpalatable because it was so dry. The overwhelming taste was cinnamon, an interesting and wholly unwelcome take on macaroni cheese. Even the trough gone replaced with a regular green bowl. I suppose this is more in keeping with the ‘light bite’ that the Hare’s 4 Baked Macaroni Cheese has always claimed to be however, we all agreed it is a deeply unsatisfying turn of events.

The other dishes selected were Steak and Ale Pie with cauliflower cheese and Slow Roasted Beef with dauphinoise potatoes. More successful but still lacking something and not up to the usual standard to which we had become accustomed when dining here.
With the benefit of hindsight, we might have known that standards have dropped when there were many empty tables where once it would have been impossible to find a space. A shame, possibly a off day….


Friday, 21 November 2008


Last night I ventured to Fitzrovia. I used to work in this area and upon my return I am suitably impressed by developments. There are several places of interest in the vicininty, Lantana, a brunch/lunch Aussie cafe about which I have read many positive things, Charity shops on Goodge Street, El Burrito - a new and very popular (queues sprawling outside daily come 1pm) Mexican eatery, Busaba Eathai - far less croweded than the Wardour St branch and a mere 5 minutes walk away, and, as I learnt yesterday, a fine little street, Torrington Place, with a Patisserie Valerie and a Planet Organic. Very unexpected.
I was in the area to meet my boyfriend for some after work refreshment in the good company of his Birkbeck university classmates.
I met them at The Marlborough Arms, a pub described as 'A haunt for members of academia'. I had been warned that conversation would largely revolve around computer programming and related topics and so came prepared to look very interested and engrossed in conversation whilst allowing my mind to wander.....what's for dinner? What shall I wear tomorrow?
Some confusion arose when upon hearing the acronym PDA I foolishly assumed they were referring to public displays of affection, in actual fact they meant Personal Digital Assistant, of course, how stupid of me!

That said I had an immensely enjoyable evening and the pub provided a refreshingly relaxed environment in comparison to most others in Central London being busy enough to maintain ambience whilst also securing seating!
The evening's only downpoints were

1) feeling the (slightly tipsy) need to defend my fondness for reality television?

I've not been following this series of I'm a Celebrity however I seem strangely aware and up-to-date with the latest happenings. This is also true of most soaps.

2) Travel difficulties thanks to the ticket machines at Warren Street

3) The kebabs purchased and consumed upon arriving home knowing full well that this would result in a feeling akin to food poisoning the morning after. It always seems like a good idea at the time...... One week we had 3 in 7 days. At this point we realised enough is enough and this has to stop. The guys in the kebab shop knew who we were. The shame! Last night returning to the scene of our crime felt very wrong and we knew it. I talk myself into the 'if I have halloumi and salad in pitta, it's not quite so bad is it?' school of thought. Silly girl.
In conclusion, next time I'm back in Fitzrovia I hope it will be for a spot of organic grocery shopping or brunch of the antipodian variety though I have a feeling I'll be seeing a lot more of the Marlborough Arms in the coming months.

Thursday, 20 November 2008


Last night I dyed my hair.....oh dear! I have been colouring my hair for many years now and recently went red taking inspiration from the likes of Julianne Moore and Isla Fisher who beautifully flaunt their auburn locks. I am eternally envious of those who have enough money and balls to change their hair so often and so drastically.
Going from black to red was a job worthy of seeking professional help and courtesy of my ever generous boyfriend I ventured to Toni and Guy for a few hours which made the whole thing a fairly smooth transition.
6/7 weeks down the line, with 1 inch roots I reached for the Scwarzkopf Live Colour XXL last night and am fairly pleased with the results. Suitably Autumn/Wintery i feel for the approaching cold spell!

Wednesday, 19 November 2008

Tamarind and Paps

On Monday night i was in Mayfair for an anniversary dinner at Tamarind on Queen St. On the same night Brad and Angelina were in town at the nearby Curzon cinema for a private screening of her new offering 'The Changeling'. There has been mention of an Oscar nomination come January for Angelina following the Academy's snub last year for her role in 'A Mighty Heart'. So, that explains the presence of the paparazzi lurking on the street corner.

I had earlier in the day been pleased to discover Tamarind offers a set menu for early diners making this michelin starred Indian restaurant accessible to all for a reasonable £28.00 for 2 courses including a bottle of wine!

However, upon requesting the set menu the waiting staff offered only the £50 and £70 options of 3 or 4 courses. The reluctance to acknowledge something which is clearly offered on their website is disappointing. In addition upon telephoning to book a table for 6:45 we were told in no uncertain terms that there was no availability after 6:30. So, 6:30 it was, puzzling when the restaurant was barely 1/3 full all evening.

Anyway, the matter of the food, it was certainly superior to the average fare one can expect from their trusty local takeaway but is it really worth three times the price? Plus wine, plus service? I'd have to say no. Sure it was the best nan bread I have ever had, and curry houses do not generally offer scallops on the menu but in all I would say stick to your local.

I always find the service in Indian restaurants to be above average however this in itself seems strangely not in keeping with the comfort eating ethos of hearty indian cooking. This, I suppose is the image they are attempting to move away from, and are indeed succeeding if this is their aim. I shall be sticking with the Tiffin Tin, Tufnell Park when seeking out that spicy indulgence for the forseeable future.


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Friday, 7 November 2008


Done it, at last.
I've been thinking about blogging for a while due, in the main, to my growing interest in and respect for others who blog. I first became aware of blogspot via fashions blogs and more recently have been investigating foodie ones in advance of a New Year holiday. So I expect that my thoughts will be primarliy food/film/celebtrity/popular culture related as these are the things that mainly infiltrate my mind though work and general interest. Hmm, my first blog, i'd hoped it would be something more momentus, or relevant, or interesting and it's none of these things. Oh well, I have no grand plan or delusions of popularity or anything, I just get very bored!