Tuesday, 22 June 2010

LUCKY LUCKY SEVEN...the American pancake of your life!



Where:
Lucky Seven, 127 Westbourne Park Road, London W2 5QL

First impressions:
I've been coming here for years but I can still remember my first time as I absolutely loved this place the minute I walked in. My sister Juliana introduced me to the diner and since then I have spread the word to all of my friends. It has this inviting and chilled-out vibe with big booths and an open kitchen. It is not flashy in the least but has an inviting retro feel. It constantly plays new and old music and I always love the fact that they play entire albums.



The service:
Waiters are always friendly and the food is quick.

The food:
It is without doubt a great place to come for a burger, fries, breakfast, milkshakes and it's incredible American style pancakes. I went with my sister and my nephew, Noah who likes to make his way slowly through a burger, fries and a strawberry milkshake.



I went for the blueberry pancakes with Juliana and we shared a portion, as they come with four very large thick buttermilk pancakes.



I cannot describe these as anything other than the most perfect, buttery yet also fluffy delights I have ever eaten. They arrived with a gentle dusting of icing sugar and a sensible sized jug of maple syrup. I was happy to see a few squares of extra, but still necessary butter.



These were delicious and I've had a lot of pancakes in my life. We had the blueberry pancakes but you could order plain or banana. I could taste that they were made with quality ingredients and if you're going to treat yourself you may as well indulge in one of these.



The price:
At £8.25 for the blueberry they are not cheap, but I highly rate these as you get a decent amount for your money. A massive bonus is that they practically give you a whole bottle of maple syrup and believe me you need it!



You can also get milkshakes priced:
Regular at £3.95
Thick at £4.95
X thick at £5.50 (I normally have the extra thick because they put loads of ice cream in but Noah opted for the regular)



What I always take from this experience:
It's fun to hang out here and it is great for all ages. Whether for the burger, milkshake or these mouthwatering buttermilk pancakes, I think once you have tried Lucky Seven you will keep coming back.

http://www.lucky7london.co.uk/





Sunday, 20 June 2010

Pin up of the week: Be

I was sent this when my friend Be was in Rome...




I think he deserves to be the pin up of the week as he is clearly showing that tough guys in tanks tops can still try to look cool whilst enjoying some gelato.

Crêpe affaire, more like crap affaire!



Where:
Broadway Shopping Centre, Hammersmith Broadway, London, W6 9YE

First impressions:
I had just come from a barbecue and was looking for a little chocolaty snack so I thought this crêperie might be what I was looking for. I was wrong! I wanted to leave the minute I saw these horrible square looking crêpes but I was already too far along in the transaction. The machine in the background of the photo below is the crêpe making monstrosity which I was told turns out a crêpe every 30 seconds. They keep them out on display in that lovely plastic cover and the traditional large black hob is merely used to heat up the pancakes.



After these two photos were taken I was told that I was not allowed to take anymore for what reason I cannot imagine. I managed to creep and lean over slyly to get this shot of the outside.



The service:
The girls that served me barely knew what they were selling and they were very unfriendly.

The crêpe:
I had a Nutella crêpe and Nutella can usually save most things that are lacking in taste but this crêpe, if you could even call it that was beyond any kind of help. The texture was rough and it looked stale, despite this I needed to try it and I was still trying to be a little optimistic.




Two stops later on the tube after Hammersmith and I felt a bit sick. I still was holding a little bit of the Nutella crêpe which was a world record for me. I relentlessly never leave a Nutella anything so the situation must have been bad. I was hungry so I admit that I ate the majority as I was secretly hoping that it would start to redeem itself after each bite. Sadly this was not the case and you could tell that this was made from extremely poor quality ingredients and I dread to think when is was made. To top it off I had to go another three stops with Nutella all over my hands as the bitch didn't give me a napkin.

The price:
£2.95 = nat worth it!

http://www.crepeaffaire.com/

Monday, 7 June 2010

Brunch at the Connaught Hotel



Where:
The Connaught, Carlos Place, Mayfair, London, W1K 2AL

First impressions:
Hélène Darroze has revamped the Connaught's famous brunch and I hoped to experience a very heavy and extremely creamy French breakfast. This was a special occasion as it was a birthday present for my friend Flick, as I don't normally indulge on this scale in the morning, however much I would like to. All I can say is that the interiors are to perfection and if that wasn't enough we were surrounded by an array of incredible Damien Hirst butterfly collages. (see below)

Not too shabby.





The breakfast/dessert buffet:
After having sampled the savory buffet and had our mains we began with the best part of the trip, dessert! As we made our way towards the buffet we were greeted by a display of beautifully handmade French chocolate treats and pastries.




They had these delightful chocolate and strawberry brioches that were not only a feast for the eyes but they also had some delightful Nutella-esque ganache inside.




GANACHE does not get any better!




Then there were these rich but perfectly bite sized chocolat fondants...again, massive attention to quality.




I can't pass a very fair judgement on these as embarrassingly I just couldn't manage to eat mine. It was not the sort of place where you could ask for a doggy bag, so I'm taking Leo's word for it that they had great croissants and pain au chocolat.




Now for the big guns. They had a waffle machine where they made glorious fresh waffles in front of you. You could chose from dark chocolate sauce, whipped cream, homemade jams and maple syrup.




Every home should have one!




My waffle




Flick's waffle




Charlie's waffle




Eating my waffle





Extra thoughts:
So this was the healthy option if you really didn't want to take part in all of that sensational and overwhelming fun.




What I took from the experience:
Hélène Darrozet has nailed it!
The food (including the savoury) was of the highest quality and if you wanted to treat yourself then I absolutely recommend it. Furthermore, service was warm and friendly and they even were quite funny at times. I liked this. The down side is that quality costs, but you are paying for probably one of the best brunches in the city and you do get a fair amount of fun for your money.

I hadn't been this full since christmas!



http://www.the-connaught.co.uk/london_restaurant.aspx

The pin up of the week - Lechy

Ok, so I thought the first pin up should be Lechy as he is sporting such a cool ice cream themed T-Shirt out on the town.




He also looks like he's having a great time with his mate who snuck in on the photo.

Sunday, 6 June 2010

Automat desserts



Where:
33 Dover Street,London W1S 4AF

First impressions:
I've been to Automat a couple of times and I have to admit that in the past I found it a bit too cool for school with some pretencions waiters. Despite this, the interiors are tasteful with a retro American brasserie style. As it happens on this excursion it was third time lucky. The atmosphere was lively and the service was faultless.

After having a delicious sea bream decorated with surprise but good clams, I felt it was my duty to sample some of the desserts. The four of us shared an amazing apple crumble with vanilla ice cream and a Mississippi Mud Pie accompanied by a scoop of pistachio ice cream.





Price:
It's not bad at around £6.50 for a pud and the quality overall is quite good. It was obviously fun to try two dishes but I'd definitely only go for the crumble next time.




Extra thoughts:
Apparently they do a great brunch with American style pancakes...so, yes, I will be back!


http://www.automat-london.com/

CHEFS at L'ANIMA chat ICE CREAM

I finished work at L'Anima in Liverpool Street a little over a month ago but I still like to go and visit the guys from time to time. This, being an ice cream blog I went to ask the professionals themselves about their favourite flavours and filmed some of their comments, (see below). I was there on their pizza break where they were chilling out before the dinner service began. Apologises for the Indian music in the background as someone was playing their dodgy ipod,(Valerio).

The first video is Michele and Nando from mains who very kindly did a joint interview.

video

This is Claudio speaking who is currently in pastry and desserts and this is where I first started learning about ice cream and the making process. In the video I distracted him while he was preparing the zabaione.

video

http://www.lanima.co.uk/