There’s a German Food revolution happening in London and it’s called Berlin brünch

The Berlin brünch a new German food based brunch roams around London’s quirkiest venues and this August has two super-cool venues, which will certainly get the party started on a lazy Sunday afternoon. The Berlin – Bread Brunch Booze vibes will be in full flow as each venue offers a quirky and fun atmosphere while enjoying a proper Sunday Berlin-style brunch with all the trimmings. brünch has stumbled upon two as yet undiscovered London insider gems – Playground & Proof in London Fields and converted garage venue in Peckham.

Quirky venues around London

Quirky venues around London

On Sunday 16 August Berlin brünch will be hosting a bottomless Berlin-style brunch at ‘Playground & Proof’, an amazing new rooftop venue above London Fields’ Railway Arches. Experience a little bit of Berlin overlooking London Fields. Indulge in generous Berlin-style brunch with fantastic cocktails, hard-to-come-by drinks straight from Germany and some hot Berlin tunes from a local live DJ. And if the Saturday night hangover is hard to shift then we’ve got bottomless Volcano Coffee Works coffee and unlimited fresh bread from E5 Bakehouse to kick start your Sunday.

This isn’t all! If you can’t make the 16th August, don’t despair – they’ve got a second event in late August, just before Berlin brunch goes on holiday in September.

On Sunday 23rd of August, South of the River to take you to The NINES – a new hidden Peckham den. brünch has a one-day residency in a converted garage bar behind the Bussey Building, in the heart of Peckham. The area is known for music, theatre, film, anime, art and comedy – almost feels like home for brünch. Head down on Sunday 23 for a long lazy Sunday brünch and Berlin vibes in Peckham.

“Every time I see people’s reactions as they enter the venue I know why I am doing what I am doing. It is such a buzz to share our passion with people that love Berlin and great food. We’ve been very lucky and are excited about hosting more quirky and eclectic pop-ups in the months to come.” commented Noemi Dulischewski, creative founder of brünch.Berlin Brunch founder

Each of the weekends will have two sittings from 11.30am until 1.30pm and then 2.30pm onwards for those who want to carry on their day with more drinks and chilled music for a perfect mellow Sunday. Tickets are just £24 via brünch. A taste of Berlin that’s not to be missed. Tickets are limited and to book please go to:
Food Menu
● Selection of fine German cold meats and cheeses
● Smoked Mackerel Pâté
● brünch signature Amaranth & Chia Granola with German Quark
● Topless Eggs with Remoulade
● Home-made Jams & Nutella
● Typical German Dessert
● Fresh Berliner Waffles
● Unlimited fresh Sourdough from E5 Bakehouse *supplier change per venue
● Bottomless filter coffee from Volcano Coffee works * supplier change per venue

Drinks Menu* (not included in the ticket price)

The drinks menu, includes some of Berlin’s coolest drinks, which are hard to find
anywhere else in London
(Club Mate, fritz-kola, Berliner Weisse, etc.).
And if you like it boozy, the bar will sort you out with the best Bloody Mary and other brünch specials.
There will also be unlimited coffee and a variety of teas & juices available.

Every Berlin brünch includes locally-sourced cheeses, German meats, smoked fish, fresh fruit, home-made Granola with quark, fresh breads, home-made jams, Nutella, typical German desserts & fresh waffles. As well as much-loved Berlin drinks such as Club Mate, fritz-kola, Berliner Weisse and sometimes surprise guest drinks too – from Germany of course! Noemi is also turning her hand to being a music promoter creating a platform for some talented new DJs, that put on some awesome tunes to compliment the Berlin vibe at brünch. brünch also hosts and caters for parties and other tailored events, bringing together the best of Germany’s drinks, food & music scene.
Brunch time menu

Secret Food Tours of London.. Brings London’s History of Food and Culture into one Melting Pot

I recently spent a Saturday afternoon on a Secret Food Tour around London Bridge and Borough market area, not just any foodie tour but a secret one complete with a history of London, the spots we visited and an affable guide.

Secret Food Tour - Bermondsey

The Secret Food Tours company offers tours around London, Paris and Rome with plans I learnt to also expand to Madrid later this year. The London tour has two secret food tours, Traditional British food tour around London Bridge and Indian Food tour around the East End of London. It has a clever approach of using local guides whom know the various traders and restaurateurs and insider knowledge that proves really helpful when you’re limited on time and want to see the best each city has to offer, but in the most painless way.

On tour with visitors

I’ve been on several ‘foodie tours’ in my time around Bangkok and New York City and they were good but what I personally enjoyed about this insight into Borough market was the in-depth knowledge from the guide and the history and details he told us with each stop. I was also impressed that he gave us a few extra tips and facts along the way and spent I suspect a little more time with us.

We kicked off the tour with some traditional fish and chips at the famous Fish Kitchen and tasted some beer battered haddock and generous portion of chips with homemade tartare sauce .. soo good. We then had a little tour around Bermondsey market at various coffee and chocolate specialist shops, which all looked very tempting before we stopped at a local fruit and vegetable producer to taste some succulent strawberries.

Our Tour Master - OlliOyster Time

Then it’s onto an amazing oyster tasting with a secret ingredient and fire show .. ok well almost a fire show as the Spanish server very nonchalently throws around a blowtorch to heat and burn off the secret ingredient of cheese and a pesto looking mixture, while having a conversation in very fast Spanish .. it’s quite a skill and I’m suitably impressed. After the show we then each try to devour our oyster as delicately as possible, it’s tasty but I still wince as i struggle slightly with oysters.. am I bad?!

Oyster time

Oyster time


Moving swiftly on we have a bit of a history lesson about the buildings, and cobbled lanes around the market area as we walk over towards London Bridge and The Golden Hind and Sir Francis Drake’s defeat of the Spanish
Armada. Oliver our guide explains that the next stop is a surprise and we’re simply not going to guess where or what the building was in its hay day.

One of the final stops on this tour is a former stables underneath the arches of London Bridge in a very cool pub that the next time I have people to stay in London will definitely take advantage of. Oliver has arranged for us to have a cider and cheese and fig tart tasting.. quite an unusual combination as it goes, but as he starts to explain the reasons behind choosing the cider over beer it all become crystal clear.. well almost. The cheese board is a generous mix or cheeses such as English Stiltons, Stinking Bishop Cheese Caerphily cheese and a Yarg cheese along with a fig cake that went really well with the light summer cider.

For the final chapter of this epic afternoon we headed to the river for some fabulous views and the most important dish of the today pudding and lots of it.. Traditional English puddings with stolen recipes by the French and the best eton mess i’ve had in a long time, was certainly a highlight for me and not to missed along with a cup of English breakfast tea and a history of tea lesson from our guide.

Pretty colours in umbrellasDessert time ..

All in all not a bad way to spend a Saturday afternoon learning more about London and getting to eat and drink along the way.

Tours can be booked directly at

Price per person per tour is £60.00 and takes approximately 3-3.5 hours to complete the tour along with plenty of insider knowledge and history about the area as you walk around.

Meringue and Mandarin double cream

Christmas cake, Caviar and Champagne.. what’s not to love?

The diet is most well and truly over and I’m back to full–on luxury indulgence which is fortuitous as it’s also coinciding with the festive season. Happily I’m eating again well over eating, and loving it. On a recent press trip out to Austria somebody commented rather rudely’ I’ve never met such a petite woman who could put away so much cheese and beer’. Really! How rude..

I can’t help it though, there’s no stop button well until the ‘New Year, New Me’ regime kicks in again. I’d made a promise to myself at the start of the diet that I’d treat myself and long suffering friends to a long lunch somewhere fabulous with food that was a combination of comfort, deeply satisfying and indulgent.  I found myself back on the welcoming doorstep of Angelus restaurant in West London, ready to dive into a divine plate of Orkney scallops, succulent rabbit and a long awaited and much anticipated ‘assiette of dessert’ which involved a memorable Clementine and Vodka soufflé, salted caramel tart with homemade ice-cream. It didn’t disappoint.. that was nearly a month ago and since then I’ve been indulging in a non-stop sugar fix.

French Fine Wine

French Fine Wine

Foie gras - Creme Brulee

Foie gras – Creme Brulee

Not a huge lover of traditional fruit Christmas cake I jumped at the chance to taste test some of Maison Blanc’s Christmas Patisserie range and offering of beautifully designed festive themed cakes made with woodland theme <a href="”> at their Fulham rd store.  Naturally I had to try all of the patisserie on offer, my favourite was the Pistachio woodland cake featuring cute toadstools. It’s indulgent yes, but it’s fun, especially for children and a great alternative to a full English afternoon tea. You can either chose 1 or 2 mini cakes an exquisite chocolate ‘Buche de Noel’ log or some of the Christmas Cupcake range are also really fun and with fresh cream and light vanilla flavoured sponges, much better than Christmas cake anyday.

There’s a limit however, even for me as to how much sugar you can have in a week, so moving over to the savoury side of my tastebuds. On a more savoury note but no less indulgent I was sent some Caviar by the London Classic Caviar company along with a Mother of pearl teaspoon and given explicit instructions on how to taste the densely packed Caviar pearls.

Caviar Classic London .. package perfection

Caviar Classic London .. package perfection

The Caviar is beautifully dense, grey, shiny in appearance and densely packed. As soon as I put a spoon into mouth .. hmm it has a deliciously creamy texture with a slight hint of fish but not overpowering in anyway and a nutty aftertaste. We sip some Champagne and then taste with blinis and creme fraiche and wow it’s a great little amuse bouche if you’re looking for something special to offer guests over the festive period or New Year’s.


Brand New Festival Lets People Taste Over 20 Brixton Restaurants & Pop-ups for a whole day


An exciting day-long food and drink festival is coming to South London this autumn, on Sunday 26 October, to celebrate the delicious tastes and cultural delights of Brixton. Brixton Flavours – Brixton’s Food Festival, will bring together locals, Londoners and tourists alike to enjoy and revel in the warm atmosphere and diversity that is making Brixton a world renowned food and cultural destination. The headline sponsor for the event is OpenTable, the UK’s leading online restaurant bookings service.


With so many fantastic restaurants, bars and eateries to choose from, Brixton Flavours allows customers to taste as much as possible in one day. Brixton Flavours tickets can be purchased from as little as £15 with lots of extras. Ticket holders will get 15 Brixton Pounds (B£) to be spent in any of over 20 participating venues, with diverse cuisines from Brazilian to Mexican, Japanese to Dim Sum, French to Italian and Caribbean to Modern British. As well as OpenTable, the festival will be supported by Brixton Bid and local food blogger Miss South.

Additionally, only ticket holders will get a wristband allowing them to eat free samples and secret dishes at all participating restaurants letting people try new places and get out of their ‘food comfort zone’. There will be a fun filled carnival atmosphere with several local artists playing and adding to the day’s entertainment. Tickets for Brixton Flavours can be bought in advance via the website (and a free Zinco Coconut Water or Alibi drink will be given out on the day to the first 250 people to buy a ticket online).

Oliver Mernick-Levene, Founder, Brixton Flavours commented: ‘I love Brixton and as a local resident and foodie, I was keen to help support the food and cultural scene, to help celebrate its diversity and bring people together over their passion of food, drink and music.”
He continued: “With so many cultures and different people populating the area, here in Brixton, eating and drinking are not just pastimes but a ‘way of life’. As such, the area has some of the best restaurants, bars and eateries in London. There are no lazy taste buds here and with one ticket you can try all the different flavours of Brixton. It’s an exciting day for us and we can’t wait to welcome people to the festival and make Brixton proud.”

The festival will include and cover Brixton Village, Market Row, ColdHarbour Lane, Atlantic Road and Windrush Sq, areas on Sunday 26 October From 11.00am – 7.30pm. It will see a host of new and firm favourite cafes, restaurants and craft shops taking part in this cool and exciting festival. All venues will be offering special discounts and secret new tapas style dishes to visitors and will also be offering delicious free samples to wristband wearers. From the original Brixton set to the newly arrived, the festival will play host to a really special day, which is set to be become an annual food and drink fixture in Londoners diaries.


On the day visitors can also buy wristbands and Brixton Pounds (B£) from strategically located vending kiosks around Brixton Village and Market row and outside The Ritzy Picturehouse, in Windrush Square. Location maps will also be given out and downloadable as a guide to where all of the participating restaurants, venues and music locations will be throughout the day.

Mike Xenakis, Managing Director, OpenTable International, said: “With Brixton now at the epi-centre of the London food scene we’re excited to support this new food festival and the diverse selection of local restaurants that are putting the area firmly on the foodie map. The Brixton Flavours festival is a fantastic way to showcase the evolution of London dining at a local level, encompassing a fun carnival style atmosphere and friendly neighbourhood appeal.”

The restaurants on the day will include: Brindisa, Brixton Village Grill, Carioca, Casa Morita, Courtesan, Duck Egg Café, Etta’s seafood, FGB- Foccacia, Fish Wings & Tings, Ichiban, Jalisco, Kaff, Market House, Lounge Bar, Prince of Wales –POW, Satay Cocktail Bar, Senzala, Snugg, Sponge & Cream, The Ritzy Picturehouse, The Wine Parlour as well as the pop-up stalls, which will be positioned in Windrush Square.

Brindisa - Bellota Jamon slicing. An art form

Brindisa – Bellota Jamon slicing. An art form

Elly Foster, Chair/Non-Executive Director, from Brixton BID, said: “We are proud to be supporting Brixton Flavours festival and welcome people throughout London and further afield to enjoy and taste our wonderful food. Brixton is a Mecca for people who want to try all different cuisines in one area. We see the value in developing and maintaining the ethos and cultural diversity of community projects such as this, which help benefit local businesses and bring further awareness to the area we love and call home.”

Croatia National Tourist Board launches new ‘Croatia365’ Campaign

Croatia 365

Croatia 365



Last night, I attended the UK launch of the Croatian National Tourist Board (CNTB)’s new pre- and post-season campaign: ‘Croatia 365’.
Held in the Grand setting of Queen’s Club, we were welcomed by Mr Darko Lorencin, the Croatian Minister of Tourism, Mr Ratomir Ivičić, Director of the Croatian National Tourist Board, Mr Tonko Rilović, UK & Ireland Director of the Croatian National Tourist Board, and Mr Ivan Grdešić, Ambassador of the Republic of Croatia to the United Kingdom.
Representatives from the regions of Dubrovnik and Riviera, Korčula and Pelješac, Slavonia and Baranja, and north-western Istria showcased their huge range of cultural, eno-gastronomic, adventure, wellness & health and MICE offerings.

Wine Tasting menu

Wine Tasting menu

Award winning Croatian wines

Award winning Croatian wines

We were then treated to a fun and informative tasting masterclass by Joe Wadsack, the renowned wine writer and Saturday Morning Kitchen TV presenter. During the tasting, Joe, transported us on a wine tasting journey around the beautiful country of Croatia.
Once we’d over indulged in some amazing Croatian canapes and artisan delicacies – which included the highest quality truffles, cheeses, olive oils, pršut, salami, honey, sweets and cakes – we were treated to a beautiful and charismatic performance from world-class Croatian tenor Stijepo Gled Markos.
Canapes with Croatian Artisan produce

Canapes with Croatian Artisan produce

The aim of the evening is to put Croatia in people’s minds as an all year round destination, which can offer – so much more than just stunning coastlines, with cultural activities and fascinating historical architecture to thermo-mineral water based spas and local food delicacies. Looking forward to going very soon for a city and wine tour.

A Charmante Luxury B & B in Biot – Bastide Valmasque, Cote-d’Azur

Over the summer I stayed in a charming little family run B & B, owned by the very affable Philippe and his wife. The old farmhouse has been converted into elegant and charming bedrooms, seeping French interiors and Mediterranean essence with a touch of India on the side. The owners are passionate about India and have brought several artefacts from large chest of drawers to glass cabinets which all inter-mingle to make a beautiful contemporary ambience.


What I loved about Bastide Valmasque was the easiness of the hosts with their guests, breakfast was tranquil and served from 07.00 -10.00am , after breakfast fruit, cheeses and divine biscuits and teas were left out for guests to enjoy at their leisure. The biscuits – Sables des Pres, were irresistible along with the house speciality tea from Kashmir, made from Green Cardamon pods, with Cinnamon and spices.

The rooms were also lovely and spacious with beautiful French white linens and Indian fresh cotton throws, rather too inviting indeed, as one almost didn’t want to leave it was that comfortable.


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La Biere in Biot's Cafe de la Poste

Interestingly I learnt during my stay that Bastide Valmasque also hold cooking classes throughout the year. Guests are invited to shop at the local market for fresh produce and then back to the kitchens to cook up a mediterranaen feast for a 3 course lunch. This can be done as a group or individual basis with other people taking part.

The luxury B & B is well located in the little town of Biot, close to Cap D’antibes and Juan les pins. You will need a car to reach the B & B, but from Nice airport this is quite an easy process.

A double room per night is from 100 euros, and up including a lovely French breakfast with cheese, meats, jams and lots of French baguette.

There is also an apartment to hire by the week or 3 night minimum, which has it’s own private garden and patio area. Phillipe tells me they are also hoping to have a swimming pool by next year once the famous French planning permission has been given.

Après London- A cool ‘Sex in the City’ Cocktail bar

A heaving Oxford Street gives way to a trendy side street, where Après London drinks bar and club lives. It’s my Sex in the City moment post work,shopping cool cocktail bar. Après is a nice little find around the busy West End and Mayfair area, conveniently situated opposite Selfridges. It has an outside area for summer drinks and tasty nibbles and some very comfy leather seating inside by the bar to relax and chill out in post a busy day at work.

Apres London, Terrace area

Apres London, Terrace area

Serving an eclectic mix of cool cocktails ranging from some fabulous martini and mojito concoctions with a twist to wine and beers, as well as non-alcoholic cocktails with some pizzaz!

Cucumber cooler

Cucumber cooler

Mojito with a twist

Mojito with a twist

When we arrive at the bar it’s fairly busy and the Thursday night DJ who is too ‘Cool for Skool’ starts setting up next to us. To the left of us a couple on a date and another table of very chic London girls are sipping cocktails and avidly catching up on the gossip over some cool tunes. I notice it’s mainly Londoners in here, everybody is achingly on trend and looking very London, there are a few wealthy looking ex-pat types but it feels quite local in here as well.



After the initial cocktail we veer towards the menu, which is certainly a fun eclectic mix of some different and favourite cuisines. We decide on some beef sliders, steak tacos, hummus with fresh large green olives and hot pitta bread, as well as chicken satay sticks, simple but good ingredients, which certainly hit the spot.

Beef Sliders

Beef Sliders

Well stocked bar

Well stocked bar

Apres has an easy and fun atmosphere for a quick drink and bite to eat. It’s a lovely relaxed spot with cool tunes and an even cooler DJ, who was good when we were there on the Thursday evening. Weekends the basement club is also open and holds bigger numbers, there is a doorman policy at the weekend and you can ring ahead to reserve a table as it does get busy with the cool set.

For a few cocktails and 2-3 tapas style dishes the average cost would be £30-35 per person. The location is easy for Bond Street/ Oxford Street tubes.

Atmosphere: 7
Food: 8
Drink: 9
Overall Experience: 8