News bites: What we’re reading

Time for a tea break? Check out the food news and restaurant reviews we’re loving this month.

Yauatcha2Excellent Value & Much Scrumptiousness‘ – The London Foodie reviews Yauatcha City.

First look inside Bristol’s new Ivy restaurant – Bristol Post. (Opening August 2nd – book now!)

A foodie postcard from Edinburgh – Delicious Magazine

Clean eating and dirty burgers: how food became a matter of morals – The Guardian

Healthiest lunches on the high street – SheerLuxe

Galvin brothers announce opening in St Albans – The Caterer

Donal Skehan: I found the best food in London’s Chinatown – The Irish Times

Got some food news or a restaurant review we should check out? Get in touch via twitter.

Flavours of summer: Seven restaurants to try in Birmingham

This is a guest post written by Birmingham-based food and drinks blogger, Full to the Brum.

The start of the British summer has been a bit of a wash out this year, hasn’t it? And whilst everyone remains hopeful that the sunshine is just a bit late to the party, if you want to pretend youre in sunnier climates without having to board a plane then there are plenty of places in Birmingham to whisk yourself off to.

ElBorracho
Tapas at El Borracho de Oro

El Borracho de Oro – This Spanish tapas bar is nestled in Edgbaston, a foodie hot spot just on the edge of the city centre. Run by Alfonso and Emma, El Borracho has a distinctly Spanish feel with traditional tiles and a relaxed but vibrant atmosphere. The long bar, which overlooks the restaurant, allows you to enjoy some delicious honey-like Sangria and tapas whilst you pretend you’re in an Andalusian paradise.

Rofuto – High up in the clouds, Rofuto is a Japanese bar and restaurant based on traditional Japanese techniques served in a creative modern Japanese style. The izakaya-style service means it’s the perfect place for a romantic getaway or celebration, just make sure you get a table near the windows – the city looks magical as the sun sets.

Blue Ginger – A charming little suburban restaurant serving Singapore and Malaysian food, Blue Ginger belongs to Siew Kuan and her team, and the menu includes dishes inspired by her childhood. The mixed platter for two of chicken satay, two fish otaks and a five spice roll is full of delightful flavours or if you prefer your dinner more meat-free, they do an excellent vegan night on Mondays.

ChiKi-RajaMonkey
Dishes at Chi Kitchen and Raja Monkey.

Chi Kitchen – Conveniently located in Debenhams in the Bullring, this is a great place to get away from the hustle and bustle of the shopping centre. Chi Kitchen serves pan-Asian inspired breakfasts and brunches, right through to cocktails and dinner – and the menu has been created by Group Consultant Chef Ping Coombes, winner of 2014s MasterChef.

Raja Monkey – Inspired by the vibrant street side cafes in India, Raja Monkey is the sister venue to the upmarket Lasan. Its reassuringly brief menu is quality over quantity with a menu of traditional dosa and thali (a selection of various dishes) in an unfussy environment with passionate staff. It’s a great place for families as well as a relaxed date – or partake in their Tiffin Club, which allows regulars to have food delivered (or picked up at the café) in an authentic Indian delivery box.

Soul Food Project at The Church – Influenced by the New Orleans French quarter, Soul Food brings together its music, food and the vibrant culture all in a traditional British pub. With elements of Cajun and Creole cooking, their menu includes classics liked blackened fish, grits & greens and a house jambalaya, of which one mouthful will tell you why they’ve been lauded in the The Times newspaper.

The High Field – Let’s not forget the couple of weeks where we do actually get some blazing sunshine in this country. When the surprising happens then flock to the nearest beer garden post-haste and you would do well by heading to modern British gastro pub High Fields outside space.

Still hungry? Visit OpenTable to find more great restaurants in Birmingham.

Feel Good Food: Healthy (but delicious) London restaurants

If you’re on a bit of a detox or just trying to eat healthy, we’ve got you covered. We’ve rounded up some of the best places to eat clean in London, from raw food cafés to restaurants that serves naturally healthy and delicious dishes. So don’t sit at home with a pile of kale – get out there and try some feel good food!

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Redemption Bar – If you’re cutting back on alcohol but don’t want to sacrifice your social life, check out Redemption’s booze-free bars in Shoreditch and Notting Hill. As well as delicious mocktails and alcohol-free beer, they serve healthy dishes like courgetti with pesto, veggie maki rolls, and raw desserts. We’re big fans of their Coco-rita – a coconut water, lime and agave syrup ‘Margarita’ that doesn’t end in bad decisions and a killer hangover.

The Good Life Eatery – At these clean eating cafés in Chelsea and Belgravia, you can start your day with cold pressed juice and chestnut-almond waffles or pop in at lunch for a superfood salad. There’s so much choice on the menu that even junk food junkies will be converted. Hungry for more than just salad? No problem – try the green chicken meatball wrap and a slice of gluten-free red velvet cake.

Snaps & Rye – Dine out Scandi-style at this modern Danish eatery just off Portobello Road. Pop in at lunchtime for open-faced sandwiches, smoked and cured fish, or homemade soup washed down with antioxidant-rich birch juice.

Sea Containers – At the Mondrian Hotel’s riverside restaurant, there are plenty of dishes to suit the health-conscious diner. Enjoy fresh salads and flatbreads, ceviche or carpaccio from the ‘raw’ section, or the Mediterranean-inspired roast sea bream with citrus salsa verde. If you fancy a drink after dinner, the hotel has two excellent options – award-winning cocktail bar, Dandelyan, and the rooftop Rumpus Room.

Grace

Grace Belgravia – Grave Belgravia is London’s leading health, wellbeing and lifestyle club for women. Their restaurant (which is open to members and non-members) specialises in fresh, nutrient dense food and drink. Expect dishes like miso glazed roast chicken, green papaya salad, and peach vegan cheesecake. If you’re in need of a pick-me-up, their juices and smoothies are packed with seasonal fruit and veg and ingredients like wheatgrass, goji berries and chia seeds.

Wild Food Café – This Covent Garden favourite is a haven for vegetarians, vegans and raw food enthusiasts. They use ‘wild, fresh, colourful gourmet ingredients’ in their smoothies, root veg burger, and Ayurvedic super salad. Food writer Deliciously Ella is a regular and raves about their raw pizza.

The Detox Kitchen – Promising ‘fresh, bold and delicious dishes that are free from wheat, dairy and refined sugar’, The Detox Kitchen now runs popular delis in Soho and Fitzrovia. It’s great for grab-and-go juices and salads, but if you have more time you can linger of a nutritious breakfast or lunch. There’s also a fitness studio beneath their Fitzrovia deli offering a range of yoga, barre and pilates classes.

Ottolenghi

Ottolenghi – If you can resist the mouth-watering display of cakes and pastries, Ottolenghi’s delis are a great choice for a light lunch. We love the vibrant, colourful salads and breakfast options like scrambled tofu with rose harissa. For dinner, try his West End restaurant NOPI where the Middle Eastern-inspired dishes are light, fresh and full of spice and flavour.

Daisy Green – This Marylebone eatery is one of six Australian-inspired cafés serving great coffee, all-day brunch, cocktails and more. If you’re shopping on Oxford Street, this is the ideal place to escape the bustle and relax with a detox box or a fat-free fro-yo. Brunch fans will love their coconut bread French toast and full Bondi breakfast (with bottomless Prosecco, Mimosas or Bloody Marys if you’re feeling naughty). If you work in the City, check out their Broadgate café – Beany Green.

Tanya’s Café – Join the raw food revolution at Tanya’s Café, a plant-based restaurant and superfood cocktail bar in Chelsea. They use ethically sourced, organic ingredients in dishes like Thai curry kelp noodles, raw cheesecakes, and ‘adventure salad bowls’. Wash it all down with a glass of organic wine or a matcha green tea latte.

Have we missed your favourite? Tell us your favourite place to eat healthy in London in the comments below.

Three Wimbledon-inspired treats to try this weekend

Pimm’s, Wimbledon, and – finally – some sunshine – the British summer has arrived! Whether you’re a die-hard tennis fan or just need some foodie inspiration for the weekend, here are three Wimbledon-inspired treats to try.

AquaShard

‘Strawberry and white chocolate cream’ at Aqua Shard

Who needs tickets for the tennis when you can dine in style on the 31st floor of The Shard? From sunrise to sunset, the views and the food are equally impressive. In homage to Wimbledon, Aqua Shard are serving this very special dessert – white chocolate cream, green apple crumb, and a medley of strawberries (fresh, dehydrated, compote and jelly). Their bar team have created the perfect tipple to accompany it – a blend of Tanqueray gin, lemon juice, Cointreau and strawberry jam, topped with a Pimm’s and lemonade foam!

BreadStKitchen

The Wimbledon Summer Cup at Bread Street Kitchen

Looking for somewhere to watch Wimbledon this weekend? The bar at Bread Street Kitchen has been transformed into Ramsay’s Ridge, bringing the buzz of Henman Hill to the City. Expect grassy knolls, picnic blankets, widescreen TVs, and best of all – no rain! Try the Wimbledon Summer Cup – a refreshing mix of Bombay Sapphire gin, peach purée, lemon juice, passion fruit syrup and Earl Grey tea, served in a supersized tennis ball. If you’re feeling peckish, there are picnic-inspired bites like Scotch eggs, lobster rolls, and strawberries and cream. This is the pop-up’s final weekend – don’t miss out.

OXBO

The Wimbledon Sundae at OXBO Bankside

Available throughout Wimbledon, OXBO Bankside is serving up this dreamy summer sundae. Inspired by the historic tournament, the sundae is made with fresh strawberries, Chantilly cream and strawberry coulis topped with tennis ball macaroons, white chocolate shards and popping candy. The restaurant is a short stroll from London Bridge – perfect for a bite to eat after a stroll along the Thames or a visit to the Tate Modern. Top tip – on Sunday, OXBO serves a superb 3-course Sunday roast including unlimited Prosecco for £40.

If you’re actually heading to Wimbledon this weekend, here are some great restaurants nearby.