Ah, December and January. The time of the year for office Christmas knees-ups and New Year feasts among old friends.
But while we might like to spend a bit more to get a bit more, pockets tend to be, shall we say, not particularly well lined at the end of the year. So here’s a mix of restaurants – some for keeping things deliciously affordable, others for when food and drink is most definitely on the company account – who accommodate group bookings especially well.
Pizza East Shoreditch – Provided you can slap down a booking quick enough to secure one of the giant 20-cover tables at Pizza East’s Shoreditch outpost, you might want to extend invites to the whole family – great aunts, cousins twice removed, et al. It all helps to ram home the idea good pizza should be wood-fired, kindly priced, and subject to the mouths of the whole table.
Tayyabs – 1972: the year that bought us ABBA, the digital wrist watch, Jude Law, and Tayyab’s spiced lamb chops. At £4.20 per portion (four by last count), these are arguably the best value slabs of meat in London. Order them for the whole table, get some keema naan bread and some seekh kebabs in, and your table-for-ten will be singing.Continue Reading
We can’t think of anything more festive than spending a weekend away visiting a European Christmas market and totally immersing yourself in the Christmas spirit. Whether in the historic squares of Prague, traditional Vienna or the beautiful Tivoli gardens in Copenhagen, the universal Christmas spirit unites them all and showcases European traditions at their best. So grab your warmest winter coat and pick your favourite winter destination this December.
If you have never been to a German Christmas market, we recommend you visit the Striezelmarkt in Dresden which has been a fixture since 1434 and is believed to be the oldest Christmas market in Germany (of which there are over 2,000 nowadays). Its name stems from “Stollen” or “Streizel”, the German Christmas bread enriched with dried fruit and marzipan, without which no German Christmas would be complete. So if you like having your cake and eating it, Dresden is the place to be. You’ll also find the world’s tallest nutcracker and tallest Christmas pyramid here which are definitely worth a visit. Why not drink some German Glühwein (mulled wine) too, to keep warm?
Prague’s largest and most magical Christmas market takes place in Wenceslas Square (as in Old King Wenceslas) and the city’s distinctively medieval backdrop of church domes, towers and stunning 9th century castle provides the most festive skyline. We recommend strolling through the cobbled streets in the week leading up to the Christmas holidays as the streets will sport gigantic tubs of water filled with carp, the traditional Czech Christmas dish – best enjoyed with grog and honey liquor, traditional Czech beverages which are guaranteed to warm you up on a cold winter’s day.Continue Reading
With Christmas fast approaching, it’s time to stock up on festive food, sweet treats, and gourmet gifts for friends and family. You can do it all online these days, but where’s the fun in that? Wrap up warm and check out one of these winter food festivals instead.
Now in its tenth year, the Padstow Christmas Festival is a real treat for foodies. Kids will love Santa’s Grotto and the Friday night fireworks, while grown-ups can watch cooking demos from Rick Stein, Nathan Outlaw, and Angela Hartnett. The Christmas market will be selling local meats, cakes, chocolate, and craft beer, as well as festive staples like cheese, gin, and Christmas pudding.
Each winter, York is transformed into a winter wonderland, complete with ice-skating, Santa’s grotto, and the St Nicholas fair. There will be plenty of festive food on offer at the Shambles Market, plus mulled wine by the fire inside Thor’s Tipi.
With over 170 stalls in one huge marquee, Shrewsbury Winter Festival is the ideal place to start your Christmas shopping. Continue Reading