Posts Tagged ‘coffee’
A sudden cry of joy, filling the house.
It’s here! It’s arrived!
Eyes sparkling. A Harrods Hamper is a celebration. The luxury, the delicacies, the dream universe. A picture of the rich brick building in Knightsbridge, tiny lights lining it, paradise-like shop windows comes to mind. Curiosity takes over – makes you feel like a child on Christmas day, about to open the biggest gift under the tree.
The parcel is huge. You try to will yourself to open it slowly. In the box, a beautiful heavy weaved basket, leather cover embossed to Harrods name. What will it be? What will we find? This hamper is dedicated to After Dinner – this very precious time, comfortable, conversations getting more personal, turning to life and philosophy. And so this assortment offers these touches of perfection, little pieces of sweetness that will take you later through the night, bring a wonderful conclusion to a night shared with loved ones.
First discovery, a large box of divine mint chocolates. 7 varieties, some focusing more on the cacao, intense or sugary, others on a heart of mint, crisp, melt-in-the-mouth, crystallised. If you fancy something lighter, try the addictive, crunchy, cacao duster almonds. Eat me, should they be labelled, don’t even try to resist. Even more exotic, the rosace of crystallised ginger, beautifully lingering spiciness, lemony and peppery. Just add a chimney fire and self-indulge!
And, for the elegance of the gesture, to make these chocolate notes last even longer, to sharpen your thoughts, exceptional coffees too. The boxes are gorgeous, a pink tinted chestnut, a copper ebony, golden finish, illustration of the Harrods facade to complete the embellishment. Two intriguing blends are presented: The Founders Choice (citrus from Kenya and fruitiness from Costa Rica) and the Signature (silky, berries, floral reminding of jasmine). Serve these nectars in the two refined espresso cups by LSA, hand painted, metallic effect turning them into mirrors, reflecting your nice treats on the side. And the final wow? Sugar nuggets in gold dust. Yes, just wow.
A unique quality of products that justifies Harrods’ fame, smart boxes to turn each discovery into edible gems. A memorable hamper, really.
Of Wimbledon, we mostly picture the Central Court, champagne and strawberries. A festive summer feeling. The expectation of greatness about to played. But did you know Lavazza has served more than 3 millions coffees there since 2010? Quite impressive. All the charm of Italy in a cup. It is quite iconic : family owned to this day, it began its life in 1895 in Turin and is the world’s biggest espresso brand.
And this year, Lavazza is again official supplier of Wimbledon. They have asked 15 bloggers to celebrate the union of tennis and coffee and come up with #NewTraditions. Here, we will play with upcycling, the Wimbledon colours (green and purple, like on the limited edition Favola plus Amodo Mio, gorgeous isn’t it?), decoration ideas for a coffee party, ideal if you are planning to watch the games with friends at home and we’ll add a few smiles too.
Tell us what you think. And if you have new traditions of your own, if you are experiencing with coffee or going to Wimbledon, join in, share with us, tweet your pictures under #NewTradition !
Meanwhile, what can I get you? An espresso, an iced latte, a mocha?
If you love refined coffee, try a cold drip one. Filtered at room temperature, even iced, drop by drop. The process takes a minimum of 06 hours, a whole night, up to 12. Hypnotising. Less acidity, no contact with heat so no loss of flavour. An exceptional purity. Velvet…
11 Leonard Street
Brighton, until June 02, is even livelier than usual: the Fringe Festival is on. Art, theatre, concerts, family workshops, the streets are so very festive! Alpro is sponsoring the event this year and invited me to have a look around as well as sip on delicious #alproccinos et #alprolattes (by the way, tweet your #mugshotmoments for a chance to win a trip to Rome!). Walking form one neighbourhood to another, I was fascinated by the incredible number of cafés around. You feel like stopping every 5 meters. Here are a few we loved:
We love the large industrial space revamped with colours from floor to ceiling, shelves meticously organised, filled withdelicious jams, chutneys, limonades… There is so much to look at you probably will completely forget you have a plate and a hot drink.
100 North Road
Brighton BN1 1YE
A minimalist café, in small touches of design, small splashes of colours. The cakes are divine, the atmosphere very homey,a great place to spend a rainy day with a good book.
Cute clocks here and there, childhood memories, a great sense of humour, mismatched chairs, a mouthwatering collection of cakes. Locals love, love, love this address!
My favourite. For coffee lovers who appreciate a good roast, a fruitiness, care about the origin of the beans. Such a treat to ask for a syphon coffee or a cold drip…
Small Batch Company
17 Jubilee Street
Brighton, BN1 1GE
A stroll through Shoreditch, a lucky street art hunt: here is the perfect conclusions for caffeine-addicts. We know Starbuck won’t do, we need the real stuff. And ha, how welcoming that roasted fragrance is when you step in - the beans are grilled on site. Look around. This industrial building is now a trendy coffee shop with a homey feeling, a chic diner space and a lovely wooden counter along the window. Ah, the first sip of perfect velvety, fruity espresso, the one that sharpens your senses… The flat white is perfectly dosed too with a creamy froth. And you’ll be back - with a novel or a laptop. This is your new HQ.
Ozone Coffee Roasters
11 Leonard Street
Ah, Paris. Two magic syllables. Sit at the terrace of a café, order a grand crème, a croissant, a stereotype maybe, but life is made cheerful by enjoying such simple pleasures. Follow me – here are some detours in the city to inspire you…
* At Gals rock (17 rue Henry Monnier, 75009 Paris), step into the back room and sit for a while in the sofa. You will fall in love with the music being played, again and again. There is a flask of tea, the deco is vintage inspired and you will find many treasure here.
* Look for deco ideas in the famous concept store Merci (111, boulevard Beaumarchais – 75003 Paris) – so much more there than just a shopping expedition, such as how to turn any crack in the floor or wall into a clooming poem.
* While you are at Merci, have breakfast at the Used Books Café, leafing through romance or devouring whole chapters of adventure stories. Do come early to avoid having to wait - they open at 10.00 and are closed on Sundays.
* How could you resist Judith Lacroix (3 rue Henry Monnier 75009 Paris) kids collection? Clever work on geometry and assymetry in pop colours.
* Nearby, the gorgeous Rocket Ship (13 bis rue Henry Monnier, 75009 Paris) will make you nostalgic of the 70ies. You will want to buy everything. Or you could just sit at their counter and order one of their fab chai lattes.
* There is more to Paris museums than the Louvre – the city has many adorable cultural centers and a lot less expensive too. You may not know Gustave Moreau but do go and visit his house/workshop (14, rue de La Rochefoucauld 75009 Paris). Some of the rooms are still as he used to know them, filled with his ecclectic and fascinating collections. Others are filled with his paintings from floor to ceiling – so much to take in you will sit down and admire endlessly. Oh, and don’t miss the fabulous spiral staircase, worth coming for on its own. Entrance fee is only 5€.
* As always, keep an eye out for street art. We loved the stencils by The Dude Company.
* Buy tea and coffee from Daval (12 rue Daval, 75011 Paris), the tiniest shop you could imagine in an artist’s courtyard right at Bastille. Very old France. Shelves threaten to curve under the weight of huge tea tin boxes with charming names (chimney fire, Valentine’s day, angel, everglad…), the coffee bags perfume the air, you cna glimpse cooking recipes cut out from magazines, local stop by, have a chat and leave their second hand books to be sold for a couple euros. A very simple place, one that makes you feel all warm inside.
* Take your fiancé to Alain, one of the very rare barbers in Paris – the French experience will leave his skin so soft he will be the one wanting to go back.
* No space left in your suitcase for souvenirs? Indulge in the sweetest gift to yourself at chez Bogato, a boutique-pastryshop all in candy like colours.
* The French love a cartoon called Shadoks, based on the absurdities of life. The creator Jacques Rouxel, used to live a few minutes walk from Bastille. The courtyard (71 Rue du Faubourg Saint-Antoine, 75011 Paris) is now dedicted to him. So very cute in summer with lots of flowers around, a pleasant detour – one you will not find in your guidebook.
* Fancy a real espresso? Try a syphon one at Café Coutume (47 Rue de Babylone 75007 Paris). Splendid to observe, really. The staff speaks English and can advise the perfect roast depending on whether you like it spiced, strong, fruity, cocoa tinted… Their brunch is lovely too with yummy potatoes and sweet chilli sauce. And they serve amazing treats from the Pâtisserie des Rêves.
* And if you are a movie fan and speak a little French, in the same street to this amzing cinema in a Chinese Pagode (57, rue de Babylone, 75007 Paris). It does need renovation but it is worth having a look!
In the wooden, soothing atmosphere of Notes, it is ever so tempting to go beyond the usual cappuccino or flat white. On the slate board the words Macchiato and Piccolo trigger curiosity. The fist one is an espresso, extremely strong, almost bitter, just tinted with milk. The second, below works the other way round: to warm milk is added just a little espresso. So different from a latte (larger, more watery) or a cappuccino (different proportions, more froth). Much more character, more balanced, caramel hints. Try their with their cinnamon banana bread…
36 Wellington St
London WC2E 7BD
Shiny machines that look right out of a secret lab, soft shhhh-shhhh song when they come to life, purring when they grind the coffee, wonderful aroma when the latter is then freshly brewed. Simple decoration with modern lines, touches of colour here and there, blue cups that make you feel like sitting in front of a lagoon, delicious cakes forcing you to stand way too long at the counter when you had decided you just wanted a drink to warm you up. I can tell you in advance they will win – you might as well give up straight away. Why do I love the place so much? Because the espresso is extra strong and just one will keep you awake all day. Trust me – you will thank me beginning of January.
On Saturdays, you can even train to be a barrista – drop them a line!
23-25 Leather Lane
London EC1N 7TE
Hunt down the last few gifts on the list, write the last few cards, hug your favourite colleagues at work, have a nice time, see you next year, comparison of festive plans, who will travel the largest number of km in the shortest time, at least there is no snow this year, no chaos, what a relief, a last card on the way out, forgot to do some for the neighbours, must do that before I go, fill a suitcase, not enough space, empty the suitcase, grumble, get a bigger one, sit on it, chuckle, in a nutshell: speed up to be able in a few hours to slow down and relax. A merry Christmas to you all!
: We wish you a merry Christmas:
* Quick, a few days left to have a look at this life-size Advent calendar.
Yummy time ahead:
* Add a little exotism to your last minute preparations and have a Turquish coffee. And maybe a cake. Or two.
* Eat smart. For lobster, click this way, we promise it will not break the bank.
* Fed up with the cooking spirit? Have a break. and a champagne brunch.
* Quick – note in your 2012 agenda your Monday appointments: delicious ramen.
That’s art, baby:
* Apocalypse at the Tate Britain.
A little touch of magic:
* Look out for leaves on the pavement. Between autumn and spring.
* Marvel at one of the most beautiful synagogues in London.
* Royal Mail will launch Roald Dahl stamps in January - preorder them, they will be gone in no time!
I ♥ London:
* Fall in love again with the city.
* Well done! Fans of the inspiring blog Tired of London, tired of life will be delighted it will soon be followed by a book beginning of January. Well done to the gentle author!