Posts Tagged ‘Spitafields’

A week-end in London: June 21-24, 2012

Behind stern buildings can often be found luxurious, soothing, green havens. At the Chiltern Street Studios, the tiny courtyard offers a transition between two worlds, details of another era, keys opening invisible doors, ivy like necklaces around vintage glass bottles. A welcoming chair, a bird singing cheerfully. Funny how a few square meters can be such an escape from the wild wide world outside. Do you have a secret garden in London too?

That’s art baby:
* After the elephants, the eggs… 75 phone booths have been redecorated and scattered around town. Happy hnting, until July 18!
* It is spring on the new facade of the Whitechapel Gallery – worth seeing.
* Yoko Ono opens her show at the Serpentine.

Take the little ones along:
* An architecture festival dedicated to kids? What a fabulous ideas. Look at the program for great workshops.
* Are you hunting the BT Artbox phonebooths around town? Now this one, with a knitted monster should really wow them.
* Cupcakes bloom in sweet bouquets at Mulberry Teacup – deliciously beautiful!

Music, Maestro!
* Musicals fan? Come sing and dance on Trafalgar Square this week-end.
* Exhibition Road has a fabulous musical day planned on Saturday -  check it out!
* Spitafields too celebrates music, with a street party on Saturday.
* Walk through Camden in the most musical way.

Out of the ordinary:
* On Thursday, watch Royal Ascot on the big screens at Canary Wharf.
* Kensington Palace will be open late next Friday for the most enchanting evening.
* Watch the sumos race.
* Fancy walking on the roofs of the O2?
* The Old Vic Tunnels turn into a holiday camp for adults this week-end – give it a try!

A week-end in London: March 22-25, 2012

What sound represents spring the best to you? Birds chirping happily? I would say the ice-cream van returning to the neighbourhood. Right after school or on clue for dessert. This cheerful music that stays in you head the whole evening. Children rushing to their parents (well, the one with a wallet nearby), then to the ice-creams. Flake, sirup or both, that is the question! Kids laughing. Even if it is only 09 degrees outside. I once saw the ice-cream van serving treats as it started snowing. Spring is weather resistant my friends. Looking for ideas to put sunshine in the week-end? Scroll down!

That’s art, baby!
* Loved The King’s speech? It is now played on stage at  Wyndhams theatre. Don’t miss this!
* Try the Polaroid workshop at Rough Trade on Saturday.
* Have a look at Bernard Cohen’s futuristic art -  the level of detail is quite hypnotising.

Take the little ones along:
* Take them to the Crafty Fox Market -  there will be lovely workshops there. Lots of hints on the website.
* Passez-y! Roots & Shoots is a real piece of countriside hidden in the city – they are having an open day on Sunday, do go and discover it.

Yummy time ahead:
* On Thursday, get a free Austrian lunch on Soho Square.

Out of the ordinary:
* For 6 weeks, a free music festival settles in St Pancras. Might be worth making a detour!* Add a little touch of crazyness on Thursday and play musical bingo.
* Did you know there is a scooter club in London? 300 of those will drive through the city on Saturday, leaving from the London Eye.
* (Re)discover Wandworth. or see Spitafields a different way.
* Go treasure hunting on Saturday.
* See the city from a different angle with this tour by Occupy London.

A week-end in London: Sept 30-Oct 02, 2011

I had grown tired of cinemas -  they had lost their charm. The Nomad Cinema, this year, suceeded to bring back a wonderful atmosphere I was longing for. Have you tried it? They choose amazing places. With changing weather -  beautiful now, what will it be by the end of the day? Here you never know – indoors probably is safest: why not try this one, in a pub or this more elegant one with a glass of champagne?

If you do not have any plans for the week-end, you can find inspiration below:

* Friday is tango time at the V&A.

* Be a mad (but fun) scientist this way.

* Try a gourmet safari on Regent Street.

* Have an afternoon tea at Café Luc. Or breakfast. Or lunch. Or dinner.Their steak tartare are the most tender is the whole of London.

* Climb up the Monument in the most musical way.

* See the foundry which made Big Ben.

* Rediscover Spitafields. And do go and see this amazing synagogue, built by Huguenots and just reopened. Gorgeous.

* Gordon Ramsay goes the extra size.

* Sing along at the pub.

* Get your shoes tattooed.

A week-end in London: August 19-21, 2011

Well, this week-end, I will be sitting on a beach in the South of France with a glass of Sauternes in my hand. Heaven. If you are staying in London, here are a few ideas to make life sweeter, to tip your hat off, to travel in time… and many more!

* Dance in a very French atmosphere at the V&A.

* Have a look at a real space capsule.

* Try hoola-hooping again.

* Indulge in a Tolkien night.

* Rediscover the treasures of St Paul.

* Chiswick park turns symphonic.

* The best response to riots? A lot of love and a little art.

* London really is the home to strange but fun museums.

* Discover a secret garden in Spitafields.

* Beach souvenirs from London-on-sea.

* How would you recycle routemasters?

* Cycle through the city.

* Ping-pong and cocktails. Or vice-versa.

Psst: from August 24 to the 26th, Soho Square will be deliciously Swedish. Come and discover the sweetest pop-up, enjoy a cup of real coffee with one of the amazing traditional treats!


A week-end in London: July 08-11, 2011

When I’m tired, I snack. And I feel pretty tired at the moment. And so I have become addicted to pop-corn. I can’t escape it, it is everywhere!

At work, I fall for Tyrrell‘s crunchy treats (yes, yes do more than just crisps).

Before heading to a long meeting, I find energy in Meltcafe‘s wasabi ones. I hope it makes me look fiercer too.

My best reward would be Joe & Seph’s gourmet versions. My favoutite remains the caramel, macchiato and whisky.

There’s also one to put in your handbag: Wild Trail does bar ones, with pieces of apples, apricot…

Next on my list is this Shoreditch cinema‘s interesting jazz corn.

Any advice? Let me know! Meanwhile…

* A new way to recycle: fridges put together as a cinema screen.

* Celebrate Friday with a free music concert at the Scoop.

* Take a beer masterclass.

* Anish Kapoor reflects the City.

* Go and see the Spitafields Market new sculptures.

* Spring clean and declutter those shelves.

* Did you know it is mango season? Here is where to find the best ones.

* Pretend you are Mozart. Yes, in the street.

* Southbank will celebrate too, it is a whole party next week at Borough Market.

* Baranis will be joining too. There will be petanque, delicious treats and a themed cocktail.

* Maille is opening a pop-up in Spitafields. Boutique by day and underground restaurant at night. Made even bubblier by the excellent Mrs Marmite Lover.

Step back in the past

I love the Spitafields Market during the week, free from the buzzing designers stalls, the crowd on its way to Brick Lane for some street art or vintage accessory hunting. Mondays to Fridays, it regains its peacefulness.

On Thursdays an antique markets steps in, traveling back through time. Prices remain on the whole reasonable – quite a nice occasion to get a more authentic souvenir back rather than the Made in China ones. Sellers usually are in for a chat too, sharing their knowledge and anecdotes, calling you love, will let you take pictures as long as you ask first and throw a smile in.

Go through the boxes – it is like a treasure hunt : monocles, games from another generation… You might even add a picnic basket to your luggages !

Spitafields Antique Market
Thurdays 10.00-16.00
Old Spitalfields Market
London E1 6BG

Ideas for a week-end in London: June 03-05, 2011

Inspired by Tastour, I’m thinking of a themed week-end. La vie en rose!
Rosé wine. Fentimans’ rose lemonade. A bouquet of peonies. A raspberry and litchee trifle. Cranberry scones and cristalised rose petals.
What’s your program? Looking for ideas? Here are a few:

* Renew your shelves by swapping books.

* Photograph London at dawn.

* Have a sweet tooth. There will be an incredible gingerbread house, with a popcorn chimney and chocolate furniture at The Brunswick. I have heard that clouds will be made of meringue and that cupcakes grow in the garden… Kids can have a bite, listen to accordion or tales. The fabulous Lily Vanilli will also give gingerbread men masterclasses. Not to be missed!

* Art does recyle. A very colourful project in Spitafields.

* Royal beasts take over the Tower of London.

* The Old Truman Brewery will be home to quite amazing pieces of art.

* Al Fresco cinema? Sure, but on the city rooftops!

* The zoo will open late every Friday in June and July. With silent discos and cabaret, you will roar of pleasure.

* Regent Street will turn Spanish on Sunday: giant paellas, drums, dancing horses…

* Temperatures should go up to 22 degrees. That definitely calls for a cool pint in a beer garden.

* We’ve been begging her to – Lily Vanilli is opening her café on Columbia Road. Stop there for a treat before getting those bunches of flowers.

* Pssst: Banksy’s back at the Andipa Gallery.

More soup, please!

What an unusual entrance!

At the end of the 19th century, Jews flee Russia -  epurations laws had been passed. Some of them arrive in London and what a difficult situation to face: no job, no money, sometimes no roof.

More fortunate Jews use their money to start this soup kitchen for those in their community who might need it. It stats on Leman street before moving in 1902 on Brune street. Open on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, it serves soup, bread plus sardines and margarine on alternate days. An extra portion of the latter is given on Thursdays to last the week-end.

4000 were fed during the winter 1931. In the 1950ies, 1500 still come. The place closes in 1992 as the charity joins with Beaumont Care in a different location.

Of this formidable eff0rt, remain only the splendid carved letters and tureen. The building has since been transformed into elegant flats…

Soup kitchen for the poor
19 Brune street
London E1

A few minutes from there, have a look at Eine’s alphabet, Huguenots’ houses, enjoy a pizza tour of the world or a gourmet one and finish with a cup of tea!

Around the world with Fire & Stone pizzas

I am a pizza addict (well, I have tried but you cannot live on chocolate and cupcakes alone). Let me to it and I probably would feed on those rwice a day. When Fabienne asked whether I wanted to come with her to the launch of Fire and Stone’s new address in Spitafields, I think my stomach answered first.  A tasting event for food bloggers? Yes, yes, yes!

We had just stepped in and the staff welcomed us, friendly handshakes, have a seat, would you like a drink, but also sat with us for a chat about life, blogs, London. Yes, of course it’s their job to make us feel loved and comfy but still it’s only 10.00 on a Saturday morning and they are so enthusiastic and sincere…

The restaurant is not yet open to the public, everything is sparkling new, lovely bay windows for a maximum of natural light, counter overlooking the kitchen for you to spy on the pizzaiolis…

On a table are presented most of the ingredients they use. Fire and Stone prefers to limit the number of suppliers, and use the same for their 5 addresses (3 in London, 1 in Oxford and 1 in Portsmouth). quality comes first obviously but as importantly will be the same in each restaurant. The chorizo, especially is a gem -  so tasty, a little peppery -  and comes from Brinsida, my favourite tapas place (a deli is also open @ the Borough Market). First class!

This is also the first restaurant to propose a windowed workshop – you can watch the dough being prepared, brought into shape, a little semolina underneath to add some crunch, olive oil on top…

I can hear you think. Well, yeah, another good pizzeria, there’s plenty around. Ah, yes, my friend, but this one has a difference, you see. It got its inspiration from the 5 continents and it is a culinary travel. Take the Koh Samui: thai yellow coconut sauce, roast sweet potato, fried Thai shallots, mozzarella, red chilli, mange-tout, baby sweetcorn and basil, toasted sesame seeds. Amazing! The Melbourne even proposes sweet roasted butternut squash and brie. It just triggers curiosity.

To convince us further, we are invited to choose on ein the menu and prepare it ourselves. Apron, hat, go, go, go! Oh, what a collection of ingredients. Here it goes in the oven. You get it back on a warm plate and no matter how many wonderful meals you have cooked before, you cannot help but smile… The waitresses bring samples of the different home-made smoothies and we’ll even get to taste the wines -  the white one is particularly nice, light and sweet, very refreshing. The kind of bottle you have finished in no time.

But that’s not it! Now come the deserts. Brownies, ice cream, lemon tart, a vanilla pannacota with a red berry sauce you are just bound to love… everything is fresh, melts in your mouth. Perfect from start to finish. There is no way we can consider another meal in the coming 24 hours…

But this is a launch party. Of course, everything would be impeccable, guests spoilt rotten, the service quick and easy. It just has to. What about real life? Would it be as perfect?

It wasn’t difficult to convince Mr Chocoralie to come and give it a try – I just had to mention their number 1 pizza, New-York: bacon, mozzarella, tomato and basil sauce (takes them five hours to cook every morning),  garlic and rosemary roastes potatoes, caramelized onion jam (also home made as all their sauces and marinades), sour cream and paprika. Starving, it did not take much to drive him to the F&S in Westfield. Now, that is a busy place, especially on a Sunday, how will they fare? Perfectly. The staff was amazing, the dishes were on our table extra quick, my husband even went for one of their smoothies (we’re talking of a Coke fan here) which was proposed with or without yogurt, not a word was spoken as we were too busy enjoying our pizza, the pannacota was as lovely as the previous day. 20/20.

A fab address with friend or as a family!

Fire and Stone
Horner Square,
Old Spitalfields Market
London E1 6EW

For the opening, all pizzas are at £3 on Wednesday august the 04th, £4 on Thursday August the 05th and £5 on Friday August 06th. Enjoy!
Pssst: even better, children up to ten eat free until Sept 05, 2010…

Post-it for the week-end: July 23-25, 2010

This is a real summer. I am amazed every single day by the lovely temperatures. Makes me feel like dancing and jumping around! Unfortunately,  when you are 3 weeks from giving birth, you look more like a whale, the elegance is gone. Soon snails will overcome me on the pavement. I’m counting on you to tell me about London gems!

- The free ping-pong tables project finally is launched tomorrow. Rush to St Pancras!

- You have until Friday to enjoy the food festival @ the Old Spitalfields market – cooking demonstration and free tasting, yummmy!

- On Friday, the Design Museum goes mad for recycling and green art. You can even try electric bikes. All this listening to a fab percussionist!

- Visit the parliament!

- Why not celebrate the 60ies @ Carnaby Street?

- Time to revise your Picasso knowledge

- London parks are getting festive too!

- Add a pinch of poetry… and learn about Keats’ life right in the house and gardens where he used to live…

- Summer school holidays are on! Struggling to come up with ideas to keep the kids busy? You’re gonna love O2: mini golf, water games, trampolines…

- Or initiate them to opera with this version of Mr Fox -  only a few pounds.

- Did you know a few falcons actually nest on the Modern’s Tate chimney? Here is a chance to learn more!

- Sushi AND fusion food? Count me in!

- oh, and I’ll have cherry granita for desert…

- Speaking of ice-cream, Ben and Jerry’s launch their music and sweet treats festival this week-end @ Clapham…

- How could you resist a designers’ market?

- Follow Time Out to discover the oldest parts of London

- Opera, art, walks, a pinch of madness with the in-transit festival….

- Too hot? I know what you need: a water tournament!

You’ll find me having a mocktail with friends @ Vista, a bar on a roof with a view on Trafalgar Square… I’ll also be following my friend Celine, a street-art specialist, to discover some more in London!


This Week End in London

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