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Taste of London - Part I

 

I went to “Taste of London” for the first time last year. It happened to be their 10th anniversary and it was quite an event. To start off with, this foodie festival takes place in Regent’s Park, a stunning North London park in all its glory; manicured lawns, lovely walkways, and lots of space to wander and explore.

C. had the good idea of booking V.I.P. tickets, which meant that we had priority access. Not to sound snooty, but at busy events such as this one, not having to queue is a luxury, which I greatly appreciate. The weather was also slightly threatening so I simply wanted to get in before we all got soaked! So in we went.

With a map in hand, we knew which restaurants we wanted to sample as a matter of priority. We headed to Roka first. As Japanese food is one of my favourite indulgences, I have sampled their cuisine previously. That did not stop me though. At Roka, a cheerful and springy young woman greeted us and invited us in. I would have
happily sampled any food on offer but I opted for “Gindara to kani no gyoza” (Black cod, crab and crayfish dumpling), whilst C. chose “Teriyaki sake no salada” (Salmon teriyaki and grilled vegetable salad with citrus miso dressing). My gyoza came in a delicate little boat whist C's salmon salad was served in a cone. A delight for the eyes and the palate.

Our next destination was L’Autre Pied. It so happens that their iconic dish was on offer that day. How could I resist? The ceviche of hand-dived scallops with black quinoa, crème fraiche, radishes, fennel and dill looked absolutely divine. Apart from the fact that half the crème fraiche landed on my suede shoes and white trousers, I savoured every morcel. The black quinoa had been grilled, which gave it an amazing crunchy texture. The scallops were fresh, chilled and incredibly tender. Heart-stopping good.

We stopped at the British Airways lounge for a bit of a pause afterwards. Inviting lounge chairs and smiling staff exuded a welcoming charm. C. and I enjoyed our first glass of chilled champagne. Lovely! The lounge had a smoked salmon-carving chef on hand and a French cheese master cutting small slivers of a variety of cheeses. Delicious little finger foods to complement the champagne. We returned to the lounge towards the end of our foodie adventure and indulged in L’Artisan du Chocolat chocolates and a bit more champagne. Why is it that all foods seem to go with Champagne?

To read more about this amazing foodie experience, skip onto Part II.

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