Creative food

Location: 

Carousel
71 Blandford Street W1U 8AB
London
United Kingdom
GB

Carousel is such a great restaurant and considering it is so close to where I live, I am really surprised I had not been there before and would not have found out about it probably for a while had I not been invited here by friends for dinner. Carousel is a three floor space in Marylebone that invites guest chefs to cook for around 2 weeks. Each 2 weeks they have chefs from around the world bringing their own cooking style to Carousel. Because of this it is hard for me to give it a ranking, as the menu would change so frequently, but I love the concept and I loved the dinner I had at Carousel.

Maija rated: 

0.00

Location: 

BAO
53 Lexington Street W1F 9AS
London
United Kingdom
GB

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BAO is probably one of the most popular restaurants in London at the moment. It is a Taiwanese restaurant serving a range of Taiwanese dishes but focusing on bao, a “pillowy soft cloudy steamed bun” which at BAO is made using milk. The restaurant is located in Soho and for dinner opens at 5.30. We arrived at 6pm to face a queue and could get into the restaurant at around 6.30. The lady at the door was lovely and explained that each table takes around 45min to 1h and the restaurant is very small, but the queue does move. When we left the restaurant at around 7.45 (more than 1h for us), there was still a huge queue and BAO has had the luck of being loved by food bloggers, since it opened, which has contributed to this craze for BAO and the constant queue at any time of the day.

Maija rated: 

4.00

Location: 

Engawa
2 Ham Yard W1D 7DT
London
United Kingdom
GB

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It was my fiancé’s birthday and I wanted to take him somewhere special, so I chose Engawa. I had not been before, but had read about it and seen various pictures of the food, and I thought this could be a great special location for a birthday. Engawa is a Japanese restaurant in Soho, next to the Ham Yard Hotel, and in contrast to other Japanese restaurants specializes in kobe beef (beef from the Tajima strain of wagyu cattle raised in Japan’s Hyogo Prefecture, the meat is famous for it’s flavor, tenderness and fatty/well-marbled texture), and serves it in a variety of styles and ways. You can find kobe beef on the menus of other Japanese and non-Japanese restaurants in London (for example the restaurant M Grill in city sells a 150g fillet for £150), but Engawa seems to be the only restaurant that focuses exclusively on this and puts kobe beef at the forefront.

Maija rated: 

4.50

Location: 

Shackfuyu
14A Old Compton Street W1D 4TJ
London
United Kingdom
GB

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Bone Daddies, the Soho ramen restaurant, as well as the group behind Flesh and Buns, the modern Japanese restaurant in Covent Garden, has launched another modern Japanese restaurant Shackfuyu, in Soho, distance wise, in between Bone Daddies Soho and Flesh and Buns. Shackfuyu, according to them, serves the sort of food that is popular in Japan at the moment. Translated from Japanese the restaurant’s name means Winter Shack and this restaurant is only going to be open for a year, it opened in February 2015, so you need to visit it before February 2016.
 

Maija rated: 

4.00

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Location: 

Quality Chop House, The
88-94 Farringdon Road EC1R 3EA
London
United Kingdom
GB

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My friend Paul suggested we go for lunch to The Quality Chop House, a place I strangely had not heard anything about, especially considering how amazing the restaurant was. The Quality Chop House is a dining room, wine bar, butchers & shop on Farringdon road. It was originally opened in 1869 but obviously the original owners have changed since then and it is a different type of restaurant.

The restaurant apparently is great if you love wine, with a long wine list and a wine shop alongside the bar and dining room. 5 of us came here for lunch and one of us ( South African) ordered a glass of wine (the rest of us did not drink) and surprisingly was recommended a South African wine. The Butchers & Food Shop located next door sells a range of British meats as well as home-made condiments and pies. I did not visit it, but Paul went there after our lunch to stock up for his supper, and Paul only eats the best food, so this must be a great shop.

Maija rated: 

4.00

Location: 

MANI
Rua Joaquim Antunes 210 Jd. Paulistano
São Paulo
Brazil
BR

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Latin American food scene is on the rise and at the moment there are already 2 Brazilian restaurants included in the St Pellegrino top 100 restaurants in the world list and there is a rumor that the Michelin guide is finally coming to Latin America next year to award their stars.  My boyfriend and I were visiting Sao Paulo for 2 days and we had to go to the 2 restaurants that were in the St Pellegrino top 100 restaurants in the world list – D.O.M. and MANI.

 

Maija rated: 

5.00

Location: 

D.O.M
Rua Barão de Capanema, 549 - Jardins SP, 02053-000
São Paulo
Brazil
BR

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D.O.M is a very special restaurant and one of those very few restaurant to which I can’t give a rating… D.O.M is a modern Brazilian restaurant in Sao Paulo that currently is ranked the 7th best restaurant by the St Pellegrino restaurant awards, the highest ranked restaurant in Latin America. It does not have any Michelin stars yet though, as the Michelin guide is only going to Brazil this year, so I am sure it will get them soon. D.O.M stands for Deo Optimus Maximus, which means ‘God is greatest and best’ and the restaurant was opened by now celebrity chef Alex Atala, who is passionate about Brazil and tries to source ingredients from all over the country, including Amazon. Before opening D.O.M he worked in France and Italy as a chef.

Maija rated: 

0.00

Location: 

Borago
Av. Nueva Costanera 3467 Vitacura,
Santiago
Chile
CL

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Borago was named the best restaurant in Chile and the 8th best restaurant in Latin America in the St Pellegrino restaurants awards. Borago reminded me a lot of Noma and Narisawa, and it is a restaurant that is very in line with nature, and tries not only to make beautiful dishes but use a lot of natural ingredients and for the food to have a story. It describes itself as a dialogue between nature and cuisine. Chile is such a diverse country due to its long size and Borago uses ingredients across the country, from the Andean mountains to the plains of Patagonia.

Maija rated: 

4.50

Badges: 

Location: 

Kasha/ Gourmet
Stabu iela 14 LV-1011
Riga
Latvia
LV

I was meeting my friends in Riga for lunch and Olga and Arturs suggested we meet in Kasha/ Gourmet, which is one of their favourite cafes in Riga. Kasha is located on the corner of Brivibas and Stabu streets, and the word Kasha means porridge in Russian. From the outside the place does not look like much and also the inside is quite casual (apart from the great children’s corner which has a lot of interesting things for children) but the menu is very creative.
 

Maija rated: 

3.50

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Location: 

St John
26 Saint John Street EC1M 4AY
London
United Kingdom
GB

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St John is a very special restaurant. I never thought I particularly liked British food, but I absolutely loved St John and also their sister restaurant St John Bread and Wine, so these restaurants have totally changed my perception about British food. I am not alone in rating this restaurant highly, and it has been part of the 100 best restaurants in the world list for many years and has 1 Michelin star.

 

Maija rated: 

4.50

Badges: 

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