London Calling!


A few weeks ago, I flew to London, England on what I would label as a very impromptu trip.  Usually, I plan my vacation many months in advance, and for this trip, it was down a turnaround planning time of 2 to 3 weeks.  London was very much what I expected it to be: rainy and cloudy. But with that, there was so much more: the food, the people and the tiny things that reminded me of my second home, Hong Kong.  Everyday, I averaged 25,000 steps (that might be low for you, but it's definitely high for my regular lifestyle here in Toronto), and my feet took me to every neighbourhood.  


Flat Iron: For £10, comes a steak cooked on a flat iron with a mixed salad as a side. So good, and remember to order a side of chips.  I waited for a bit to get a table, and as I was waiting, the smell of the steak left me salivating! 

Monmouth Coffee: Both the locations, Covent Garden and Borough Market have great coffee, and the perfect bench for people watching.

Blacklock: Cocktails for a fiver, and £20 pp for a platter of meat cooked over charcoal, and each person gets to a choose a side from sweet potato, beet salad to the beef dripping chips.  And my recommendation goes to the beef dripping chips hands down.  I don't like lamb, and I ate piece here happily, and I think that tells a lot of how good this restaurant is.

Mother Mash: Very happy to end my last day in London here.  There are 3 steps to ordering: the type of mash, the type of pie and the type of gravy.  Everything put together was so hearty and so savoury.  It happened to snow on the night I ate here, and it was just very fitting to eat pie and mashed potatoes.  I had the cheddar mash with the steak and ale pie.  I'm salivating as I'm typing this. 

The Regency: Recommended by Ken when he visited London last year, it was the cheapest meal we ate for £6.  I love English Breakfasts: sausage, bacon, beans, eggs - so good. 

The Squirrel: The pub next door to where my friends live.  Their fish and chips and ribs were delicious.  The ribs slid right off the bone.  I honestly didn't expect a lot from the pub next door, but taste was great, and the amount of food for £12/main was worth it!  At the time, Monday meals were 1/2 off!

Homeslice:  It's pizza.  It's so good.  I was doubting having pizza in London, but this restaurant was great for a place to hang and share pizza, along with some beer and wine.

Spitalfields Market: A food, arts and craft market under one roof - everything I love! 

Borough Market: When everyone tells you to go to this market, it's not overrated - I had a collection of mussels, scotch eggs and coffee here and I wished my stomach was a bottomless pit because I wanted to eat more.  I highly recommend Scotch Tails for the scotch eggs. 

Dishoom: Every person that I asked about London recommended me here.  A Bombay cafe with multiple locations in the city, the naan, the curries and the gunpowder potatoes are delicious.  We waited 20 minutes at 3pm for an afternoon snack.  You know this cafe is good when there's a constant wave of people flowing in.

Fortnum & Mason: Book a table for high tea here! With a list of savoury items from beef wellington to lobster bisque omelette, paired with a variety of quality teas, then followed with unlimited scones and pastries - this was one of my highlights of the trip.  I spent 4 hours here and it's because the unlimited scones and pastries were not overly sweet, and the teas were complimentary to the food.  Try out Countess Grey or Queen Anne.

There's so much to do and eat in such a walkable city.  From so many museums like British Museum, Design Museum and then the Winston Churchill War Rooms, to the architecture of the Gherkin and The Shard, wrapped around the historical houses from hundreds of years ago - London is amazing.

- Robyn


Selfies and portraits from Katie S and all others taken by me.