Food Shopping in London

Let me tell you what I think about shopping in a supermarket in London.
I have travelled a lot and lived in 9 countries. Believe me, you are not always in places where there is a wide choice of things to buy.

Try living in Malindi and then we’ll talk about it!
In short, I’m used to having to settle and adapt.
This means that I also have a very broad and general vision of what there can be in the world in terms of food. Living in London for me means being super lucky because I have an infinite choice of food to choose from. From every culture, from every country and infinite choices for just about anything, really!

It's expensive, isn't it?

Absolutely not. And the reason why it is not expensive to shop in a supermarket in London is that you have so much choice, it’s up to you to decide how much to spend.
If you want to shop at Whole Foods every week, you already know that you will spend more than the average, it is up to you to decide where to go and what to buy.
Tesco and Sainsburys, as well as Asda and Morrison, are supermarkets that are absolutely super stocked with everything and with normal prices. Then of course we have LIDL and ALDI, and why not mention one of my favourites: ICELAND. Where to find all the frozen foods you need. Great prices and good quality!

Then there are obviously the various markets, to buy fresh vegetables if you want. Of course, you can also find fresh vegetables in the supermarket, but going to the neighborhood markets is always a good habit and experience. So, why not!
I also think it is nice, when possible, to support small businesses, so green light for shopping from the local butcher and greengrocer!

Inoltre credo sia bello,q uando possibile, sostenere i piccoli businesses, quindi via libera alla spesa dal locale macellario e fruttivendolo!

London Pub: The Bull

Here we go again.

Where are we going for lunch today? So, John and I literally marched up and down Upper Street one day looking for a nice place for lunch. After having scraped off the usual Café we have been several times already, and after having scanned every menu pinned outside each and every restaurant along Upper Street, we ended up here.

The Bull Pub.

It looks very pretty. A mix in between a traditional British pub and a Mexican restaurant, with a mezzanine floor for bigger parties and a lovely bar area right in the entrance space. We picked a table right next to the window, scanned the QR (hey, we are going through a Pandemic!) and decided what we wanted to eat.

I went for fried chicken because that was what I was craving, and John picked a lovely pie. Everything was super delicious, the waiter was also very sweet and patient with John who, as usual, asked for extra mash and gravy. I have chosen sweet potatoes as a side for my chicken and that, I guess, was the best thing to do: so yummy and crispy.

From their Website: “We pride ourselves on serving up a seasonal menu that’s packed with hearty, traditional British pub classics. From mouth-watering starters and tasty sharing platters to sensational roasts and freshly grilled burgers alongside sumptuous steaks and great vegetarian and vegan options — we’ve got a dish for you this season.”

The rest of the menu looked interesting too, and they have a great selection of drinks, beers and cocktails.

From their Website: “As is the custom in any Great British pub worth its salt, properly poured drinks are at the heart of what we do. So, from our annual Craft Beer Residency to our limited edition On Tap Beers, we’ve got something to tantalise your taste buds.

Not a beer person? Not a problem. We have a fantastic range of wines from around the world for you to sample, along with a great selection of spirits. For those of you who fancy something a little lighter, we have an amazing selection of low & no alcohol drinks.”

Do I recommend it? Yes, great lovely place, great food and the location is perfect too. Ideal sport after a nice shopping session in Angel.

The Bull: 100 Upper Street, London, Greater London, N1 0NP

Mac & Wild | Great Scottish Meat | London

So, I had someone visiting back in February 2020, and this someone loves meat. Like in “good meat”. Did some research and MAC & WILD came up. Ok then let’s try it.

We booked a table at 7 pm, the restaurant in central London is lovely and I am going to tell you this straight away: the staff is very nice and very knowledgeable, especially when it comes to talking about meant a whisky. Which is what this place is all about.

The Menu is Scotland-themed, from the starters to the desserts. We decided to go for a “trio” when it was time to choose the dessert: the best choice ever! Honestly, desserts here are super good!

As for the main meals, I don’t think I have to tell you much, you can see the pictures: good, aren’t they? Yes, the meat was top quality, and the waiting staff very helpful in explaining what was available and how to pair it with their wide selection of whiskeys.

I wanna tell you a bit more about this lovely place, I will paste here a short description take from their website, you can read the rest of it by clicking on the link at the end of the text.

Scotland is home. It’s where we both grew up, and the warm Highland way of life is the constant inspiration for Mac & Wild.

In the Highlands, most folk are closely connected to the land and the produce we gather from it. Perhaps that’s why many traditional farming practices have blessedly been preserved. You won’t find industrialised animal practices here – animals are reared the ‘right’ way – on open pastures, with natural feed and without the use of any chemical nasties. “ CLICK HERE TO READ MORE.

Do I recommend this place? Yes. Of course, it is not cheap, but I don’t think you can place “cheap+good quality+meat” in the same sentence. I believe that when it comes to meat, especially, you need the pay for its value if you expect quality. Great quality, in this case.

Would I go back? Absolutely yes. Because as I was mentioning at the beginning, the experience was super from the starters to the desserts.

Thank you Mac & Wild, we will be back!

Address: various locations. We went to the one it Fitzrovia.
65 Great Titchfield Street, London, W1W 7PS

More Places Where to EAT while in LONDON? Click here!

Ole & Steen | Danish Bakery

This adorable bakery has been a marvellous discovery. I can’t recall how I got to know about it, I just know that I fell in love with it even before stepping inside it!

It is a Danish Bakery and I have a thing for danish pastries, a real thing. I thought it was going to be kind of touristic and chaotic since it is right in central London, just a few meters away from Piccadilly Circus.

Happily surprised to see that it is actually the opposite. Nice dark, modern, sleek, and rather minimalist interiors. As soon as you enter you must take a numbered ticket, go to the pastry counter and tell the staff what you’d love to have, they have pastries and sandwiches, but also avocado on toast and stuff like that.

Everything looks so yummy!

You can also order your drink and collect it from the cafeteria counter. Take your tray and enjoy this fab place!

I love going upstairs, it is so nice. Dimmed lights (that’s why the pictures are nothing good, unfortunately!) and a long nice counter with stools. Free wi-fi and you can stay there as long as you wish.

I fell in love with their Mini Apple Pie. I’ve been baking apple pies for a few years while running my own bakery & cafe, so I guess I can recognize a good apple pie, and Ole & Steen Apple Pie is made to perfection. Tasty with a very good pie crust, filled with flavoured apple chunks, and so-ooo very moist.

Cinnamon Social is another pastry that is to die for. So-ooo flaky and buttery, but at the same time light and tasty. I highly recommend to buy this pastry on your first visit, it is their best seller!

Who are they?!

They have been serving delicious bread and pastries for over 20 years,  products made with the very best ingredients, always.

In 1991, Ole Kristoffersen opened a small bakery in Copenhagen, he wished to create the best pastries ever, baked every day to perfection, by hand. It didn’t take long for the bakery to become very well known in town.

But he was not the only one who actually opened a bakery back in 1991: Steen Skallebaek was opening his own bakery too, this time in Jutland. Similar products, similar ideas, and projects.

In 2008 Ole and Steen decided to join forces.

Nothing much has changed, they still bake the best pastries and bread every day, freshly, at any time of the day.

Very cool and nice place with great quality food.

What else can you ask for?
Prices are affordable, not too high and still, remember you are right in the heart of London.

London Local Cafe: Star Express

Here we are, a lovely local cafe in Angel. This particular one was some kind of surprise. My partner and I were in Angel, as usual, looking for a local cafe, and to be honest with you we wanted to skip the market area, but then we ended up having our fab breakfast here

It is a traditional local café, and even though it is located right on Chapel Market, prices are still very good and in line with a traditional café in a more residential area. We’ve spent an average of £12 for the two of us, and we have been there twice so far.

In these pictures you can see you can have a lot more than the usual fry-up, my partner went for an omelet! Me, being intolerant to a lot of things, I have to adapt and my plate always looks kinda sad! 😊

I have lots more suggestions on local cafe HERE

This area is so nice, the market is a traditional local market, not a tourist one so I strongly recommend visiting Angel. Also, on the nearby (1 min walk away!) the main road you can find lots of restaurants, shops and there are 3 supermarkets in the area too.

Address: 71 Chapel Market, The Angel, London N1 9ER

Friendly London: Happy to talk Badge!

When I talk to people about London, I sometimes mention the fact that when you are travelling on the tube, you are not supposed to talk to anyone.
We just don’t do it. Why? Well, we just don’t’.

I am fine with it, I am not very chatty with strangers and I am utterly OK with this. But not everyone is, so this is where the Happy to Talk Badge comes in handy.

photo of three women lifting there hands \

You Can Now Wear A Badge That Let People Know You’re ‘Happy To Talk’ On Public Transport

So, as mentioned above, we like to keep our heads down and concentrate on things we can do with our phone, or maybe a book.

Happy to talk Badge, what it is? Something that can change the way we interact with people if we want to, Of course. But the fact that a high percentage of Londoners might not be interested in it, did not let its inventor, Chris Zair, change his mind.

He created the #happytotalk badge which you can pin up to your jacket and let everyone near you know…well, yes, you guessed it, that you are happy to talk.

Something similar has been tried out years ago with very little success, but again Chris just went for it.

How this is going to work now with Covid-19 restrictions and social distancing, well we will see about that. This thing will of course not work if there is nobody on the train, but it is not the case any longer. Now, in October 2020, I can actually see more people using the underground, and social distancing is not going to be a massive issue, right? We can still have a nice chat while being seated 2/3 seats apart.

The badges cost £5, and most importantly 40% of sales going to Run Talk Run, a mental health support group, and the rest of the profit will go to another charitable cause that will be picked up at the end of each financial year.

Click HERE and get your badge!

They say we all got a bit better after Covid-19, so let’s prove it: start nicely talk to people while commuting, you might find it pretty pleasant after all!

Let’s go to Clapham.

Conosci Clapham? Ecco perchè ci italiano

I lived in this area for three years, many years ago, and I must admit that at the time it was not what it is today, it was not so “alive” and full of things to do, so it was a bit boring for me, I felt almost isolated. But today is a whole other thing! Let’s find out together how this borough was born and evolved into what it is today. If you come to London on holiday, a trip to Clapham junction is a good idea: independent shops, cafes, restaurants, in short… a little gem often not too well known by visitors! Continue reading Let’s go to Clapham.

Best Vintage Book Stores in London

I migliori negozi di libri vintage a Londrain italiano

In London there is certainly no shortage of book shops, and certainly those where it is pleasant to spend some time, are often the second-hand, vintage, or new shop…and the  “the old classics.”

This is a quick guide with 10 of the places that I personally find most interesting for several reasons.

10 Vintage book stores in London.

All these shops are very quaint and very British – I’m sure a visit to some of these will enrich your visit to London! Continue reading Best Vintage Book Stores in London

10 Facts about Hyde Park that you might not know!

10 Cose di Hyde Park che forse non conosci!in italiano

I love Hyde Park and its beautiful open spaces. Very much loved by tourists too, but do you really know it much?When you think of London, one of the first places that will come to mind is Hyde Park. Located in central London, it provides Londoners with a lovely escape too, not just the tourists. There’s a lot of history behind the park that many visitors know very little or nothing about. Here are some interesting facts for you!

Continue reading 10 Facts about Hyde Park that you might not know!

8 Fab Museums for Kids in London

8 Stupendi Musei per bambini a Londra in italiano

Coming to London with kids can be super fun and stressful at the same time. Many museums in London have child-friendly interactive exhibits and activities, so don’t stress too much, this is how you can keep them entertained!

Great museums in London that kids will love. Continue reading 8 Fab Museums for Kids in London