Opera Tavern

The sun's out in London and what better way to spend a day then aimlessly wandering around the bustling streets of the West End, nipping in and out of the pubs for some light refreshments and of course... tapas!

And the restaurant in question? Opera Tavern - just opposite the Drury Lane theatre in Covent Garden.

Opera Tavern specialises in Spanish-Italian tapas using carefully sourced ingredients with delicate flavour combinations. 

The restaurant is split over two storeys, the street level bar with an open grill and upstairs - the slightly 'less charming' and more formal dining area.

We each began with a simple aperitif ... an Aperol Spritz and a White Peach Martini.

With a bottle of cold, crisp white wine - naturally!

We started off with a few light dishes...

A tangy salad of Roasted Beetroot with Radish and Cumin Dressing.

The main event most definitely has to be the well renowned mini Iberico pork and foie gras burger - which has made multiple appearances on many of London's best burger polls.

They certainly lived up to expectation - so much so we ordered another round!!

You have to be very careful though here at Opera Tavern, it is easy to run up a big tab as portions are dainty - yet, there are so many great dishes on offer.

So after a few more glasses of wine we decided to head to Gelupo, an Italian ice-cream parlour in Soho - known for its unique flavour combinations. Open til late, Gelupo is a great way to finish of a warm summer's evening. My flavours of choice was raspberry sambuca and black forest. Adam had mint stracciatella.

With a belly full of food and a head full of booze it was time to head home.

Opera Tavern is part of the Salt Yard Group, along with Dehesa in Soho and Salt Yard in Fitzrovia.

Opera Tavern
23 Catherine St

Tea for Three

Having lived down south now for nearly 7 years (yikes!!) I've never been for afternoon tea in a fancy hotel. 

I'm not sure how that happened as i love tea, love cake and i especially love sandwiches.

I've always had an infatuation with the Corinthia hotel - it always look so romantic - something so attractive and luxurious right in the heart of the hustle and bustle of the big smoke!!

So when the opportunity to go for afternoon tea came up at the Corinthia - it had to be done...

As soon as you walk in you know you're somewhere special. Crisp white table cloths and napkins, polished silver, crystal clear glassware...not just on the table...
Time for tea!

I love this art-deco china. There was so many great teas on the menu, luckily my friends were up for trying a few different blends. I went for assam - a strong black tea with a malty character.

Soon followed by a delightful plate of sandwiches - no crusts of course!! Though personally, the crusts are my favourite part.

The best part however, was the waitress asking us if we wanted more! more you say?!? of course i said yes!!

and then...

Let them eat [exquisite] cake!!

Seriously though, these looked too good to eat, so delicate, so decorative  so decadent. My faves were the blueberry eclair and the rhubarb and champagne jelly - definitely something i need to try and make at home.

And warm english scones with clotted cream and jam (raspberry is my jam of choice, if you were wondering)

Followed by more tea, this time oolong - a lighter and slightly sweeter tea - a perfect accompaniment to the scones. Oh yeah, and they offered more scones too!! yes please!!

Look at the mess we made!

Everything about the Corinthia screams luxury and class - if only i was fortunate enough to stay there. Oh well, maybe next time.

 Blazer: Zara, Trousers: Zara, Shirt: Uniqlo, bag: Mulberry

Corinthia Hotel London
Whitehall Place
London SW1A 2BD
United Kingdom


Taco Wars

A long time ago, in a merchants yard far far away...Dalston to be precise - a battle was about to commence. The prize - who will be crowned the best taco in London. Organised by the guys at Tweat Up, Taco Wars is the first event of the summer, following the success of the Chilli Stand-Off back in Novemeber (that i unfortunately couldnt make) *sad face*

Over the past 18 months, central American cuisine has exploded all over the capital thanks to places such as Wahaca, La Bodega Negra, Cerviche and Lima. So what better time to bring 10 of the finest street food stalls, pop-ups and restaurants together  paired with ice-cold liquid refreshments courtesy of a personal favourite, Rotary Bar & Diner.

Let the battle commence...

Eating and voting - easy at first...

 Next one...

Ice-cold beers and fiery tacos - the perfect combination

This one was a strong favourite by Kimchinary - an unconventional Korean taco bursting with the flavours of east meets west. Slow-brased ox cheeks, soju and gochujang battered cod cheeks, Korean pickle, kimchi, and toasted seaweed. Yum!

 Imperial BBQ was a Vietnamese inspired taco...

 Another one? Go on then!

These hot sauce capsules were a great touch for those who enjoy the bun! Wish i'd pocketed a handful of these badboys!

Entertainment was provided throughout the day by a mariachi band who were excellent - just dont ask them to play 'that song off the Doritos advert'

Rotary Bar did a good job of keeping everybody hydrated throughout the day offering pint-sized cocktails, ice-cold beers and sneaky helpings of mezcal from the margarita mixing machine.

Could this guy look anymore sinister? 

Posing with our mezcal - it all went downhill from here...

Dessert was provided by Sorbitum, a local ice cream company whose creations and concoctions are to die for. Adam and I were torn between the avacado and lime, and the dark chocolate, chipotle and rasin - so we both had a scoop of each! Naturally!! 

We stumbled across a hideaway where the mariachi band was hanging out and had an impromptu sing-a-long to numbers by Johnny Cash, the Killers, the Beatles...

Julie's thinking of joining the band

We were having so much fun we nearly missed the crowing of the winner!!

The votes are in...

And the winner is... 

Luardos!! Well done guys! Though, I have to be honest after all the beers, cocktails and mezcal, i cant remember what it tasted like but i'm sure it was definitely worthy of the title.

Tweat Up put on a great day, we didnt want to go home - so we headed up the Kingsland Road for a couple more before hopping on the train home.

May the sauce be with you!

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