Silo | The Zero Waste restaurant | Brighton

Brighton has to be the place to be if you have sustainability in mind. I’m not sure which of Silo or that trend came first, but I sense there’s a bit of a chicken and egg sort of thing going on there. Cake + Whisky | Silo Zero Waste Restaurant BrightonCake + Whisky | Silo Zero Waste Restaurant BrightonEven from the outside, you can see the “no-waste” concept runs deep. It shows in the uneven wooden facade and the repurposed metal bins turned planters. In the display menu and the rugged, rustic feel of the whole thing. Cake + Whisky | Silo Zero Waste Restaurant BrightonCake + Whisky | Silo Zero Waste Restaurant BrightonCake + Whisky | Silo Zero Waste Restaurant BrightonOnce you pass the door, it is everywhere: not just on your plate, but also in the material chosen, in the art, in the loyalty system, even in the loos. A concept pushed to its very limits.Cake + Whisky | Silo Zero Waste Restaurant BrightonCake + Whisky | Silo Zero Waste Restaurant BrightonCake + Whisky | Silo Zero Waste Restaurant BrightonCake + Whisky | Silo Zero Waste Restaurant BrightonThe waste-avoiding initiatives at Silo are varied and (almost) exaustive. But the most impressive of them has to be the massive recycler-composter standing in the corridor.Cake + Whisky | Silo Zero Waste Restaurant BrightonCake + Whisky | Silo Zero Waste Restaurant BrightonThe dining room also had that rugged feeling about it. Mainly places have tried (and failed) to create just that atmosphere. But here, the rustic-hipster style is very much in alignment with the concept. It has been push to the very smallest of details and it just works.Cake + Whisky | Silo Zero Waste Restaurant BrightonThe menu is predictably short and cooked from whatever seasonal ingredients had been delivered that day by Silo’s carefully chosen local suppliers. Not food-milage to see there. The team still manages to keep things interesting by focusing on classics with a bit of a twist, which happen to be my favourite kind of dish. Unsurprisingly, I wanted to try everything.Cake + Whisky | Silo Zero Waste Restaurant BrightonCake + Whisky | Silo Zero Waste Restaurant BrightonFrom the drinks menu, we got pretty much everything that seemed even remotely interesting. My favourite was definitely the Gin & Earl Grey cocktail with cracked black pepper (not only did it look pretty, but I really enjoyed the spiciness of the pepper against the acidity of the cocktail), but the Kombucha iced tea truly is worth a try as well (it’s both subtle and fresh, which makes it a winner in my book). Cake + Whisky | Silo Zero Waste Restaurant BrightonWe ordered two of the three starters available that day. The Beetroot & Fennel Soup was absolutely delicious as the earthiness from the beetroot perfectly balanced the anis-seed flavour of the fennel. I don’t usually like beetroot that much, but this was a cracking dish! The accompanying homemade Sourdough Bread was so good I’m not even sure there is words to describe it. I’ll just tell you that: it’s basically what foodie dreams are made of. And I’m French, trust me, when it comes to bread, I know what I’m talking about!Cake + Whisky | Silo Zero Waste Restaurant BrightonThe other starter, Asparagus with slow poached egg yolk and Silo butter, was a very safe bet as it’s pretty much one of my favourite ingredient combination. The addition of garlic flower and a generous sprinkle of linen seeds was an interesting one as it brought strong flavours as well as crunch to what could have easily been too simple a dish otherwise.
Cake + Whisky | Silo Zero Waste Restaurant BrightonCake + Whisky | Silo Zero Waste Restaurant BrightonThe “Plant” dish was Cauliflower steak with lentil salad and caramelised red onion. I loved the dressing of the lentil salad, which was very mustardy and punchy. Altogether, the flavour profile of this dish was interesting but the textural aspect of it was a bit less successful due to too many crucnhy elements. Cake + Whisky | Silo Zero Waste Restaurant BrightonCake + Whisky | Silo Zero Waste Restaurant BrightonThe “Dairy” dish was this stunning Beetroot risotto with fresh curd. On paper, it was the least likely to appeal to me as the two main components (beetroot and cheese) are things I don’t enjoy eating, but it was truly brilliant. I think it’s once again the garlic flowers that made that dish for me as their pungent flavour balanced the earthy sweetness of the beetroot perfectly.Cake + Whisky | Silo Zero Waste Restaurant BrightonCake + Whisky | Silo Zero Waste Restaurant BrightonWhen we came in, they had run out of beef shortribs and were serving Pork Belly instead. The “Meat” dish was good and well executed, with tender meat and celeriac pieces, smooth puree and melty leaves but didn’t have any kind of unperishable impact on me. Cake + Whisky | Silo Zero Waste Restaurant BrightonMackerel is such a pretty fish, and that was no exception! I especially enjoyed the crunchy raw cauliflower & quinoa salad, which had a very interesting texture, as well as the addition of sea vegetable which re-inforced the saline flavour of the dish.Cake + Whisky | Silo Zero Waste Restaurant BrightonCake + Whisky | Silo Zero Waste Restaurant BrightonBy the end of the meal, we were pretty full, so we settled on sharing just one pudding between all of us. We went for hat might have seemed like the simplest of the three available options, but strawberry & lemon curd are things I simply can’t resist. Unsurprinsingly, they were the two elements on that plate I enjoyed most, the tanginess of the curd enhancing the sweet, yet still subtle flavours of the season’s first English strawberries. The cocoa nibs brought an interesting element of texture, but I’m not sure it was the case for the chantilly or the pine oil. 
Cake + Whisky | Silo Zero Waste Restaurant Brighton

They say the devil is in the details, and it most definitely is true when it comes to sustainability. Silo went very deep into this whole detail business and what they built is very inspiring indeed. It delivers resourceful cooking and I defy anyone not to be impressed with the level of service and dedication each member of staff brings to the cause.

Where: 39 Upper Gardner Street, North Laine, Brighton BN1 4AN

Silo | The Zero Waste restaurant | Brighton

#Letsgetfoodiechallenge Week 2 – Something green | Spinach Tortilla

In the second edition of the #letsgetfoodiechallenge, Amanda challenged us to create a recipe with something green in it.

Now I love my greens, so once again, I was a bit paralized by the choices. But since we were heading to Brighton during the last Bank Holiday weekend, and the idea of a picnic on the beach was simply too difficult to resist, I ended up revisiting one of my favourites recipes: Tortilla. Since I got some beautiful spinach at the farmers’ market that same morning, I thought I would add some in as well and cross my fingers really hard for it to work and result in something delicious. And IT REALLY DID!

Spinach Tortilla – serves 4

You’ll need: 5-6 medium waxy potatoes, 5-6 eggs (I only had 3, but more would have been better!), chopped parsley, chopped garlic (I used dried garlic), 2-3 sliced spring onions, 2 big handfuls of spinach, olive oil, salt, pepper.

Cake + Whisky | #letsgetfoodiechallenge 2 | Spinach TortillaStart by preping all your vegetables. Slice your potatoes up as thin as possible (without slicing your fingers though!).Cake + Whisky | #letsgetfoodiechallenge 2 | Spinach TortillaSlice your onions too, and wash your spinach and dry it up. Chop your parsley and garlic.Cake + Whisky | #letsgetfoodiechallenge 2 | Spinach TortillaIn a bowl, whisk your eggs with some salt and pepper, then add in your garlic and parsley.Cake + Whisky | #letsgetfoodiechallenge 2 | Spinach TortillaGet a pan (one that goes into the oven would be perfect here! I got mine from IKEA) nice and hot, then add in some olive oil and your potatoes and fry those until they’re tender. Transfer to a bowl and keep them to the side for now. Fry your onions and do the same.  
Cake + Whisky | #letsgetfoodiechallenge 2 | Spinach TortillaNext up, you’ll need to cook your spinach.
Cake + Whisky | #letsgetfoodiechallenge 2 | Spinach TortillaCake + Whisky | #letsgetfoodiechallenge 2 | Spinach TortillaOnce it’s ready, add the onions and potatoes on top and give the whole thing a good stir to combine all the elements. Cake + Whisky | #letsgetfoodiechallenge 2 | Spinach TortillaPour your egg mix on top and cook for about 5 minutes. Transfer to a hot oven (180-200 °C) and cook for a further 5-7 minutes. Cake + Whisky | #letsgetfoodiechallenge 2 | Spinach TortillaTake your masterpiece out of the oven and eat it while it’s hot. Or get some friends together and bring it to a picnic on the beach!Cake + Whisky | #letsgetfoodiechallenge 2 | Spinach TortillaWhat’s your favourite picnic recipe? 

#Letsgetfoodiechallenge Week 2 – Something green | Spinach Tortilla

Why I love London

I ❤ London. Since the moment I first saw it, I knew it was it. A love-at-first-sight sort of story.
Cake + Whisky | Why I Love London | Tower BridgeCake + Whisky | Why I Love London | V&A Museum
Cake + Whisky | Why I Love London | Museum of LondonBut then, isn’t it difficult NOT to love London. When I first had to leave it, I tried to make the separation less difficult by drawing a list of things I wouldn’t be missing. This list had, if I remember properly, only 3 things on it by the end of the week.
Cake + Whisky | Why I Love London | Green ParkCake + Whisky | Why I Love London | Borough Market
The reason why London is so lovable is that it truly offers something for everyone. From the shop-aholic (me) to the foodie (me) to the museum-aficionado (me) and the gym-bunny (me? I wish!), everybody can find their London if they know where to look for it. It’s the diversity of London that truly made the difference for me.
Cake + Whisky | Why I Love London | Piccadilly CircusCake + Whisky | Why I Love London | Duck & Waffle
Maybe it’s linked to London being the result of many villages merging together to create one massive metropole. Maybe it’s the result of centuries of immigration from all over the world. Maybe it’s something entirely different that led London to be what it is today; this bright, exciting, strongly multi-cultural city.
Cake + Whisky | Why I Love London | South Bank Millenium BridgeCake + Whisky | Why I Love London | Trafalgar Square
And it’s the freedom we, as Londoners, get from a such unique environment that I truly love about London. I love the variety of the food offering and the endless possibilities it creates.
Cake + Whisky | Why I Love London | Covent GardenCake + Whisky | Why I Love London
I love the effervescence of the Borough Market and the calm of the V&A’s medieval galleries; I love the small streets of the City and how spacious Royal Parks are; I love the crowds of Oxford Street and the quiet contemplation atmosphere of churches; I love the fire of Indian curries, the tang of Peruvian ceviche, the cleaness of Japanese sahimi, the home-iness of Italian pasta; I love it all. And above all, I love that there’s always something new to discover.
“Tired of London, Tired of Life” has never seem more fitting.
Why I love London

Postcard from Brighton

I ❤ Brighton.

I know I keep talking about how much I love living in London, but there’s this little spot in my heart for cities on the seaside.Cake + Whisky | Postcard from BrightonCake + Whisky | Postcard from BrightonCake + Whisky | Postcard from BrightonCake + Whisky | Postcard from BrightonI always want to bring all the pebbles home. I’m such a kid. Cake + Whisky | Postcard from BrightonCake + Whisky | Postcard from BrightonCake + Whisky | Postcard from BrightonCake + Whisky | Postcard from BrightonCake + Whisky | Postcard from BrightonCake + Whisky | Postcard from BrightonSomeone KNITTED the Royal Pavilion. How crazy is that? Cake + Whisky | Postcard from BrightonThe said-pavilion is really worth a look, it looks so strange and out of place, but so pretty at the same time.
Cake + Whisky | Postcard from BrightonCake + Whisky | Postcard from BrightonBut Brighton’s not all about the beach. What I was most impressed by was the new breed of creative, socially- and environmentally-responsible businesses that have popped-up since the last time I visited. Double thumbs-up to Silo, hisBe and BlueBird Tea Co for all their hard-work and proving it can be done. I left very inspired. 👍👍Cake + Whisky | Postcard from BrightonWhat’s your favourite thing to see/eat/do in Brighton? Already looking for things to do on my next visit!

Postcard from Brighton

Top 10 Summer Essentials

Summer, Summer, Summertiiiiiiiiiiiiiime!

If you ask me, there’s only one true way to now if summer is on its way. One very simple test. Do I want to wear pastel nailpolish or do I stick to my dear Rouge Noir?

We all have a favourite season. Some like Winter and the snow, some prefer Fall and its beautiful colours, or Spring with all its flowers. But Summer, with its barbecue parties and beac holiday plans has always been my personal favourite. I’m never happier than when I wear jean shorts, a white linen Tshirt and sandals, sit in the sun and sip on one too many cups of Pimm’s (oops!), so today, I wanted to share my absolute summer essentials.

Cake + Whisky | 10 summer essentials | shopping guide1. Jean shorts: I basically live in those from June to September and those H&M ones are definitely on my radar!

2. Stay Matte pressed powder, Rimmel: I love hot weather and all, but shiny skin, not so much. Luckily, this does the job perfectly and is cheap as chips! #WinWin

3. Glass bottle, BKR: I said it before, I said it again: those are the BEST! And it seems Selfridges is now stocking them, so you won’t have to deal with the whole “do I really want to pay that much in P&P?” issue!

4. Aloe Vera Gel, Banana Boat: My skin is just the worse: as soon as there is ANY kind of change in the weather, it starts drying out, cracking etc… So convenient when the weather changes about 12 times a day. So I’m trying everything I can possibly put my hands on to see what works best to keep things in control, and sofar, this seems to do the trick. I also love that it dries very quickly and doesn’t stick when you put clothes on afterwards. Not sure I’m a massive fan of the Shrek-like green colour though, so might try to find a “cleaner” alternative next time around.

5. Pore Refining Solution Instant Perfector, Clinique: Shine-free, Photoshoped-like skin anyone? This thing is basically magic in a bottle (and you can use it on top of your make-up too!).

6. Aqua Smoky Lash mascara, Make Up For Ever: When they say “waterproof”, they mean it. Go on, jump in that pool and have fun!

7. Maximillian Strasse nailpolish, Essie: Some people start wearing shorts and flip-flops the second the sun starts shining. Instead, I just switch my usual dark red polish for some sort of pastel mint. This one, by Essie, is one of my absolute faves.

8. Audrey Swimsuit, Princesse Tam Tam: 😍😍😍 (I think it says it all)

9. Mojito Ice Lollie, Ice Kitchen: Just what it says on the bag: Mojito. In a Lollie. Life is good!

10. Ultra Light Daily UV Defense, Kiehl’s: A no-brainer this one, really. When there’s sun, wear sunscreen, your skin will thank you.

What are your summer favourites? Anything I should check out? (Would take any excuse to go shopping, really! Please help!)

Top 10 Summer Essentials

Gü’s Dessert Island

I’ve been so tired these last few weeks that I’ve been dreaming of beach holidays even more often than I usually do. All I wanted was the sound of the waves, the kiss of the salty wind on my face, a good book and maybe a few cheeky cocktails.

Unfortunately, taking the first plane to dreamy destinations such as St Lucia or the Barbados isn’t quite in my budget. Luckily, the team has more than one trick up its sleeves and when they invited me with the promess of pudding in a beach-stastic environment, I almost did a little dance of joy!

I quickly packed sunscreen, sunglasses and the rest of my summer essentials (more on this soon, keep your eyes peeled!) and I was on my way!Cake + Whisky - Gu #dessertisland pop-upCake + Whisky - Gu #dessertisland pop-upCake + Whisky - Gu #dessertisland pop-upPudding paradise was waiting and I was READY!Cake + Whisky - Gu #dessertisland pop-upCake + Whisky - Gu #dessertisland pop-upCake + Whisky - Gu #dessertisland pop-upCake + Whisky - Gu #dessertisland pop-upAfter a quick look around the upstairs lounge (they had the most beautiful flowers there!) and a bit of a debate on which Gü dessert was the best (Chocolate & Vanilla cheesecake in my opinion, the combination of the dense chocolate truffle layer and airy vanilla mousse just can’t be beaten!), I was quickly swifted downstairs… or should I say St Lucia!Cake + Whisky - Gu #dessertisland pop-upCake + Whisky - Gu #dessertisland pop-upAaaah! Blue skies and transparent water. I could already feel myself being a lot more relaxed than I was a few minutes earlier! Cake + Whisky - Gu #dessertisland pop-upCake + Whisky - Gu #dessertisland pop-upAnd the pudding you ask? Well it simply was as velvety and decadent as ever!

The Gü #DessertIsland experience is on at 15 Bateman Str. today (20/05/2015) and tomorrow (21/05/2015) and a little bird tells me they still have a few availability for tomorrow.. so if you’re in the neighbourhood, drop by for a delicious and relaxing experience!

Gü’s Dessert Island

The Delhi Grill | Not your usual curry house

Until last week, I had never visited an Indian restaurant (Whetherspoon’s “Curry Nights” definitely don’t count!). It was not an option growing up (there are no Indian restaurants where I grew up), and after I moved away from my parents, it wasn’t really either (my boyfriend is Indian and cooks. Enough said). But we passed the Delhi Grill a few times, and it looked kind of fun, and the menu “seemed legit” (his words not mine).

Cake + Whisky | The Delhi Grill Indian Restaurant LondonColourful posters on the walls and a lot of happy customers… I loved the way they managed to mix quite traditional items (movie posters, Indian music and TV…) but remain modern at the same time. I don’t know how they did it, but it works and Islington’s youngster population seems to love it!Cake + Whisky | The Delhi Grill Indian Restaurant LondonCake + Whisky | The Delhi Grill Indian Restaurant LondonI was given a menu but must admit I paid very little attention to it (when you have an expert right next to you, it would be foolish not to let him do his thing, wouldn’t it?). There seemed to be a decent balance of well-known “classics” and obscure dishes though. Cake + Whisky | The Delhi Grill Indian Restaurant LondonWhile we were waiting for our (quite extensive) selection of dishes, we nibbled on salad. Which apparently is pretty typical, except you’re meant to eat it with your meal (oops).Cake + Whisky | The Delhi Grill Indian Restaurant LondonWe soon got something more substanscial to munch on though! The Delhi Grill Platter is basically a meat lover’s dream come true: you get an assortment of chicken tikkas, tandoori paneer and sheekh kebabs to share (or not). My favourite was the chicken, which was perfectly cooked and SO MOIST (my boyfriend says it wasn’t spicy enough, but I doubt anything ever is for him!😜). I also quite enjoyed the paneer, which wasn’t too squeeky and nicely spiced up but would give the lamb kebabs a miss as they were a bit too dry and not all that interesting in terms of flavour either. Cake + Whisky | The Delhi Grill Indian Restaurant LondonCake + Whisky | The Delhi Grill Indian Restaurant LondonThen came one of the most fun things I’ve eaten in a while (or maybe even ever, but I’m still planning on trying jellyfish some time soon, so that might change!): Pani Puri. It’s a snack that people usually buy from food carts and it is made of little balls of crispy batter, filled with chickpeas, coriander and chilli, which you fill with hot coriander-y stock right before stuffing the whole thing in your mouth. The combination of texture is really worth a try!

From the snack menu, we also got Aloo Tiki, which is a dish of smashed potatoes topped with a spicy mix of chickpeas, coriander and tamarind sauce. I’m still not entirely sure how I felt about this one. It wasn’t bad, but something seemed to be missing to take that dish to the next level.
Cake + Whisky | The Delhi Grill Indian Restaurant LondonWe also tasted a couple of dishes in the “from the pot” section. Butter chicken with nan bread was the most succesfull of the ones we tried. The balance of flavours was far from perfect (it was way too mild and spices seemed to have been skipped all together) but once again, the chicken was cooked to perfection and the texture of the sauce (a blend of tomatoes and butter) was absolutely perfect.

Rogon Gosht on the other hand wasn’t really successful: once again, it was a bit bland from the lack of spices, but the texture of the sauce made things even worse as it was quite watery and unpleasant.Cake + Whisky | The Delhi Grill Indian Restaurant LondonFor dessert, we had Gulab Jamun (dough balls cooked in sugar syrup), which my boyfriend loved but I found a bit too sweet, and Pistacchio Kulfi, which he said wasn’t made quite in the traditional way and as a result was too ice-y but I enjoyed it anyway (especially since there were so many pistacchio bits in it and I’m a sucker for anything pistacchio!).

What: A modern take on your regular curry house.

Why: For the atmosphere, first and foremost. A few dishes are also worth the trip (basically, go for the ones you’ve never seen anywhere before and you should be fine).

How much: about £50 for 2

Where: The Delhi Grill, 21 Chapel Market, London N1 9EZ

The Delhi Grill | Not your usual curry house

Gift Guide | For your (London) visitors

Since I’ve been living in London, I’ve had loads of people coming over to spend a few days in the capital, tour all the sights and eat some world famous breakfast.

And if I enjoy creating little guides of things for my visitors to see and do, there’s absolutely nothing I love more than putting together little London gift bags to make them feel truly special upon arrival and remember the fun times once they’ve left.

The content of my gift bags usually varies depending on what I stumbble upon while shopping, but here are a few of my absolute favourites!

Cake + Whisky | Gift Guide for your London visitors1. This Gin & Tonic Lip Balm is just genius. I mean, it’s basically a cocktail that keeps your lips soft. What more could you possibly ask for?

2. I’m such a kid at heart! I LOVE Legos and this Big Ben Nanoblocks make for the perfect alternative to tacky snowglobes!

3. Tea is obviously a must and I like to get a small tea caddy from Fortnum & Mason for the added wow-effect. I tend to get classic blends such as Earl Grey or the Royal Blend but their Peach Balck Tea and Elderflower Green Tea are also cracking!

4. I have a stock of Cath Kidson purses at home, so if you ever visit me, it’s very likely you’ll be handed one as soon as you pass the door. I’m absolutely obsessed with purses so it’s near impossible to resist buying them and my friends have loved being gifted some as it’s so convenient to keep everything together, keep currencies separate, not lose your Oyster card at the bottom of your bag…  Win-win then?

5. Burt’s Bees lip balm was one of the first things I ever bought when I first lived in London, so this one has quite a sentimental value to me. Plus they’re absolutely ace, entirely natural and now come in so many flavours!

6. Don’t we all need something sweet in our lives? I believe we do, so I always try to include some treats in my little London boxes, be it Jelly beans or a bar of Green & Black Chocolate!

Do you put together gift bags for your visitors? What do/would you include in them?

Gift Guide | For your (London) visitors

Objective Capsule Wardrobe – #2 The Investment Theory

The previous episode of my “Objective Capsule Wardrobe” series was all about de-cluttering, only keeping the clothes you liked and liked you back and making room in your cupboard and your life!

But of course, everyone knows nature abhors a vacuum, and there’s very little point pretending you’ll never want to buy anything anymore now that you have all of that empty space! So I thought it would only be fitting to focus the second episode on strategies to buy better so you don’t have to go back to square one too often.

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My mum has always tried really hard to explain the whole price VS quality thing to us. I was that kid that never got one pair of expensive branded trainers but was always wearing expensive, well-made leather shoes.

But when I first started buying my own clothes, I obviously forgot it all at once for quite a while and ended up with far too many things, many of which that didn’t fit me and I incidentally never wore.

I’m not even sure why I fell in the fast-fashion trap. I clearly didn’t need that many things, but it was so cheap and I felt like buying things “in case I’d need it” made me ready to face every situation I’d ever encounter. I was basically trying to build an armour out of all those junk-clothes I’d never wear and believed that my life would definitely be ruined if I didn’t have those sparkly silver heels the day I needed them.

Thanksfully, that’s when bloggers started taking a step back and talking about minimal wardrobes. Reading Dead Fleurette and French blogger Une Chic Fille, I had a bit of a lightbulb moment and eventually realised that I didn’t need all these things in my life. That having them around actually made me feel worse rather than good and that my money would be better used differently.

That same evening, I sat on the floor of my room and filled two (TWO!) Ikea bags with all the things I shouldn’t have bought in the first place. I donated most of them, sold a few, and promised myself it wouldn’t never get quite that bad again.

I obviously needed to come up with a plan though! That’s when I created my very own “Investment Theory” as some sort of a test for potential wardrobe suitors, so I thought I’d share my top tips to buy well!

1. It’s not all about the price! Mark my words: no deal is good enough not to be missed. If you’re never going to wear it, no matter how cheap it is, you are still wasting money buying it. This is especially true when it comes to sales; I’ve bought SO MANY things on sales because it was cheap and I would never find such a good deal ever again! Whether or not I would be using it was a thought that never crossed my mind. So now, every time I catch myself thinking “oh, that’s such a good deal”, I ask myself if I’d still get it if I was shopping in Liberty and it had the usual £££ pricetag. Works like a charm!

2. Better material is a worthwhile investment: Well-made clothes will last you longer, so it might be worth putting in the exact £, especially for those major pieces you’ll wear quite a bit (shoes, coats…). (However, that only works if the quality increases proportionanlly with the pricetag. I usually find that there is some sort of price ceiling for this, which is generally related to the impact of branding.)

The reasons behind it being that:

1- Better material will keep you warmer and won’t made you sweat so much (i’m so glamourous!)

2- Well-build items can be fixed.

3- Good-quality material will keep its form and colour much better.

4- You won’t tire of wearing basics quite as quickly as you would of wearing the last fashion fad.

3. Cost-per-wear: If I invest time in money into buying something, I want to make sure I get the best return on it. Which is why I usually only invest in items I know I’ll be using on a daily basis. So before you go out and spend all your money on really beautiful but also expensive pieces, take the time to figure out what you are actually wearing every day. One good way to measure this up is by putting all your clothes in the Closet app which allows you to log in what you’ve worn and does all the hard work for you!

4. Beauty samples: I love how you can get samples for pretty much every beauty product there is. That’s such a great way to try things out and decide whether or not they’re truly made for you without cluttering your cupboards!

Do you have tricks to avoid shopping mistakes? I’d love to hear them! 

Objective Capsule Wardrobe – #2 The Investment Theory

#SpreadTheSmile – Touring London’s best coffee shops with The London Coffee Festival

Blogging makes you do crazy things. Visiting 9 of London’s best coffee shops in one day was definitely one of them.

Now, let’s come clear: I have a weird relationship with coffee. I’ve always loved the taste (I used to drink coffee with milk from my mum’s cup when I was no older than 6 or 7) but my tummy’s not the biggest fan of it, so I can’t actually drink much of it.

But when the lovely folks behind The London Coffee Festival invited me for a day full of coffee beans and fun, I decided to take one for the team and join in!Cake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalFirst stop was the lovely Coffeeworks Project in Islington. Now, that one was not exactly new to me as it’s local to me, so they’re my go-to when I need that extra caffeine-boost on my way to work. Cake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalThose guys do the best cakes. Seriously. Especially their salted caramel brownies! 😍Cake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee Festival…but just to make sure it was the best (I never thought of questioning that fact, I mean, it’s salted caramel!!), we got a little selection of the said brownies.Cake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalLook at that! So fudgy! Which is how brownies should be in my opinion. If they’re too fluffy and aerated, they’re really just sponge, aren’t they?Cake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalAnd of course, there was some coffee. I initially wanted to get espresso but ended up going for filter coffee as I didn’t want to start with something too strong.

I just had time to drink a few sips and it was already time to jump on our dedicated mode of transport for the day!Cake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalCake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalA private double-decker no less! I could get used to that (and was definitely making plans to turn this into an office some day, wouldn’t it be awesome?)!

Next stop was Caravan on Exmouth Market, which had been on my bucket list FOREVER! They always come up in lists of places to go for brunch in London, and now that I’ve tried they coffee, I can tell that they’ve really strong game indeed! I suppose I’ll have to move it up a few spots and make my way there for eggs and things some day!Cake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalCake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalCake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalI barely had enough time to practice my pouring-shot skills that it was already time to leave. Within a few minutes, we were dropped at Black Sheep Coffee on Charlotte Street with the romise of a very special coffee experience.
Cake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalCake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalCake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalBlack Sheep opened with the objective of challenging the traditional coffee scene with their “Robusta Revival”. Robusta coffee beans are less acidic but far more bitter than other species and makes for a very new experience indeed!Cake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalCake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalCake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalAren’t those cups the cuttest?Cake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalAs promised, this was a very different tasting experience. One of the things I enjoy most about coffee is the smell and robusta simply… doesn’t smell like coffee, which was really strange and quite disorientating at first. I did enjoy the taste though, and it truly was unlike anything else I had ever try. So if you’re a bit of a coffee connoisseur, Black Sheep’s definitely a must-go!
Cake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalLive-tweeting our robusta taste-test!Cake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalCake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee Festivalcoffee-week-tour-22Cake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalOur next stop, Kaffeine, was just a few steps away and it definitely was one of the highlights of the day for me!Cake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalCake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalI obviously fell in love with the neon sign. And more importantly, with the staff possitive energy and the general vibe of the place!Cake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalCake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalCake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalCake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalCake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalVery much considering to make some sort of carrot-cake jam now! ✨Cake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalThese guys also have the BEST food counter! I wanted to try absolutely everything! Cake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalCake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalCake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalBut my eyes truly lit up when I saw this beauty! Avocado, mango, prawns, cashew nuts… pretty much my dream salad, really! Cake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalI thought I had made my choice. But obviously, that was until I looked up and was faced with the most tempting cake shelf I’ve ever seen.
Cake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalCake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalMaking a decision wasn’t easy, but I was told that the banana bread is an absolute must-order by at least three people, so I ended up ordering it. I mean, if so many people agree on one item, it must be good right?
Cake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalCake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalAnd very good it was! Partly because they toast it so it’s all warm and pillowy. And I’m not gonna lie, partly because they serve it with salted butter!

Because we’d been eating since the morning, I didn’t realise it was already lunchtime but was more than happy to soon find myself in Benugo. Cake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalCake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalI’m not even sure I was hungry to be honest, but a little (relatively healthy) feast was awaiting us (and it would have been rude not to give everything a chance, wouldn’t it?). Cake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalCake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalCake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalCake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalCake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalRows after rows of delicious goodies to choose from. I so wish I had one of those near(er) my office!Cake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalI went for a classic Ceasar salad, which was perfectly balanced and moreish! The sauce was especially good as it wasn’t too thick or cloggy.Cake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalPlus I might have had a bite of the different sandwiches on offer… my favourite being the one with tomato, mozzarella and fresh basil (obviously).Cake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalAnd how good do those espresso cupcakes look? They were amongst the best I’ve had in a little while, thanks to a very fluffy batter and lightest of coffee butter creams! I’m usually not the biggest fan of cupcakes (they more often than not look better than they taste no?), but those were a dream!

Cake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalWe then stopped for a little caffeinated treat at Sacred on Carnaby Treat. Cake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalThose guys sure know their coffee-art! Cake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalAnd a little bird told me that they’re starting some coffee cocktails soon too… 🙌🙏 but we didn’t have too much time to investigate those, so I’ll have to go back… You know, just to be sure!

Cake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalOur next stop sure put a big smile on my face. Let’s put it quite simply, I loved everything about Timberyard: the space, the people, the cakes…Cake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalFrom the second I set foot in the shop, I just wanted to move in. Everything was just perfect.
Cake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalCake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalCake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalCake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalCake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalAnd the team’s pretty ace too!Cake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalCake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalAnd the food, oh the food!Cake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalBut for once it didn’t take me ages to decide what I wanted! Dulche de Leche Cronut anyone? Trust me, you should!

We hoped on the bus one last time to reach our very last stop. I couldn’t help myself and clicked a few pictures on the way…
Cake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalCake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalCake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalCake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalNestled inside the Somerset House, Pennethorne’s is one of London’s true hidden gems, where we met James-Lee Campbell, Pennethorne’s head barista for a bit of a coffee degustation masterclass. After that much coffee, you might think I would tire of it, but each and every one we tried was so different it didn’t seem like that much!

Cake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalThe master doing what he does best… coffee!Cake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalCake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalCake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee FestivalWe tried out two different blends, including this month’s special, Tanzania Kilimanjaro, which was probably the strongest of all the ones we had that day, but it was also my favourite! Cake + Whisky | Touring London's best coffee shops with The London Coffee Festival

So many cups altogether though! Thanks London Coffee Festival for taking me on this coffee adventure (and the double-decker!), I truly enjoyed discovering the variety of the coffee offering in London and experiencing different blends and species to find my own favourite!

If you want to find out more about London Coffee Festival and all the wonderful things they do, head to their website: http://www.londoncoffeefestival.com.

What’s your favourite kind of coffee? Have you ever been on a coffee tour before?

#SpreadTheSmile – Touring London’s best coffee shops with The London Coffee Festival