Ben’s Canteen, Battersea

There’s more to Clapton Junction station than a gigantic transport hub.

Exibit A: Local-favourite joint Ben’s Canteen.

Ben's Canteen, Battersea • London Restaurant Review • Cake + Whisky

Obviously, it got me at striped awning.

Ben's Canteen, Battersea • London Restaurant Review • Cake + Whisky

But neon lovers should feel right at home too…

Ben's Canteen, Battersea • London Restaurant Review • Cake + WhiskyBen's Canteen, Battersea • London Restaurant Review • Cake + Whisky

There’s also a gorgeous bar, serving up faaaaaantastic frosé cocktails.

And if you’re still looking for a sign to justify commandeering a table…

Ben's Canteen, Battersea • London Restaurant Review • Cake + Whisky

… well, here it is!

Better go hungry though, because the menu is full of amazing options.

Ben's Canteen, Battersea • London Restaurant Review • Cake + Whisky

There’s finger-licking good pulled pork & guac’ nachos.

Ben's Canteen, Battersea • London Restaurant Review • Cake + Whisky

Smash-your-own guac.

Ben's Canteen, Battersea • London Restaurant Review • Cake + Whisky

Because there’s no such thing as too much guac’… and a bit of aworkout can’t hurt before moving on to the main event!

Ben's Canteen, Battersea • London Restaurant Review • Cake + Whisky

Though to be fair, the special BrewDog burger (two beef patties, double smoked cheese, streaky bacon, BrewDog’s flagship Punk IPA barbecue sauce, stacked with crack fries to give it that extra crunch) will give your jaw plenty of exercise!

Ben's Canteen, Battersea • London Restaurant Review • Cake + Whisky

If you’re after something a bit more novel, try Ben’s Canteen’s National Burger Day special: the Juicy Lucy Goat Burger – just think goat’s cheese IN a goat burger!

I’m still the worse French person on Earth and don’t like goat’s cheese, but even I had to admit that was a winning combination!

So yeah, burger goats achieved!

Ben's Canteen, Battersea • London Restaurant Review • Cake + WhiskyBen's Canteen, Battersea • London Restaurant Review • Cake + Whisky

Now, let me tell you one thing about Ben’s Canteen: the burgers are good but the fries are NEXT LEVEL.

Buffalo-fried chicken chips with homemade sauce, house ranch and blue cheese, nachos-style, Chip Shop-style or (my personal favourite) Korean-style, complete with deep-fried pork belly, kimchi, crispy seaweed and Korean hot sauce… Picking just one is basically impossible!

So better get a bunch of people together and head to Ben’s Canteen… Not having to choose will be the #1 reward for strong, burger strengthened friend-chips!

Ben’s Canteen, 140 St John’s Hill, Battersea, London SW11 1SL

Ben’s Canteen, Battersea

Stripes & Cocktails at Bunga Bunga

You can’t beat a girl’s night out.

Life often gets in the way, everyone’s busy, so it can be difficult to put a date in the diary.

But once in a while, when you do manage to get a group of your favourite people together for a proper catch up… It’s just magic.

It was Bunga Bunga, the infamous Battersea Bridge pizzeria & Italian-themed bar, which finally gave us all an excuse to get together.

It’s been going through a bit of a refurb’ lately (and it was a rather polemic one) so, just as you would with a girlfriend that suddently went platinum blonde, it was our duty to show our support.

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But to be honest, I’m not sure why there’s been so much noise as it now looks better than ever!

Inside, they kept the same fun-filled, quirky bits…

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Including the famous motorcycles on the ceiling.

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And a whole lot of pickpocket-proofed bags!

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And they went full-on Italian outside by painting the facade in red, white and green!

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Plus they still serve the same great sharing platters…

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Boasting all your Italian favourite nibbles, from arancini to bruschetta, polenta chips, parmigiana and much, much more!

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Absolutely impossible to resist!

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But the best part is the fantastico new cocktail menu.

All inspired by Italian regions and their world-famous ingredients.

And there’s nothing quite like cocktails to fuel long-overdue catch ups!

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Even better when made and served by lovely, chatty bartenders in the most adorable stripped Tees.

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Stirred, shaken and served in the blink of an eye!

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Piemonte (Mount Gay Black Barrel rum, Fernet Branca liqueur, Mancino Bianco Ambrato vermouth, Peychaud’s bitters & home-made bitter syrup)

Stripes & Cocktails at Bunga Bunga | Cake + Whisky

Veneto (Bombay Sapphire gin, elderflower syrup, fresh lemon juice, home-made sugar syrup & fresh green grapes)

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Cocktails flying to nearby tables will make you want to get one of each.

Fear of missing out much?

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Good thing the gondola driver/cocktail guys have made skills and are fast as lightning!

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Marche (Dewar’s White Label Scotch whisky, Visciolata del Cardinale dessert wine, Amaro Averna liqueur, Luxardo maraschino liqueur, fresh lime juice & home-made maraschino syrup).

And cherry on top: a white chocolate covered cherry. Divine.

Stripes & Cocktails at Bunga Bunga | Cake + Whisky

Lombardia (Bacardi Carta Blanca rum, Tia Maria liqueur, Amaretto Disaronno liqueur, home-made cocoa nibs & amaretti biscuit syrup topped up with double cream).

Pudding-worthy!

Stripes & Cocktails at Bunga Bunga | Cake + Whisky

Lazio (VII Hills gin, Cynar artichoke liqueur, Frangelico hazelnut liqueur, fresh lime juice & home-made rosemary syrup)

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SO fresh and fragrant and probably my favourite of the night.

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Alongside some vino.

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And a few old favourites…

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Whisky, cherry and chilli concoction of dreams.

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And a couple of Bunga Bunga’s iconic David Punch.

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Going to Bunga Bunga can be a bit of a trek if you’re not an SW11 resident, but it’s one that’s very much worth taking!

Book a table, take a group of friends, the more the merrier. There’s great cocktails, delightful finger food and even karaoke, it’s very relaxed and always great fun! You’re going to love it!

Bunga Bunga, 37 Battersea Bridge Rd, London SW11 3BA

Stripes & Cocktails at Bunga Bunga

An Italian Hog Roast feast at Il Porco

Dans le cochon tout est bon.

Surely the masterminds behind House of Peroni & Bunga Bunga latest installation at L’Osservatorio are very familiar with this French proverb.

And they sure have proved it right with Il Porco: an Italian-style feast of all things porky.

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Don’t be fooled by the grand, elegant surroundings.

Il Porco is truly a party where nobody will look at you weirdly for pigging out. Au contraire!

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Bunga Bunga’s head chef Alexis design Naray  has conceived an extraordinary three – course feast of pork delicacies to honour the noble and delizioso pig, served with Peroni Nastro Azzurro Alta.

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More exciting yet, each dish is served with with an exclusive Peroni Nastro Azzurro cocktail.

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Starting with the excellent Peroni Limoni.

Limoncello, peach liquor, lemon juice and Peroni, garnished with basil & cracked black pepper.

A wonder reminiscent of end-of-summer parties and one I fully intend to reproduce sooner rather than later!

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Served alongside some Aperitivo classics such as pork scratchings, olives, salami & focaccia.

No matter how delicious all those are (especially the bread), make sure you save some stomach real estate, because you’re in for a real feast!

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Nose-to-tail porky goodies everywhere you look!

Il Porco by House of Peroni and Bunga Bunga 8

Pig cheek arancini, slow-cooked shredded pork shoulder, garlic & rosemary pork medallions, pancetta-wrapped pork & apple sausages, slow-cooked sticky ribs, as well as the whole roasted porchetta.

Plus some pig fat roasted potatoes, aubergine parmigiana, celeriac remoulade & baby carrots for good measure.

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Everything looks so good you won’t be able to wait to tuck in!

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Piling it all up onto your plate will be a bit of a challenge, but one I was glad to take on!

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The accompagnying Peroni Speziato (Peroni Nastro Azzurro with orange, fennel, black pepper & rosemary) was the perfect match for this feast!

Even though it’s quite a surprising cocktail, very unusual, savoury and aromatic, it worked really well with the pork (which I suppose is not that surprising since it was inspired by traditional Italian porchetta recipes)!

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And when you think you can’t manage any more food or you might just explode, they bring out the brownies.

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But not just any brownies. Bacon brownies.

Dense, caramelised and deeply chocolate-y. No matter how full you are, you have to try them.

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Alongside came some cute little maple syrup ice cream cones.

On a gondola. #partygoals

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With its subtle taste, it was the perfect sweet ending to a night of feasting…

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And if you happen to drop yours onto your brownie… well, let’s say that’s the only time dropping your ice cream cone might lead to a very happy ending!

Il Porco will happen once a month, starting this December, at The House of Peroni L’Osservatorio, Bunga Bunga.

Surely the most Italian hog roast in London! Viva Italia! 

 

 

An Italian Hog Roast feast at Il Porco

Market Porter, Battersea

Those last few weeks, I had been working really hard on blog scheduling, trying to make sure I balance content to make sure you guys don’t end up reading 7 restaurant reviews one week, and then none for weeks.

It was all going well, but then I visited the newly-opened Market Porter in Battersea and everything tumbled down.

Forget being organised and planning content ahead, there was no way I was keeping this one from you for one second!

Market Porter, Battersea, London | Cake + Whisky

Nestled in the still-being-built Embassy Gardens luxury development right by the river, finding Market Porter is still a bit of a challenge…

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But it’s well worth the effort as Market Porter is the cutest café / deli I have ever seen.

Worthy of my Paris’ favourites!

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Quite small, but so very charming and welcoming, just like the people running it!

People who love wine, cheese and charcuterie are always the best people anyway.

Market Porter, Battersea, London | Cake + Whisky

And true to its roots (Market Porter is the first off-line venture of Meatporter.com, famous for delivering exceptionally high-quality meat cuts right to your door), Market Porter focuses on the quality of ingredients.

Only the very best, carefully sourced with both taste and ethics in mind, is to be found on the shelves.

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The artisan deli selection of course includes some of Meat Porter‘s gorgeous own produce, usually only available through their website.

Market Porter, Battersea, London | Cake + Whisky

Along with a fine selection of wine, coffee, cheese as well as other high-quality British food and drink products.

Market Porter, Battersea, London | Cake + Whisky

You can of course take all those beautiful things home and turn them into the most beautiful of picnics.

Or you can turn to the man behind the bar and trust him to come up with something wonderful.

Market Porter, Battersea, London | Cake + Whisky

Like this Green Peppercorn wild boar salami on sourdough with spinach and roasted red peppers.

Market Porter, Battersea, London | Cake + Whisky

Crunchy toasted sourdough, spread with a touch of the very best mayo, fresh baby spinach leaves, paper-thin, smoky and delicate salami, soft peppers, simply drizzled in fragrant olive oil and sprinkled with sea salt, this beauty shines by its simplicity.

But when everything that goes into a dish is that good, nothing more is needed to create something absolutely stellar.

Market Porter, Battersea, London | Cake + Whisky

Both picture and taste-perfect and one of the best lunches I’d had in a while.

So if you happen to be in the area, go give them a go (and get me some of this salami when you’re at it!).

Market Porter, 5 New Union Square, Embassy Gardens London SW8 5AJ Market Porter Bar Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Market Porter, Battersea