Macellaio RC, Bankside

Even though most of the recipes I post on this blog happen to be vegetarian/vegan (thank my laziness and love of vegetables for that), I do love a good steak.

Preferably one that’s been seared to rare, smokey perfection by a pro (aka. not me).

Steak night at Macellaio RC, Bankside ● London restaurant review ● Cake + Whisky

In my quest of London’s best, I had heard much praise about the Macellaio RC ‘butchery with tables’ mini group.

Many of my Italian friends had named it as their favourite restaurant in London. No small fate.

Steak night at Macellaio RC, Bankside ● London restaurant review ● Cake + Whisky

In true Italian spirit, Macellaio RC is all about simple dishes made incredible through a dedication to the excellence of Italian produce.

In the franchise founder’s own words, “Macellaio Roberto Costa […] aspires to be a praise to the animal, but above all to the work of the artisan farmers that devote their lives to this passionate world”.

Steak night at Macellaio RC, Bankside ● London restaurant review ● Cake + Whisky

The restaurants themselves, set up as modern, welcoming, warm Italian trattoria, mirrors this objective.

With brick wall, wooden accents, a myriade of trinkets reflecting the diversity of Italian crafts, big windows looking into the ‘meat room’, an open-air Ligurian bakery and a stage dedicated to butchery and carving, the Union Street restaurant looks like a dining theatre dedicated to the cult of good food.

Wanting to make the most of it all, we went for a bit of everything…

Steak night at Macellaio RC, Bankside ● London restaurant review ● Cake + Whisky

Starting with salami and house-made, cloud-like focaccia, drenched in super fruity olive oil.

Steak night at Macellaio RC, Bankside ● London restaurant review ● Cake + Whisky

And a couple of glasses of good Italian wine, of course!

Steak night at Macellaio RC, Bankside ● London restaurant review ● Cake + Whisky

We then tried Macellaio RC Union Street’s specialty – the pissa.

A form of pizza originating from 15th century Genova, the pissa dough is made from very strong flour and risen at cold temperature for 60 to 90 hours, resulting in a super crispy thin crust.

Topped with just a smearing of cream, it’s the perfect little nibble before moving onto the main event.

Steak night at Macellaio RC, Bankside ● London restaurant review ● Cake + Whisky

The meat!

Being a greedy little French girl, I couldn’t resist the tartare.

Served very simply with Tuscan extra virgin olive oil, salt, pepper, it allows the quality of the Fassona breed beef to shine.

Steak night at Macellaio RC, Bankside ● London restaurant review ● Cake + Whisky

But the true star of the show – Macellaio signature Fiorentina T-Bone steak.

Aged for 6-8 weeks, butchered and grilled in house and served with fluffy triple-cooked chips, it’s a meat lover’s dream come true.

Steak night at Macellaio RC, Bankside ● London restaurant review ● Cake + Whisky

Cooked to perfection, with crispy fat on the edges and deep, smokey-umami flavours…

The rumors were true – London’s best steak is at Macellaio’s!

Steak night at Macellaio RC, Bankside ● London restaurant review ● Cake + Whisky

After that beast of a meal, you might be tempted to skip pudding.

Don’t. Get the basil panna cotta. It’s light and fresh, wonky in all the right ways and an absolute must-try.

Be-leaf me!

Macellaio RC Union Street, Arch 24, 229 Union Street, London SE1 0LR

What else to do/see/eat in Bankside?

A British cocktail masterclass at Hixter Bankside

Exploring London’s Bankside

Padella Pasta

Autumn cocktails at TwoRuba

I dinned as a guest of the restaurant for this visit.

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Macellaio RC, Bankside

A British cocktail masterclass at Hixter Bankside

Bankside is one of my favourite parts of London.

Home to the fantastic Borough Market and some of my favourite restaurants in the city, Bankside is a fantastic destination for dinner and weekend meanderings alike.

And in October, things are getting even more exciting along the Lowline with the launch of the Bankside School of Food and Wine!

A British cocktail masterclass at Hixter Bankside ● Cake + Whisky

To celebrate Bankside’s emerging food scene, various venues are holding a range of food and drink workshops.

From doughnut making to butchery classes, chocolate workshops and mixology lessons, there’s a lot to choose from.

But you know me, I’m never one to say no to a good cocktail!

Which is how I found myself in Mark’s Bar at Hixter Bankside for a hands-on British cocktail masterclass.

A British cocktail masterclass at Hixter Bankside ● Cake + Whisky

After a Hix Fix (a delicious mix of cherry liquor and English sparkling wine and the best selling cocktail across all Hix restaurants) on arrival, it was time to get down to cocktail-mixing business!

A British cocktail masterclass at Hixter Bankside ● Cake + Whisky

First things first – a quick refresher on the history of cocktails, must-know techniques used in cocktail making and of course, the provenance of the spirits!

A British cocktail masterclass at Hixter Bankside ● Cake + Whisky

Much like for the food, the approach to cocktail making focuses on local, seasonal ingredients such as Black Cow vodka – the world’s only Pure Milk Vodka™.

Made entirely from the milk of grass grazed cows in West Dorset, it makes for an exceptionally smooth vodka with a unique creamy character.

A British cocktail masterclass at Hixter Bankside ● Cake + Whisky

After eagerly tucking into delicious bar snax (the signature Yorkshire pudding with whipped chicken livers is an absolute must-order!), it was time to recreate some of Mark’s Bar’s renowned cocktails.

First up on the cocktail menu – the Dorset Donkey (a British take on the classic Moscow Mule).

Made with the freshest seasonal produce (blueberries in the summer, blackberries in fall and preserved Morello cherries in the colder months), it’s a great drink to mix for impromptu guests any time of the year.

A British cocktail masterclass at Hixter Bankside ● Cake + Whisky

All you have to do is crush a couple of Morello cherries and sage leaves at the bottom of a highball glass.

A British cocktail masterclass at Hixter Bankside ● Cake + WhiskyA British cocktail masterclass at Hixter Bankside ● Cake + Whisky

Top with 20ml lime juice, 50ml Black Cow vodka, 10ml cherry brandy and 15ml honey or sugar syrup.

A British cocktail masterclass at Hixter Bankside ● Cake + Whisky

Fill the highball glass with ice cubes.

A British cocktail masterclass at Hixter Bankside ● Cake + Whisky

Top with ginger ale.

A British cocktail masterclass at Hixter Bankside ● Cake + WhiskyA British cocktail masterclass at Hixter Bankside ● Cake + Whisky

Garnish with a Morello cherry and 2 sage leaves and you’re all done!

A British cocktail masterclass at Hixter Bankside ● Cake + Whisky

Substitute the sage for orange peel, add a cinnamon stick and you’ll have yourself a smashing Christmas cocktail.

The perfect way to get into the holiday spirits!

Unless of course you’re more of an Espresso martini kind of gal/guy!

A British cocktail masterclass at Hixter Bankside ● Cake + Whisky

I have it on good authority that Mark’s Bar serves one of the best in London.

So might as well learnt from the masters!

A British cocktail masterclass at Hixter Bankside ● Cake + Whisky

It’s actually not that difficult either.

For 1 glass, you’ll need:

  • 50ml Black Cow vodka
  • 50ml fresh ground coffee or a double espresso
  • 35ml honey or sugar syrup
  • coffee beans to garnish

A British cocktail masterclass at Hixter Bankside ● Cake + Whisky

Pour all the ingredients into the smaller half of a shaker, add cubed ice and shake vigorously for 10-15 seconds.

A British cocktail masterclass at Hixter Bankside ● Cake + Whisky

Strain into a champagne coupe and garnish with three coffee beans.

A British cocktail masterclass at Hixter Bankside ● Cake + Whisky

A brew-tiful drink indeed and one well worth learning for yourself!

A inspirational gift or a unique way to celebrate Christmas with colleagues (beats the canapé buffet anyday!), Hixter’s British Cocktail Masterclass will whisky any cocktail lover away! (just remember to book ahead!)

Mark’s Bar at Hixter Bankside, 16 Great Guildford St, London SE1 0HS

*I attended the Hixter cocktail masterclass as a guest of the restaurant and Better Bankside. All words, pictures and love of eau de vie marinated cherries my own.

A British cocktail masterclass at Hixter Bankside

Autumn cocktails at TwoRuba

It’s getting cold and crisp outside, and the weekend’s almost there…

You know what that mean – time’s just right for some Autumn cocktails.

Luckily, I know just the place.

TwoRuba ● London cocktail bar ● Cake + Whisky

Nestled inside the Hilton London Tower Bridge hotel, TwoRuba’s has quite the reputation for serving the best crafted cocktails in the area.

TwoRuba ● London cocktail bar ● Cake + WhiskyTwoRuba ● London cocktail bar ● Cake + Whisky

Their new autumn menu definitely holds up to that reputation.

Filled with expertly crafted seasonal creations and twists on the classics, it’s filled with perfectly balanced and innovative concoctions.

And when it comes to naming their creative elixirs, the team doesn’t shy away from a good pun – just the way to my heart!

TwoRuba ● London cocktail bar ● Cake + Whisky

So what will it be?

Scary Mary? Autumn Lady (a gin sour with a ginger kick) ? Or the ever elusive, unicorn-worthy Rainbow cocktail?

TwoRuba ● London cocktail bar ● Cake + WhiskyTwoRuba ● London cocktail bar ● Cake + WhiskyTwoRuba ● London cocktail bar ● Cake + Whisky

Orange juice, grenadine, vodka and curaçao, beautifully layered into a tall glass.

TwoRuba ● London cocktail bar ● Cake + Whisky

And garnished with delicate flowers to create the most ranunculus-ly gorgeous drink I’ve ever seen.

TwoRuba ● London cocktail bar ● Cake + WhiskyTwoRuba ● London cocktail bar ● Cake + Whisky

Having tried my hands at recreating the above wonder, I can confirm it’s not quite as easy as the pros make it seem.

TwoRuba ● London cocktail bar ● Cake + Whisky

So better leave it to TwoRuba’s to make your fall Fridays rainbow and unicorns kind of days!

TwoRuba, Hilton London Tower Bridge, 5 Tooley St, London SE1 2BY

More things to do by the River

A walk along the Thames

Exploring London’s Bankside

Padella

Shopping at the Borough Market

Autumn cocktails at TwoRuba

Monty’s Deli

My idea of the perfect autumn Sunday is the absolute Instagram cliché: brunch, golden autumn light, a bit of a walk and fresh blooms .

The BF has a more novel approach – preferably one that’d involve Netflix, chill and some sort of sandwich.

Yesterday, we both got our way.

We started things off at the ever bloomin’ lovely Columbia Road Flower Market, where we purchased several plants to complete our ever-growing flat jungle.

Then we headed off to Monty’s Deli for lunch.

Monty's Deli ● London Restaurant Review ● Cake + WhiskyMonty's Deli ● London Restaurant Review ● Cake + Whisky

The restaurant itself is very Jewish-deli meets London East-End.

There are walls stripped of their plaster covers to reveal the original tiles underneath, gorgeous black-and-white checked floors big booths for dinner with family & friends and a long bar that’s perfect for solo visits.

Monty's Deli ● London Restaurant Review ● Cake + WhiskyMonty's Deli ● London Restaurant Review ● Cake + Whisky

The second you pass the door, you’re greeted by the fantastically friendly team.

The comforting smell of salt beef and sauerkraut lingers in the air, attesting to Monty’s Deli dedication to all-things home-made.

One of the only places in Britain to make their own salt beef and pastrami, Monty’s Deli is proud to produce everything by hand.

They bake the bagels and the rye bread, they cure the meat, they even make the mustard!

And results for all those efforts clearly show.

Monty's Deli ● London Restaurant Review ● Cake + Whisky

The smoked salmon bagel board is a lesson in the value of simple things done to perfection.

Monty's Deli ● London Restaurant Review ● Cake + Whisky

A dense, crusty, sesame-speckled bagel, served with just the right amount (e.i. too much) of cream cheese, salty smoked salmon and a few other bits on the side.

It’s the masterclass in simplicity.

Monty's Deli ● London Restaurant Review ● Cake + Whisky

Especially when served with a serving of cooling, dill and sour cream-ladden cucumber salad on the side.

Monty's Deli ● London Restaurant Review ● Cake + Whisky

Even better yet – the pastrami Reuben.

Monty's Deli ● London Restaurant Review ● Cake + Whisky

Thinly-sliced pastrami, kraut, Swiss cheese, mustard and Russian dressing sandwiched inbetween two slices of toasted rye bread…

Monty's Deli ● London Restaurant Review ● Cake + Whisky

Though it’s not quite as epic looking as Katz’s Deli‘s version, Monty’s take on the classic sandwich is positively Reuben-esque!

Monty's Deli ● London Restaurant Review ● Cake + Whisky

And then of course, there’s the cloud-like cheesecake… Not much of a looker but actually berry special!

Hospitable service, attention to detail and superb-in-its-simplicity food… Monty’s Deli is a brilliant example of what Jewish tradition is all about.

Not to mention that they take reservations and that yes, the sandwiches can be taken away too if you want to make the most of the last fo the autumn sun!

Monty’s Deli, 227-229 Hoxton St, London N1 5LG

Monty’s Deli

Kanada-Ya

There’s two approach to London’s grey-skied autumn.

The SAD one, and the noodle-based one.

Kanada-Ya ● London best noodle restaurant ● Cake + Whisky

If, like me, your preference goes to the later, I (and all of London’s ramen lovers) know just the place.

Kanada-Ya.

Kanada-Ya ● London best noodle restaurant ● Cake + Whisky

The authentic Japanese tonkotsu ramen specialist has two friendly, informal, one near Piccadilly and one just off Tottenham Court Road.

Neither take reservations and both are always incredibly busy.

Kanada-Ya ● London best noodle restaurant ● Cake + Whisky

Which is not all that surprising since Kanada-Ya is home to London’s most comforting dish – the ultimate bowl of tonkotsu ramen.

Originating from Fukuoka on the Kyushu island of Japan, the infamously time-consuming soup broth is based upon pork bones, boiled for several hours and served with ramen noodles and sliced pork belly.

Kanada-Ya ● London best noodle restaurant ● Cake + Whisky

At Kanada-Ya, the default toppings include sliced wood ear mushroom, seaweed and spring onion, with add-ons such as chashu-cured, gooey-yolked egg, spicy yuzu or porcini truffle paste coming highly commended!

Kanada-Ya ● London best noodle restaurant ● Cake + Whisky

And so do the small plates.

Not that you’ll really need them (the noodles themselves are plenty!). But if you’re able to resist the karaage chicken, well you’re clearly a lot more restrained than I am. And absolutely wrong at that.

I mean, if you’re going to stand in line with all of London’s noodle lovers, you might as well make the most of it.

So don’t be chicken and get it all – it’ll warm you to the bones!

Kanada-Ya – 64 St Giles High Street, WC2H 8LE (Covent Garden) or 3 Panton Street, SW1Y 4DL (Soho)
Kanada-Ya

Madame D

My boyfriend has been wishing for Indo-Chinese food to make its way to London for as long as I’ve known him.

And, I don’t know if he finally found the magic lamp or something, but it looks like his wish has finally come true.

Madame D • London Restaurant Review • Cake + Whisky

Hidden away behind the Old Spitafields market, you’ll find Gunpowder‘s new baby sister – Madame D – serving up a modern interpretation of the food prepared by Chinese-Tibetan immigrants in India.

To be honest, Madame D is a bit of a hipster child wonder.

Brick, plants, candles, creative cocktails, short but sweet menu of small plates designed to share, it has it all.

And it’s all very, very good indeed!

Madame D • London Restaurant Review • Cake + WhiskyMadame D • London Restaurant Review • Cake + Whisky

Starting with the naga chilli beef puffs.

Crispy on the outside & steamy on the inside, delightful spiced and utterly addictive beef morsels.

So addictive I easily could have eaten a buffet-sized plate of those all by myself. Sadly, that wasn’t on the menu.

Madame D • London Restaurant Review • Cake + Whisky

Hakka chilli paneer – an irresistible take on the BF’s usual order at his favourite Delhi restaurant.

Madame D • London Restaurant Review • Cake + Whisky

Sweet, sour, spicy and all in all spectacular, we fought over the last pieces and vowed to order it again on our next visit.

Madame D • London Restaurant Review • Cake + Whisky

Ginger-scented stuffed aubergine with mushrooms.

Thanksfully not as spicy as the deep-red sauce would have you believe, but every inch as delicious!

Madame D • London Restaurant Review • Cake + Whisky

Light and fragrant Kathmandu curry with bamboo shoots and sweet potato served over mountains of steamed rice.

Madame D • London Restaurant Review • Cake + Whisky

Himalayan fried chicken, served Chinese-style with sliced spring onion, chilli and vinegar dipping sauce.

Much like the rest of the food at Madame D – absolutely faultless and just ridiculously tasty – all paired with super cosy atmosphere (the flip side of that one smallish-room, no reservation situation) and swift yet attentive service.

Unsurprisingly, getting a table is already near-impossible. But when the food’s that good, you’ll forget about the inconvenience the second the food hits the table and start making plans to go back to before you’ve even left.

Madame D, 76 Commercial Street, E1 6LY

Madame D

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

Cake for Dinner at Cutter & Squidge

When the London weather is frightful (August? Really? More like November-ish!), few things are more delightful than cuddling up with a cup of tea and a piece of cake.

Luckily, I know just the place!

Cutter & Squidge • London Restaurant • Cake + Whisky Cutter & Squidge • London Restaurant • Cake + Whisky

Located in the heart of Soho, minutes from Piccadilly Circus, Cutter & Squidge is a cake’s lover dream come true – with shelves stacked high with all kinds of sweet treats.

Cutter & Squidge • London Restaurant • Cake + Whisky

Creative twists on classic puds, like this gorgeous Eton Mess layer cake…

Cutter & Squidge • London Restaurant • Cake + Whisky

Dreamy Sundaes…

And shelves full of the most incredible flavours of Biskies.

Cutter & Squidge • London Restaurant • Cake + Whisky

What’s a biskuit I hear you ask?

The most amazing biscuit/cookie creation filled with lightened buttercream, handmade jams, caramels and other delights, that’s what.

All crafted using the highest quality ingredients, all beautiful, all delicious… The only difficult thing is to pick one!

Cutter & Squidge • London Restaurant • Cake + Whisky

Matcha & black sesame? Chocolate hazelnut pearl?

Cutter & Squidge • London Restaurant • Cake + Whisky

Choc O Berry? Lemon meringue?

Cutter & Squidge • London Restaurant • Cake + Whisky

Classic (or salted caramel!!) S’mores? PB&J?

Cutter & Squidge • London Restaurant • Cake + Whisky

Of course it had to be PB&J!

Cutter & Squidge • London Restaurant • Cake + Whisky

What can I say, that’s just my jam!

Add a glass of (incredible!) ice tea and here it is: the perfect spot to escape the rain/cold/overall dreadful weather – or recover from an especially intensive shopping session…

Cutter & Squidge, 20 Brewer St, Soho, London W1F 0SJ

(or you can also place an order online)

Cake for Dinner at Cutter & Squidge

30 Regional French Dishes You Must Try (& where to eat them in London)

When it comes to French food, there are the classics everyone knows, and then there is the rest.

As a matter of fact, the world famous snails and frogs’ legs aren’t what French people eat on a regular basis.

Instead, the vast majority of French cuisine is a regional affair.

From the fish and tomato heavy diet in the South, to much cheesier affairs in the mountains, and duck every way in the South West, there’s much more to French food than your regular café might have you believe.

Below is a list of 30 lesser-known regional French dishes that are worth ditching up your usual steak-frites for!

1. Bouillabaisse

Bouillabaisse is a traditional Provençal fish stew. It was originally made by Marseille fishermen to use the fish they were unable to sell at the market.

The traditional version includes at least three kinds of fish, and there usually is some seafood inthere as well. Vegetables and potatoes are also simmered in the broth. The whole lot is served with rouille (a spicy, saffron and chilli infused mayonnaise) and grilled bread.

Try it at: Brasserie Zédel, as well as many other London restaurants including popular chain Café Rouge and Brasserie Blanc.

2. Baeckeoffe

Typical in the French region of Alsace, baeckeoffe (“baker’s oven”) is a mix of sliced potatoes, onions, mutton, beef and pork which have been marinated overnight in white wine and juniper and slow-cooked in a sealed ceramic casserole dish.

The dish was a way for French women to have something to put on the table on laundry day. In the morning, they would drop the pots off at the baker, who would cook it in his oven during the day and the children would pick it up on their way back from school.

Try it at: Brasserie Zédel, where it’s the dish of the day on Tuesdays.

3. Canard au sang (ou à la presse)

Canard au sang (also known as pressed duck or duck Tour d’Argent) is a very extravagant dish, that was invented in the 19th century at Paris famous La Tour d’Argent restaurant.

The simple-looking yet devilish to prepare dish consists of various parts of a duck, served in a sauce of its own blood and bone marrow, which is extracted by way of a press.

Try it at: Otto’s, where they also serve a lobster dish along the same lines.

4. Canelés

A speciality from the region of Bordeaux, canelés are small French pastries flavored with rum and vanilla.

The recipe is very similar to that of a traditional French crêpe batter and results in small cakes boasting a soft and tender custard center and a dark, thick caramelized crust.

Try it at: Babelle, or indulge your and your guests’ sweet tooth by ordering a few dozens from Yvonne & Guite.

5. Carbonnade Flamande

Popular in the northenmost parts of France, as well as in Belgium, carbonnade is a sweet and sour beef and onion stew, made with beer and usually served with fries or boiled potatoes.

Try it at: Bar Boulud

6. Céléri Rémoulade

This dish of grated celeriac seasoned with a mustard and vinegar flavoured mayonnaise is a school cantine classic, where it’s usually served as a starter. However, it’s best served alongside some grilled meat, especially pork and sausages.

Try it at: Terroirs, where it’s currently served alongside grilled eel.

7. Choucroute garnie

A German import into French cuisine, especially popular in the bordering region of Alsace, choucroute is a preparation of hot sauerkraut with meat and potatoes.

Though there is no fixed recipe, traditional garnishes include three kinds of sausages (Morteau, Strasbourg and Frankfurt) and salt pork in one form or another.

Try it at: Unsurprisingly, Alsatian-brasserie-inspired Bellanger is the place to go!

8. Coq au Vin

Coq au vin is a winter warmer kind of dish, made of chicken, braised with wine, lardons and mushrooms.

Traditionally, red Burgundy wine is used, but many other regions make their own version of coq au vin using local varieties, such as coq au vin jaune in the Jura (deeeeeelicious!) or coq au Riesling in Alsace.

Try it at: La Poule au Pot

9. Crêpe Suzette

A flamboyant take on the much-loved French pancake, crêpes Suzette are served with a sauce of caramelised butter and sugar, orange juice and zest and Grand Marnier, flambéed in a table side performance.

Try it at: Le Pont de la Tour

10. Cuisse de Canard Confit

Originally used as a way to preserve the meat by salt curing it, then cooking it in its own fat, duck confit is considered to be one of the finest French dishes.

It is made across France but is generally seen as a specialty of the duck-rearing region of Gascony. Traditionally, all the pieces of duck are used to produce the meal, though today, it’s most common to use the thougher leg meat that way.

Try it at: Chez Elles, where it’s served alongside another duck-enriched South-West classic, Sarladaise Potatoes.

11. Foie Gras Poêlé

Foie gras is a usual sight on french inspired restaurant menus, where it usually features as a terrine served with toast and chutney.

Less common is ‘foie gras poêlé’. A hot alternative to the luxurious cold slab, it’s made of raw foie gras that has been roasted, sauteed, pan-seared or grilled.

It’s usually served with pan-fried fruit such as fig or stone fruit, or atop roast beef tenderloin (Tournedos Rossini).

Try it at: La Poule au Pot

12. Galette de Sarrasin

In Brittany, a proper meal is constituted of traditional buckwheat galettes and cider.

Galettes are usually garnished before being folded. One of the most common variations is the Galette Complète, garnished with grated cheese, ham and a fried egg.

Try it at: Mamie’s

13. Gâteau Basque

Typically, Gâteau Basque is constructed from layers of shortbread pastry with a filling of either almond or vanilla pastry. Sometimes, preserved cherries are also added to the filling.

Try it at: Bar Boulud

14. Gougères

A gougère is a baked savory choux made of choux dough mixed with cheese (commonly grated Gruyère, Comté or Emmentaler).

Gougères are said to come from Burgundy, where they are generally served cold when tasting wine in cellars, but also warm as an appetizer.

Try it at: Colbert, Brawn

15. Île Flottante

Another school cantine classic, a ‘floating island’ is a dessert consisting of poached meringue floating on thin vanilla custard (crème anglaise).

Try it at: Brasserie Zédel

16. Kouign Amann

Kouign Amann is a Breton round crusty cake, originally made with bread dough that has been enriched with butter and sugar.

The strict, traditional recipe insists on a ratio of 40 percent dough, 30 percent butter, and 30 percent sugar, making it some sort of croissant on steroids and a very indulgent treat indeed!

Try it at: Dominique Ansel Bakery, where the DKA has gathered a following almost as strong as the trademark Cronut. Alternatively, Temper serves an extra-indulgent version with salted caramel sauce & dulce de leche ice cream…

17. Lapin à la Moutarde

“Rabbit is probably the biggest divider between our two nations” says chef Raymond Blanc. “The French on one hand view rabbit as food; the British as a pet”.

Which may explain why lapin à la moutarde is nowhere as common this side of the Channel as it is in France. Regardless, this dish is an absolute classic!

Try it at: La Poule au Pot

18. Moules Marinières

Moules marinières, a combination of super fresh mussels cooked in white wine, garlic and parsley is the quintessential French holiday dish.

For a bit of a twist, try Mouclade, where the sauce is thicken with crème fraiche.

Try it at: Chez Elles

19. Petit Salé aux Lentilles

The classic lentil and ham hock stew combines the advantages of being very easy to prepare, relatively unexpensive, tasty and filling, making it a very popular winter dish in France.

Try it at: Casse-Croute

20. Petits Farçis Niçois

Farçis are a Provence speciality and are usually prepared by emptying the insides of summer vegetables and stuffing them with a combination of sausage meat, bread or rice and herbs before baking them.

Try it at: La Ferme

21. Pissaladière

Pissaladière is a dish which originated from Nice in Southern France. It consist of bread dough, topped with caramelised onions, black olives and anchovies.

Now served as an appetiser, it was originally a morning snack.

Try it at: Blanchette

22. Poireaux vinaigrette

One of the simplest French recipes, yet most beautiful ingredient combination there ever was.

Try it at: Chez Elles, where it’s on the lunch menu.

23. Poule au Pot

Poule au Pot, just as Boeuf Bourguignon, is one of the most classic of classic French dishes.

It consists of a vegetable-stuffed chicken, poached with pieces of beef meat and simmered until the meat falls of the bones. It’s similar to Pot au Feu in the way it’s cooked, though the latter is made with salt pork as its main source of protein.

Try it at: The eponymous La Poule au Pot

24. Quenelles de Brochet

Lyon and Nantua are famous for their quenelles de brochet (pike). They may be served sauced and grilled, or with a variety of sauces.

Try it at: Pique Nique, where it’s served as a very elegant Vol au Vent with sauce Nantua.

25. Raclette

Raclette is a semi-hard cow’s milk cheese, that is most commonly used for melting. In the eponymous Franco-Swiss dish, the cheese is heated, either in front of a fire or by a special machine, then scraped onto diners’ plates.

The term raclette derives from the French word racler, meaning “to scrape”.

Raclette is usually served with boiled or steamed potatoes, gherkins, pickled onions and dried meat.

Try it at: the Borough Market, where Kappacasein serves theirs with all the trimmings, street-food style.

26. Rillons

A speciality of Touraine, these slow-cooked cubes of pork belly are usually purchased from your local butcher and make for the perfect snack.

So good in fact the last piece usually starts up a fight (that I would totally win, would my brother not be freakishly strong).

Try it at: Bar Boulud

27. Salade de Chèvre Chaud

An absolute classic of café and bistrot cuisine, this simple goat’s cheese on toast focused salad doesn’t seem to have quite made it over here just yet. Which is surprising, considering how much people seem to looooove cheese anything in London!

Try it at: Chez Elles, where it’s a lunch menu favourite!

28. Salade Lyonnaise

Another classic on the menu of bistros and small restaurants throughout France, this typically French salad hailing from Lyon is all about contrasts. Salty lardons, creamy poached egg, crunchy croutons and bold mustard dressing make it simplicity at its very best.

Try it at: It’s currently on the menu at Bon Vivant, and a good lunchtime pick from Paul.

29. Saumon à l’Oseille

A symbol of French ‘New Cuisine’, the classic salmon with sorrel was created in 1962 in Roanne’s famous Maison Troisgros restaurant by some sort of happy accident. It quickly became so popular the local train station was painted in similar pink and green shades and that taking the dish off the menu could only be done under the condition that customers could still order it regardless.

Try it at: La Poule au Pot

30. Tarte Flambée Alsacienne

Tarte flambée (or flàmmenküeche) is an Alsatian-Mosellan and South German dish made of bread dough rolled out very thinly, covered with crème fraîche, thinly sliced onions and lardons and cooked in a wood-fired oven.

There are many variations of the original recipe, the most common being the addition of grated cheese (gratinée) or mushrooms (forestière).

Try it at: Bellanger serves the traditional version, as well as cheesy and sweet twists on it.

30 Regional French Dishes You Must Try (& where to eat them in London)

Bar + Block

In London, steak is a rare medium well-done. Especially when you’re on a budget.

Or at least it was that way until Bar + Block opened its doors.

Bar + Block • London Restaurant Review • Cake + Whisky

Nestled right behing Kings Cross station, Bar + Block has everything it needs to satisfying meat-craving travellers on a budget.

Bar + Block • London Restaurant Review • Cake + Whisky Bar + Block • London Restaurant Review • Cake + WhiskyBar + Block • London Restaurant Review • Cake + WhiskyBar + Block • London Restaurant Review • Cake + Whisky

There’s a big bar, natural, red leather, wood & copper-led decoration and plenty of big, comfy booths to host your steak party.

Bar + Block • London Restaurant Review • Cake + WhiskyBar + Block • London Restaurant Review • Cake + WhiskyBar + Block • London Restaurant Review • Cake + Whisky

There’s also meaty popcorn & nicely crafted, very reasonably priced cocktails.

And if that’s not every traveller’s dream, I really don’t know what is.

Bar + Block • London Restaurant Review • Cake + Whisky

Though I’m sure the American inspired small plates come not far behind…

Bar + Block • London Restaurant Review • Cake + Whisky

There’s plenty to choose from, but make sure you don’t miss out on the mac ‘n’ cheese bites.

Especially grate when dunked into Bar + Block signature tangy n’ spicy Fiery Black Sauce!

Bar + Block • London Restaurant Review • Cake + Whisky

For the main event, there’s only one way to go – steak.

Once again, there’s a lot to choose from, but the signature ‘spiral cuts’ are the best.

Bar + Block • London Restaurant Review • Cake + Whisky

Unless you include the sweet potato fries with corizo, feta & coriander, that is!

Bar + Block • London Restaurant Review • Cake + Whisky

All topped up with Asian coleslaw for your daily vitamin intake…

Bar + Block • London Restaurant Review • Cake + Whisky

…and this chocolate-y, brownie-y, toffee-y churros-topped wonder because every day, even the most tedious of Mondays, should feel like Sundae!

No need to wait for the weekend though – with reasonable pricing (especially considering the gigantic portion sizes), convenient location and friendly, efficient service, next time your friends are grilling you, you know where to take them!

Bar + Block, 26-30 York Way, Kings Cross, London N1 9AA

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Bar + Block