Thursday, 21 November 2013

Michelin Star Dining

A friend of mine came to London when I first arrived, him along with another friend are attempting the 50 before 50 challenge which involves racking up 50 Michelin stars before you turn 50 (if you have the money you can fast-track the process by eating at two michelin star restaurants), so we decided to go to a Michelin star restaurant for dinner. We made a list and my friend chose Arbutus. After reading some really good reviews I was pretty excited.

To start I had a mackerel and squid burger that came with razor clams which are possibly the most delicious things ever.


The starter was actually so so good. It was really delicate and subtle. There was a nice flavour of garlic running through the dish but it wasn't over powering. It made me really excited for my main course of partridge and smoked corn. Unfortunately it was pretty disappointing...




I didn't really like presentation, a bit too slap dash for me and not really fine dining. Overall the flavour of the dish wasn't bad it just wasn't great and had no wow factor. I couldn't rally detect a smoky flavour from the corn either-all in all a bit meh.

I was hoping for dessert to redeem the meal and it was better than the main but nowhere near as good as the starter and still pretty average in my opinion. I ordered Dulce de Leche ice cream.


It was good but not as decadent and rich as I wanted it to be and overall I wasn't too impressed. I had some amazing Argentine Ducle de Leche cookies when I went to the Logan Square farmer's market in Chicago and they were much more rich.

So I don't know if I chose the wrong food or what but all in all this was a pretty disappointing star.

Christina, x

Mackerel Sandwiches at Borough Market

If you read my blog regularly you will know there is no place I'd rather be than at a food market and in London I am pretty spoiled for choice. Probably the most famous market is Borough Market. My friend came to visit a few weeks ago and so we decided to hit it up.



Apparently I wasn't in a very picture taking mood that day-I'll get more next time! I did get some pictures of a really good mackerel sandwich that I had. I have really come round to mackerel after successfully catching one during my fishing trip in West Cork.



I like Borough Market but it's a little too touristy and busy for me but I guess I did go on a Saturday. I'll go mid-week and report back!

Christina, x

Hackney Harvest Feast

So in my first couple of weeks in London I was feeling kind of down as my usual jamminess when it comes to house hunting seemed to not be working. After a week of searching and no luck I decided to cheer myself up by heading with my friend to the Hackney Harvest Feast. The event involved creating a free lunch from food that would have been thrown away and it was such a great day and definitely cheered me up.

We arrived early to help the people from People's Kitchen prepare the food......



I also got to wear my new vintage apron.....


....and take part in a massive salad toss.....




....and this all led to a delicious lunch which definitely made me feel better.



Christina, x

Wednesday, 20 November 2013

Capitol Farmer's Market

If you live in Lansing you will know it's the capitol of Michigan, not Detroit like everyone seems to think. Twice in the year a farmer's market is held on the capitol lawn and lucky for me the second one for 2013 was on just before I left. It showcased the best of Michigan produce and I must say I was really impressed.





My favourite stand was the Tomac Pumpkin Patch which is where I used to get my weekly beautiful squash when I went to the Allen Street farmer's market. I do miss having a squash lady....







I also got some yummy food such as this amazing lemon blossom cookie...


I also got an awesome lunch from the Purple Carrot food truck, which is the food truck of Red Haven which I posted about before. I got a peach bisque that came with a balsamic dressing and blueberries. It was actually really nice especially as it was a pretty day.sunny day.




Also if you do go to the Capitol Farmer's Market make sure you check out the Capitol building itself, I was quite impressed with it.



Christina, x

Tuesday, 19 November 2013

Best Burger in Lansing

So I know I rant about American food a fair bit but I always stand by American burgers. As my German housemate said 'You just eat what they do well-burgers'. So in my time in Lansing I tried a fair few burgers and here is my round up of them...

The Peanut Barrel 

This  is quite a popular place among MSU students and my  housemate said it was one of her favourites.




Overall it was pretty good, the meat patty itself was particularly good even though mine wasn't actually cooked medium. Also the Barrel employs a silly system whereby you can only get two cocktails. Now you may say this makes sense but I can have two long islands and then switch to gin and tonic and then lash beer in to me...oh America and its ways....I am also pretty sure I left my sunglasses there but I guess that isn't their fault.....

Kewpee

A friend of mine recommended Kewpee if I wanted something that was just grease. Some days I do want food that is just grease and on one of these days I headed to Kewpee. I liked the decor.....


.....and the baby logo.....


I ordered the Oliver burger as it is what Kewpee is famous for. I made the stupid mistake of ordering a burger that was bigger than a small...you would think that after two summers of living in America I would remember to never order anything bigger than a size small.....



If you like your food fancy then Kewpee isn't the place for you, no plates, no cutlery and water gets served to you in a styrofoam cup....


Overall the burger was pretty good. I am probably not the best judge as I am trying to fall back in love with olives after I had an awful stomach bug after some olive eating but alas I just don't enjoy them as much as I used to. Kewpe is a fun and cheap place and definitely worth a try.

The Avenue Cafe

I have to mention the Avenue Cafe even though I have only ever got veggie burgers there but they are really good and they do half price burgers before seven and amazing cocktails with homemade ginger syrup and basil and the barmaid is Welsh so doesn't get annoyed when I have my Irish I.D. If anyone tries the meat burgers let me know how they are!



Olympic Broil

Olympic Broil is essentially an old style fast food restaurant near Old Town Lansing. I went there for the car show they have in Summer with a photography meetup but decided to sample the burgers while I was there. The burger was only ok and I thought the other food looked better such as the chicken strips and fish but it is a fun place and if you have an interest in cars (which I don't....) the car show is good....







Crunchy's

Crunchy's is somewhat of an institution among MSU students. I heard the burgers were good even though my house mate said she saw the kitchen and would not recommend eating anything from there. But I must admit the burger was pretty good and was one of the few places that actually seemed able to cook a burger medium....



....but perhaps my housemate was right and being served medium burgers in a bar that also serves beer in buckets may not be a good thing....


....either way I had fun.

Five Guys

Five Guys is not unique to Michigan, one even came to London recently, but if I'm honest I think it's completely over-hyped. I thought for what I got it was expensive and just overall very average.


Hopcat

Hopcat is a new bar in Lansing that has 100 beers on tap and also serves great food. I think this was my favourite burger. It was served in a brioche bun which is my favourite way to have a burger and the toppings were really good and the crack fries it came with are amazing. Plus you can get my favourite Michigan beer 'Final Absolution' there.


I almost want to go back to Lansing for a burger now!

Christina, x