Rijsel | Amsterdam

Rijsel amsterdam

Rijsel Rotisserie is good!! The food, the friendly waiters, good vibes. It’s a little out of the way in a residential street in Amsterdam Oost and based in an old school building with a retro interior. The menu changes all the time, but you can always expect simple and delicious French/Belgian dishes. We went for oysters and the poussin (Rijsel’s poussin was named the ‘best chicken in town’ by Johannes van Dam!) which comes with baked potatoes and a really nice salad. I also really liked the Huzarensalade, a must. The place feels authentic and works for everyone and all occasions. One thing I didn’t like was the bright lighting as I prefer more dimmed lights in the evening. Make sure to book a table, they are always packed. Closed on Saturday and Sunday. Marcusstraat 52B | Tel: +31-20-4632142 | Website | €€

Sawyer & Gray

sawyer and gray
By accident I ended up in this completely amazing little bar in Islington (walking distance from Highbury and Islington station) I had a reservation in Le Coq next door and went to wait for our table to be ready in this charming place. So cute. It is the place you want to take your friends from out of town to, to show them how cute, cool, funky and creative London is as a city! Their kitchen is too small to start a ‘real’ restaurant so they are only open on Fridays and Saturdays for tapas etc. The rest of the week just breakfast and lunch.  290 Saint Paul’s Road, Islington, London | Tube; Highbury & Islington | £££ | Website

Le Coq | London

Le Coq Islington
Love this little restaurant in Islington on walking distance from Highbury & Islington Station and right next to the BEST bar ever (Sawyer and Grey) In le Coq you pick a starter and as a main you’ll get the most amazing, juicy, free range roast chicken with sides of your choice… The interior is cozy with an open plan kitchen, small tables, industrial details and big windows overlooking St Paul’s Road. Perfect restaurant to go as an easy dinner during the week, with your parents when in the neighbourhood or with your romantic date. Probably wise to make a reservation on time if you are planning to go here in the weekend. On top of this they have a private dining room, do take away and office delivery and catering for large parties! 292-294 Saint Paul’s Road, London |+4420 7359 5055 | Tube; Highbury & Islington | £££ |  WebsiteMap

Cépage | London

Cepage Notting Hill
I am back on the road in our hood (and other ‘hoods’ so stay tuned) I am so excited about this new restaurant on Westbourne Park Road! It’s the perfect French little bistro. Small, cozy, good location, delicious food and great wine list. You’ll be served by French, eat French and feel French when here.

The restaurant does not come cheap and the dishes are small and to share. When we were dining here at the bar they told us they are focusing on small proper wine makers in France. So most wines here, you won’t be able to find in the shops in London and are really good. This makes it all more charming to me! Love the place and will definitely be back for more delicious French signature dishes and wine! 69 Westbourne Park road, London W2 5QH | +44203 602 8890 | Twitter: @cepagesWPR | Tube; Royal Oak or Ladbroke Grove | Map

Piccola Cucina | London

Piccola Cucina
There is a new Italian restaurant in our hood… and the cool thing is that suddenly this part of Kensington Park Road (the crossing with Blenheim Crescent) has become an Italian hood… There are 3 Italian restaurants next to each other on one side, and right across the street there are two others… Conclusion; should you be in a desperate need of Italian food you just go to this part of London and you can be quite sure to get a table in one of them. This particular one is very Italian and took the spot of the old Rossopomodoro (also Italian!!). I would recommend them to dim the lights a bit and put some candles on the tables but the food is absolutely amazing and so is the Italian service. Have the Parmigiana di melanzane if you want to make sure to order a hit but everything else I tried was great too. Love their table outside which has heaters and is a great spot for people watching … 186 Kensington park Road, London | Tube; Notting Hill Gate or Ladbroke Grove | £££ | +442072210154 | No website

Shrimpy’s | Kings Cross, London

Shrimpy's London Kings Cross snackettes dinette
If a place offers Snackettes, I’m generally sold. I love sharing plates so I can try lots of different things. Especially if it includes chips and dips and deep fried chillies. Shrimpy’s call themselves a deluxe dinette, offering burgers, chippies, as well as some other more healthy options. The restaurant was set up by the old crew behind Bistroteque and they renovated an old filling station to launch Shrimpy’s. The interior is a bit of a weird mix but I like it. Expect a good time surrounded by fun wall illustrations, lots of random golden pineapples, palm trees and a few giraffes.. PS. They have lots of seating space outside too. Goods Way | Tube: King’s Cross | Website | £££

Mazi | Notting Hill, London

Greek restaurant Mazi London Notting HillAmazing food, atmosphere and service at this cool Greek restaurant just off Notting Hill Gate. I wish I had discovered it earlier! It reminded me of summer holidays in Greece with white walls and a simple light decor. We went on a Friday night when it started to get really busy at 7.30pm – glad we made reservations! The lovely Greek waiter suggested to order 2 jars to start with, 2 hot dishes and one signature dish to share between the 2 of us. And so we did. Absolutely loved the grilled aubergine spread which came with really nice bread and a smokey flavour. We also thought the feta tempura was great, to mix with meringue and lemon. The calamari main was special but not our favourite while the greek yoghurt mousse was the perfect end to our dinner. Foodies will enjoy this place. They also have a cute garden in the back. 12-14 Hillgate Street | Tube: Notting Hill Gate | Tel: +44(0)2072293794 | Website | ££

Blanchette | London

Blanchette
Personally I think that we will never get tired of these sort of places. Blanchette is a  super trouper cozy French restaurant in the middle of Soho. There is an urban feel to the interior; bare brick walls and funky lamps combined with a rustic, country French kind of atmosphere. The sharing dishes are simple and nice, the atmosphere is perfect for a romantic night out (candles, dimmed lights and at the moment a beautiful Christmas tree) and its not that hard to get a reservation but the restaurant is quite popular so you do have to book a week in advance for a Friday/Saturday night!
9 D’Arblay St, London |+20 7439 8100 | Tube: Oxford Circus / Tottenham Court Road | ££ | Website

The Musket Room | NYC, Nolita

The Musket Room NYC Nolita
New Zealand cuisine in Nolita. First of all, I absolutely loved the interior. It feels very rustic and understated but cool at the same time – very instagrammable! The food is impressive too. We shared the Heirloom Gazpacho, Fois Gras, New Zealand Red Deer and Chicken & Egg. All came beautifully presented with great taste. Good to know, the starters are tiny but the mains are normal sized so don’t be afraid you won’t end up with enough to eat. When you decide to go for an afternoon shop & stroll in Nolita, this restaurant is the perfect place to end the day. 265 Elizabeth Street, Nolita | Tel: +1(212) 219-0764 | Subway: Houston St & Prince St | Website | $$$