Pesca | Amsterdam

Pesca Amsterdam
I love new concepts and places with a little edge to it and this is just one of these places. I L O V E it. Thanks to crowdfunding this place saw its first daylight about 5 months ago. I went to say ‘Hi’ on a grey afternoon in late October and was assisted by the most enthusiastic, chef Bryce who told me all about the place, the concept and the way it all works. The next evening I went again to put my new knowledge into practice.
So, you pick your fish at the ‘marketplace’ when you come in. Then you pick your wine and take your bucket with wine (or whatever else) to your table. You then hang your bucket on a fancy hook above your table and you are all set. A buzzer tells you when to pick up your food. Some staff is walking around to pick up dirty dishes but overall the whole idea is self-serving. The place looks awesome. Cozy, stylish and with daring choices in the interior. Bright yellow tiles and wood panelled walls (made from unprocessed large wooden palets) etc. We loved the food. If they can’t get certain fishes fresh they won’t have them on there menu (marketplace) which I actually quite like. We had an amazing tender juicy halibut filet with a subtile citrus sauce, amazing gamba’s and a great wild mushroom salad. I will definitely be back to try more fish! Rozengracht 133, Amsterdam | +3120 334 5136 | Tram: 1, 2, 13, 14, 17 (Westermarkt) 1,2, 3, 12 (de Clerqstraat) | Website | €€€
pesca amsterdam

Dishoom King’s Cross | London

dishoom kings cross

Dishoom is a funky Indian restaurant group that I have become to love. What a concept! This post is about Dishoom King’s Cross where I + 5 friends had an amazing evening last weekend. We sat on one of their round tables and had mouthwatering food handed to us. The food is just crazy good and fresh and for me nice to try something different for a change. Ever been to Bombay? The Dishoom Group will make you feel like you are in the middle of buzzing Bombay (have to be honest here that I have never been to Bombay… but I am going now really soon because of Dishoom ;-)). The styling is just gorgeous. Funky tiles, cozy dining booths, cool industrial details and lighting, retro furniture and so on. Dishoom is big, spacious but cozy and also perfect for after work drinks or group dinners.  5 Stable Street, London N1C 4AB | +4420 7420 9321 | Tube: King’s Cross St. Pancras | Website


West Thirty Six | London

West Thirty Six
Golborne Road…. The place to be in 2015 if you ask me! New trendy original places are popping up like daffodils in spring! The roof terrace of this four story bar / restaurant overlooks the railway tracks and for some reason I think this gives an edgy feel to the place being on the dodgy end of Golborne Road. The place looks fantastic. Very stylish cosy interior and a perfect meeting place for a drink with friends or grab some food. I do think the food is too expensive but I would still go back for the whole experience, their amazing cocktails, roof terrace with heaters and stylish decor. Loved the Lobster! They also have spaces available for private dinner parties apparently…36 Golborne Rd, London | +4420 3752 0530 | Tube: Westbourne Park or Ladbroke Grove | Website | £££


North Audley Cantine (N.A.C) London

n.a.c. londonnac london
Completely excited about this relatively new restaurant in Mayfair. Just a few steps away from Roka Mayfair actually (very different food, atmosphere and price range though!) This is a great French Bistro restaurant to go to for lunch during business hours but it looks so good that I think it will probably also be really nice in the evenings or for drinks in the afternoon. The interior style is contemporary and industrial with very cool light fixtures and it looks light and fresh during the day. I Loved their tableware so much that I now have the same tableware at home and I also found their salads original and fresh.
In their basement they have a very cool looking cocktail bar. 41 North Audley Street, London | Tube: Bond Street | +4420 7493 3443 | ££ |Website

Barnyard | London

On Charlotte Street (one of my favourite streets in London) is this cute, simple, raw restaurant where I had a good dinner a few weeks back. This would be a place I pick for a dinner on a weekday. Not quite fancy enough for a Friday Night perhaps but still a great spot for dinner with some friends. Charlotte Street is a great hang out so always good to have a few options. The restaurant is tiny with some tables outside on the pavement, some seats at the bar, seats on high stools at high tables and upstairs 6 or so tables squeezed into a small space. It seems like a big trend the past few years in London but also this place has the sharing dishes idea. London would not be a great place for Joey Tribbiani (from Friends – who does NOT SHARE food) The interior is a combination of wood and metal. The only thing I did not like about this place was the charcuterie platter we got (for 2 people); 3 pieces of meat that did not even taste well so I would not necessarily order that. If you want a great charcuterie platter to start you evening with you better go across the street to Vagabond.  18 Charlotte St, Fitzrovia, London | ££ | Tube: Goodge Street | +442075803842 | No Booking Policy | Website

Cafe Lennep | Amsterdam

Cafe Lennep

Great place in a great city and exactly the kind of place I love. Cafe Lennep is a brown cafe with an industrial twist and reminded me a lot of New York; Brick walls, industrial lamps, wooden tables, high stools and candles. The cafe is quite spacious and they have tables outside so the place is a good option if the weather is nice. To start the evening we had a draugt beer (I choose B.Z.B… really good) and a sharing platter. Best sharing platter I had in long time. We were sitting at the bar next to the chicken grill so I obviously had to pick Poussin as my main dish… Didn’t regret that either. The Poussin was juicy and tender and so was my friends Rib-eye. On top of all this I found the staff super nice and friendly.
For the not-live-in-Amsterdam readers of our blog the restaurant is located in Oud West which has a lot of nice pubs and restaurants. Jacob van Lennepkade 334, Amsterdam | Tel: +31 20 233 5201 | Tram 1 (Jan Pieter Heijestraat/Kinkerstraat, 7, 17 (Jan Pieter Heijestraat/Overtoom) | Website

Social Eating House | London

This place has got everything for a great Friday/Saturday night out in Soho! Great food, great location, great dark & vintage decor, great prices… It was launched by the people behind the Pollen Street Social and Little Pollen so you know you’re in good hands food-wise. I feel as though this new venture has a more laid back attitude compared to the others without compromising so much on the fresh British style menu. I suggest to book a table at the restaurant in advance, especially for a weekend spot as it gets booked up quickly. Start your evening at the Blind Pig bar upstairs, get the ‘Dill or no dill’ cocktail and you’re all set for a perfect evening. Oh, and the basement has a hidden ‘employees only’ space for 15 people if you’re looking for a private dinner party venue. 58 Poland Street | 02079933251 | Tube: Oxford Circus | Website | £££

Talkhouse Coffee | London | NOW CLOSED DOWN :-(

Talkhouse Coffee
This place is located on Portobello Road and perfect for tea and coffee lovers! It is incredibly minimalistic. Scandinavian minimalistic. You would almost think they are not done decorating the place. I want to mention Talkhouse Coffee because I know how nice it is to find a place where you can quietly enjoy a book or do some work when you don’t have any friends to join you (me and my about to pop pregnancy belly have an occasional alone lunch or coffee when I am bored to bits) You are offered tap water without asking and my tea was prepared with love; I got my own little teapot with extra hot water in a thermos flask to top up the water. Anyway, I also noticed other ‘on their own people’ eating some really good looking salads and there are some delicious pastries / cakes etc on display to tempt any sugar addict like me so perfect for lunch, breakfast or over indulgence sugar cravings too! I will be back this week for a little caffeine (and sugar!) and report back! 275 Portobello Rd, London | +4420 7221 8992 | Tube: Ladbroke Grove | ££ | Website

The Chicken Shop | London

The Chicken Shop Kentish Town
I never really come in Kentish Town but now that I have discovered this place I will definitely be back for more because the chicken they serve is to die for! The meat is juicy and moist with a crispy skin.. In other words heavenly… The chicken comes with simple side dishes of your choice like corn on the cob (love…), lettuce with avocado or (and in our case) chips. The restaurant is located beneath the third Pizza East that I know of in London (see our posts about Pizza East Shoreditch and Notting Hill)  You can have a drink at their bar whilst waiting for your table downstairs in the Chicken Shop. If worst comes to worst you could have dinner here instead but I prefer the Chicken Shop because their chicken is just too good to miss out on.  The interior is perfect for a romantic date but also to go to with friends. It is almost ski hut kind of cozy with low wooden ceilings, dim lights and a large wooden open kitchen / counter. They mixed the ski hut look with industrial American diner look which works perfectly. Last but not least; do NOT leave before having tried their home baked apple pie… It is SO insanely delicious! 79 Highgate Rd, London |+44 20 3310 2020 | Tube: right in between Gospel Oak / Kentish Town and Tufnell Park | ££ | Website | Map

Houston Hall | NYC


Houston Hall drinks NYC

My 2 favourite New Yorkers took me to this place and I absolutely loved it. It’s basically a new Beergarden style place in the middle of the West Village. It must have been an old garage before, it’s huge! In any case, they’ve made it look really cool, and it keeps me coming back for more. The vibe is easy. Everyone shares long tables with each other, and they show sports on Sunday afternoon. We enjoyed the Bloody Mary’s so much we basically finished the entire supply. I suspect it may have something to do with the little bits of cheese and olives they add to them. So good! Alternatively you could opt for GIANT beers. Foodwise, the Pot Stickers are delicious. This place is great for after dinner drinks or as an all day hangout. 222 W Houston St (between Bedford St & Varick St) | West Village | (212) 675-9323 | Website | $$