Jan 27, 2011

London Cheap Eats: Gallipolli

This one is maybe not the best Turkish food in the region (it's Stokey, that's a tall order), but it's probably the cutest. Ambiance is lacking at the more traditional places.

The location is perfect, right on Upper St., and the decoration, with all the lamps hanging from the ceiling, really sets the mood. Great for a date.

The Iskender, yoghurt, lamb, pitta, "special sauce" is great, the hoummous is also good. The tarama was a little dreck, I'm afraid.

They also only serve an obscure Turkish beer, which is rubbish, however authentic....

But all in all a cute little spot for an unpretentious dinner, and bonus points for ambiance..

The "Gallipolli" family comprises of three restaurants/bars on Upper Street, I prefer Bazaar.

107 Upper St, London, N1 1QP,
020 7226 53 33


London Breakfasts: Gastro in Clapham

Well, I'll refrain from sharing what I was doing having breakfast on the other side of the city. But I did wake up in great spirits, and had the most lovely little breakfast.

Actually, this is a cute cute little french joint I quite enjoy. The prices are decent, the atmosphere is truly French, not snotty "international cuisine" French, but homely "cafe du coin" French. The croque-madame was a treat, and where else can you get your coffee in a bowl in London?

This is also a good place to come for dinner, they do a great bavette with bearnaise.

I'll miss Clapham, the park is lovely. Oh well, we'll always have Paris.

67 Venn Street,

London Contemporary Art Fair

Here are some pics from the art fair this weekend. It was a really great opportunity to see all the galleries gathered together, and to kind of get a feel for the direction of each, something we seldom get to reflect upon when visiting individual shows.

I must confess I also quite enjoyed knowing the price of everything, it just made palpable the subjective alchemy of valuing art, which always fascinates me.


Jan 26, 2011

Best London IPhone Apps

Ok. I have a problem. I'm completely addicted to my IPhone. It's not entirely healthy. On the other hand, I'm also addicted to red wine and I've never really gotten wasted on angry birds so all in all it's been positive.Wait. I've been late to meetings playing angry birds. Ok. I have a problem.

But really, the IPhone has some amazing tools for making your way around London. Here are some of the essentials:

1. OpenTable: lets you book a truckload of restaurants online.

2. Travel Deluxe: does what it says on t he tin. gives you the best travel itineraries on public transport, and shows you all the bus routes on google maps. which is awesome. and everybody knows that, after the bike, the real way to get around in London is on the bus. you sit on top. you see the sights. it's nice.

3. AroundMe: locates all the amenities, like cash points, pharmacies and stuff in the vicinity. real nifty.

4. TimeOut: it's kind of rubbish sometimes, but it does let you quickly find exhibitions, films and things to do around the city. and it's free. we like that.
5. Addison Lee: ESSENTIAL. get a trusted minicab home anywhere in the city, any time of the day or night.

6. Flixster: all films, reviews, showtimes. also free.

those are all amazing. i strongly recommend, and they're all rather cheap. there's some travel guide like things as well, but they're really expensive and not so useful. these are all free, or cost less than a pound.

of course you still need angry birds for the bus rides and what not.

Jan 18, 2011

Contemporary Art Stroll

This first weekend back in London beckoned for some ferocious cultural activity, and Gauguin at the Tate was just not going to cut "le Dijon". Give us some hype, some shock, some Brit grit!

Well, arguably anything showing at White Cube in Mason's Yard is already on the wrong side of avant-guarde (apres-guarde?), but Gilbert and George still do pack a punch. Their new show is made up of craftily amalgamated postcards, the cute "Greetings from the Old Smoke" kind, as well as the spurious, "Me love you long time" kind. The latter were picked up along our famous red phone booths. All good kinky fun, and there is a visual rhythm of sorts to the assembled lot.

I then ventured past the most psychedelic window displays of Fortnum and Mason, into Dover Street, past the Acne and Yamamoto sales (was with boys, acting very artsy and unattached, must return with my good friend American Express, note to self!).

At Spruth Magers, a little gem of a palate cleanser with the new show from Cindy Sherman, all decked out in a King Arthur meets South Florida retirement home get up. The show was rather small, but it was great to see Ms. Sherman work the printed on wall photography thing, in quite large format. I guess if you're not familiar with her work, it's easy to miss the point, so have a wiki before you head, yeah?

Washed off all the culture with a fat burger and a pint in a seedy pub off Carnaby St. "London Grim(y) Eats". Damn I missed this city.


Cindy Sherman, until February 19
Sprüth Magers London
7A Grafton Street

Gilbert and George, until February 19
White Cube
25 Mason's Yard,

Fish Fight

Now for some not so cool foodie news. I guess we all know by now what predatory fishing is doing to our oceans. In the North Sea, 50% of all fish is caught and thrown back dead into the water because it has insufficient commercial value.

A program aired on Channel 4 this week has however had a huge effect on fish sales in UK supermarkets already, with more sustainable species flying off the shelves.

I'm adding the little widget for the campaign here, with a petition signed already by 550,000 people, to try to get fisheries to change their practices.

Sardines and mackerel, not so shabby....

Jan 13, 2011

London Art Fair

Well hello blog. Long time no see. I've been living it up on the hyped shores of Bali, you see. No time for pesky little blogs like yourself on my holiday.

Now, now. Don't make such a fuss. I'm a fickle master, but I can be fun (on occasion).

I'm going to kick things off for the year with the London Art Fair, happening next week, 19 to 23 of January, in Islington.

This is the largest British art fair, and as it enters into its 23rd edition, we can expect to encounter over 100 galleries pluggin their stuff to over 23000 visitors.

Tickets are available online, at the fair's website:


It's on Upper Street, so afterwards you can hit The Afghan Kitchen, a little gem that is sure to feature soon enough on the London Cheap Eats section...

See? All better now.


London Art Fair
Business Design Centre, 52 Upper Street, London N1

The Afghan Kitchen
35 Islington Green