Lifestyle

Restaurants, Pubs & Food

Pop Up Opium Den in Mayfair

Imagine yourself in the basement of a Chinese laundry, surrounded by a heady cloud of opium and slumped bodies inhaling vapour from pipes. Now image a legal and more civilised present-day scenario and you have yourself ‘The Blue Lotus’ Opium Den, a four-day event by award-winning immersive pop-up event planners. The Chinese brought opium over to the States with them during the California Gold Rush, resulting in numerous dens popping up across San Francisco’s Chinatown. Back then the clientele varied, with some dens hugely opulent with others seedy and basic. Despite their underground popularity, huge bonfires in the city destroyed confiscated […]

Reviews

Morden & Lea Review: What We Thought

Following on from being Chef Director at The Strand Dining Rooms, Mark Sargeant has recently opened his first central restaurant, Morden & Lea on Wardour Street and so of course The Handbook had to go and check it out.  Split across two levels, the restaurant caters for those looking for a more formal evening and those like us who just wanted to snack on a little (or in our case, a lot) after an evening of drinks. The downstairs restaurant is kept simple, dark blue leather banquettes, small tables and calm, light grey walls adorned with an eclectic mix of […]

Reviews

Morden & Lea Review: What We Thought

Following on from being Chef Director at The Strand Dining Rooms, Mark Sargeant has recently opened his first central restaurant, Morden & Lea on Wardour Street and so of course The Handbook had to go and check it out.  Split across two levels, the restaurant caters for those looking for a more formal evening and those like us who just wanted to snack on a little (or in our case, a lot) after an evening of drinks. The downstairs restaurant is kept simple, dark blue leather banquettes, small tables and calm, light grey walls adorned with an eclectic mix of […]

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Restaurants, Pubs & Food

Sold Out Theatre Shows: Your Way In

Benedict Cumberbatch’s stint in the West End has received critical acclaim as well as sold out shows and queues 50 long on the pavement each morning. With people camping out on the pavement daily you could be forgiven for thinking there is a new Apple launch in town. Not quite – these thespians are hoping to get their hands on a precious ticket to see Benedict Cumberbatch in the critically acclaimed ‘Hamlet’ which has completely sold out. With tickets now fetching hundreds online and in ‘discount’ stalls all over central London we have some good news; The Handbook’s Offer section […]

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Reviews

Homeslice Fitzrovia Review- What We Thought

Remember when we told you about the opening of Homeslice in Fitzrovia? Well finding ourselves in need of a cure to a miserable Wednesday we decided to head over to Wells Street to gorge ourselves on 20” pizzas and prosecco…as you do. Walking up from Oxford Street I thought I had missed Homeslice it’s quite a long way down Wells Street, but there it was, the awning and neon pizza sign welcoming Londoners in from the rain. With Neal’s Yard being as successful as it is, they’ve kept the formula pretty much the same, great music, drinks on tap and […]

Reviews

Homeslice Fitzrovia Review- What We Thought

Remember when we told you about the opening of Homeslice in Fitzrovia? Well finding ourselves in need of a cure to a miserable Wednesday we decided to head over to Wells Street to gorge ourselves on 20” pizzas and prosecco…as you do. Walking up from Oxford Street I thought I had missed Homeslice it’s quite a long way down Wells Street, but there it was, the awning and neon pizza sign welcoming Londoners in from the rain. With Neal’s Yard being as successful as it is, they’ve kept the formula pretty much the same, great music, drinks on tap and […]

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Restaurants, Pubs & Food

Flavour-altering Pop-Up Cafe

Do you eat all the fruit in the bottom of a glass of Pimm’s but leave the bitter lemon because even the thought of eating it makes you wince? We do. An exciting culinary experiment is taking place where nothing is quite as it seems. Sour will taste sweet in a venture that sounds very Heston Blumenthal-esque; we are slightly expecting clouds of smoke and flying doves when we visit The Attendant. Sound familiar? You probably know of The Attendant as London’s most unusual cafe. A converted Victorian public toilet down steps in the heart of Fitzrovia, The Attendant’s latest […]

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Openings & Launches

Nanban Lands in Brixton

We always love to see when a pop-up or street food stall is so successful it can take up permanent residence and that is happening again this month as Tim Anderson’s Nanban settle in Brixton. Opening on the 25th September the restaurant on Coldharbour Lane is found in a building that was the former home of a pie and eel shop and many of the original features have been restored; there is an arched picture window, brickwork, dark hardwood panelling and a red and white terrazzo floor.  Being a combination of an izakaya and ramen shop the restaurant will offer […]

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News

Top 5 Spiciest Places to Eat in London

Sharp tongued is a thing but how about rubber tongued? The expression, just created by me, sums up some people’s ability to consume incredibly hot foods without so much as a moistened forehead. Now if the words “scoville rating” gets your heart racing for all the right reasons then make sure you get working through our guide of the spiciest places to eat in London.

Restaurants, Pubs & Food

Top 5 Spiciest Places to Eat in London

Sharp tongued is a thing but how about rubber tongued? The expression, just created by me, sums up some people’s ability to consume incredibly hot foods without so much as a moistened forehead. Now if the words “scoville rating” gets your heart racing for all the right reasons then make sure you get working through our guide of the spiciest places to eat in London.

Read more

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Openings & Launches

The Hour Glass Opens

In amongst all the superluxe hotels, the restaurants, the constantly new pop-ups and the slick bars, it seems as if pubs get a little lost amongst them and yet pubs have been an intrinsic part of London’s culture and history since the 17th century, back then there were more pubs in London than you can swing a stick at. Whilst pubs might be closing more than we’d like, a saviour is coming in the form of The Hour Glass, opening this month in South Kensington. First of all and most importantly this is not a gastropub – nope none of […]

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News

5 of the Best Doughnuts

Ever since the launch of Electric Diner and Donuts in Portobello doughnuts have  been at the forefront of Londoner’s sweet-led minds. Then came Nuno Mendes with his crab doughnuts at Chiltern Firehouse, which dominated the restaurant columns of summer 2014. Now, still sitting proud at the top of the foodie trend chain and seeing as we’ve pretty much passed bikini season, we’re giving you our round-up of the top 5 doughnuts in London:

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