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Openings & Launches

Big Fernand: the hamburgé is coming to get you

You’ve tried the hamburger so now it’s time for the hamburgé! The Gallic twist on the US burger is crossing the channel and installing itself in Fitzrovia’s Percy Street next month. Much as we love a good ole burger, they’ve never been particularly chic but Big Fernand is set to change all that bringing the bistro to the burger with super-fast service, quirky vibe and oodles of Parisian savoir faire. The new venue promises to take the American classic and blend it with a ‘grand’ helping of French gastronomy. We’re talking artisan buns – made in London to a French […]

Restaurants, Pubs & Food

The Porridge Café Pop-Up

What’s not to love about porridge? It’s healthy for you (it’s all about the slow releasing energy), it’s basically a duvet day in a bowl when you eat it on a rainy morning and the ways in which you can pimp it up are officially endless – we’re all about coconut and Greek yoghurt at the moment. And launching next month is The Porridge Café Pop-up on Paul Street which will be serving up big old bowls of porridge goodness 7am – 6pm, 7 days a week. There will be 11 grains to choose from including buckwheat and quinoa, coconut, […]

Openings & Launches

The Handbook Meets…Mark Hix

Celebrated chef, restaurateur and food writer Mark Hix is known for his original take on British gastronomy. After 17 years as Chef Director at Caprice Holdings, he opened his first restaurant in 2008 – the distinguished HIX Oyster & Chop House in Smithfield, and has since opened a further seven, establishments including HIX at Browns Hotel, the chicken and steak concept restaurants ‘Tramshed’ in Shoreditch, Hixter Bankside, which opened July 2014. The Handbook caught up with him to talk about unusual ingredients, rivalry and food predictions. What led you to wanting to become a chef? I sort of fell into cooking. My grandparents brought me […]

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On September 3rd 2019 the award-winning Staycity Aparthotels opened its first ever resort-style property in France, Paris Marne La Vallée – just five minutes from Disneyland® Paris.

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Openings & Launches

East London’s First Raw Bar

It was once The Richmond Arms pub, it’s also been a rather strongly themed Egyptian restaurant, but now the venue on the Dalston, Haggerston and London Fields intersection is reopening as The Richmond next month. Owners Margaret Crow and Brett Redman have been working on it for over a year to transform it into an inviting neighbourhood restaurant, definitely less of the Egyptian look going on, thankfully. If you recognise Brett’s name it’s because he is the chef and restaurateur behind the three time Michelin Bib Goumand winning venture, Elliot’s in Borough Market – so he knows a thing or […]

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Openings & Launches

The Hampton Court Palace Wedding Fair

We’ve had the flurry of engagements at Christmas and wedding season starts in a few months, so now is the time to start planning. Because believe it or not there is quite a lot to think about a wedding (who’d have thought?) there is the cake, the dress, the flowers, the napkins, decorations and that’s even before the downright nerve -wracking experience of who to ask to be your best man/ maid of honour. Well Hampton Court Palace is here to give a helping hand with the return of their wedding fair on the 22nd February. Taking place in the […]

Openings & Launches

The Ivy Chelsea Garden To Open

They say things come in threes: buses, potential suitors, bad luck (the last two a coincidence perhaps?) and now a third Ivy restaurant  from Caprice Holdings.  Following on from the launch of The Ivy Market Grill last year, they are opening their third venue, The Ivy Chelsea Garden on the Kings Road. So we admit we aren’t quite ready for alfresco dining, but when we are and when it opens (which is scheduled for the 30th March) then The Ivy Chelsea Garden is straight where we are heading to. There is a whole smorgasbord (don’t you just love that word) of […]

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Openings & Launches

The Daily Grind

There was a time when you would wake up and smell the coffee at Grind & Co, just the coffee. Then you could smell the coffee with a blend of martini as they nailed the perfect espresso martini.  Now however you will wake up smell the coffee and the eggs, because there is a new Grind & Co in town and it’s doing food. Hurrah. Joining the other Grinds in Soho, Holborn and Shoreditch is London Grind at London Bridge and they’re going to be serving locally sourced food through right throughout the day. Breakfasts will include poached eggs with […]

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Restaurants, Pubs & Food

Our Guide to… Getting Battered

No not that kind of battered, you don’t need a guide on where to get drunk. We’re talking pancake batter, obviously. Flip them, toss them, roll them in sugar or drown them in chocolate – pancakes are a wondrous thing. Yes, we may eat them more times than we care to admit when it comes to the weekend, but there is still something extra special about Pancake day/Shrove Tuesday/Fat Tuesday. As ever London has stepped up to the occasion: eating challenge, insane creations and unique flavours, here are some of the best places to get well and truly (pancake) battered: […]

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Restaurants, Pubs & Food

Our Guide to… Getting Battered

No not that kind of battered, you don’t need a guide on where to get drunk. We’re talking pancake batter, obviously. Flip them, toss them, roll them in sugar or drown them in chocolate – pancakes are a wondrous thing. Yes, we may eat them more times than we care to admit when it comes to the weekend, but there is still something extra special about Pancake day/Shrove Tuesday/Fat Tuesday. As ever London has stepped up to the occasion: eating challenge, insane creations and unique flavours, here are some of the best places to get well and truly (pancake) battered: […]

Restaurants, Pubs & Food

Shikumen Launches

Shikumen, a new affordable Chinese fine-dining restaurant, has slowly been opening its doors to the public since its opening a few months ago at The Dorsett Hotel on Shepherd’s Bush Green. The name Shikumen is so called after the traditional Shanghai stone house architecture of the 1940s that blended east and west which is reflected in the restaurant’s style. The Handbook popped down to see it for oursevles and found the whole experience was very authentic from the interior design, to the other guests and of course the food, which was aesthetically well-presented and consistent throughout the evening. In the […]

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Openings & Launches

A Dog Opens A Restaurant

We follow them on Twitter, look at their photos on Instagram, like them more than most of our friends, get overly emotional when they do something adorable/funny/brave and now we drink at their bars.  No we’re not talking about celebrities, we’re talking about dogs. That’s right, a bar with a dog at its helm. Well ok maybe that’s a slight exaggeration, he isn’t actually pouring the drinks – we hear it’s the lack of opposable thumbs, but he has given his name to the venture and his seal of approval. Meet Teddy the Chow Chow and his new cocktail bar […]

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Openings & Launches

Bonhams: Launches its 1st restaurant

Mayfair auction house Bonhams is launching its first restaurant this month with Tom Kemble (Hedone in West London and Faviken in northern Sweden) as head chef whose pared back, modern European menu fusing French technique with British, Italian and Scandinavian produce, will be served alongside a wine list overseen by two Masters of Wine – a first for London. The restaurant, is split over two floors, with a wine bar on ground level, intimate dining room on the first floor and plenty of art on the walls. Initially just open for breakfast and lunch you can start the day with […]

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