The Handbook
The Handbook

We’re on the final countdown until retail and hospitality can open up once again and we cannot wait. To help you fill your weekend with fun activities until then, we’ve compiled a list of the eight best things to do in and around the city and at home. 

From mixology masterclasses to food festivals, here’s how to spend this weekend.

Take part in this interactive art trail 

While we patiently wait for art galleries and exhibitions to reopen, catch twelve of the world’s finest modern artists in person at London’s largest outdoor gallery – Wander Art. 

Spread over the neighbourhoods of Mayfair and Belgravia, Wander Art is an interactive art trail that allows Londoners, passersby and visitors to explore London in a fun and invigorating way. Running until September, stroll along and uncover vibrant installations from Margaux Carpentier, Fernando Laposse, Yinka Ilori and Richard Woods. 

When? Running until September 2021
Follow the trail at mayfairandbelgravia.com

Check out Covent Garden’s rotating food festival 

We love a food festival at The Handbook, so when we heard that Covent Garden was set to have a six week pop-up residency launching on the Piazza this weekend, we let out an audible yelp in celebration. 

Launching 8th April, the pop-up is from the event planning platform and street food purveyors, Feast It and will see a changing roster of some of the UK’s best street food stalls. New and up-and-coming street food concepts will pop-up weekly. Expect to see the likes of The Barrow, Milktree Vegan Gelato, Bubble Bros, Hermanos Tacos House and Kuka Coffee.

Alongside the food festival will be Covent Garden’s epic alfresco dining scheme. Over 500 additional new seats are set to spring up across more than 25 restaurants along the Piazza and streets surrounding, from 12th April.

When? Running for six weeks from 8th April
www.coventgarden.london

Enjoy live music from Benjamin Grosvenor in your living room 

Let Benjamin Grosvenor soundtrack your Saturday evening as he performs live from the Barbican. 

One of Britain’s most musically talented pianists, Benjamin will be performing his romantic piano set this Saturday. Let your imagination free as he paints Ravel’s musical pictures of siren-voiced water nymphs and skittish goblins scuttling across rooftops.

The perfect soundtrack to have on in the background of your outdoor dinner party with your household or for enjoying alone, captivated by Benjamin’s talent.

When? Saturday 10th April, 8pm
Book your spot at barbican.org.uk

Mix up this heavenly strawberry smash cocktail

While we spend our last weekend at home before restaurants and bars reopen for outdoor dining, why not mix up one last cocktail to remember? Here we invite you to try this heavenly strawberry smash cocktail, made with Sipsmith London’s new gin formula that nods to Wimbledon season. It’s sweet, fruity and delicious. Definitely one to file away for Wimbledon season too.

Ingredients:

40ml Strawberry Smash Gin
10ml Dry Vermouth
20ml Lemon Juice
10ml Sugar Syrup
3 Fresh Strawberries
1 Egg White (or vegan alternative)
Black Pepper

Method:

1. Add all of the ingredients into a cocktail shaker and shake
2. Add ice and shake again and then strain into a chilled coupette
3. Finish with a fresh strawberry and crack of black pepper to garnish

Recipe courtesy of Sipsmith London

Take part in a cookery class with two-Michelin Star chef Claude Bosi 

One for the film and food fanatics, this Sunday S.Pellegrino invites you to join two-Michelin Star chef Claude Bosi for a free, live Waitrose Cookery School virtual masterclass, where you’ll whip up one of his signature dishes: Cod à La Grenobloise and Roasted Cauliflower à La Grenobloise for a vegetarian option.

The French chef, renowned for his Michelin-starred modern French restaurant, Claude Bosi at Bibendum, will take to the virtual stage helping you cook up a storm at home. Hosted by Waitrose Cookery School chef Andrew Roberts, the class will be approximately one hour and will see you fuelled ready for the EE British Academy Film Awards which will broadcast on BBC One at 7pm the same evening. 

Master fine cuisine at home in under an hour. Book your free spot now and prepare ahead with the online shopping list.

When? Sunday 11th April, 5-6pm
Book your spot at experiences.johnlewis.com

Take part in one of these outdoor activities 

On the search for things to do now you can meet up with your pals outside? We’ve rounded up the best eight outdoor activities that you can do with six or less people. 

The ‘Rule of Six’ has returned and we can now meet up with five other people as long as we’re outdoors. From picnics to boating, paddle boarding to barbecuing, there are several fun activities you can do in groups of six this month. Here are our favourites…

Watch Netflix’s latest superhero comedy, Thunder Force 

Ever wanted to become a superhero? While you might have daydreams of getting bitten by a spider like Peter Parker or follow in Captain America’s footsteps and get injected with super-soldier serum, it’s an unlikely cycle that you’ll get picked. But not in Thunder Force.

Here two childhood best friends reconnect as a hilarious crime-fighting duo after one of them invents a formula that enables ordinary people to curiously get superpowers. Starring Melissa McCarthy and Octavia Spencer, expect one wild, comedy-led ride.

Release Date: Friday 9th April
Stream it on Netflix

Listen to our album of the week, Taylor Swift – Fearless (Taylor’s Version) 

Before you judge this inclusion, hear me out… Say what you will about Taylor Swift, but there’s no denying she’s a brilliant songwriter. Bursting with emotion, curiosity and imagination, her songs are a love letter to herself, not others. 

Having released two killer albums, Folklore and Evermore last year with the help of The National’s Aaron Dessner and Bryce Dessner, and singer-songwriter and producer Jack Antonoff, Taylor decided to then use her time re-recording her previous albums, starting with Fearless.

If you’re wondering why she’s chosen to re-record her first six albums, Taylor has confirmed that it’s to gain artistic, as well as financial control over her work, which was sold by her former record label. Now, her first re-release will be Fearless this Friday, featuring classic heartbreakers and duetting harmonies from Keith Urban. Plus, there are six (yes, six!) new songs that will be joining the line-up that didn’t originally make the cut and have been re-recorded.

And as an OG closeted Taylor fan, I’m extremely excited for this release…

Release Date: Friday 9th April
Listen on Spotify


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