Restaurant Reviews

Restaurant Reviews

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Fed up with celebrity chefs drizzling sauces over undercooked pieces of meat? I am!

I regularly dine out and am happy to share my restaurant experiences, and views on food, with you.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Bad Food Award

Bad Food Award

The Consumers International World Congress is meeting in Sydney this week, and will present on Tuesday its Bad Products Awards.

Quote:

"The 'awards' will be given to leading brand companies guilty of high profile examples of irresponsible behaviour."

Those companies that market products high in sugar and salt had best beware.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Happy Birthday

Happy Birthday

Happy birthday to that eponymous British dish (that claims to be Indian) Chicken Tikka Masala, which celebrates 60 years this month.

It is the UK's most popular dish, according to Food Service Intelligence.

It represents 25% of the total turnover of £2.5BN of all the 9000 "curry houses" in the UK. In another staggering statistic the organisers of the National Curry Week have estimated that if all the portions of chicken tikka masala consumed annually in the UK were stacked on top of one another, they would form a tower 2770 times taller than the Greenwich Millennium Dome.

The origin of this peculiar hybrid dish is rumoured to be one of the first Bangladeshi restaurants that opened in Britain in the 1940s. A customer was disappointed to find that his Chicken Tikka was "dry", as it was meant to be. He therefore asked for some gravy, the chef opened a can of tomato soup and poured that over it.

Result?

The birth of a new dish, the rest is history.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Greed

Greed

It is regrettable to see that some pubs are jumping in on the "gastro pub" bandwagon and attempting to pass of very mediocre food as "gastro", whilst charging top prices for it.

The price of pub food has now "soared" to an average £20 for a two-course lunch and glass of wine, according to the Good Pub Guide.

The guide lists about 5,000 UK pubs and is based on reports from more than 2,000 pub-goers, plus anonymous visits from its editors.

Seemingly some pubs are charging over £10 for a rather pathetic steak and kidney pie. The guide concludes that pubs are overcharging customers by about 67% for food.

I am a firm believer in "what goes around, comes around". Customers will not tolerate being ripped off with poor quality shit, and will vote with their feet by going elsewhere.

The pubs that try to rip people off in this manner deserve to go out of business.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Compulsory UHT?

Compulsory UHT?

A row has broken out over media reports that the government was going to force people to drink UHT (a most disgusting and foul tasting product) in place of fresh milk, so as to cut down on carbon emissions (UHT uses less energy to store).

The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) has rushed to deny the press reports:

"Defra has been working in close collaboration with all parts of the dairy supply chain to look at ways to reduce the environmental impact of dairy production and consumption, including greenhouse gas emissions.

The paper referred to was drawn up to stimulate discussion - it does not represent government policy and was never intended to.

The government is not and will not be telling people what kind of milk to drink, people need to make their own decisions
."

It sounds to me as though the leak was designed to test public reaction, the reaction being so vehemently negative Defra was forced to rush out the denial.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Ramsay Rated by Michelin

Ramsay Rated by Michelin

Gordon Ramsay has become one of the two most Michelin starred chefs in the world, after his New York restaurant (Gordon Ramsay at the London) was awarded two stars in its first year.

This is a welcome change of fortune for the restaurant, which received poor reviews when it opened earlier this year. There have also been reports of arguments between the restaurant's staff over tips, and neighbours of restaurant complained about noise and other irritations.

The 2008 Michelin guide awarded the London two stars, signifying "excellent cuisine, worth a detour", it praised its consistency in food and service and singled out its seven-course Menu Prestige.

Ramsay now has 11 Michelin stars.

Monday, October 08, 2007

Jamie's Authentic Italian

Jamie's Authentic Italian

Celebrity chef Jamie Oliver has announced that he will create a chain of Italian restaurants across Britain. The first branch of "Jamie's Italian" will open in Bath next year. He is planning to create a chain of up to 40 across Britain.

The aim is to prepare "rustic Italian" cuisine. All pasta will be freshly made on site, and the bread will be baked daily by artisan bakers.

The mission of the chain is to create a "fast, urban casual dining" experience.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Irish Coffees

Irish Coffees

Those of you with a penchant for Irish coffees, as I do, could do a lot worse than pay a visit to Mae Ping a Thai restaurant in Croydon.

The preparation of the coffee is a most enjoyable performance to watch, as the waiter brings a trolley to your table and then begins the show.

-The rim of the glass is dipped in liqueur and then in sugar

-A small stove on the trolley is lit, and the sugar caramelised in the flame

-Whisky is flamed in a ladle and poured, with a flourish, into the glass

-A coffee liqueur is then flamed and poured

-After which the coffee itself is poured

-Finally the cream added

I would hasten to add that the Irish coffee looks, and tastes as good, as the performance leading up to it.

Therefore Mae Ping is worth visiting for the Irish coffees alone. The food, atmosphere and service are also good!

Mae Ping
16-18 South End
Croydon
0208 760 0278

Monday, October 01, 2007

The World's Largest Salad

The World's Largest Salad

Pulpi, in the Almeria province of Spain has entered the record books for having tossed the world's largest salad.

It contained 6,700kg of vegetables, and took 20 chefs over three hours to prepare it.

The salad was prepared in a container 18m (59ft) long and 4.8m (15.7ft) wide.

The salad was distributed to restaurants in Pulpi, to provide free to their clients, Mr Navarro told reporters.