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Archive for December, 2013

Restaurant Spy: House of Ho

If you think the London restaurant scene is slowing down for Christmas then think again dear friends. In fact you might have to undo another notch on that belt or buy an extra-large festive jumper so you can fit in another opening next month.

 

Our moles can reveal that Old London Town is playing host to The House of Ho from Bobby Chinn. This brand new restaurant is all ready to go on the 6th of January 2014.

 

Why not sneak in one more glug of sherry with that mince pie and head on down to Old Compton Street in the heart of Soho to get your eat on.

 

Born in New Zealand, Chinn has lived in numerous countries already from the USA to Vietnam. Chinn actually achieved a bachelor degree in finance and economics during his stay in the United States and was even a financer for a short period of time on Wall Street.

 

HouseOfHo_London

(c) zagat.com

 

In 1996, he then set up Restaurant Bobby Chinn and his television credits have included appearances on the Beeb’s Saturday Kitchen and Sunday Brunch on Channel 4 hosted by Simon Rimmer and Tim Lovejoy.

 

Modern Vietnamese is definitely the order of the day here with plenty of inspiration taken from Chinn’s experience in the Far East. Stretched over two decades, this has seen him work in a host of kitchens across the likes of not only Hanoi but Saigon.

 

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(c) destinasian.com

 

In addition, the Vietnamese cookery on display will no doubt enthral plenty of diners with a melange of both of authentic as well as adventurous grub. So what’s cooking over at the House of Ho?

 

You can chow down on signature dishes such as Smokey aubergine and crispy shallots served with a warm scallion vinaigrette not to mention a delicate apple-smoked pork belly, shredded confit duck banana blossom salad and an intriguing seafood ceviche for all those nautical fans.

 

old compton

(c) rightmove.com

 

Other culinary highlights include “Shaking Beef” and an oozy molton, arou chocolate cake. There is also an extensive wine selection which takes in a wealth of countries with around 60 bins to choose from.

 

Watch out for the range of sakes available, whilst you are sure to be stirred into a frenzy with the impressive cocktail list. Signature drinks feature the ‘Ho’rny Devil incorporating lemongrass vodka, Vietnamese Devil’s Chilli and fresh coconut for a taste of paradise.

 

lemongrass-vodka

(c) greenteadesign.com

 

This 90 seater joint is raring to go for the New Year with a 10 metre bar and oak wooden flooring to boot. It may be stormy and wet outside but you can always warm up at the delightful House of Ho.

 

Chinn up it could be worse!

 

 

 

 

Simon Lazarus is an experienced PR/Business Consultant and copywriter with a number of clients across different territories including the US, Europe, Asia, China and the Middle East. His vast portfolio includes writing content for a variety of sites on food and drink, travel, personal finance, news, showbiz, sport, technology and much more. He also advises businesses on strategies and marketing across different sectors

Focus On: Ski Season at Hush, Mayfair

With the holiday season in full swing and the treetops glistening, it’s time to go off piste in the capital. Get your snow boots and outfits ready as Hush in Mayfair is all set to unleash a wintry wonderland for its guests.

 

Tucked away in Lancashire Court in the heart of W1, mum is most definitely the word here. But can you keep the secret safe?

 

Launching at the beginning of 2014, you can head to the Alps without even stepping on a plane thanks to its après-ski courtyard.

 

As the ski season kicks off, it is certainly is the perfect time to introduce this powdery white palace. Our moles tell us that the courtyard will undergo a transformation like no other with a good bit of kitsch thrown in!

 

courtyard

(c) hush.co.uk

 

Just think sparkly lights not to mention retro skis and a host of sledges sitting side by side with cosy blankets and hot water bottles galore.

 

In addition, you can do your own Sound of Music impression if you like and really blend in with the locals.

 

But what’s cooking at this snug outdoor Alpine retreat? Hush guests can tuck into a number of different off piste delights from schnitzels and spaghetti to baked Vacherin Mont d’Or.

 

home-1_03

(c) hush.co.uk

 

For those drinks enthusiasts, why not slurp on one of their brand spanking new signature cocktails which features the Courchevel 1850. This comes straight to your table presented in a monogrammed hip flask.

 

But wait there’s so much more dear friends. Thanks to their dedicated ski season loyalty card you can pick up at Hush, you will have the ability to enjoy your seventh meal free of charge.

 

Of course this is on the condition you will pay a visit at least half a dozen times. The icing on the Christmas cake is they intend to whip up a batch of the priciest mulled wine in the world.

 

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(c) hush.co.uk

 

Well that’s the word on the street anyway. The Mayfair Mulled Wine as it is called is a steamy £50 a glass. Let’s just hope you have change from a ton.

 

Incorporating a glug of 2008 Château Grand Puy Ducasse, this particular mulled wine is the ideal pick me up this time of year.

 

Once this warm concoction envelops you like a warm fuzzy hug, feel the blend of cloves, bay leaves as well as anisette balls, cinnamon sticks organic goji berries and saffron.

 

Hang on to your ski hats though as they are also unveiling their ‘Classics in the Courtyard’ series. This will involve a host of ski based movies which will be shown across January.

 

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(c) hush.co.uk

 

Films you can hunker down to include ‘The Spy Who Loved Me’ and ‘Cool Runnings’ starring John Candy. So whichever way you intend to eradicate those post festive blues get yourself down to Lancashire Court from 2nd of January.

 

But remember…it’s all a bit hush hush.

 

 

 

Simon Lazarus is an experienced PR/Business Consultant and copywriter with a number of clients across different territories including the US, Europe, Asia, China and the Middle East. His vast portfolio includes writing content for a variety of sites on food and drink, travel, personal finance, news, showbiz, sport, technology and much more. He also advises businesses on strategies and marketing across different sectors

Focus On: Mark’s Bar at Selfridges

Fancy picking up a pair of brand spanking new shoes whilst enjoying a cocktail? Well now you can thanks to Mark’s Bar which has just opened up inside Selfridges, one of the most iconic department stores in the world.

 

So put on your best party hats and join the festivities this month. The motivation behind this particular setup is to celebrate the first anniversary of Selfridge’s all-embracing male shoe department.

 

No, you are most definately not seeing double as designer Lee Broom has been specially commissioned to open up Mark’s Bar on the first floor. Deemed as the smallest cocktail bar in the world, our moles tell us that it’s probably a shoe in for the title!

 

marks-bar-selfridges

(c) hospitality-interiors.net

 

This pop up watering hole is of course fronted by leading restaurateur Mark Hix who already has a restaurant behind Selfridge’s famous doors on the ground floor.

 

Inside you will find a diverse collection of contemporary furnishings, whilst the bar itself offers extreme portability meaning it can be shifted to any given location.

 

Marks Bar

(c) londonfashionweekend.co.uk

 

Pop ups are certainly all the rage in the capital but this special venue really has it all…bar none. The key elements only involve three basic parts, a sideboard not to mention a hostess trolley and a matching drawer set.

 

All of these have been made with loving care and affection thanks to some intricate design work exclusively produced in the United Kingdom.

 

In addition to this, nothing but the finest walnut wood has been utilised alongside a number of different brass works. The bar can also be seen as an individual furniture installation piece when it is not being used and sits together as an ideal one off component.

 

SONY DSC

(c) shoeholicsclub.com

 

Thirsty for more? It may be small in stature but this pop definately packs a punch. Choose from delights such as Hix Kix involving Morello cherry doused in Somerset eau de vie and finished with Nyetimber Classic Cuvée 2004 as well as Last Man Standing.

 

This little number incorporates Beefeater 24 London Dry gin, Antica Formula sweet vermouth and a dash of Campari.

 

Other drinks have taken their inspiration from shoemakers themselves with an intriguing Mocassin Martini featuring Belvedere vodka Kahlua coffee liqueur, white sugar syrup and espresso, a West Country Winkle Picker using Somerset cider brandy and a Dirty Old Boot Martini with green olives.

 

marks-bar-selfridges2

(c) hospitality-interiors.net

 

But wait there is more dear friends. Why not enjoy some tasty treats to go with those cocktails? Things kick off in style with Moons Green beer stix, whilst you can sample a sinful Ronnie’s chocolate cake and an aptly titled Coronation chicken slipper.

 

Looks like everyone will be having a Merry Hixmas this year.

 

 

 

 

Simon Lazarus is an experienced PR/Business Consultant and copywriter with a number of clients across different territories including the US, Europe, Asia, China and the Middle East. His vast portfolio includes writing content for a variety of sites on food and drink, travel, personal finance, news, showbiz, sport, technology and much more. He also advises businesses on strategies and marketing across different sectors

Focus On: Festive Films @ BFI Southbank

With a handful of shopping weeks until the big day, why not take things a little easier and join in the festive fun at BFI Southbank. You will no doubt see a twinkle in both kids and adults alike as this popular venue takes centre stage for a magnificent Christmas film fiesta.

 

Situated towards the south of Waterloo Bridge comprising of the main cultural hub along the iconic South Bank, there’s plenty to see and do in the local area. This includes a dizzying array of shops, bars and restaurants not to mention the River Thames in all its glory.

 

BFI has seen a number of different unique films over the years as well as an annual film festival all of its own. But that’s enough hogging the limelight for the time being.

 

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(c) wikimedia.org

 

Christmas at BFI Southbank is set to fill you with a warm glow all over and that’s before the mulled wine kicks in! Bask in some of the most nostalgic films of all time thanks to exclusive screenings featuring the likes of It’s A Wonderful Life.

 

There will also be a couple of modern classics thrown in for good measure thanks to Jim Henson as The Muppet Christmas Carol comes riding into Old London Town.

 

Annex - Stewart, James (It's a Wonderful Life)_01

(c) doctormacro.com

 

An ideal way to spend the afternoon or evening, It’s A Wonderful Life will no doubt capture the mood with not a Bah Humbug in sight.

 

It stars James Stewart who plays the role of a small town man who is paid a visit by a guardian angel after being swept up by despair before the Christmas period.

 

However, there are still more stocking fillers to tempt you down to SE1. Tim Burton’s A Nightmare Before Christmas is yet another Crimbo treat for BFI fans.

 

the-nightmare-before-christmas

(c) kaboooom.com

 

With the added benefit of glorious three dimensions, this particular film is brought to life on the silver screen by Jack Skellington, otherwise known as the King of Halloween Town.

 

Other spooktacular offerings includes the aptly titled Gothic Horror Season at BFI Southbank. Consisting of four main themes, it entails Monstrous, The Dark Arts, Haunted and Love is a Devil. Exploring these themes is certainly not for the feint hearted but what lies in store?

 

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(c) bfi.org.uk

 

It highlights a variety of intriguing sub-genres across more than 13 different programme selections. From the scintillating and thought provoking German Expressionism movement to the Universal Studios and Hammer Films, it seems Gothic is very much alive.

 

There are also a wealth of screenings taking place until January 2014, whilst Christmas at BFI Southbank officially runs until the 29th of December 2013. The nearest tube station is Waterloo.

 

Can you feel a sudden chill in the air!

 

 

 

 

 

Simon Lazarus is an experienced PR/Business Consultant and copywriter with a number of clients across different territories including the US, Europe, Asia, China and the Middle East. His vast portfolio includes writing content for a variety of sites on food and drink, travel, personal finance, news, showbiz, sport, technology and much more. He also advises businesses on strategies and marketing across different sectors