• LOVE FOOD, LIVE FOODIE •
On a recent visit to Warwick Castle ( I would thoroughly recommend), we decided to try out a local restaurant before the two-hour journey back home.
Looking online for recommendations of an Indian restaurant in the area, we found Jambavan. As a recommended restaurant on a Saturday night, we immediately went and were able to get a table.
Jambavan ... was a hero from Indian mythology, a man forced to live as a bear, but granted as consolation a long life and the strength of ten million lions.
When we had the chance to open a restaurant in Warwick within sight of the castle and saw the iconic Bear & Staff emblem, it was Jambavan that instantly came to mind. The two bears represented our vision: we wanted to bring our guests the best of both worlds: traditional, home-cooked Indian dishes in an historic building but with a contemporary ambience.
And to match the flavours and spices of our thought- and palate-provoking dishes, we wanted to offer a unique and comprehensive selection of the finest locally crafted ales and beers, as well as seasonal signature cocktails and old and new world wines. Top of the list is our very own Jambavan India Pale Ale, which has been carefully crafted to complement the spices and aromas of the food we prepare.
We invite you to come and explore our dishes and drinks and find your own favourite combinations. And we hope you enjoy the experience as much as we’ve enjoyed our journey to make it happen.
I am not sure if Jambavan were happy to see us; four adults (GOOD) and three children (including one crying baby). But, we were there to feast and personally I was craving some lamb chops and some daal.
Once the menu came, we were inundated with alluring dishes that shouted out to me. I obviously couldn't get everything so had a bit of tried and tested (from the curry club days), alongside some additional treats too.
The dishes included:
GOOD TIMES: The Biryani is generous and tasty, deffo order
WATCH OUT: A popular restaurant in the area, but they seemed short staffed. Hopefully a one off.
OMG: The dhall, this dish is the one to go for. So creamy and delicious.
Filippino life and culture have always been a part of my life, firstly through my family with my auntie and more recently my sister-in-law.
However, this visit to Romulo Restaurant in Kensington was the first time I have been to a Filippino restaurant.
I have eaten lovely Filippino food before and always wanted to explore more and try more. Thankfully a catch-up with family was arranged and with it, a visit to my first Fili restaurant experience.
Romulo Cafe into from Romulo (taken from their site):
Following our four critically acclaimed restaurants in Manila, we were passionate about introducing London, the food capital of Europe, to Asia’s best kept culinary secret……authentic Filipino cuisine.
At the core, our flavours are very fresh and authentic, originating from my grandmother’s recipes but they have been elevated and refined and adapted to include more options for Vegetarian and Vegan offerings and with a focus on health and nutrition.
We also wanted to have fun with our menu and have given creative freedom to chef Villanueva resulting in some extraordinary dishes that create a total food experience.
With a large group of us in attendance, we went for a dual approach of individual dishes each as well as some sharing plates for the group. This is probably my favourite way to dine as it lets me have my comforts but and try more dishes.
The list of what we (I) had was:
Sizzling Chicken Inasal Sisig
Jack Brand diced chicken thighs marinated in annatto, ginger, green chili, garlic, and lemongrass served on a sizzling skillet
Chicken & Shrimp Wok-fried Rice Noodles “Pansit Guisado’’
Thin rice noodles, stir fried with prawns, chicken, assorted vegetables
Truffled Chicken Adobo “Romulo Style”
A Filipino classic, Norfolk chicken cooked in soy sauce, garlic and cane vinegar scented with black truffle, served with bok choy and sweet potato
Char Grilled Stuffed Squid (Rellenong Pusit)
Squid stuffed with tomato, cheese and onion flavoured with garlic and annatto oil served on a bed of squid ink with aioli sauce
GOOD TIMES: Lovely food, with great flavours and spices
WATCH OUT: The coffee machine wasn't working and they didn't have any Filippino beers :(
OMG: The Sisig was my fave on the day and a dish I need to try an dmake myself
Special occasions call for a certain ambiance, atmosphere, vibe, or mood.
Whatever you want to call it, you just want things to be right, For my 5th wedding anniversary, this meant, asking the wife what she wants and trying to find it.
The quest to match requirements led me to The Black Rabbit in Arundel. As you will read below, this pub on the banks of the river fulfilled the criteria of a nice lunch, with great views of a river, woodlands, and the countryside.
Situated on the banks of the River Arun and only a few minutes’ drive from the A27, with stunning views over the wet lands to Arundel Castle, the Black Rabbit is a perfect example of the quintessential traditional country pub. In 2016 Hall & Woodhouse spent £700k to preserve the riverbank and keep the jetties usable by pleasure boats and with plenty of outside seating areas directly overlooking the water, the pub is a hive of activity on a perfect summer’s day. And when winter finally sets in our cosy pub, with its roaring log fires, oak beams and even the boat from the Harry Potter film The Philosophers Stone, provides the perfect place to relax and unwind.
This anniversary was slightly different as there were three people in attendance. My wife, myself, and ... my son. My 5-month-old son was joining us. Not ideal, but needs must.
We weren't expecting the most romantic occasion or even time to talk, but just a chance to enjoy the moment and soak in the atmosphere.
With the good weather and tables outside, we were able to have fleeting moments of bliss and happiness, initially, we were very well looked after by the hostess. However, once our table was moved (due to tree surgeons working on the day), we lost our hostess and it seemed the pub stopped caring so much.
Tasty food, quite well done and well presented. The only problem we had was that once the food arrived, our son decided to wake up and want attention. Tasting food and enjoying food whilst a baby is crying, doesn't work so well.
GOOD TIMES: A pub for all occasions and all flavours
OMG: The location and settings are amazing, Insta worthy for sure
WATCH OUT: As a busy pub, we did feel a bit neglected at times
A birthday treat and tradition ( i missed last year, because... well you know). But a trip to the seaside is my new birthday tradition.
And when by the coast, fish & chips is a must.
After a few tantrums and the threat of rain, we stood our ground as parents and ordered our new family combo at Peter's Fish Factory.
This new combo is a large cod/haddock, a portion of scampi, a sausage, and a large portion of chips. Perfect meal for two adults and a child; be warned, you must be willing to share to do this.
Good food, great location and a lovely birthday tradition.
GOOD TIMES: Tasty seafood and a healthy portion of chips
OMG: Lovely location by the harbour and a huggggge wetherspoons
WATCH OUT: Wobbly benches, you have been warned.
Waffles in North London, but I did not get any.
Breakfast in North London and i went for the full works.
Chi Chi's in Winchmore Hill is a
"modern North London eatery with a strong ethos of sourcing locally and caring for our community. As a team, we pride ourselves on delivering high quality, creative food & drink and the highest levels of hospitality with a fun attitude to service. The team love looking after our customers, serving families, couples, groups of friends and anyone who is looking for a great experience in a lush, modern “Brooklyn meets Shoreditch” kinda place."
For an early birthday treat, I went here for a recommended breakfast.
Chi Chi's is known for it's waffles, however, on this ageing day it wasn't what I was craving.
With an impressive menu, I decided to take a step back and go for their Chi Chi breakfast.
Although, I kept on glancing at the other options and wondering whether I made the correct decision.
After quickly eating our breakfast (it was cold and we had a crying baby), I can fully endorse Chi Chi's and thank my friend for their recommendation. A big fan of their homemade beans.
The next obvious step is to try out their waffles and their wider menu too.
See you soon team.
GOOD TIMES: Hearty and filling food. The menu outside traditional breakfasts is great.
WATCH OUT: Timing of the menu, plan in advance for their weekend specials.
OMG: You and I will have to trust word of mouth, but their waffles are supposed to be great.