24 Nov 2014


London, UK

Last year when I told people that I was moving to Shoreditch, breakfast at Leila's Shop was the first restaurant recommendation I got. It is located on Calvert Avenue, a cosy street full of independent shops, just off Arnold Circus. Even though it's really close to my home, it took me a whole year to go there. It is always crowded at breakfast, brunch and lunch (it's not open for dinner), and I never bothered to queue up. When I finally had the time to go on a weekday, the tables outside were free, and we sat down in the sun for some food and people-watching. The menu is always short, usually with one vegetarian and one meat-based option. I am assuming the selection is decided by whatever daily produce is available, and thus we didn't have much to choose from. My friend and I both went for the baked eggs with sage, which came served in one pan that we shared. We asked if they had any sides, as I had a craving for avocado, but they didn't. They also didn't have any orange juice, so I went for a freshly squeezed apple juice, and my friend had a good quality cappuccino. After a short wait, we could smell the distinct aroma of sage from inside the restaurant, and we were quite excited to dig in. We meticulously divided the four eggs which had merged into one to make sure we both got an equal share. The organic eggs were great, with an orange, runny yolk, and lots of flavour from the seasoning. Without sides the meal was not big, so we ended up finishing the bread basket and we were still kind of hungry when leaving. The service was so-so; for instance when we asked for butter for the bread they seemed annoyed as if that was an unreasonable request. Despite this, I really liked eating there, and will recommend it to anyone who walks past when one of their few tables are available. Their small grocery shop next door is also worth checking out, full of fresh produce and delicious looking ingredients. 

Leila's Shop on Urbanspoon

23 Nov 2014


Are you following us on Instagram yet? Check it out for daily updates on our meals in London and abroad. Follow this link or use the icon in the right-hand side menu. @foodgrid

16 Nov 2014


Hong Kong

When it comes to fine Chinese dining in Hong Kong, it doesn’t get much better than Yan Toh Heen, located in the legendary Intercontinental Hotel on Kowloon Bay. With breath-taking panoramic vistas of Hong Kong Island, this two Michelin starred institution is globally revered for its cuisine and impeccable service. I dined at Yan Toh Heen on my very first night in Hong Kong as a way to kick-start what would be a very busy five-day break of non stop eating and partying. I am glad to say that even though Yan Toh Heen did not top my list of being the best in Hong Kong, it very much delivered and left a good impression. What disappointed me about Yan Toh Heen was not the food but the ambience. My friends and I were expecting a lively buzzing dining room with spectacular views, and what we found was a very quiet space with many business suits and an older crowd; the mood I have to admit was a bit of a buzz kill. Despite this, the food resurrected my impression of the place; it was just that good! Highlights from the dinner include the barbecued fresh water eel, which was prepared with an Osmanthus honey sauce, which is very fragrant and sweet, and worked perfectly with the eel; it was the best dish of the night. The crispy fresh water prawns with black truffle are definitely worth ordering, although the serving was a bit small and thus we had to order two more portions. A favourite of the night was also the wagyu beef with black peppercorn, which is not the most inventive dish, but the quality of the beef was terrific and just melted in my mouth. To balance out our meal with a vegetarian option, we ordered the very delicious and mouth watering wok fried white asparagus with bamboo pits and mushrooms. As an emblem of Hong Kong fine dining, I would definitely recommend Yan Toh Heen, but don’t go expecting a lively scene; at least not at dinner time. 

9 Nov 2014


New York, USA

Like clockwork, merely two to three hours after landing in New York, I make my way to Soho to have a bite at Ed’s Lobster Bar, a tradition I have upheld for the past five years and intend to do for many years to come; that is until I officially cross the Atlantic and become a New Yorker myself. This marks our second review of Ed’s on the Food Grid, and just as last time it was delicious and fulfilling. Not much has changed in that I ordered my go to drink, the Arnold Palmer, and started with the Shrimp Cocktail that was just as fresh as I have come to expect and with what is the best cocktail sauce there is. Of course no meal at Ed’s would be complete without the Lobster Roll and French Fries, which still commands my opinion as being the best lobster roll in the city; the brioche bun is just sensational. To kick things into a higher gear I also ordered the Lobster Pot Pie for the first time, as every time I go to Ed’s I would arrive around lunchtime and the pie is only served after 17:30 as part of their dinner time menu. The pie, which I had been dreaming of, was a heavenly broth, with the lobster and vegetables perfectly stewed in bisque gravy decadence, topped with a flawlessly crispy piecrust; it is phenomenal. Need I say more? I am just in love with this place.

Ed's Lobster Bar on Urbanspoon

Ed's Lobster Bar