Review: Neo Bistro

2018 and I’m back with a bang!

2018 is the year of food and boy am I excited to go to loads of restaurants this year and eats tons of good food. Add A Little: the rebirth here I coooome!

Obviously I can’t help but start 2018 in any other way than a review of a delicious restaurant situated in Bond Street called Neo Bistro. I hadn’t previously heard of this place but was recommended by my friend. The restaurant describes themselves as modern British and rightly so, the food is delicate and full of flavour. No heavy steak and ale pies coming your way, but rather, sea bream ceviche or home cured charcuterie. You can see a European influence amongst the dishes and every one was 10/10.

I went for the tasting menu and every dish was new and innovative.

The first course upon arriving was homemade sourdough, house churned salted butter, fennel cured charcuterie, chorizo and truffle mousse with hazelnuts. Honestly nearly cried because it was so delicious and it always surprises me how a restaurant can make something so simple so incredible.

Next up was sea bream ceviche with creme fraiche, pine nuts, fennel and grapefruit slaw and lovage oil. A beautiful palate cleanser.

The Parmesan gnocchi’s were clouds of cheesiness and the raw oyster mushroom and pickled walnuts added a lovely contrasting texture whilst the pumpkin purée provided a lovely sweetness.

On the menu, I didn’t know what to expect from quail kebab but this was probably my favourite course. Confit leg of quail and grilled breast were cooked to perfection, accompanied by the fresh, lightly dressed leaves and the creamy, decadent chestnut purée.

This dish focused on duck with a few accompaniments. There was a homemade cranberry jam, roasted onion and a bacon wrapped date that was roasted until gooey and sweet.

A palate cleanser of whipped goats yoghurt with orange blossom honey and candied linseeds came next. A lovely light dish.

The dessert was a rich chocolate mousse with malt ice cream. The chocolate was dark and slightly bitter, a perfect way to end the meal.

But of course, they manage to bring out one last dish of a freshly baked pistachio financier. Couldn’t have ended the meal any other way!

I would highly recommend Neo Bistro to anyone. £50 for an incredible tasting menu is a great offer and they cater to allergies and have a vegetarian tasting menu if needed too.

Neo Bistro
11 Woodstock Road, London, W1C 2AE
020 7499 9427

Review: Tibits

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Back at it with the reviews! I love sharing all my favourite spots around London with you all so I hope you enjoy this review.

It’s strange to think I’m only just writing this review as I’ve been going to Tibits for years – their food is always packed with flavour and love how you can pick and choose what you want. (Also, a bonus that Tuesday, everything is plant based!)

I started with a carrot, apple and ginger juice which was sweet and refreshing. They have so many wonderful drinks on offer and always have specials of the day (prickly pear was the special when I went).

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For the main, I obviously had to get a little bit of everything just to taste all the different things they had on offer. The highlight of the meal was definitely the smooth and smokey babaganoush, beetroot mint (delicious with the addition of mint) and the dried green bean salad. To be honest, it didn’t look or sound like the most appetising thing on the menu but the flavour was banging. Green beans tossed with walnuts and a tangy vinaigrette. Definitely something simple that I’ll try to recreate – I’m sure it would be great with a pesto dressing too.

There were plenty of options for everyone, whether you’re gluten free, dairy free or raw. There were so many delicious dishes from fresh Asian slaw and carrot salad to mushroom pie and falafel.

And of course, there’s always room for dessert! I sampled a little bit of everything but the warm sticky pudding was so decadent and delicious. They also had a range of fruit on offer as well as victoria sponge cake, rice pudding and warm berry crumble.
Thinking about all of this is making my mouth water!

Tibits
Address: 12-14 Heddon St, Mayfair, London W1B 4DA
Opening hours: Mon-Thurs: 9am-10:30pm, Fri-Sat: 9am-12am, Sun: 11:30am-10:30pm
Website: https://www.tibits.ch/en/home.html 

Review: Beyond Sushi

Beyond Sushi Review | Add A LittleI’m aware that a 100% plant based sushi restaurant may sounds quite strange and in your mind you are probably just thinking of cucumber and avocado rolls. But hold up because Beyond Sushi is super creative with their rolls, making every bite full of flavour.

My absolute favourite rolls their is the Mighty Mushroom roll, filled with enoki, shiitake, tofu and surrounded by wild rice and alfalfa sprouts. But the main attraction is the sauces that they pair with the rolls. Yes they come with your average smaverage soy sauce but they also come with a super creative dip. For the mushroom roll, I got the truffle and shiitake sauce which blew my socks off. Seriously good stuff.
I’ve also tried the Pickle Me roll which I thought was ok. the mushroom roll really takes the crown for me as its got such well rounded flavour, whereas I thought the roll with the pickles was just a bit sharp and salty overall.

Beyond Sushi also have a plethora of sides that are equally wonderful, such as the dumplings and soups. However, to create a full meal with my sushi (they have great lunch time deals!) I opted for a cold noodle salad. I went for the green tea noodles with cilantro, parsley, seaweed salad (a huge favourite) and crunchy almonds, all drizzled with a ponzu sauce (in my opinion it was much too sweet to be ponzu and was more like a hoisin sauce) and it was delicious! You can never really go wrong with noodles 😉

Beyond Sushi
Website: https://beyondsushinyc.com
Address: Many locations across Manhattan, New York
Tel: +1 646-861-2889

Review: 00 + Co

 So I’ve never found a super creative amazing vegan pizza in London so I knew that when I heard about 00 +co in New York I had to stop by!

Whenever I get pizza, I tend to go for the marinara or anything with lots of vegetables with no cheese. To be honest, I’ve never been a fan of fake cheeses that weirdly taste sweet to me – I would rather go sans cheese  and taste all the amazing ingredients (if you’re in London, you’ve got to try Franco Manca for the best marinara ever) or have a homemade nut cheese on top.

00 + co really stood out to me as their menu is so inventive and uses lots of interesting ingredients. Although they all sounded so delicious, I settled for the margarita with homemade cashew mozzarella on top. OH MY GOD. I really can’t even describe how good it was. I haven’t had a margarita in about 2 or 3 years and this totally made up for it.
The dough was crispy but doughy and cooked perfectly with bits of Maldon salt on top for extra flavour.
The tomato sauce was perfectly balanced, sweet and salty and actually tasted of truly ripe tomatoes.
And the main star of the show – the cheese. In my opinion the consistency was more similar to that or mascarpone than mozzarella, but it was to die for. My mum didn’t even realise that there was no dairy in this pizza until I told her after and saying she was completely shocked and speechless is an understatement.

I couldn’t recommend 00 + co enough, it’s definitely my favourite pizza spot in New York (well… Manhattan, because there are apparently some spots in Brooklyn that I need to check out next time like Vinnie’s and Screamer’s). If you have a chance, definitely go! Whether you are vegan, vegetarian or meat eater, I have no doubt you will be pleasantly surprised by this place!

00 + co
Address: 65 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10003, United States
Tel.: +1 212-777-1608
Website: https://matthewkenneycuisine.com/hospitality/double_zero/

Review: Hemsley + Hemsley Cafe

Hemsley + Hemsley Cafe Review | Add A LittleI met the lovely Hemsley sisters on their ‘Good and Simple’ book shoot last year (wow, how time flies!) and I’ve been eager to try out their cafe ever since I heard about it (especially after trying their food and knowing how delicious it was)! I’m such a big fan of their ethos of eating whole foods that do good and make you feel good.

Their cafe, situated on the new Body studio on the third floor at Selfridges, embodies their positive attitude towards healthy eating with bright and flavoursome dishes.
They have a wide range of choices to cater for any dietary needs. I’ve heard that the slow cooked chicken stew with cauliflower rice is particularly delicious and the salmon burger in the flaxseed bun caught my eye. However, on the particularly sunny day in London I was craving a salad. Knowing the Hemsley sisters, I knew I was in for a treat.
Because of the many choices (it was too hard to pick just one!) I went for the mix of the three: puy lentil salad with thinly sliced beetroot, tart apple, dried cranberries with a light maple vinaigrette; sesame soba and carrot noodles; and quinoa with roasted vegetables and brazil nut pesto.

I loved that I was able to try all three and the generous portion for £10 was a steal! My favourite was definitely the quinoa with roasted vegetables. It was packed with different flavours and textures and the pesto added a basil punch to the dish. Next time, I will definitely opt for a large serving of this.

They had a range of drinks and I went for the hardcore green juice as I’m a sucker for it when I see it on a menu! It was filled with green vegetables and herbs which gave it a lovely light flavour. Don’t worry, if you’re not so keen on the liquid vegetables, they also have a range of smoothies and hot drinks.
As well as this, of course they have some desserts options such as chocolate chip cookies, carrot cake and their famous paradise bars.

I highly recommend checking out the cafe as it’s a place that anyone can go and enjoy the food on offer. Although their food is free from gluten, grains and refined sugar, the meals they serve are packed  with flavour and substance and their wide range allows anyone to enjoy the food. But be warned that it’s very small so I would say to go early if you want to get a seat!

Hemsley + Hemsley Cafe
Website: No website, but read more about it here.
Address: 400 Oxford Street, Marylebone, London W1U 1AB
Opening Hours:

The Best Kaiseki Meal in Tokyo: Innsyoutei

Innsyoutei Review | Add A Little

If you go down to the woods today you’ll find a big surprise…

Nestled into the depths of Ueno park, you’ll find a beautiful traditional restaurant – Innsyoutei.

Innsyoutei Review | Add A Little

It’s almost like a treehouse, hidden within the growth of trees and the beautiful natural surroundings.
The view from the seating area is incredible – if you dine upstairs, you get the view of the park and the trees surrounding you, amost as if you are enclosed in a secret room!

Innsyoutei Review | Add A Little Innsyoutei Review | Add A Little

I was lucky enough to have the traditional course meal of kaiseki ryori. It was my first time having it and I’m hooked – not only is the food and harmony of flavours incredible but the beauty of each dish comes through and everything is so intricatly plated.

Also, can we just take a moment to look at the placemat?! It is probably the most beautiful piece of paper ever.

Innsyoutei Review | Add A Little Innsyoutei Review | Add A LittleWe first started with a plate of bite sized foods. At the top, we have an amazing creamy salad made with cucumber and sesame. Next to that was an incredible namafu dengaku – chewy wheat gluten topped with rich and sweet miso. a piece of what seemed to be frittata bursting with fresh summer vegetables, lemon flavoured sweet potato and a piece of plum to cleanse the palate.

Innsyoutei Review | Add A Little

The next course (unpictured) consisted of a slice of winter melon and light king prawn dumpling which was so light and in a smooth dashi broth. I’m normally not one for dumplings in soup as I find that they are soggy, but this was truly another experience!

Speaking of experience, the picture above shows my first yuba experience – almost like burrata, it melts in your mouth while remaining creamy and rich.

Innsyoutei Review | Add A Little

The sashimi we got next couldn’t be more fresh – the squid melted in your mouth whilst I was lucky that my two favourite fish came out – tuna and yellowtail, both of which had incredible flavour and texture: so simple yet delicious dipped in soy sauce.

Innsyoutei Review | Add A LittleThe next fish course was a salt grilled mackerel fillet that was perfectly oily and tender and delicious when paired with the two sides: grated daikon with knotweed to give a fresh and almost mint like flavour and the baked okara (a salad made from the by product of tofu – much tastier than I described it!).

Innsyoutei Review | Add A Little

Before heading onto the final course, we had a chilled chawanmushi (egg custard) that was pudding like and so wobbly yet easy to eat and flavoured with the perfect amount of dashi.
The final savoury course consisted of deep, dark and rich miso and some light pickles that came with the large pot of rice that got placed on the table. The rice was cooked in a traditional pot and filled with fresh corn, scallops and herbs to give the most fragrant rice!

Innsyoutei Review | Add A LittleOfcourse no meal is complete without dessert and although I only pictured the matcha mousse here, I actually loved the more traditional wagashi of a mochi like substance, made of wheat, filled with red bean paste.

Innsyoutei is definitely a restaurant where I’ll be back – the food and the service was top quality (nothing less than expected in a beautiful restaurant like this)! They are also known for their nabe dishes where you cook chicken and vegetables in a shabu shabu like manner, so I guess I’ll have to go back to try that! 😉

 

 

 

Maisen Review

Review: Maisen | Add A Little

If you go to Tokyo, this place is a MUST.

I rave about it to just about anybody who will listen because if you’re looking for the best tonkatsu in the world, you’ll find it here!

Review: Maisen | Add A Little

The restaurant itself is super cute (and a bit hard to find, although there are guides luring you to it all across the street!) and, fun fact, used to be an old bath house, so the main area where you sit is where people used to change!

Review: Maisen | Add A Little

Review: Maisen | Add A Little

If you are unfamiliar with tonkatsu, don’t worry, I’ve got you covered! Tonkatsu is tender and juicy pork thats coated in light panko breadcrumbs, fried until crispy… or in other words, the best piece of fried meat you will eat!

In my opinion, no one does it better than Maisen. Ofcourse they do more luxury tonkastsu using the best pork but they also have delicious fillets for a much more reasonable price!

However, my favourite has got to be the daily changing set lunch. It’s a bit of secret that only locals know since it’s written in Japanese on a tiny board, but I love it because it’s got a bit of everything!

Review: Maisen | Add A Little

You start with some freshly grated daikon with a drizzle of soy sauce to cleanse your palate before the main event.

And this is what you come for.

Review: Maisen | Add A Little

The menu changes daily and today’s main was a pork and green pepper fry along with a king prawn cream croquette.
The meat is unbelievably tender and juicy whilst the outside gives a contrast with the crunch and it’s surprisingly not greasy at all!

Whilst I couldn’t eat the croquette I was told it was piping hot and creamy with large chunks of prawn (no skimping here!)

Review: Maisen | Add A Little

As with any traditional set meal, it comes with a few sides. the first of which was some light and refreshing cucumber salad with shirataki noodles. The cucumber gives a lovely crunch and cooling flavour when you need a break from the rich tonkastu.

Review: Maisen | Add A Little

There was of course some nimono on the tray as well – super fluffy yet creamy potatoes, carrots and melt in the mouth onions and pork belly stewed in a sweet yet savoury stew. This is a meal that will transport any Japanese person back to their childhood – it tastes like comfort!

Review: Maisen | Add A Little

I always find the little portion of fish a really nice touch, it’s simply seasoned with salt and grilled to give it a perfectly flaky texture. They also somehow have the most deep coloured salmon known to man which gives a lovely brightness to the tray of more brown hues!

I couldn’t recommend Maisen enough, so if you’re planning a trip to Tokyo, this better be on your list!
If you can’t make it, make sure to go to a depachika or get a quick takeaway from outside the store where they sell bentos, sandwiches (which are to die for: the fluffiest, slightly sweet Japanese bread (crusts off of course!) which encases the tender tonkatsu and delicious sauce, I could eat 100 easily) and mini katsu burgers!

Review: Maisen | Add A Little

Maisen
Website: http://mai-sen.com/
Address: Japan, 〒150-0001 Tokyo, Shibuya, 神宮前4−8−5

Review: C Press Juice

Review: C Press Juice | Add A Little

I love a good fresh juice, especially in the summer, and I actually LOVE vegetable juices (yes I’m aware that that’s weird!)but I find it so hard to find vegetable or green juices that aren’t 99% apple! C Press is a  juice bar that specialises in cold pressed juices – this means they are not pasteurised and a million times better for you because the nutrients are still kept in (most shop bought brands tend to be pasteurised and also full of sugar – boo!)

They are also organic and certified by the Soil Association so you know that all the ingredients are going to be of the best quality!

Review: C Press Juice | Add A Little

I got a takeaway but the interior is quite small but simple and I love the wooden walls.

Review: C Press Juice | Add A Little

First up is the Green Angel juice (£8.50) and I must say I felt like one of Charlie’s Angel’s after this! This was the most hardcore juice – filled with greens, no fruit and chlorella – an algae rich in antioxidants. I’m a major green juice fan but I’m not a big fan of chlorella! Luckily, this didn’t taste too strongly of chlorella so I didn’t mind it but I preferred the green juice without the extra superfood bonus!

Review: C Press Juice | Add A Little

Farmer’s market (£6.50) was one of my favourites – it’s fully green but I love that and I love how the slight sweetness and freshness of the vegetables come through, as well as the warm and sweet ginger! However, for a first time green juicer, I would recommend Farmer’s Market with Apple (£6.50) as its got all the benefits of a green juice but with added sweetness of apple.

Review: C Press Juice | Add A Little

If anyone’s looking for a sweet juice, the Prime Number (£6.50) is the one for you! The sweetness of the fruit really comes through, especially the orange and pineapple, and almost tastes like you’re eating a lollipop! Also, the colour of this is phenomenal – so vibrant!

Review: C Press Juice | Add A Little

This Charged Up (£6.50) juice was also great for those looking for a sweeter juice, but it’s not too sweet! Obviously, the sweetness of the pineapple and orange came through but the turmeric gave a really lovely depth of flavour which I really enjoyed (and it’s great for the anti inflammatory benefits)!

Review: C Press Juice | Add A Little

Now onto the food –  I got a salad called Spring Greens (£5.75) that was filled with sweet potato and quinoa falafel and greens.  The only downside is its got a very soft texture but that’s due to it obviously not being fried. The salad itself was a whole bunch of greens like kale, peppery rocket, broccoli, quinoa, pumpkin seeds, avocado and goji berries that came with the most amazing dressing (definitely recreating this!) – I could literally drink this stuff because it was so creamy and rich! It’s a miso cashew dressing that brought the whole salad together – absolute perfection! I would definitely get this again!

Review: C Press Juice | Add A Little

I also got a side of kale chips (£3.75) which are always good! This was the original cheezy flavour that were lovely and crisp and I really liked the addition of pepper which give a slight heat! Very addictive!

C Press is a great place to go, whether you are looking for a healthy lunch (everything is vegan and gluten free), quick snack or a plethora or jucies, smoothies and nut mylks!

C Press
Website: http://www.cpressjuice.com/
Adress: 285 Fulham Road, London, SW10 9PZ
Opening Hours: Monday – Friday: 7:00 – 22:00, Sunday: 8:00 – 20:00

Review: Le Pain Quotidien

Review: Le Pain Quotidien | Add A Little

A piece of Paris has been found in London!

Le Pain Quotidien is one of my all time favourite cafes. Whether you are going in for a quick snack or a leisurely lunch, it’s the perfect place that caters to lovers of healthy food or if you want something a bit cheekier! I love the interior of it as it’s so cozy with the wooden tables and chairs yet the windows allow the sunlight to come through and brighten the whole room. Try to get the top floor window table if you can – it’s perfect for people watching.

Review: Le Pain Quotidien | Add A Little

We ordered a few things to try as much as we could possibly fit onto the table!

Review: Le Pain Quotidien | Add A Little

I ordered the quinoa cake which was a quinoa patty with earthy mushrooms, beetroot caviar’, which gave a lovely tang and more earthyness, a roasted carrot hummus and creamy avocado, all finished off with some rocket leaves to give a slight pepperyness! I thought all the flavours balanced eachother out really well although, as I have the weakest spice tolerance ever, the roasted carrot hummus gave a slight heat in my mouth, especially when eaten on its own!

Review: Le Pain Quotidien | Add A Little

My friend ordered the roast vegetable tartine, which was highly recommended by the server. I’ve tried the tartines numerous times as Le Pain and they are always so delicious. You can really taste the ingreients and the bread is always so fresh.

Review: Le Pain Quotidien | Add A Little

The bit we both loved the most was detox salad. It was full of crispy and fresh raw vegetables and topped with seeds to give a nice crunch. I loved the addition of the herbs as it really seemed to lift the dish and every so often, the sweetness of the fresh mint would come through.

Review: Le Pain Quotidien | Add A Little

We were so full that we didn’t have space for dessert but I made sure to take a photo for you! I was eyeing up the chia pudding and my friend highly recommended the pavolva which was towering with cream and berries – perfect for the warmer weather.

As there are many Le Pain Quotidien’s dotted around, you’re more than likely to find one whereever you go! It’s a great place to have a mid afternoon snack or a full blown meal!

Le Pain Quotidien
Website: http://www.lepainquotidien.com/
Adress: 81-85 Notting Hill Gate, London W11 3JS, United Kingdom
Opening Hours: Monday – Friday: 7:00 – 22:00, Saturday and Sunday: 8:00 – 22:00