Cafe Design

Afternoon Tea in Sketch, London

Happy September everyone! 

During the long bank holiday weekend, I got to try Sketch, one of the nicest afternoon tea experiences in London! I have been wanting to go for the longest time and I am so glad I finally did. I had afternoon tea at the gallery. The space was mostly pink with pink chairs and pink walls. It was so girly and dreamy. I liked that they covered the walls with sketches. Some were funny and others were a bit strange. 

The afternoon tea was unlimited, which was something I did not expect and really loved! I was full from the first serving, but had a bit more because they kept offering so nicely. It was pure indulgence. It included a choice of tea, vegetarian finger sandwiches, traditional scones, pastries. There were two choices for pastries ones with beef gelatine and vegan ones. I went with the vegan ones and was pleasantly surprised of how yummy they were. I liked that we were able to try more than one kind of tea. I tried the oolong and the rose teas. Overall, the food was nice but nothing out of the extraordinary. The lovely tea selection, the interiors and the amazing service made it all so worth it. To top it off, they had MAD bathrooms that looked like they landed right out of space. It just added a fun twist to the space.

I will definitely be going there again. Keep in mind you need to reserve a table in advance because it gets booked up really fast.  

Heladería los Italianos

After a very eventful day at Alhambra last September, my friends from the course and I headed to the best ice cream place in Granada, Heladería los Italianos. It was so busy and we had to stand in line for a little bit, but it was worth the wait. I got the melon ice cream and it was heavenly and refreshing. It was the perfect treat after a long day of discovery. I also liked the chandeliers in there. If you are there, give it a go! :) 

Address: Calle Gran Vía de Colón, 4, 18001 Granada, Spain

Pancakes in Zurich

Good morning!

I was waking up today with some serious pancake craving thanks to the lovely pancake/breakfast cafe that I tried in Zurich *yumz*. Just a short walk from where I was staying, there it was, Zum Guten Glück. A lovely local eatery where they specialised in different pancake types from savoury to sweet plus other breakfast choices. The interior was really light and felt effortless. Part of the floor was tiled in interesting patterns and that added richness to the design. My friend and I got the ricotta and almond pancakes that were covered in maple syrup. That combination was heavenly and surprisingly filling. The place is popular and it was busy and we had to share the table with complete strangers, but that's totally fine there. 

Stax Diner, Halal Burger to Remember

Happy Sunday everyone! 

It's getting so close to winter these days and with this cold weather all I can do is indulge in really good warming food. Yesterday, I found my new favourite halal burger joint in London by accident. It was so good that it's all I can think of today! :D It was located in Kingly Court, which is proving to be a really nice place to eat, although with Christmas coming really soon, it's crazy crowded there. 

Outside Kingly Court

Outside Kingly Court

Stax Diner  is in the first floor and it was SO crowded. 

Hello Stax! 

Hello Stax! 

The place is really small, which means the queue is outside, which is a little awkward. 

Waiting Sign

The menu had American choices from fried chicken and waffles to great burgers and shakes. 

The Menu was like a cute little fan 

The Menu was like a cute little fan 

To be honest, I wasn't a big fan of the interior space. The light fixtures were really cool but the tables and the chairs weren't comfortable, but I guess that's because of the very tiny space. 

Burger Joint Interior
Lights with Cans

The food was AMAZING and did I mention Halal AND ORGANIC! That's still hard to find in London. The supplier is Abraham Natural Produce farm. The same one I recently order my organic, grass fed meat from. The burgers were so fresh and delicious. SUPER GOOD. Will surly come back for the burgers. 

My Boston Float, which is ginger bear and ice cream. It went so well with the burger  

My Boston Float, which is ginger bear and ice cream. It went so well with the burger  

Meet my beautiful meat! 

Meet my beautiful meat! 

up close 

up close 

Loved the burgers. Go try them and let me know what you think when you try it! :D

Dishoom

Happy sunday beautiful people! 

This is my favourite day of the week when I am in London. The atmosphere is so relaxed and everyone is taking it easy. Plus, it's quiet in the morning. This day is appreciated by the whole nation I think. 

This week I finally went to the famous Dishoom for breakfast, so if you are looking for a place for today's breakfast or brunch then look no further! By the way, this place gets crazy busy, so I would advice you to book in advance. I went during a weekday's morning. That's why it was quiet and just amazing. 

Entrance

Entrance

The Shoerditch brand is where I went. They have a main resturant hall + bar that has a contemporary industrial look with a funky geometric floor pattern. It's louder there and very lively. The designers of the space wanted to tell a story with the details they chose, a story inspired by Iranian cafés that took a place in India in the 1960s and mix it with the current atmosphere of London. Read more on the design process in Dishoom's journal. I loved the fact they wrote about it. 

Main resturant + bar

Main resturant + bar

Geometric floor pattern

Geometric floor pattern

Part of Dishoom is the veranda. I loved the design so much. I can see myself there daily just drinking their delicious chai, writing and enjoying the coziness of the space. The design is indoors because of the London weather conditions, but has an outdoors feel. It's shabby chic with a rustic feel that makes you feel comfortable at once. 

Dishoom London
Spot the beautiful pattern

Spot the beautiful pattern

Another thing I liked about the space is the different light choices, the artwork that tells a number of stories and the green plants. 

Lights and plants

Lights and plants

Comfy seats and a very homey atmosphere

Comfy seats and a very homey atmosphere

Enough design talk! I know you are dying to know about the food! It was ready in empakisble timing and tasted amazing! You can tell how yummy the food is from the photos alone. Something I liked in the menu is that it tells you the farms where food come from, which gives a sense of community. 

Simple menu full of delicious choices

Simple menu full of delicious choices

We got the Aukri eggs, fire-y toasts, house porridge topped with dates and bananas, egg naan roll, fruit juice and chocolate chai. The naan roll was so good. The thought is just mouthwatering. The naan was very fresh, the eggs were tasty. The chocolate chai made it on my very favourite beverages list. It was the right level of sweet. I highly recommend their food. Note, the menu serves ham, but there are plenty of vegetarian and vegan options. Their dinner menu includes halal choices as well. 

Their tables are great for food photos!

Their tables are great for food photos!

Even their plates were gorgeous!

Even their plates were gorgeous!

On one of the plates, the sweetest story was written. I forgot to take a picture, but I will just share it from memory: once in Bombay, I went to a cafe. The nicest girl greeted me and talked to me for half an hour before I realized that she worked there. I went there every day for the remaining time of the trip and now the girl and I got engaged, moved to London to open our Bombay cafe and soon to be married. 

That adorable romantic story was surly a plus! 

If you go there based on this recommendation, please comment and tell me all about your experience.  

Enjoy the rest of the day!

Yumchaa Cafe

When I was younger the only hot drink I liked was hot chocolate and as I grew older, my taste buds enjoyed tea and with being in the UK -Tea Capital of the world- my love for tea has been growing. Now, everyone who tries a new tea place tells me about it and even suggests meeting up in tea shops! win win. Few weeks ago, my classmate tried Yumchaa tea shop in Camden and instead that I go with her. She didn't have to ask twice! 

What I found different in Yumchaa is they have all the types they offer laid out in lovely small cups with the names, so you can smell the tea and see it before choosing it. I thought it was cool and it gives each person a more hands on approach to tea. It was a good way to start a conversation as well. My classmates and I, compared the different types, laughed at the names and enjoyed that experience. 

The teas were also catgrorized and separated based on their types in a lovely way. Instead of having it written in menu pages. 

There was a good selection of deserts as well, which is always needed with a good cuppa!

The interior space was quirky, cozy and casual. 

In the center of the cafe, they had an glass ceiling that allowed access to natural light in the cafe, which brightened up the space. There were different chairs and sofas around. The mix was fun. Overall, it's a nice place to have tea, read a book or meet friends. Check it out when you are in Camden next. They have other locations as well. Details on their website

Sugar Junction

The Northern Quarter in Manchester is full of really lovely and quirky places. They are hidden behind the glossy shopping mall and the generic coffee shops. There you can find local cafes that are individual and different. I don't know about you, but I rather have my tea at home rather than go to Costa. It's just too predictable and their tea bags are just SAD! sorry Costa nothing personal. One of the loveliest places that saved me from Costa is

Sugar Junction

. The name is brilliant and the place is very sweet full of handmade cakes and a nice selection of loose teas. A great spot to unwind and have a cuppa! The style of the place is very vintage inside with the choice of colours, floral table covers, cushions, the placement of the old sewing machine and even the branding of their menu.  

Note: the pictures are from two visits. I promise I didn't eat two cakes in one sitting not like there's anything wrong with it lol

The place gets quickly packed because the seats are limited. When you enter you see the cake counter and then get the tea and the food menu. The light green wallpaper behind the the counter and the small bunting on the shelf. Makes the place look like a childhood house. Playing on people's nostalgia is a good trick some designers can use.  

The other side of their menu is like a page of an old newspaper with vintage 

Cake List! best kinda list! :D

I liked their decor and the little bits and pieces around that gave it the vintage twist. The seating wasn't the most comfortable, but at least they had cushions for back support! I liked the feature wall, which is basically exposed brick wall. It gave the place some character.  

The singer sewing machine in the corner was a nice touch. The combination of it and the tins above it makes it even more vintage looking. 

Sugar Junction serve hot food as well! Mainly sandwiches and soups. I tried their fish fingers sandwich with their sweet potatoes. DELISH! I would replace bread with pita wrap tho *you can't take the Arab out of me!* Their plates and cutlery were simple and nice.  

Deliciousness up close! NOM

Toffee cake and Lime mojito cake! 

and some more cake! *drool*

I would highly recommend this place, esp after a nice walk all over Manchester city centre.