Once upon a time, the most outlandish and avant-garde meal you’d find in London was a chicken tikka masala. These days, it can feel like we’ve become so used to experimental meals that the novelty wears off before you can say ‘avocado toast’. We sent Rosie on a search for London’s most unusual and innovative dishes that reflect the tastes of millennials…
Thought éclairs were all about whipped cream and chocolate? Think again. Three Michelin star-experienced chef Joakim Prat has created four new bites that blur the lines between savoury and sweet, featuring flavours including Double Tomato and Feta, filled with sundried tomatoes and feta cream; Crunchy Spring Vegetable, topped with slices of carrot, broccoli and cauliflower in a secret marinade, and filled with a smooth earl grey and carrot puree; Smoked Salmon, Yuzu Cream Cheese & Avocado, complete with rolls of smoked salmon with flecks of yuzu cream cheese and chives; and Chicken Mayo & Avocado, filled with a layer of velvety avocado puree and topped with marinated roasted chicken and parmesan.
Notting Hill’s eclectic bar The Little Yellow Door has whipped up a quirky cocktail featuring more health benefits than drinkers can shake a stick at. The new detox/retox drink includes chlorophyll, a green pigment found in plants that is used in medicine to help flush out toxins along with helping to hydrate and balance pH. Called ‘The Hangover’, the cocktail is a fresh, nutritional drink made with The Botanist Gin, elderflower, egg white, chlorophyll, served in a coupette with mint and chlorophyll perfume. Drinkers have the option to add an activated charcoal shot on the side of the cocktail for an extra detoxifying kick. Does it taste any good? Surprisingly so – chlorophyll takes on the flavour of other ingredients found in the concoction, with the subtly sweet and slightly vegetal taste balanced nicely with the fresh, crisp elderflower and mint notes.
Indulging in raw cookie dough is no longer reserved for scraping the bowl during a baking session. Thanks to Naked Dough, edible, egg-free cookie dough has come to London – to be eaten from a cup, out of a cone, or in a takeaway tub to devour later. For the ultimate in-dough-gence, try the ‘Fairy Dough’ available exclusively at Westfield London: indulgent layers of ice cream, raw cookie dough, more ice cream and caramel and topped with a candy floss cloud: dreamy.
Thought kebabs were reserved for drunken munchies? Think again. Soho favourite Le Bab has just launched a new fine dining concept, Kebab Queen: a tasting menu dedicated to all things kebab. Think foie gras ‘kebabitos’, doner risotto, monkfish shish, and even paired wines. Should we be ashamed to say we are secretly rather excited that a mighty kebab needn’t just be a guilty pleasure? Not according to head chef Manu Canales, who claims that “kebabs give a surprisingly big gastronomic scope. We aim to explore and execute that to the highest level.” Having tried the six course tasting menu, we’re certainly keen to see where that exploration may take them next…
Kalifornia Kitchen is giving ‘high tea’ a whole new meaning with its CBD-infused menu. Choose from either a CBD latte, CBD ‘cmoothie’ or a glass of champagne, then work your way through hazelnut CBD truffles, banana CBD cupcakes with strawberry CBD icing, CBD raspberry madeleines, CBD turmeric and ginger gummies, and CBD granola.
Island Poké have launched UK’s first plant-based tuna poke bowl, the Vegan Ahi bowl. The plant-based vegan tuna is made through a natural process by marinating watermelon in similar ingredients to its signature dish, the Classic Ahi Poké bowl, then gently cooked to create a product with the same look, taste, and texture as the regular Ahi Tuna. The plant-based tuna is then served on a bed of sushi rice, topped with Wakame seaweed, zingy pineapple chilli salsa, and spring onion, as well as a good smattering of crispy shallots and sesame seeds.
Bubblewrap Waffle started out life as a humble market trader and when they opened their first shop in London it quickly went viral: replicas of the product can now be found all over London, although nothing quite beats the original from their Chinatown shop – hence the queues that spill out down the street. Millennial flavours include the ‘luxe’ range that includes a limited-edition truffle waffle, as well as avocado in a charcoal waffle. Alternative brunch, anyone?
When Chef Dominique Ansel made it his goal to create “the taste of pure fresh fruit and summertime”, this was the result: a slice of fresh watermelon, topped with soft serve made with watermelon juice, and hand decorated with tiny little “seeds” created with dark chocolate that is tempered by an expert team of pastry chefs. The treat got the ultimate millennial seal of approval last year when it took Instagram by storm, with the What-a-Melon video reaching 75M video views on Dessert Insider.
This hidden gem in Earlsfield is raising the bar when it comes to brunch. Forget avocado toast and poached eggs: here you’ll find dishes like the ‘Waltz of the Crab’, a spiced miso crab eggs benedict served with miso hollandaise and asparagus on brioche toast with seaweed – or, our favourite, the ‘Exploding Yorkshire’, a giant Yorkshire pudding engulfed in a Mediterranean tomato base, filled with chorizo, grilled bacon, poached egg and topped with pulled pork. Oh baby. And it’s not just the food that’s inventive: the cafe is decorated with an incredible array of furniture, all of which is available for sale. Our tip: ask about the secret tasting menu evenings on Fridays and Saturdays and prepare to have your mind blown with some of the most inventive, delicious, and ridiculously good value food going.
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