I’ll let you into some exciting news, I’m off travelling! I’ll be heading off for New Year in Colombia followed by 4 months around South America taking in Brazil for Rio Carnival, Argentina, Bolivia, Chile and finishing with the Inca Trail in Peru. While that’s all very exciting I hope you’ll agree, the reason for me telling you this is not only because I won’t be as active in the South London sphere in the coming months (although I’m scheduling some posts and have an awesome team of contributors to keep you in the know), but also because I’ve finished work a little earlier than my trip starts and have therefore had time to concentrate on blogging more or less full time over the last couple of weeks!
The run up to Christmas has definitely been a great time to do this, and it’s been fantastic being able to say ‘yes’ to things I’d normally have to turn down due to work.
So over the past month I’ve packed my diary with as many south London things as possible and thought I’d share a bit about what I’ve been up to!
Breakfast club bingo – the first Tuesday of the month took me to London Bridge for Bingo at the Breakfast club. So I drafted in a couple of mates who were brave enough for school night drinking and headed to this quirky breakfast spot come restaurant, bar and on this occasion, Bingo Hall! We were sensible enough to line our stomachs and for me the brioche bun filled with hallumi, avocado and butternut squash did the job nicely. It was happy hour for the whole night so we started with a round of aperol spritz at the very happy price of £5 each. Wine was also in the happy hour, with £4 off bottles, so we graduated to this in due course.
Bonkers Bingo would be a suitable name for what then took place, as our bubbly host, Anne Hiking (@structuredfun) who possessed more energy than a Duracell bunny took us through a whirl wind night of (loosely) Xmas themed bingo calls, group sing alongs and lots of alcohol consumption. It’s a great group event, and one not to be taken too seriously. There was also the opportunity to win some pretty awesome prizes too. Keep an eye out for more bingo from the Breakfast Club in the New Year.
More highlights of my month included;
A girls trip to the Southbank Xmas market, one of my fav things to do in London at Christmas. This year they have really gone all out, taking over the whole area that the Udderbelly occupies in the summer, with food and drink vendors as well as a big Rekordeling cider lodge. Word of warning – be sure to wrap up warm so that your night’s not spoiled by numb fingers! We followed mulled wine and hot cider up with a meal in warmer surrounds at nearby Turkish restaurant EV, it’s on Isabella Street which is a tucked away gem off The Cut.
Myla and Davis, who already have salons in Herne Hill and East Dulwich, have just opened their doors in Brixton on Coldharbour lane. As part of their opening celebrations I was invited along to have a free wash and blow dry, just in time for another Christmas meal, this time at the Windmill on Clapham Common, it’s looking very beautiful and Christmassy! The salon looks lovely and I was very pleased with the results. I wish they’d been there when I lived in Brixton as a good hairdresser’s was one thing the area lacked.
Dessert Caffe opening in Earlsfield – I was invited to the official launch of this new café in Earlsfield. Don’t be fooled by the name, they do more than just dessert. The glitter and mirrored walls might not be to everyones taste, but the chicken bacon and avocado toasted sandwich I tried was great, and from the wide range of Gelato flavours they had on offer the salted caramel and peanut butter
were delicious! The Mayor of Wandsworth was on hand to cut the ribbon and pose for some photos. If you’re in the area show some support for this new local business.
Christmas Cake – The below pic says it all really, this beaut of a Christmas cake was delivered to me by the lovely people at Cakes by Robin. It’s so perfectly decorated the old cliché ‘too good to eat’ came to mind, but of course I had to try it. After a whole family tasting I have to say I was very popular as it went down a storm ‘moist’, ‘fruity’ and ‘great marzipan’ were just a few of the positive reviews from the De Luca clan.
Another highlight of my South London time off was a find close to home. I had a lovely stroll around Streatham Common and finally visited the lovely Rookery, which is a beautifully kept walled garden, a tranquil haven in the midst of busy Streatham. This was topped off with a meal at Brighton Way, a recent addition to Streatham’s food scene, and one which pleased the whole family.
To finish off a hectic month and just in time to get myself ready for a family filled Christmas I had a two in one tasting day.
This started with a special tasting of the new home delivery food service Bonapeti and this really does deserve a special mention. The food is fantastic and is restaurant standard, the chef used to work at the Fat Duck so this is beyond anything you could imagine from a take away service. I think Bonapeti would definitely appeal to the cash rich, time poor who are health conscious. Food is all gluten free and vegetarian with vegan options too.
After a healthy delicious lunch courtesy of Bonapeti I made sure that I didn’t miss out on my daily intake of meat by heading to Argentinian restaurant CAU in Wimbledon Village. With my impending trip to South America, this seemed rather appropriate! We were tasting their Xmas menu which went beyond the usual turkey dinner, in fact no turkey in sight. Instead a mix of their usual delicious offerings with a few extras thrown in for festive cheer. At £23 for two courses or £29 for three it’s pretty good value too. Whether it’s Christmas or not I’d recommend a visit!
So all that’s left for me to say is, I hope you had a fantastic Christmas and have a wonderful New Year!