June 26th, 2007

Feast

Taste of London

The Taste of London was just as good the second year running. The event is expensive if you're going as a way of just eating a good lunch or dinner; it's worth the price if what you want to do is eat samples from lots of London's top restaurants (Pied-à-Terre, Le Gavroche, Angela Harnett at the Connaught etc.). This year we had snowdrifted with us which meant we had three peoples' worth of dishes to all sample - an added bonus to already good company.

Taste of London is held in Regent's Park in a series of large white tents, large enough to cover the vendors and the stands and the people buying, but potentially crowded if the throngs actually all needed to dive indoors with the advent of rain. We've lucked out on the weather; indeed, thinking it would be sprinkling on Saturday afternoon, we brought umbrellas when really, sunhats or a parasol would have been more useful.

Tickets admit you to a four hour time slot - there are two per day for most of the days of the event. Four hours is enough to use up tickets and browse all the freebies courtesy of the non-restaurant vendors which makeup the physical heart of the event. The restaurants were spaced out around the periphery of the event - they're the heart and soul of it, and this way there was more room for eating and more room for queues, when necessary. We sampled loads of free drinks, alcoholic and non, picked up free magazines, sampled fudges and dips, tried out bean bag chairs - but mostly we ate. There wasn't time to go around all the non-restaurant vendors in the allotted time this year, in part because the event has grown, and in part because we didn't arrive quite as promptly as we did last time.

Impressively, although everything's on disposable dishware, the plating was generally admirable. But really, it's all about the food. In order, here's what we ate.

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