Saturday, December 21, 2013

English's of Brighton

 Dear old English's of Brighton. Oh what can I say? I've had this post kept for ages. I've decided to check this place out because the restaurant rank number 41 on TA, which isn't too bad.

 I'll talk about the food first. What is wrong with this picture? That bread. That horrible looking bread. Goodness gracious can't they get baguettes or something more presentable? They try to make everything look pretty but the bread just look like some 4-year-old kid work. Presentation makes a big impact - people tend to be happier and much more comfortable for the things they pay for if it looks nicer. Not just that, look at that amount of butter on that bread?? What if I don't like butter? God.

 Portion? It's definitely over priced for the tiny little portion. I'm confused really, if you want to charge that price I expect better presentation and food quality. If they are serving such ungenerous portion and horrible presentation then don't charge that much. The only thing that justifies the price is the freshness of the seafood. Then again, it's really too much. like £15 for a half dozen of oysters. A dozen usually goes for about £20, anything more has to be exquisite!

 I won't deny the seafood is really fresh though. The next thing I would go on is their service.

 Dad had this ordered 20 minutes after everything else. To our surprise, his dish arrived the earliest, right after appetiser. We jokingly asked the waitress (Staff B) where are the rest of the dishes, we ordered this last but it came first! She replied "This is a cold dish, does this mean anything to you?". I literally choked at her sarcasm. What the hell?

 As you can see our dishes came really late - after the sun has set. You can tell from the pictures. So I've ordered a glass of wine from the staff which was attending to us (Staff A). She didn't come back and I've asked Staff B to check because I've already ordered. I'm pretty sure her (basic) English is terrible she could not understand my request. She stomped back and said "You have already ordered it with my colleague why are you ordering it again?". I told her that I requested you to check not to get you to order it once again! That atrocious waitress ignored what I've said and walked off. Not even an apology.

 That got me so I had to complain to the manager. What an obnoxious waitress I feel like giving her a slap in the face!

 I didn't come here to be treated like that. The waitress was so damn rude and I've never gotten an apology even until I left. The manager apologised but that's not sufficient, he should have made that obnoxious waitress apologise. I told him I don't want to see her serving any of my food after though. I don't even have a clue why would this restaurant hire such inexperienced, untrained and ill-mannered staff to serve their customers!

On a brighter note, Staff A who served us was a really nice girl. I don't really want to go back again, once bitten twice shy. There are many other restaurants out there which can cater to my needs, so I don't need to stress myself over silly people.

I sincerely thank the person who had responded to my review on TA, but I'm sorry this is all I have to say as I've already provided all details and do not want to go over it again.

English's of Brighton
29-31 East Street,
Brighton
BN1 1HL East Sussex
United Kingdom
012 7332 7980

Friday, December 20, 2013

Apolo XI

It was really funny how I ended up in Arguineguin. Some random "swinger"/stranger approached and started a conversation which prompted me to ask about good seafood around Maspalomas. (P/S: Story bout swinger ends here) He suggested Arguineguin (famous place for seafood), and I could not decide which one to go as TripAdvisor was not quite helpful. In fact this restaurant I went to was quite low in terms of ranking. Reason being, I was in Maspalomas and about to head to Puerto Rico, in which Arguineguin was right in the middle.

 Bread and mojo sauce. Mojo is a typical Canarian product - there are various mojo sauces, from red to green to mild to spicy (slightly, its not really spicy anyway). These sauces are to suit bread / meat / fish, depending on what you're after. I really don't know how to explain. Basically what you see in this picture is a mild mojo sauce for bread. Mojo sauce is for anything / everything. I'm not kidding. It has this distinct taste I don't know how to explain to you. It's really something different. Read more here.

 We ordered a couple of dishes to share - crabsticks as appetiser. Unfortunately this is just so typical instant crab sticks (a mixture of crab flavours with little crab meat and flour perhaps) I can get from Asian grocers and then deep fry it or something. Definitely not something I would go for the second time.

 The polipo is TO DIE FOR! I think it's grilled octopus topped with some spices and sea salt. It's super soft and slimy - it does sound disgusting but it's super good. It's so chewy you would die for more!! I can't really tell what the redish stuff is on the octopus as I was focusing too much on the freshness and the sliminess of the octopus haha. Though I would say the sea salt they have added to the dish is almost unnecessary - it's way too salty so I had to scrap them off. 

Some whole fish with (green) mojo sauce, canarian potatoes and salad. The fish is undoubtedly fresh!! They have this counter in the shop to display their fish available for the shop - and mommy had taught me how to see what's a fresh fish (clue: look at the colour of the eye!). So yes. Fish was really sweet - topped with green mojo sauce with a mixture of garlic and some herbs. The fish is rather tasteless but goes really well with the mojo mixture. I really cannot tell you how mojo tastes like, it's basically a slight salty sauce with various mixture of herbs in it. This, is only available in Canary Islands. :)

Despite the ugly rankings on Trip Advisor, I would definitely give a plus point to this place - perhaps there are other restaurants that are better but this one is definitely not poor and you might want to give it a shot. :)

Apolo XI
Avenida del Muelle
Arguineguin
Gran Canaria
Spain

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Eataly

 The beautiful port of Genoa. Why Eataly? Because it has a nice view and reasonably cheap food.

 Eataly is located in various locations in the world - couple of places in Italy, New York, Japan and Chicago (I have zero clue bout other locations but Genova).

The view from the elevator.. So why Eataly? There are 3 things in Eataly Genova - (1) Proper Italian dining, (2) Food court, (3) Supermarket. So it's indirectly - (1) proper dining, (2) budget dining, (3) home dining. 

I did not get a chance to try out il Marin Ristoro, maybe next time if I ever go back again. As for eating in and taking out, yes I've done it - Meal for one costs less than €10 :)

Desserts to take away or to eat in.

 Market section. You can get fruits, vegetables, not really wide range of choices though.

 There are more wine selections than fruits or vegetables.

 Truckloads of pasta..

 And even more pasta. In whatever shape you're after. I have not even seen/heard some of it myself. It's actually quite interesting :)

This falls under the food court category, a pasta bar. There are a few bars, depending on what you feel like having. 

 This is the charcuterie bar. Prosciutto, cheese, ham, you name it, they'll do it. 
*Oopsie to the couple in the background.

 Food court tables. With that view.

The plate of meat, cheese and free bread for about €8. Quite a bargain! :)

 And if you feel like having it in the hotel, feel free to takeaway :)

 Horrible wrappers and all, but it doesn't matter.

 The entire meal costs less than €20 (for two). Ignore the fried rice at the corner as it's not an Eataly product.

There are times when you just feel like having a quiet night, I would definitely recommend getting food from Eataly. You can find it at Porto Antico, one of the main spot to visit in Genova. It has this really huge EATALY sign you cannot miss.

Eataly Genova
Porto Antico
Genova
Italy

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Tapas Brindisa

 Charcuteria is a must when it comes to Spanish food... I know the method used to preserve the ham seems pretty disgusting, but humans eat the most disgusting things anyway (Like preserved bean curd, stinky tofu, cheese). Back to the food - we had the ham selection - serrano and bellota served with bread and olive oil. It's best to have it with red wine but we just didn't felt like it. I have to say that it costs so much to have it in London really, £19.50 for selection of ham. Ok I have to give them credits for hand carving the bellota if I'm not wrong. For the same portion I could probably get it for less than £5 in Spain I am so not kidding you!

Then there's the wonderful traditional black rice. I believe it is made out of seafood broth, particularly squid/crab/fish/[insert whatever seafood] and squid ink, served with even more squid and aioli - £6.95. For the same price I've paid for, I got it three times the size of what I have here. But taste? It was just so damn good, the rice is so very flavourful because of the broth.

Just to make it clearn, I'm not picking on the price, obviously no comparison. But what I'm trying to say is it way cheaper, so much cheaper to have all of these in Spain as we would probably pay 4-5 times more in London. So make sure you eat more when you're in Spain. But I know it's crazy to fly to Spain just to get one Spanish meal. So, by far, Tapas Brindisa is the best Spanish (closest to what I've had in Spain) in London. Therefore, it is definitely worth paying for if you really want to get Spanish food in London. 

Another option (if you want to spend lesser), you may check out their shop in Borough Market or purchase it online. They even have Ham School!!! I've been dubbed as "Ham Girl" therefore I should really consider going to the Ham School. I think I'm in love with Spain/food/place/[you-name-it]!

Tapas Brindisa is available in London Bridge, Soho, South Ken and Shoreditch.

Tapas Brindisa London Bridge
18-20 Southwark Street
SE1 1TJ London
United Kingdom
020 7357 8880

Tapas Brindisa Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato