London larder: Gelupo W1D
Since opening in 2010, Jacob Kennedy of Gelupo fame has wowed London with his innovative flavours winning the accolade of Time Out's 2012 Top Things to Do In London. We couldn't agree more. With flavours such as ricotta, chocolate and black pepper and tantalising blood orange, our taste buds are perpetually a spin with this artisan ice-cream makers thesaurus of taste sensations making it our go-to-place for ice-cream in Soho. At the back of the store is a perfect selection of Italian goods from the highly covetable and “we can’t live without” truffle shaver to apple balsamic vinegar, The browsable selection of cookbooks just add to our delight from the absolutely necessary The Geometry of Pasta to the BOCCA cookbook - its older sister restaurant that is just across the street. Perfecto!
7 Archer Street, London W1D 7AU Tel. 7287 5555
Hours: Mon - Thurs 12.00 - 23.30; Fri - Sat 12.00 - 00.30; Sun 12.00 - 23.00
Weekend inspiration: Kirazu W1D
Kirazu is our latest find here at London Food Essentials just off Soho's frenetic Piccadily Circus. With a menu of Japanese tapas like cold soba noodles and tempura and Japanese pancakes, we can't get enough of Yuya Kikuchi's inspired menu. A homage to Japanese cuisine and an ode to healthy eating, Kikuchi's cuisine reflects his training in Japanese food and healthy eating. Kirazu translates as bean in Japanese. The perfect selection of tea and tranquil yet modernist interior makes it the perfect lunch and dinner venue. See you there. 47 Rupert Street, London, W1D 7PD
The latest spot in London town takes its inspiration from the style emporiums of New York. At 55 Duke Street, it's a gathering of Fernandez & Wells, The Shop at the Blue Bird and Jigsaw in this converted Arts & Crafts building off Oxford Street. The highlight of our trip was listening to Roberta Flack's Where Is The Love playing on the free jukebox and discovering our favourite Marvis toothpaste. Ohh and that delectable slice of pear and lavender loaf (as pictured above). Duke Street Emporium is a great concept store and a refreshing addition to this end of Oxford Street. 55 Duke Street, W1K 5NR.
My London: David Voxlin of Craved
The idea behind Craved is a simple one: an online marketplace retailing London’s small batch food and drink. Since launching in June 2014, founder David Voxlin has brought together some of London’s best producers from England Preserves through to relative newcomers Anspach & Hobday. Proudly showcasing small batch produce,
Craved is as much a statement about London as a food city as Voxlin’s own ingenuity. With a vision to create a “hub of exploration and discovery”, Craved offers a way to buy local produce online as well as learn more about what’s new in London.
It was our great pleasure at London Food Essentials to talk to David Voxlin. We were inspired by his commitment to small batch producers and creating connections between the food we eat and those that make it. By the end of our interview, we were craving for more.
What’s the story behind Craved?
London food is fantastic but it is getting more and more local, more experiential and more fragmented. So Craved is designed to support these producers using online distribution to promote a connection with local food and
the people who make it. We have already seen GrubHub and London Pop-ups as online platforms for sharing information, but on a distribution level, I found there wasn’t really anything that allowed me to discover and access everything made in the city. Craved was created to fill that gap.
You feature a unique mix of producers from Amelia Rope to Cobble Lane Cured. How did you select them?
First of all I have done a lot of tasting! I’ve selected producers who are passionate and committed to the quality of what they produce. All of them are small business owners who source ingredients responsibly and are finding new and innovative ways to reinvent food traditions. A lot of them are in their twenties like me and have never had a traditional job. Anspach & Hobday are probably the youngest producers that I deal with and one of the newest. They opened their doors in April this year near Maltby Street. There’s also Ed and Robyn at Square Root London in Hackney who with a business loan have set up a small batch soft drink company.
We love a family business here at London Food Essentials and our weekend inspiration this week is London's H.R. Higgins, purveyor of coffee and quality teas. This third-generation business first sold coffee from an attic room in South Molton Street W1 before opening its retail store on the same street two years later. H.R. Higgins was a true connoisseur, a man of vision, steadfast in his conviction that Londoners were ready to appreciate the art of good coffee. In 1986, H.R.Higgins moved to its current location in Duke Street, opening its tea and cafe salon downstairs. A wonderful British institution and one of London's first generation of coffee roasters.
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