Sunday, 19 December 2010

tom's diner, brooklyn

This diner, is quite simply, the most amazing place on earth. Well, I love it anyway.
It was a sunny NewYork day and our fantabulous NY friend was showing us all her favourite haunts, which included a stroll around Prospect Heights, Brooklyn. We worked up a massive appetite and I was starving by the time we arrived at Tom's.

Tom's Restaurant, Brooklyn
From the outside, you'll see they've gone to town with the Halloween decorations and inside the diner was filled to the brim with lots of kitsch. Wall to wall fake flowers, posters, plates. I loved it!

The staff were really friendly too. As soon as we sat down we were offered free slices of oranges and cookies. We quickly order a coffee and a milkshake.

free cookies, always a winner
The girls said the milkshake was the best they'd had in their life. We spent ages deciding what to eat. There were so many pancakes to choose from but we also fancied something savoury. What the hell, why not get a side of fries?!

So we each ordered different pancakes to share. My mouth is watering as I type this at the memory. London has many things, but pancakes like this? No chance!

So first up, my pumpkin and walnut pancake. Now, it might look fairly ordinary but you can probably notice the pumpkin colour of these, and the walnuts added a divine crunchiness and flavour.....mmmmm

pumpkin and walnut pancake
The pancakes come with maple syrup (of course!) and a range of flavoured butters. One was cinnamon, not sure about the others.

Next up is our NYC friend who ordered a sweetcorn and cranberry pancakes. Again,  to die for....

sweetcorn and cranberry pancake
And finally, my little lady ordered a sweet potato and blueberry pancake. She swears hers was the best but of course, I disagree...

sweet potato and blueberry pancake

Rumour has it that this is the diner that Suzanne Vega wrote her song, aptly named 'Tom's Diner' There is a bit of debate that it could have been written in a diner in Manhattan. So, next time I hit NYC, I shall try out the competitor. But I have to say, it will have to be rather special to beat this place.

Those pancakes....mmmmmmm......

Kitsch heaven

Sunday, 5 December 2010

silver tips in sleepy hollow

One sunny but chilly Halloween's day I mysteriously found myself in Sleepy Hollow NY. How did this Perth girl, land up in the USA on the biggest known American celebration? (Okay not counting Thanksgiving) Just lucky I guess.....

I learnt a pearl of wisdom when I was in NYC visiting my closest friend in the whole wide world...
'Sightseeing if what you do in between drinking coffee and eating cake'

That's the  most true statement ever....

Anyway, so what does one do in Sleepy Hollow? Apart from trawl the vintage stores (bought a fab George Washington plate which is now up in my living room)

Well goes to tea shops of course...Now apparently America doesn't have great tea but we found ourself in a quaint little tea shop.

We waited and waited and waited for a table, it was packed to the brim. We narrowly avoiding a row as we waited, as some obnoxious guy was rude to my friend's wonderful hubby...

Undeterred, we waited for our table. Once there, we selected our tea...and our cakes...and read the informative menu.

So, what cakes did we eat....???

 I selected a delicious almond cake and I loved the little plate it was served on.

My wonderful friend J chose a pear tart. She hated her marzipan, which wasn't mentioned on the this one doesn't rate highly.

This bad boy below is a scone. yes, A SCONE! If you ever needed proof that everything in America is bigger than the rest of the world, this is it. This scone is about triple the size of an English scone...

Now I would insert a photo here of M's cake but she ate it before I got chance. So here's her tea instead. I loved the tea cosys, nice touch.

So, all in all, a lovely little tea room. If you unexpectedly find yourself in Sleepy Hollow pop in for a tea and scone. Just watch out for grumpy old men beside the door

Tuesday, 30 November 2010

a girl's got to dream

I have a long list of places I want to visit in the world. One major regret was not traveling to Israel with my friend when we went to Egypt and Jordan back in the year 2001. What was I thinking??!! Now days I can't imagine missing out on something like that. But hey, ho, so many friends have been to Tel Aviv for amazing adventures, and delicious food.

My wonderful friend send me this contribution almost a year ago, so finally it's on the blog.

                                                           She said, quite simply


                                                     'Aracaffe has the best coffee in Israel'

                                                But if you ask me, this cake looks pretty darn good.

                       I hope one day my dreams come true and I get to sample these delights myself!

Sunday, 28 November 2010

I love NY

Be prepared , a wave of NYC related posts will be heading to this blog. I absolutely fell in LOVE with the city. Mainly because the friends M and I have that live there are so close to our hearts. They've got lovely settled lives and have got kind and wonderful partners.
We literally ate our way around the city.

Saturday, 27 November 2010

teacups in Cannes

Ahhhhhh summer, a distant memory now. I found myself in the south of France for work a couple of months ago and managed to get a couple of hours to myself.

So, I took a long walk past Cannes Harbour, to the church at the top of the hill.

 So, making my walk back to the madness (work)  and I took a different route down the teeny tiny little French pathways, and discovered a gorgeous antique shop. Would it be packed with bargains I could fill my suitcase with? Hmmmm.....this was Cannes so I guessed now. Undeterred though, I went into the shop for a nosy around...

I spotted the tea cups immediately and fell in love. I asked the shopowner the price of the teacup...

Can you guess?

100 euros. Apparently they're from the 1800's

I enquired what was the cheapest thing they had for sale.

It was a teacup. But at 40 euros.

As much as I loved the teacups, knowing I'd been at the Brussels flea market not so long ago and survived without a purchase, I walked away.

Sunday, 14 November 2010

crockery and cocktails

A bunch of us went to this bar on Saturday afternoon. It was so damn long ago, the details are a little hazy!

It was our friend King Julian who suggested we go there as knows I have an obsession with vintage, crockery, tea...and let's face it, I like a drink too. So all my favourite things in one place.

The bar is set out like a granny's living room. There are pristine white tablecloths and basil and mind growing on each table. It's a tiny little place but I discovered you can reserve a space.

The cocktails here are the real star of the show. The best ones are served in vintage tea cups and they have little accompanying treats.

This was called Gardener's Delight ( I think). It was served with an teeny cucumber sandwich, heavenly....

This cocktail was some kind of rum based drink, served with a minute jaffa cake. It was called Pirates something (can't quite remember) It was very tasty, sampled a few of these...

This was the Gardner's Delight from D's perspective....The idea behind the cocktails in tea cups is that apparently this is how alcohol was served during prohibition times.

I even loved the bathroom......

We drank  more and more cocktails, they were irresistable. I think they were reasonable priced at £7 each. They were well made....and for this reason I spent an absolute fortune and left rather squiffy. They were such lovely drinks, I had more and more

We all had more and more......

A good afternoon was had by all....!

(they even almost ran out of tea cups)

Wednesday, 10 November 2010

brussels flea market

Look at this......absolute heaven for a crockery vintage enthusiast like me. The flea market in Brussels was packed with a range of cups, saucers, plates, pots. All covered in cute designs begging to be bought. But do you think I came back with one single thing? NO. Shocking isn't it...! But....picture this....a romantic weekend spent getting completely lost...and on the Sunday it was not just raining, it was pouring. Have I set the scene enough? I was dead excited when I realised the Sunday flea market was on route to the Eurostar and M kindly said she'd hold the cases while I had a nosy around. I suspect she just wanted to stay under shelter, but hey, I was happy.
I must have wandered the market several times, it was pelting down and the cups and bowls were all filled to the brim with water.

But, wonders will never cease, I just couldn't see one thing I felt like buying. Wierdest experience ever. I blame the rain...!

Saturday, 23 October 2010

towpath cafe

This great little cafe opened earlier this year and over the summer I walked longingly past many times, hoping to get a table... Finally the day came when I spotted a table and made my way to the menu....a great seasonal soon as I saw globe artichoke I knew what to pick....

The artichoke was delicious (although was served chilled so I wasn't so fond of that) I LOVED the plates the dish was served on I sat and nibbled each leave as I watched the canal and the world go by.

FIVE tea cups for this place. I would be back in a flash...if I can get a table that is.
Towpath Cafe, Regents Canal towpath, just by Kingsland Rd

Monday, 18 October 2010

to dry for

I've just fallen in love with this many cool tea towels, I could buy the entire online shop!

Resisted so far...not sure how much longer. I love the tunnocks tea towel!

and best of all very reasonable postage and packaging...only £1

Sunday, 17 October 2010

south beach cafe, western australia

This cafe is my favourite beachside cafe in the's my home town beach but I only get to visit it every three years. They do great coffee, yummy sarnies, perfect chips. Love it...

You can see the pathway to the beach through the window...and at Christmas they decorate it with tinsel. I absolutely love this cafe, so if you ever find yourself in Perth, head to South Beach near Fremantle (you can get the free Cat bus there) and have yourself a flat white!
Also, what I love about this place is that when you order food, rather than give you a number they ask your name and call it out. 
It's the quintessential Oz experience....oh.....I'm home sick now!

Saturday, 9 October 2010

whoopies at andersons

I have often written about my love of Anderson's Bakery on Hoxton street. As I wandered past one Saturday I spotted a whoopie pie in the window.

This is cake that has been dubbed the new cupcake, I'd been searching high and low for somewhere that sells these cakes, so I was in the Bakery stocking up on a afternoon tea treat for me and my girl.

So, what was the verdict? 

As far as I am concrned this cake has nothing on the cupcake. It's a little too big to enjoy, very very sweet and the cake isn't as soft.

So....that's the whoopie cake done....ticked off the list....

Sunday, 19 September 2010

fish n chips by the sea

One windy Sunday we found ourselves on the train to Bexhill, to check out the Anthony Gormley exhibition. Bexhill is a sleepy town...

The exhibition was tiny, so we had whizzed around it in about 20 minutes...we decided to treat ourselves to some fish n chips (without the fish!) Now , you may wonder,  what does this have to do with crockery? with cakes? with caffs? well the chipper, has to be in the same class as caffs surely??

we headed to Marthas, and I was so happy to see they had pineapple fritters on the menu- a rarity in the UK, but popular at home in Australia..

If you're ever in Bexhill- head to Martha's on the seafront. It's a highlight. They also recycle all the packaging!

day trip with a difference

It was a gorgeous sunny Thursday, and we were off to Brighton for the civil partnership for my dear, wonderful friend. With much excitement M and I donned our finest clobber and off we went. After some shopping round the lanes (whilst stuck on the BBerry for work- talk about multi tasking) we decided to pop into this coffee shop for a drink and snack...

It was a cute little place, loved the coffee, tasty chutney with the cheese, refreshing elderflower, 
nice set up...