Flavour and spice – Indian Essence: Chef Season event

Even though Indian Essence is not in London I just had to review as this restaurant is the best Indian restaurants on the outskirts of London.

Indian Essence

Indian Essence is an established restaurant that is owned by Michelin starred chef Atul Kochhar for some nights though throughout this year he is laying on some special chef season nights where he will be joined in the kitchen with another top chef.

Chef season

The chef season night I attended in February Atul was joint by Aktar Islam from the Lasan restaurant. Continue reading

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Cocktail Experience – Remy Martin pop up bar

Remy Martin is holding a pop up but only for a week in the heart of Soho. I was lucky enough to have the privilege to attend a cocktail masterclass courtesy of TimeOut.

Remy sign

Remy pop up

Reception

Remy bottles various

The first sight I came across was a display of bottles of drink all of which have been displayed really nicely with lights shinning on around them.  After signing in at the reception area I then move into the a dark small bar area and was greeted by a lovely bartender.  I chose a cocktail with rhubarb in.

Continue reading

Let’s cook B****’s – ABQ Breaking Bad Experience

Read my newer blog for my 2018 experience further below.

Do you love cocktails? Do you love Breaking Bad (or hate it)? Do you love RV’s? Do you love having fun? then look no further as ABQ covers it all.

ABQ 2017

The RV

ABQ RV

When I arrived at the location I see this massive white RV van and a double decker bus. I stand there thinking am I in the right place as there is no sign on the RV stating it’s ABQ then all of a sudden this man in a yellow plastic suit comes jumping out of the RV’s door saying “you here to cook bitch’s”. I initially thought how rude but then my friend explained to me that the word Bitches is said a lot in Break Bad and one of Jesse’s favourite words. I have not watched Breaking Bad at all so she had to explain other phrases to me throughout the night but even though I have never seen Breaking Bad and did not get the phrases it did not make a difference to the epic time I had.

Let’s cook b****’s

ABQ man
So I stepped into the RV and it was like a Dr Who’s Tardis so much bigger on the inside. The first thing that hit my eyes is the huge neon sign of the main characters face of Breaking Bad Walter White. I was sat at table two along with my four friends. On the barrels (our seats for the night) was a yellow suit each, they felt a bit sticky but I embraced the experience and put the suit on. The barrels are a cool concept however throughout the night they did start to feel quite uncomfortable on the legs and bum as the cushion upon them was wafer thin.
Along with the suits there are gas masks and goggles hanging up that you can wear which was fun especially the gas mask. I felt tempted taking one home so I can use it for home when I use my stinky washing machine or when my husband lets rip.  For our welcome drink we were given a mojito in a science flask with a plastic syringe full of blue liquid. Not being able to contain my excitement, I injected some of this blue liquid into my mouth instead of the flask then the rest into my drink.  The blue liquid changes my mojito obviously blue. The drink was sweet and tasted great but I absolutely enjoyed it for it’s fun aspect.
Next stage was choosing my first cocktail from the two of the night as you get to cook by yourself. There are six cocktails to choose from one containing Vodka, one Gin, two Whisky, one Mezcal and one Tequila type cocktail.
ABQ menu
The menu has just been updated with three new cocktails however I would have liked to have seen more Vodka and Gin ones.  Me and my friends all had different cocktails so when the bar tender came over with our flasks, needles, even rice krispies, etc there was so much going on with the table it felt like we were in a science lab or in Heston Blumenthal’s kitchen.

 

Walter Jr Breakfast

I chose the Walter Jr Breakfast as I really like Vodka also it looked the most fun. I mean what other cocktail do you know that comes with rice krispies.  My cocktail consisted of Kahlua, Almond Milk, Cinnamon and Vodka with a side serving of Orange and Vodka. I had a measuring beaker, flask with dry ice in it, a cork with a pipe, bowl of cereal, spoon, small bottle containing Cinnamon liquid, and a milk bottle with the Almond Milk in it. The bar tender explained what to do but with everything going on and so much happening on my table I forgot what he said and I panicked and asked him not to leave me but he could not stay with me but instead he provided me with an instruction leaflet instead which was a relief as I seriously forgot what he explained I had to do. The instructions were laid out well and clear but even so I managed to miss out the first step of pouring the milk onto my cereal.  Maybe the welcome drink had effected my brain already or I was just over excited.  I measured out some hot water and then put a few drops of Cinnamon into it. Then I poured the hot water onto the dry ice that was in a flask. This was a bit scary as I know how dangerous dry ice can be and when I had to then plug the flask with the cork with a pipe coming out of it that was even more scary as it did not quite fit properly. The liquid started to bubble away and that made me then even more nervous but at the same time I was enjoying my experience in cooking my first cocktail.  The end of the pipe I placed into my milk jar and the milk started bubbling everywhere. Reason being I should off poured the Almond milk from bottle into my cereal bowl but I did not realise it was not until my friend pointed out after that I had made my drink that I had missed the first step. Fumes and smoke were coming out from everywhere from the flask (where I had not plugged the plug down properly) and my bottle of milk at one point I could not see the table at all due to the white smoke.  After the smoke had died down my drink was now infused and I poured my milk that was left of it into my bowl of cereal. It smelt so nice with the Cinnamon bouquet coming from the snapping rice Krispie’s.  However I could not just have all of it to myself so I went and got some more spoons so my friends could also enjoy the taste and experience of the alcoholic cereal.  I did not think it was going to be as good as what it was as the concept of rice Krispie’s, alcohol and Almond milk did not seem right but my it was delicious. What a great alternate way to serve cereal.
“So b****’s want me to cook you a cereal?”
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CRT Fix

My next drink I chose was the CRT Fix this consisted of Gin, Elderflower, Lime, Cucumber, Mint, Thyme and Rosemary.  I had a measuring beaker, cork with pipe, flask with dry ice in it plus some herbs, a glass with Gin with a sprig of Thyme and Rosemary in it. Firstly had to measure hot water into the beaker and then pour into the flask with the dry ice and plug the flask with the cork and put the pipe into the glass of my Gin to infuse the ingredients.  Getting a bit more brave now. Again smoke everywhere what a spectacular site.  I loved the subtle flavours of this cocktail so smooth and very drinkable. I could really taste the Cucumber and hint of the mint and other herbs.
ABQ us
My friends all tried other numerous cocktails so there was so much more than just steam going on from the dry ice but also a lot of shaking and squirting with their cooking gadgets.
After our two cocktails and the two hour experience it was time for us to go but firstly we had to take off the sticky suits. That was yet another challenge in its self especially after drinking three cocktails and now being a bit tipsy. Also the suits felt even more stickier however I will miss that yellow suit, gas mask and goggles as it was so much fun in wearing them.

Get on down and book

For £30 per ticket, each ticket gives you a 2 hour slot, costumes to wear on night, 3 drinks and a great scientific atmosphere with music pumping out from Hip-Hop to Breaking Bad soundtracks. It really is worth every penny. It’s so much more unique and exciting than a normal cocktail making experience as you are actually cooking them not just shaking them.
If you go along and there is only two of you then you might end up on a table with a few strangers but if there is four or six of you then you will have a table of your own.  You can also hire out the RV for private hire.
So would I do it all again hell yeah. I loved cooking along with my bitch’s!

ABQ 2018 crew

Let’s cook again with new B****’s – ABQ Breaking Bad Experience

A year on I return to ABQ. Upon entering through the gates there it was yet again the magical RV booming with music and energy I was ready to cook yet more cocktails and get on down with my new crew of b****’s.

ABQ 2018

Upon entering the RV we was told to dress up in one of the yellow suits. Be warned some suits are rather on the large side so I had to redress for it was way to big and I was literally drowning in it.  You can also accessorise by wearing some goggles or a gas mask.

After all the shuffling and pulling in getting ourselves in the suits we all then sat down and was given a welcome drink which was a Mojito in a science flask with a plastic syringe. Not being able to contain my excitement, exactly like last time I injected some of this blue liquid into my mouth instead of the flask. The drink was sweet but ever so tasty.

ABQ 2018 welcome drink

So since visiting last year the menu has changed but now with even more choices and some of the newer cocktails involve cooking / making together.  Plus you are not provided with an instruction leaflet in how to make the cocktails anymore you are told instead so you best have a good memory.

abq

I was though very glad to see that the ABQ Brekkie (originally called Walter Jr Breakfast) was still on the menu.  Also one of the newest additions the Blow cocktail looked very interesting and be it a bit risky but then this is a themed Breaking Bad cocktail bar after all. However I never ordered or tried this one myself as I really wanted to share and cook a Wendy Martini along with some of my b****’s on the night and the Ruby drink really appealed to me.

ABQ 2018 menu what to have

Why those drinks?

Well I love fruity cocktails and the Wendy Martini contained Vodka which is my favourite poison and passion fruit.  The Ruby drink caught my attention as I just love Rhubarb but I hate needles, thankfully no needle involved with this plastic syringe.

Wendy Martini

Initially I was just going to share with one other of my crew but four others then decided they also wanted a Wendy Martini so we all then ended up making this drink together. Personally I think with six of us all trying to get involved took the fun aspect out of it. It would have been better for all three of us couples to have our own equipment rather than all six of us sharing one aperture. Each taking turns one of us poured alcohol into a flask, measured out some hot water, mixed powder within a drink, poured drink over dry ice, created bubbles and lastly one of us poured and served up the drinks.

 

 

The drink though once done looked amazing with it’s orange glow.  It was extremely delicious with a sharp kick from the passion fruit giving you that ooh feeling and making your tongue feel like it is having an orgasm.

ABQ 2018 Wendy Martini

Ruby

After the Wendy Martini I could not wait to make my own cocktail however as someone else from my crew ordered a Ruby as well, alas, I then had to end up sharing the equipment and making the cocktail together which was a disappointment.  We took turns in making it from one of us squirting in liquid into the drink, stirring some powder into the drink and finally ending up with one of us creating bubbles to go on top. The drink though once created looked awesome with it’s pink colour.ABQ 2018 Ruby

I could taste the rhubarb and lemon juice making it a hit with me as I love fruit and sharpness but what I really loved and got hooked on was the ginger foamy bubbles which my friend made plenty of. She ended up spooning the foam bubbles in my mouth I had sort of turned into a ginger bubble foam addict. I kept on crying out for more and she ended up making me more like a street corner dealer.  So if you love Rhubarb, lemon and ginger then you just have to order this.

 

The other b****’s drinks

My other crew members all tried other numerous cocktails on the night from the likes of the Blow, Choco Sky, CRT Fix and the ABQ Brekkie. So with so much going on amongst our two tables we were all having so much fun seeing each other trying to make their’s.

 

After our two hour experience it was time for us to go but firstly we had to dedress out of our yellow fashionable suits. I just wish though I could of kept the gas mask it truly would come in handy at home.

Get on down and book

For £35 per ticket, each ticket gives you a 2 hour time slot, costume to wear on the night, a welcome drink and two cocktails of your choice to make.
Which cocktails will you make?
So would I do for a third time? hell yeah. I loved the scientific aspect of cooking cocktails and all along with my b****’s!
Click here to find out more about ABQ.

 

Thanks to ABQ for letting us from Love Pop Ups London community get on down with your crew, yo!  The experience was complimentary but all views are my own honest opinion.

Click below to read the blogs and / or reviews from the community members whom joint me in March 2018 and back during February 2017. All their views are of their own honest opinion.

Balls, Balls, Balls and yet more balls – BallieBallerson GlowMcGlow

BallieBallerson GlowMcGlow is a ball pit for grown ups along with a bar area with some many unusual cocktails to be had.

Ballpit heaven at GlowMcGlow

Balls, Balls and more balls

I went along to BallieBallerson press night launch to celebrate their new ball pit which was balltastic.

They have recently rebranded themselves with new clear balls, 250k in fact that change colour due to the LED lighting under the 10k floor that pulsates in time with the DJ spinning out funk and ragged house music. Continue reading

Dip, crunch & eat crisps – HipChips

HipChips is a pop up that is based in London’s Soho area for a limited time in where you can buy and eat freshly cooked chips along with dips.

HipChips and dips

Let’s get dipping

What an amazing unique concept crisps and various dips. I don’t usually like crisps that much but these crisps are amazing. They look awesome with all the various crisp colours, crunchy and taste crisptastic. I opted for the small size portion with two pudding dips at £4.50 or you can have savory. I chose the lemon & raspberry dip and the salted caramel dip. Both were lush, the lemon & raspberry creamy and tangy and the salted caramel so sweet, extremely salty and rich. Continue reading

It’s a puppet – Wiltons Music Theatre showing ‘The Depraved Appetite of Tarrare the Freak’

Wiltons Music Theatre is showing The Depraved Appetite of Tarrare the Freak this month.

Wilton Music Theatre is a very old interesting building with its old brick work, crumbling walls, old beams, etc. The theatre is quite small but has a very intimate feel the seats though are quite uncomfortable.

The Depraved Appetite of Tarrare the Freak

I went along to see an English opera on The Depraved Appetite of Tarrare the Freak with the story played out with puppets.

Continue reading

Spinning around fun – Cirque Du Soleil ‘Amaluna’ at Royal Albert Hall’

Firstly what a great place Royal Albert Hall is to hold such a spectacular performance of Cirque Du Soleil latest show Amaluna. Royal Albert Hall is a charming spacious round building so pretty. No matter where you sit and view the stage you will always get a great view.

I have been to many other performances before by Cirque du Soleil and like usual meeting all my expectations with great story, acrobatics, jugglers, balancing acts, air stunts, comical elements, etc. all acts so magical, mesmerising and most acts takes your breath away. Continue reading

Balls heavenly balls – ‘Gandini Juggling’ at the Peacock Theatre in Holborn

Peacock Theatre in Holborn for a few days only showing amazing performances by to see Gandini Juggling.

Gandini Juggling

It was a special edition, created for the 40th anniversary of the London International Mime Festival. 17 jugglers/performers challenge all preconceptions of juggling as they play around with apples and yet more apples. The jugglers/performers are all dressed as they have come from the 40’s era and with their hair gelled back. The whole evening consists mainly of them juggling with apples but in such a unique way with a comical aspect from performing tense relationship issues, conflict, lost love, and afternoon tea on a grand scale. Continue reading

Fun fun fun – Winter Wonderland

I have never been to Winter Wonderland before so this was my first year and I was seriously in wonderland wondering….

Winter Wonderland

what is round this corner,
whats in that hut,
will that ride be scary,
what type of band is playing in there,
what should I eat
etc….. Continue reading

I love Moomins – Adventures in Moominland

This exhibition Adventures in Moominland has popped up for a limited time from16 December 2016 to 23 April 2017 in Londons Southbank.

Adventures in Moominland

moo

It begins

It is a great and unique way to learn more about Tove Jansson the author/ artist of the great Moomins and more about Moomins and the other characters that appear in her books. I loved going on the journey through Moominland clambering through a forest, sitting in a tent, huddling in a cave etc. It was so interesting to learn in this unique way that the majority of her stories and charters all was related to do with her life from romance to depression.

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