Sunday, May 06, 2007

Where to Dine

I received this tag from Lulu. I don't eat out that much right now because I'm kind of broke, but when I do it is either here in the Milton Keynes area or it's in London, so this list will contain a bit of both.

Here are the rules:

The rules:1. Add a direct link to your post below the name of the person who tagged you.
Include the city/state and country you’re in.
Nicole
(Sydney, Australia)
velverse
(Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia)
LB
(San Giovanni in Marignano, Italy)
Selba
(Jakarta, Indonesia)
Olivia
(London, England)
ML
(Utah, USA)
Lotus
(Toronto, Canada)
tanabata
(Saitama, Japan)
Andi
(Dallas [ish], Texas, United States)
Lulu
(Chicago, Illinois, United States)
Melinda June (Milton Keynes, UK)

2. List out your top 5 favorite places to eat at your location.

3. Tag 5 other people (preferably from other countries/states) and let them know they’ve been tagged.

The Swan at Salford - An excellent gastropub about three miles from Cranfield and about seven miles from my office. I go here regularly enough with both work colleagues and classmates that most of the staff know me by face, if not by name. It's got a modern, comfortable atmosphere. There are daily specials and even the main menu changes seasonally to keep things interesting, so you never know what you're going to find. They do fabulous deli boards that can be nibbles or a meal, ranging from artisan cheeses or antipasti to Mediterranean or Indian-inspired tapas. They do a bangers and mash with a different organic sausage each week. (I always feel I've hit the jackpot if it's the venison/plum one.) The grilled tuna and citrus salad on the current menu is most excellent, and last winter they made a starter that was all smoked haddock and melty cheese and a bit of crouton. Yum. And they have a spectacular wine list, as well as Guinness, both standard and extra cold. (There are other beverages, as well, but those are the ones I care about.) If they made a proper cocktail, they would be perfect.

Jalori - This Indian is located in Woburn Sands, a posh village just south of Milton Keynes. It can be hard to get a table before 9 unless you have reservations, and for good reason. They have an extensive menu, so it takes awhile to figure out what to have. The spice blends are just perfect, the curries are not swimming in ghee and the peshwari naan is always light and sweet and delicious. Meals always start with papadums with mango chutney, salad, raita and that weird hot-salty pickle stuff, and the Cobra beer is the coldest I've found. Yum Yum.

Carluccios - Technically this is a chain of Italian delis, located mostly in London. I usually go to the one on Oxford Street or in South Kensington, and they are dependably good...I've taken Kimmy, Abby, Frederic and Timmy there when we've been in the city, and no one has been unhappy. The menu is classic, simple Italian. I almost always start with the rocket and parmesan salad and move on to the fish of the day, some delicious chicken special or their ravioli in sage butter. Affordable, delicious wines (they even have wine specials here), and some of the best gelati I've had in London. All in a casually hip, bustling atmosphere with a deli counter by the door.

Tendido Cero - Also in South Kensington, this tapas restaurant has some seriously delicious little dishes, and they don't kill my pocket book. (Although no longer converting £'s to $'s, I still don't have extra spending money to waste so I look for a deal every time.) I think tapas might be the perfect way to eat...grazing your way through little dishes packed with flavour, never eating a ton but savouring every bite. There are these little phyllo rolls filled with sausage and cheese covered with a bit of honey that might be one of the best things I've ever eaten. Good people watching, relaxed and buzzy. (Confidential to TC: when you and Kelli visit me, I'm taking you here. You think Solera is expensive and not enough food, just you wait until you're paying UK prices.)

Siam Boraam - This great little thai restaurant is in half of a pub in the village of Newton Longville. It is the most improbable place to find a thai restaurant, but it is well worth the drive. Their fish cakes are crisp/not greasy, the tom yum gai is hot-sweet-sour delicious, and their pad prik khing is maddeningly good. The service can be slow even by English standards, but I find it well worth the wait. I often call ahead and do takeaway, especially if I'm already out and about. If I had unlimited money I might prefer the Blue Orchid in Aspley Guise, but for the price difference Siam Boraam gets my vote.

Not tagging anyone...if you're reading this, you have a blog and you like to eat, then take a shot.


3 comments:

Nicole Tan said...

woo the swan at stalford sounds yummy!!!

thanks for doing the tag

ps/if you know of anyone else who would be doing the tag please let me know because I'm keeping an updated list of the people doing the tag...thanks

vel said...

Wah.... I like Tendido Cero. I have cravings for tapas now :D But over here, tapas are rather costly :(

By the way, thanks for doing the tag :D

Melinda June said...

Thanks for letting me join in. This is a great little tag.

I'll keep you posted if I get more takers.