L is for London!
Laughter - Lighthouse Museum - Llama Trekking - Loch - Lone Wolf
We hadn't actually planned to go to London - it's a bit extravagant driving the length of the country for a date! Originally we were going to go with laughter and hit up a Breakneck Comedy gig, but things happened and plans changed, and we found ourselves travelling to Essex for a weekend. Since we'd made the 10 hour journey we thought we'd make the most of a rubbish situation and spend the day exploring the British capital.
It started, as all good dates do, with brunch! After much research I booked us a table at Strut & Cluck in Shoreditch - the Eastern Mediterranean food looked incredible and seemed macro friendly too! The interiors were gorgeous - a dark and sophisticated bar faces the front of the restaurant, juxtaposed to the bright and airy natural colours of the walls and hanging greenery. An Instagramer's dream!
I went for the high protein option with fried egg on handpulled shawarma (turkey meat) served on pita bread. The mixture of tahini with pine nuts and a little sweetness from the dates was delicious! Gordon's shakshuka with chorizo packed a punch and I couldn't help but scoop up the sauce with pita when he'd had enough. I would 100% eat here again!
The rest of the day was spent wandering. We had a nose in Spitalfields market and then made our way across the river to the south bank, spotting a few favourite landmarks along the way! Before we knew it we'd reached Borough Market. A bustling hubbub of people, cooking, eating, drinking... we could barely move! At least I can finally tick the popular food market off my bucket list, but I'd recommend visiting during the week when it's (hopefully) a little quieter!
We sampled a few goodies, picked up some cinnamon elephant cookies from the Cinnamon Tree Bakery and grabbed a coffee/green tea to go. You can also find traders selling glasses of fizz if that's more your thing. It was a little bit overwhelming to be honest. There was so much I would have liked to try - next time I'd skip brunch and go hungry!
Carrying on down the south bank we decided to nip into Shakespeare's globe theatre and join a wee tour. Our guide was a rather funny Ed Sheeran lookalike who kept us well entertained, while teaching us about the history of theatre in London. Afterwards we popped into the Tate Modern, where we discovered we are not art lovers. Soz!
Not going to lie, my favourite stop along the Thames was Dandelyan! Voted the world's best cocktail bar 2017, you'll find this delight in the Mondrian hotel. We got the best seats in the house (IMO) and watched the bartenders do their thing. I stuck to a classic Porter's G&T (Dandelyan's head bartender is one of the creators of this Aberdonian gin!) while Gordon went for a girly looking Mmm Hop! The gin based cocktail gets it's colour from bitter hibiscus. Dandelyan is an absolute must visit for any discerning cocktail drinker and I'd definitely check out the Wyld Tea for a treat next time!
The final part of our day was spent exploring Covent Garden and China Town. Heading towards Soho we decided to grab a bite to eat and enjoyed some Thai food at Banana Tree. It wasn't the best meal I've ever had but it was perfectly fine, if a little lacking in flavour. We're just counting down to next week when we can sample the real deal in Thailand!