The Food Diaries

One cannot think well, love well, sleep well, if one has not dined well. ~ Virginia Woolf

Mmm, I haven’t written one of these in a while…

Big Easy is an American dining restaurant providing the tastes of the Southern States since 1991. The one thing I love about Southern food is how comforting it is, and Big Easy definitely knows how to comfort you. They have two locations in London: Covent Garden and Kings Road. I’ve had the pleasure to visit both, but I’ll have to admit that the Kings Road is definitely better, which is the one I’ll be writing about today.

Perhaps it is because it is much smaller, therefore cosier and gives off a more family feel but the food is definitely better in this branch of Big Easy. Also, the staff are super friendly, which is always a plus.

The food is well presented and arrived quickly. The two separate occasions I’ve been to Big Easy, I ordered different things just so I could get a feel for the menu. The menu is so comprehensive that I suggest you take a look at it before you visit. You will be there for ages trying to decided what to order because everything sounds so cot damn delicious.

The first time I visited, I didn’t go for a starter and just went straight for the main. Because I was running late to meet my friends, I had them order me a pineapple mojito, so that when I finally arrived it was there waiting for me so cool and alcoholic and so refreshing~

For my main, I went for medium rare 14oz Rib-Eye with a chilled House salad and fresh baked cornbread muffin. The steak was absolutely delicious, and melted in my mouth every time I took a bite. I’m not a fan of salads, but even I have to admit that this one was bomb.com and don’t even get me started on the cornbread muffin… Cornbread is my freaking weakness, and ughhhh. Seriously, guys. If anything, you should go for the cornbread muffin and nothing else. Trust me. It is moist in the most perfect way, and the nicest consistency – also, the taste is something I can’t even describe.

For dessert, we ordered Iron Skillet Smores Fondue w/ Graham Crackers which was sooooo good.

The Ultimate Pineapple Mojito ~ House rum muddled with fresh pineapple, mint, lime and sugar topped with crushed ice and finished with a crown of Navy Rum

The Ultimate Pineapple Mojito ~ House rum muddled with fresh pineapple, mint, lime and sugar topped with crushed ice and finished with a crown of Navy Rum

Lets talk about steak, baby~

Lets talk about steak, baby~

What's (graham) crackin' // I want s'more, please

What’s (graham) crackin’ // I want s’more, please

The second time I visited I think I shocked myself a little bit at how much I ordered. By the time I got to my main, I could only manage a little bit and had to take the rest home. So worth it, though.

Because I am captain of the “Fatty” ship, I ordered TWO starters. Yeah… two starters:

  • Deep Fried Jumbo Shrimp – Close to ½lb. of Shrimp, Fried Golden Crisp in a Light Tempura Batter. Cocktail & Tartar Sauce.
  • Voodoo Chicken Wings

The shrimp was the size of my hand, I am not even joking. It was so delicious, and the way it was battered was out of this world. The voodoo chicken wings were really tangy, but also a little bit spicy which was perfect. I am a fan of spicy food and could it all day everyday. Granted it would probably mean I would be blowing up my toilet more often, but hey-ho.

I went for two cocktails this time, as well:

  • Frozen Strawberry Daiquiri – Bacardi Carta Blanca, Green Chartreuse, Strawberry & Lime
  • Muddy Waters – Vodka muddled with fresh lime, blackberries and sugar, charged with berry liqueur topped with soda

Cocktails are my all time favourite. I love that they can be fruity, but secretly potent as well. You can drink like 2 and then suddenly you’re drunk, af. Hee. These ones were really tasty!

My main, this time, consisted of Bar.B.Q Ribs & Chicken – Half a Slab of Our Smoked Baby Back Ribs & Quarter Bar.B.Q Chicken. It comes with Bar.B.Q. beans and coleslaw, but as I don’t like beans I opted for a side of fries and again… cornbread muffin 🙂 This is were I had to admit defeat and take the rest of my food home. I managed to eat the chicken and half the ribs, which were so good.

I wasn’t stupid as to order dessert as well because even I know my limit.

I didn’t take pictures that time I visited, except for my cocktails. I did take videos for my snapchat (un: chynnashley), so add me there if you want to see more of food adventures (which are pretty much everyday).

Overall, if you love to eat then you definitely visit Big Easy. They will feed you like your grandma does when you go to visit, and she’s looking at you like you haven’t eaten in years. 

332-334 King’s Rd
London
SW3 5UR

020 7352 4071

I have the pleasure of writing this post from Mutay’s new desk, which we both built ourselves with blood, sweat and tears. JK, of course. It was a lot of work, though. It is our finest achievement to date.

Anyway, I’m back at it again with another food post because food is love, food is life and food will never let you down.

I was recently invited to SuperStar BBQ, which is located in Central St Giles Piazza. The location is ideal because it’s central enough to get home quickly for myself, but if you’re looking for somewhere to eat after shopping in Oxford Street then it’s only a stone throw away.

I’m pretty sure everyone who reads my blog knows how much I love Korean BBQ. I only wrote about Korean BBQ two posts ago for the Food Diaries, in fact. Fatty for life.

We actually discovered this restaurant a while back when we were with another friend in the same area. When I received an email inviting me to SuperStar BBQ, I had no idea it was the same restaurant! Needless to say that when I arrived, I was really excited. 

We were seated quickly as we had a table booked for us. After perusing the menu, we decided to order some cocktails. I went for a Kojito, which had soju, fresh lime, mint leaves and a splash of lemonade and Mutay went for a Fallen Angel in Busan, which had soju, fresh lime, raspberry and mint. They were both amazing tasting. 

Damn, Mutay. Back at it again with the cocktails.

Their menu is quite extensive and it did take us a while to choose what we wanted. They have different menus; lunch/dinner and set. If you’re not feeling BBQ, then they have other items such as KFC (Korean Fried Chicken ?), soups and bibimbap. When I go next time, I definitely want to try their KFC. I’m about that fried chicken and beer life.

We ended up going for their set menu 3:

Yukhoe (beef tartare)
Traditional mandu (dumplings)
Pajeon (seafood pancake)
Miso soup
Banchan (namul & kimchi)
Tiger prawn, sesame & garlic sirloin, rib galbi, wine pork belly, grilled vegetables
Sangchu salad, mixed lettuce & ssamjang
Seasonal fruits

Banchan (namul & kimchi) – the sigeumchi namul (Lightly blanched spinach dressed with spring onions, garlic and sesame seeds) was SO tasty!

everything

left to right: traditional mandu, kimchi jeon, banchan and yukhoe

bbq

all of the tasty meats and one singular prawn because we were grilling the others, haha

meat

my tummy is rumbling just looking at the meat. such a carnivore >.>

fruit

I believe the drink is Sujeonggwa, but correct me if I’m wrong. It was absolutely delicious!

You’ll have to excuse the quality of my pictures! I was attempting to stuff my face and get good pictures at the same time – I tried my best, haha. 

The food comes out in waves, so be prepared. I loved that they catered to my allergy to seafood. The original menu has seafood pancakes, however, I’m allergic to all seafood except prawns. The waitress was kind enough to check with her manager and they were able to swap them to kimchi pancakes. That is top notch service right there. I like restaurants that actually care about their customers – of course, if you don’t ask, you don’t get!

The waiters/waitresses were very attentive to our needs. When it came time to the BBQ part, we were shown how to BBQ and the best order to eat everything for an optimal experience. You get to grill everything yourself, and they will come round and make sure the grill is at the right temperature, etc. 

It was fun to grill everything ourselves! The last restaurant we went to, they do it for you, which it nice but then you have the waiter just standing there awkwardly. It was like that in the restaurant we went to in NYC, as well. That’s why I like this place because you have the option to take your time whilst grilling everything. You really do have to pace yourself because there is A LOT of food.

My favourite meat would have to be the sesame & garlic sirloin. The way it was seasoned was out of this world, and I’m glad we saved that for last. This is how I like to eat KBBQ; I get a lettuce wrap, spread some ssamjang on that ish, add my meat after dipping in my favourite sauce and spring onions, wrap that ish up and have myself a feast!

The portions look small and lead you to believe that it won’t be enough, but it does fill you up. By the time it got to the bibimbap and miso soup we were pretty much stuffed and we still had the fruits to go!

Can we just talk about yukhoe (beef tartare) for a second? Who thought it would be a good idea to get raw meat and put a raw egg on top? It didn’t taste too bad, but as Mutay said a little fire never hurt anybody. At least I can say I’ve actually tried it now. Come at me, bro.

I love their decor in the restaurant. Unfortunately, I didn’t take a picture of the inside of the restaurant, but they had these cool lights and I love the ambience. Makes for an excellent dining experience. Everyone was so friendly and helpful!

Food: 4/5 – Wish the portions were slightly bigger, but as I said I was still full despite this
Service: 5/5 – We didn’t have to wait long for our food, at all! And the waiter/waitresses were all so lovely 🙂

Thank you to T for helping me get the Korean words right!

Psst. I really love saying the word gochujang. GOCHUJANG!

4 Central St Giles Piazza
London
WC2H 8AB

020 7836 6577

Disclaimer: The restaurant in this review has given the reviewer complimentary food or other products. This has in no way influenced my opinion. I am ALWAYS honest in my posts. If I like something, I will say it; if I don’t, I will say that too. I’m not afraid to “offend” a company or restaurant (hello, I put that one restaurant I went to for my birthday on BLAST). I’d much rather give an honest opinion. 🙂

Spontaneous food trips are all we really need in life, right?

After what felt like a ridiculously long week, I went to Mutay’s on Friday night, and we decided that we would go for ramen. That’s what you do after an extremely hard workout – dream about carbs. 

Shoryu Ramen has been on our foodie list for a while now (our list has grown exponentially and we never seem to make a dent in it, but that’s neither here nor there), and who doesn’t love a bit of ramen? Meat, broth, noodles – you can’t go wrong really. Shoryu Ramen specialises in Hakata tonkotsu ramen from the Hakata district of Fukuoka city on the southern island of Kyushu, Japan.

We booked ourselves a table for two on Saturday evening, and after a disastrous trek in Antarctic weathers, we found ourselves in Liverpool Street and enjoying the warmth that is delicious, delicious ramen. Paired with Asahi beer and you’ve got yourself the perfect dinner.

Our waiter explained the different options of ramen that you can pick, and we were also lucky enough to catch their 2 for 1 on buns. We decided to go for soy marinated chicken karaage (which happens to be gluten free) and tiger prawn tempura buns. The bun itself was so soft and yummy, I almost cried tears of joy. I held it down, though, and instead stuffed the remainder in my mouth.

buns

Next time, I would love to try their Wagyu Shoryu Buns – highly prized, tender, fat marbled beef yakiniku with shiso, daikon & shimeji. Wagyu is that premier beef, init.

Tonkotsu: rich 12-hour pork broth ramen comes topped with char siu barbecue pork belly, nitamago egg, kikurage mushrooms, spring onion, sesame, ginger, nori seaweed

We went for their recommended ramen, which was Kotteri Hakata Tonkotsu – a richer, thicker, meatier tonkotsu broth, double nitamago egg. Yeah, that’s right – double. The broth was definitely richer, thicker and meatier and ~Jesus, take the wheel~ It was so delicious!!!!

As someone who has recently gotten over an egg allergy, I thank my lucky stars that I was able to enjoy the full ramen experience. I feel like, without the egg, it would still be nice, but it would definitely be missing something. The pork was melt-in-your-mouth-give-me-more-give-me-give-me-more and I loved the noodles! You can choose the hardness of the noodle, in which we opted for standard. Simply perfect.  

ramen

You see that side dish? Yeah, I know you saw it. Yeah, you are right – it’s that mother effing good kimchi right there. Mutay and I have a mad obsession for kimchi – still busily hunting London to find where I can get a JAR of it – and so we choose it for our extra topping. They have other toppings such as piri piri spicy sauce and takana mustard greens.

That glorious mix of spice and soup, and when you catch a big spicy piece of kimchi and your eyes are watering BUT you firm it because it tastes so damn good. Overall, we really enjoyed our experience at Shoryu Ramen and we will definitely be back again soon!

They have several branches dotted around London, so if you’re ever around then sure to check out Shoryu Ramen! Top notch stuff, mate.

33 Broadgate Circle
London
EC2M 2QS

Make a booking through shoryu.liverpoolst@shoryuramen.com

Y’all know how much I love Korean BBQ.

Y’all know how much I’ve been craving it since coming back from New York. Well… I finally got my chance when Mutay and I munched on KBBQ a couple of weeks ago at this amazing restaurant called Arirang.

We had been looking for a good Korean BBQ spot since coming back from New York and having some of the best KBBQ whilst over there.

Set just off Oxford Street, we stumbled across this restaurant whilst coming back from a friend’s birthday dinner. We immediately made plans to come visit and booked a table! In hindsight, we probably didn’t need to because the restaurant wasn’t that busy.

We were seated downstairs and our orders were immediately taken by the friendly waiter. We went for the set menu A, which included:

– soup of the house
– bulgogi (sliced marinated beef B.B.Q)
– sewoo tempura (deep fried prawns)
– dak bokum (pan fried spicy chicken)
– chap che (mixed vegetables with vermicelli)
– rice
– kimchi
– mixed fruit with coffee or tea

Absolutely delicious! I was a bit worried about the portions being small, as some restaurants have set menus with a minimum order of 2 and the portions aren’t that great. However, Arirang knows how to fill your belly. They cook the meat for you, which is a bonus and the fruit afterwards is a nice touch.

Does anyone know a place in London where you can buy kimchi by the jar?

Does anyone know a place in London where you can buy kimchi by the jar?

The dumpling at the bottom of my bowl made my whole life better.

The dumpling at the bottom of my bowl made my whole life better.

I especially liked the pan fried spicy chicken and deep fried tempura. The green tea we were given did taste a little burnt, but that was my only complaint. If you’re looking for some relatively cheap Korean BBQ then you should definitely visit this place. They also have Japanese food, if that tickles your fancy.

Look at the flick of the meat~

Look at the flick of the meat~

Damn sticky goodness.

Damn sticky goodness.

prawn

You can’t go wrong with prawns.

The music was good (got to love some K-pop!) and we really liked the ambience. The waiters who served us were very friendly, and I will definitely be making this a regular spot. I actually got shunned for my love of F.T. Island because apparently, they’re too old school. The waiter started talking about CNBLUE though, and they’re just as old – so BYE! Haha.

Can’t get enough of the kimchi!

31-32 Poland Street
London
W1F 8QT

+44 (0)20 7437 9662

This will probably be the last food post I do for New York. I would talk about The Halal Guys, but there’s only so much I can write about them. Basically, it’s chicken over rice and a helluva lot of special sauce. It’s soo good and so cheap, and it will fill you up!

Anyway, the last place I’ll be writing about is Dallas BBQ. They have several branches, but I visited the one in Brooklyn and can I just say it was the bomb diggity.

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