From Balham to Shaftesbury Ave

London always has so much to offer and lately we’ve been trying hard to make the most of it. 

So a couple of weekends back we firstly tried a new (well new to us) bar then restaurant in Balham to catch up with friends. The bar is on the high street and is called Hagen & Hyde and was actually very cool. Friendly staff, plenty of drink choice, not too crowded (especially being a Friday night). We then headed to Bedford Hill and tried out a very friendly, Italian run, Italian restaurant called Caminata.  The food was gorgeous, atmosphere warm and cosy and the wine flowed freely. It was a great evening and I can highly recommend both places.

Saturday was another outing. First stop in the late afternoon was Talli Joe’s, a fun cocktail bar and eatery that does Indian Street food snacks and deliciously different cocktails.  We very much enjoyed both. For dinner we’d planned on Shuang Shuang, a place where you chose your broth then add sauces and noodles and finally from a conveyor belt you add your protein and veg. Given that reservations aren’t accepted we weren’t surprised there was a 20 minute wait so we headed off to our favourite Japanese spot, Taro. The owner recognised us as lately we’ve been there quite a bit so he said ‘no menu?’ – we didn’t need it as we knew exactly what we wanted! As usual I went for the vegetarian bento box. It is just soooooo good. Also tried the Asahi Black which was surprisingly good.

And finally it was a quick dash up to the London Palladium near Oxford circus tube for our final event ‘Alan Cumming sings sappy songs’. The name really doesn’t do the show justice. Yes he does sing some sappy songs however it is more than just a musical concert. He chats and tells stories of his life in musical theatre and as an actor, sings the odd mash up, tells a funny tale then a sad one… he is so comfortable in front of an audience that although I’m sure it is extremely well rehearsed, it didn’t in anyway way come across forced or false. He has a fabulous voice and I’d certainly pay to see him the next time he’s on stage.

So thanks again London for providing us with a brilliant weekend!

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Hagen & Hyde
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Hagen & Hyde
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London has some gorgeous buildings
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Talli Joe's
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Talli Joe's
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Alan Cumming is a little hard to see
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