A Break from the Daily Grind | Clerkenwell Grind

Earlier this week Grind opened their latest joint, Clerkenwell Grind. It’s spread out over two floors, and features their biggest restaurant to date and a late-night club/bar. Scott and I went during their soft launch and bagged ourseleves a table on a Wednesday night after work. It’s literally around the corner from where I work in the Barbican and Scott greeted me with one of their legendary Espresso Martinis.

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I love the look and feel of the the space, and is located in an old warehouse building on Old Street. You’re greated with one of their signature neon signs before heading into the restaurant which is decorated with beautiful plush pink velvet chairs, marble table tops, royal blue pannelling, which is all complimented with golden lights.

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There’s always bound to be a few hiccups during a soft launch, and there were quite a few items on the dinner menu which were no longer available. I was disappointed when I heard that they had run out of both the starters I had really wanted – the octopus and scallop, so instead I opted for the beef tartare and Scott went for the fig and black boar speck on toast. I love beef tartare and adored the gimmick of the egg yolk served in half an egg shell.

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Between courses we ordered a side of potato skins and unfortantely they weren’t crisp enough and tasted rather bland so we had to add quite a fair bit of salt.

Moving onto mains, I had the sweet potato harissa cakes topped with a poached duck egg and Scott had the bavette steak and had orginally ordered a side of chips. As the food was being served we were told that the chef was not happy with the chips so instead we recieved a bowl of sweet potato flavoured with truffle and garlic.

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My poached egg was perfectly runny but the sweet potato cake was a bit too oily for my taste. Scott was not impressed with his Chimichurri sauce either yet the steak was beautifully cooked and was served pink in the middle.

I love the fact this coffee bar is a five minute walk away from my day job so to say I was exicted by its arrival was an understantment, there’s not a huge amount of variety near the Barbican – I’m so spoilt by Pret and Pizza Express. I’ll never complain about a lack of decent places to eat and drink near the Barbican again and if I can drag my arse out of bed a bit earlier, I could always pop in for breakfast before work.

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Clerkenwell Grind, 2-4 Old Street, EC1V 9AA

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The Best Places for Matcha in London

Matcha, to most people, is just green tea. Over the past couple of month’s it has been one of those ingredients which has just exploded over the London food and drink scene – who doesn’t love a matcha latte? Their sweet, creamy and healthy, and they’re the perfect alternative to my morning coffee. In my bid to move away from the Pumpkin Spiced Lattes from Starbucks I’ve found some of the best matcha lattes in London.

EC1 Coffee House

I’ve been known to take a detour on my way to work and get off the tube a stop early to get my matcha fix from here. It’s a tiny space with a few seats but it’s the perfect spot to grab a coffee to go from.

Look Mum, No Hands

I love the concept of this cafe – it’s basically a cycling shop with amazing coffee and a great selection of beers. I love coming here in my lunch hour, loosing myself in a good book and sipping on a creamy matcha latte.

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Notes

If you’ve never had matcha before, Notes should be the first place to try it. Their lattes are fairly sweet – which is why it’s the perfect place for your first taste.

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Grind

If you can’t already tell, I seriously love Grind. They’ve only just started doing matcha lattes and they’re nailing it. I can’t wait for them to open up their Clerkenwell branch as it’s literally just up the road from where I work.

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Tombo

Now no London matcha post can be written without mentioning Tombo. They have both a Japanese Cafe and Deli in Chelsea, and a Poké Bar in SoHo. It’s not only matcha lattes you can get here – try their matcha soft serve, matcha brownies and matcha cheesecake!

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