Barrafina Dean Street, London

What a beautiful week we’ve had: record-breaking temperatures and hours of uninterrupted sunshine. It was almost like being on holiday. Hours of reading outside, coming inside to find your skin a little pink despite the shade of the umbrella. With temperatures like that you can see the appeal of a siesta in the heat of the afternoon or waiting until 10pm to eat your dinner like the Spanish do. However, although it’s a Spanish restaurant, Barrafina is very much on a British schedule. There is absolutely no point in waiting until 10pm to eat there; without doubt all the specials will be sold out and you will almost certainly still have to wait in line. Then you’ll just be sunburned and hungry, nobody wants that.

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Hide and Fox, Saltwood

After the closing of Saltwood on the Green in 2017, I will admit to worrying what the fate of the building would be; it had been so wonderfully renovated, the ornate wooden dresser beautifully restored. Over the three years it was open, the restaurant had been a beacon of brilliance; at once a place of discovery and of comfort — and all within 15 minutes from our house. I was devastated when it closed, but after a couple years gathering dust, new life has been breathed into Saltwood’s old general store. Enter Hide and Fox.

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Custom, Folkestone

Custom in a nutshell

Art meets food meets community at Folkestone’s new restaurant in Harbour Arm.


Who’s cooking?

Chef and artist Cherry Truluck and her team are all about bringing people together for great food and shared interests. Through Cherry’s imaginative menus, food-focussed artistic projects and a unique bartering system, Custom aims to make fantastic local food, and the pleasure of sharing it with others, available to everyone. 

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Copper and Spices, Folkestone: Tasting Menu

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Many of you will have already read my rave review of Copper and Spices in Folkestone. Well, because of my raving the directors of my company decided to have the office Christmas lunch there – result! The Copper and Spices team went to great lengths with Santa hats, festive glasses and poppers on the table, complimentary mulled wine – which, by the way, was the best I’ve ever had – and a ten-course tasting menu that defied belief. Enjoy ogling the photos and then get down there as fast as you can!

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Salt, Canterbury: Small plates, big impact

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Salt – the element that brings forth and magnifies flavor. Traded for centuries and at one time more expensive than gold, salt is the one thing every good kitchen cannot be without. Basic as it is, it is essential to the enjoyment of food. Salt in Canterbury is also basic, but not in the not-trying-very-hard sort of way. It’s more like they’ve taken a restaurant and stripped it back so that no element of the building or furniture distract from the reason you are there: the food.

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Copper and Spices, Folkestone: More than just curry

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Choosing to eat out on a whim is a bit risky. Who’s to say the menu bears any resemblance to what they put on the plates? To borrow from a recent episode of ‘Come Dine With Me’, who’s to say the only exotic element of an ‘exotic’ salad won’t be the fact that the chef preparing it was born in the Caribbean? Worse yet, who’s to say you won’t order a bottle of wine recommended by the owner only to find out, after you’d swilled two bottles of it, that it costs $75 a bottle – a personal experience that still brings a tear to my eye.

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