Taste of London 2015: Regent’s Park food event full coverageCultureFood & Drinks
The ultimate foodie festival is back for another year to take over London’s beautiful Regent’s Park and showcase the best – and the tastiest – on London’s growing, eclectic food scene. There are many wonderful things to taste at new pop-up restaurants, culinary showcases and cooking classes.
With so much on offer, restaurants showing off their best and tastiest include a wonderful Middle-Eastern experience from The Palomar, a Pan-Asian treat from Chai Wu, and Japanese cuisine from Aqua Kyoto. As a novelty for 2015, Peruvian hotspot LIMA Floral, Anna Hansen’s new venture, Modern Pantry 2, and Marcus Wareing’s Tredwell’s also brought their own unique flair to the festival. Guests shouldn’t forget to check out Duck & Waffle, Spice Market, Club Gascon, and many others. Sushi Samba deserves a special mention for its beautiful set-up, hands down the coolest stand in the festival with a reproduction of their iconic orange tree. The Taste of Thailand 2015 brings Thai cooking demonstrations bursting with bright and exotic flavours, as well as the talents of Lancaster London’s Nipa. In addition to this, Cocoface, Chang, Singha and Monsoon refresh us all with coconut drinks, beers and wines.
With such an abundance of restaurants and companies at the event, it would take more than one trip to make the most of the experiences, so planning is key. Or the standard approach can be taken, and you can just eat as you explore. In order to make your decision-making easier, there is The Daily Special; this gives guests a daily changing selection of some of London’s freshest new restaurants. We had the pleasure of trying Wednesday’s contribution by Lyle’s, a Shoreditch-based restaurant giving modern British cuisine a run for its money. The highlight dishes were the Lamb’s sweetbread with wild garlic and yogurt, and the gull’s egg with seaweed.
To compliment all the munching and drinking, The Bandstand offers a musical treat for guests. Each day, different artists get to create the soundtrack to our snacking so it’s advised to take a perch on the grass. Grab a cool beer (the Pilsner Urquell tank beer is recommended) and just enjoy the tunes. Wednesday saw a young singer/songwriter called Josh Kumra take the stage. Kumra brought a Ray LaMontange-esque atmosphere with his relaxing music. You might recognise him, as he did feature on Wretch 32’s 2013 hit Don’t Go.
We spotted top chef Nuno Mendes by the stand of the Clove Club, one of London’s most exciting restaurants, ordering a delicious lamb dish. There aren’t only restaurants on show: food companies such as The London Tea Company, B Fresh, Lindt, Angel Tears Vodka, Mövenpick and lots of other dessert, snack and drink companies will be there to offer samples and show visitors something new and exciting.
Celebrity Cruises Lawn Club and their massive lawn chair offer an oasis in the sea of food and guests. Taking inspiration from the grassy top deck of its ships, wine and food connoisseurs are taken on a journey around the world through their palettes. The Michelin-starred head of culinary for celebrity cruises – Cornelius Gallagher – created a tasty menu which best displays what meals could be like on board. From blackened ahi tuna with forbidden rice and baby bok choi. lamb loin with tangy yogurt and a selection of gourmet spring rolls, we really did feel like we were on a culinary holiday away.
With a more humanitarian goal in mind, Action Against Hunger return to Taste of London with a five-star pop-up kebab restaurant. With top chefs Sabrina Ghayour, Cyrus Todiwala, Yotam Ottolenghi, Alyn Williams and Bruno Loubet in tow, they have the task of making the humble kebab a culinary masterpiece. The money raised will go on to fund Action Against Hunger’s various and wonderful worldwide programmes.
There is also an opportunity to learn from some cooking masters in the AEG Taste Theatre. Chefs, such as Raymond Blanc, Lee Westcott and Marcus Wareing, offer useful hints and tip to help you up your culinary game. Live tastings and pairings and – on a more intriguing note – a man versus machine cook-off will leave guests with more knowledge, and thoroughly entertained.
As with every year’s showcase, this is another foodie event not to be missed. Learn, eat and enjoy the typical British summer is in this ultimate celebration of the tasty side of London culture.
Amaliah Sara Marmon-Halm
Photos: Filippo L’Astorina
Taste of London is at Regent’s Park from 17th until 21st June 2015, for further information visit here.