Taste of London is my all-time favourite food and drink festival in London. Every June, Regent’s Park transforms itself into food and drink wonderland for five days, featuring several of London’s top notch restaurants and bars. There is also masterclasses, cooking classes, craft beer tastings, wine pairings, tons of food sampling and it’s an ideal place to shop for your most discerning foodie friends or for yourself! More than 200 food and drink purveyors, artisan producers and manufacturers set up shop to sell their exclusive and unique products. It’s a food and drink haven and a must-do attraction if you’re in London in June!
With the plethora of exhibitors at the festival, it can be difficult to pin-point which ones to try out, so I have come up with a list of my recommendations from this year’s Taste! My best advice is to try as much as you possibly can, but these were some of my favourite spots from this year’s Taste of London.
Mr Fogg’s Safari Camp is hands down, the best bar exhibiting at Taste of London! I may be a bit biased, but the colonial-style pop-up is truly spectacular. The spacious Safari tent is filled with eclectic and colourful decor lining every inch of the walls and features comfy colonial-inspired deck chairs that provide refuge from the drizzly rain outside. Mr Fogg has brought his love of crisp G+Ts to Taste of London and they have set up a separate G+T bar, where you’ll be given a lesson in the fine art of concocting the perfect Gin and Tonic, with your choice of Tanqueray or London Dry Gin, several botanicals and your choice of flavoured tonic water. Aside from the interactive G+T bar element, they have several other incredible cocktails on tap. Tip: Try the Spirit of Savannah, made with Zacapa rum, apple liqueur, blackberry puree, Tessiere Oregeat syrup, fresh lime juice, and passion fruit juice. Perfectly refreshing.
The Cinnamon Club – My method for deciding where to eat at Taste of London is to simply visit all of the exhibitors and pick out what strikes me to be quite unique. We walked over to The Cinnamon Club and I was quite intrigued by their offering. One of the dishes was seared pigeon breast, pumpkin chutney and masala peanut sauce, which was delectable. I had never tried pigeon before and thought Taste of London is the ideal place to give it a-go. I was pleasantly surprised at how delicious it was and the pumpkin chutney was one for the books.
Chai Wu – The moment I saw duck and truffle in the same sentence, I made a B-line for Chai Wu, a contemporary Chinese restaurant that is normally located on the 5th floor of Harrods. The Roast Duck Mantou bun with garlic truffle oil was incredible. Both duck and truffle are very rich and I thought it would be overwhelming when combined, but truth be told, it was sublime.
Basque Country – Hailing from Spain, the Basque Country exhibit showcased the best tapas from the region and they didn’t disappoint. They were handing out samples of their delectable white fish (apologies, I didn’t get a chance to ask what kind), on top of grilled french bread alongside red peppers and a deliciously salty aioli. I had wished that they had a restaurant in London, as I would definitely be visiting after trying their food. A must go at Taste of London.
The Lindt Experience – A chocolate lovers paradise. If you love good chocolate, then head over to the Lindt World exhibition to taste test their famous silky chocolates. This year, they walked you through the “Lindt Experience,” where we got a chance to try the strawberry and orange chocolates, followed by the dark chocolate, key lime chocolate and orange dark chocolate varieties (all for free).
The Meringue Girls – I was drawn to this stand by the colour alone! The meringues are some of the most vibrant and gorgeous sweets I’ve ever seen (and delicious too).
Hook – Our last stop of the evening was Hook Seafood and Grille, where we ordered the Lemon and basil tempura, sea bream with basil and chili sauce, seaweed salted chips and cucumber and samphire salad. It was delicious and the fish was perfectly crispy.
Shana – Simply Authentic Food – I wanted to throw this one in too as they exhibit every year at Taste and they are awesome! They hand out free samples of their DELICIOUS Paratha bread with cinnamon sugar as well as samples of their chilli and coriander naan bread. I am a huge fan of Indian food and we’re going to order some of these to make at home. Normally, I am not a fan of anything frozen, but these are an exception! Shana uses only the finest ingredients that give the food an authentic Indian taste.
Other notable exhibits to visit:
Champor Champor – known for its delicious Thai Cuisine, Ciaran made a b-line for this stand and ordered the salt and pepper soft shell crab taco with 5 spice, spring onions and chilli. Before I could snap a photo, he took a bite and the rest was history. I will say that it was incredible and would have even tasted great without the taco. Try one out – worth the wait!
Duck & Waffle – If you can’t get a booking at this famous restaurant with a view, then Taste of London is the perfect opportunity to try their iconic Duck & Waffle. Brave the queues, again, it’s worth it.
Shotgun BBQ – Brave the queues for their salted custard donuts and the oak smoked brisket and pickle. Shotgun is my all-time favourite BBQ restaurant in London and if you haven’t been before, Taste of London is an awesome opportunity to see what these guys are all about!
All-in-all, Taste of London is a fantastic day out with friends and family and gives you the opportunity to try some great food from some wonderful restaurants that you may not get a chance to try otherwise. It’s become a bit of a tradition for us, and one that I enjoy year after year.
What’s your favourite part of Taste of London? I’d love to hear your thoughts!
Taste of London | Regent’s Park | 15-19th June | Tickets