[Trip] Denmark- Christiania

When you are in Copenhagen, this is a town that you should visit. It is a ‘free’ and ‘green’ town, similar to what you can get in Amsterdam. There are few rules which you need to follow when you are in the town, one of them is not allowed to run when you are in town and the other one which I remember is no camera or phone allowed. Because of the business that they do, it is risky. The boy read in a blog that the dealer will chase the person and smashed the camera or the phone.

The town is a hippy type of town, it was interesting walking through the town. If you follow the rules, it is quite safe and people are nice to you. We spent about half a day walking through the town, they also have some street market stalls which sell souvenirs of Christiania. It took us a while to get there, because there isn’t any sign which directs you to the town. You will know when you get there, because they have a small sign which says Christiania. We got there via train to Christianhavn and walked from there. It took us about 15 minutes by foot. It is worth going and see this freetown.

[Trip] Denmark – Carlsberg

We didn’t know that Carlsberg originated from Denmark until when we were looking at Tourist Attraction in Denmark. That was our first beer experience. When we got off the station, we were looking for signs to get to the beer factory. It is about 10 minutes walk from the station. You can get there via train, the stop we got off is Engrave St.
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You will need to buy the ticket at the Megastore, basically it starts and finishes at the Megastore. The admission includes 2 free drinks along the experience. It is a self guided tour and it has a lot of information which was written in English and Danish. It has quite a bit of history about Carlsberg, Carlsberg in Danish translates to Carl’s mountain and was established over 200 years ago. It was fascinating to see the changes in marketing and logos and as well as how they see their competitors, which made them one of the more successful beer companies in the world. Going through the tour, they have a lot of interactive materials which is quite interesting to see and experience as part of understanding the beer culture.

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There is a café in the experience which we had our lunch, the food was quite nice and it is a bar type service, which you ordered at a bar and the food will come to your table. Carlsberg beer is crisp and light (actually depends on which one you get, we got the light beer). But we didn’t have a chance to try their lager, apparently it is quite good as well. We spent about half a day in there to go through the tour and also browsing at the Megastore. On the day when we went, just outside of the Carlsberg experience, they have a flea market. There were about 50-60 stores which Danish antique or other random things that people were selling. We both enjoyed the stopover at the market.

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For more information, please visit their website: http://www.visitcarlsberg.dk

[Tips] Portobello Market

When you see the words Notting Hills, it will remind you of the movie ‘Notting Hill’ (the one with Hugh Grant and Julia Roberts). That is not what Notting Hill is famous for, but also their market, Portobello Road markets. It is one of the must go markets in London on the weekends. To get to the market, you can go via tube or buses. The closest station is Ladbroke Grove or if you want to go through the entire market, then you can get off at Notting Hill Gates. The market stretches the whole Portobello Road, it is about 1-2 miles long.

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The market breaks into different categories in each sector of the road. I quite like this market because it has a range of stalls from food to raw food to clothing to antiques. There is something for everyone. Plus you will find random things or there is stores behind stalls, it took me about a day to get through the whole market. The food is similar to what you normally see in other markets, from pulled pork sandwiches to crepes to paellas. You can buy fresh produces in the market and as well as cheap herbs and spices. There are second hand stall which sells old or vintage clothing too. I do recommended to go to the market during weekend, especially on Saturday. It is packed with people and all the stores/stalls are open.

For more information, please visit their website: http://www.portobelloroad.co.uk

[Food] Cafe Rouge

One of the first French restaurants we went to when we arrived in London is Cafe rouge. Basically it is called cafe red in English. It is franchise basically it is similar number to Pret stores around London. French restaurant that is franchise, first that I have heard before. It is a place to grab some food when you don’t know what you feel like. First few times when we went, it was kind of that experience for us.

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The first few times, the food was pretty good (that is because we haven’t been to France before). After we visited France and tried their food, we went back to Cafe Rouge, it isn’t the same anymore. The food itself was alright, nothing spectacular, but it is better than some of the French food I had in Sydney. The service was pretty good, we had an interesting experience, a guest next to our table were chatting to us (he is a regular guest to Cafe rouge), he was telling us his life stories and experience. Although we first freaked out, but it turned out he was just a normal nice old man. Their price is quite cheap because they do a lot of promotions (eg, 15% of main dishes or free dessert).

For more information please visit their website: http://www.caferouge.co.uk

[Tips] London Zoo

We decided to go to London Zoo one evening which was open to adults only, basically it is 18+ only. I found it quite interesting because in other places, zoo doesn’t open during the night and with alcohol served. Also there wasn’t children screaming and shouting in the zoo and we didn’t need to avoid the prams.Like all zoo, there is an admission fee to go in, however this type of events may be a bit more pricey than the normal admission.

London zoo is quite close to Regents Park station, you will need to walk through the zoo. We went there around 6:30pm and once we were inside, we wander around the sea animal, we saw otters and penguins. We made our way to butterfly world and also other ground animals rings. Some animals you will get to see up close and some you get to see in their cages. The boy has been to the zoo before this time and he still finds it fascinating, he just adores otters (we probably spent the longest time there)

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Food were served inside the zoo, they have a food court type of area, which has different type of cuisines, from nachos to pulled pork sandwiches to pies. Also a few bar stalls were set up around the zoo. It is quite interesting to see people holding beer cups and wandering around the zoo. During the main area, they have shows from drag queen and stand up comedians. Also they have a fun room which there is beer ping pongs, ball pits and inflatable boxing rings. All of them are free to visit and play on. There is a silent disco which costs 5GBP to go in, unfortunately we didn’t go in.

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I would recommended in trying one of these type of events when you are in London. It is worth a visit especially without children inside the zoo and it is quite an experience.

[Food] Jamon Jamon

We came across this restaurant when we were wondering around Tottenham Court Road area. We noticed the sign of Jamon Jamon, which we knew it is Spanish for cured ham (I love it). So we decided to give it a go. It does have a Spanish atmosphere especially with the design of the wall. The dishes itself do have a Spanish art feel. It wasn’t too busy when we arrived, it is a good place for gathering as it is spacious.

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The food itself was pretty good, I love cured ham. Nothing can go wrong with this dish. Although there was an incident about our paella, the kitchen didn’t received our order. Luckily the boss came to us and apologize and offered us free dishes for the wait. Paella takes over 30 minutes to make and cook. I thought that was a nice gesture of the boss, owning the mistake and compensate it. The service was really good by the staff, kept us informed and made us felt really warm. The speed of the food is quite fast, although we knew paella does take a while. The presentation was pretty nice, especially the paella. The flavour of that dish was amazing, I quite like this one better than the one I had in Barcelona. I do recommend people going to this restaurant not only for the food but also the service as well

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For more information please visit their website: http://www.jamonjamon.uk.com/
Address: 3-5, Caxton Walk, Charing Cross Rd, London WC2H 8PW

[Tips] Eating Out

The latest fashion is for Mesopotamian food. This is very much like Mediterranean/Turkish meze food but that bit spicier and fragrant.

Of course you can always get restaurants specialising food from Yemen, Nepal (great place in Sydenham called Ghurkha’s – food here is similar to Indian but the flavours are a lot more layered and varied), Sudan…this is in addition to all of the restaurants offering food from their own European countries (French, German (sausage, sauerkraut and schnitzel) Bulgarian, Italian (best pizza outside of Naples can be found just off Piccadilly CIRCUS), Spain, Portugal, Belgium, Polish, Swiss fondue, Czech, Russian, Greek, Croatian, Jamacian (Brixton)…the list goes on! Of course the Chinese and Indian communities are well catered for in both China Town (Soho)and Brick Lane (east end) as well as Singapore, Taiwan, Vietnam, Indonesia, Thailand….we will try and share our food adventure in this space :)

[Her Review] Jill loves to read

I have to admit I haven’t read much books lately, a lot of the books she wrote the review about I haven’t even heard of. That’s how much I know about books in general. I only know books which made into movies, but from reading her blogs, there are lots of good and interesting books out there, especially she likes the same genre as I do. I don’t have much time to read, I tend to get preoccupied with other things than sitting down somewhere and read. But if I’m into a book, I would try and read continuously until the end, which means I won’t get much sleep in those days.
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I thought I might do another review on a blog which my other workmate is working on. She started her blog recently this year, about same time when I started mine. She has done a lot of readings while she is out of the office. Basically if you are into books, this is a place where you can find a detailed review on the books that she has read. I found it very interesting with her selection of books. She writes a synopsis of the book and explains each main characters and as well as her thoughts about the book. You can leave your thoughts of the book with her as well.

For more information, please visit her website: http://jilllovestoread.blogspot.co.uk/

[Trip] England – The Seafood Restaurant

When we were in Padstow, the seafood restaurant is first restaurant that Rick Stein created. It is located on the pier of Padstow. You will noticed that there are a lot of Rick Stein stores around Padstow. We were lucky to get a table without making any booking in advance, we got a table at the bar, which we didn’t mind. You can keep the menu, as the menu has the date on it and it may changes from day to day (you can pick it up outside of the restaurant). When we got in, we were asked if we want to put our jackets away. We were seated at the bar where the seafood and drinks took place. We got the best view watching the chef and bartender making the food and drinks

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The service is brilliant, the head chef noticed we were missing the sauce for the seafood, he gave both of us a free oyster to try with the sauce. The staffs are willing to chat with customers and made them feel welcome. The speed of the food is quite quick. The presentation are magnificent and it was so appealing that we got very hungry from looking at it. The salad and seafood were so fresh that we didn’t need to put any sauce on it. But the sauce took the flavours to another level. The bread and butter came in the beginning was really good, especially the butter. It was made with clotted cream and seaweed flavour, it was so different to what I had before. I do recommend the seafood platter if you ever go to this restaurant. The seafood was mostly brought in the Cornwall area, of course Cornwall is known for its seafood as well.

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For more information, please visit their website: http://www.rickstein.com
Address: Riverside, Padstow, Cornwall PL28 8BY

[Trip] England – Cornwall Food

Cornish Clotted cream ice cream is one of the best ice cream I had. It was an quite flavour because it mixed with clotted cream and vanilla. It gives this creamy texture in the ice cream and made the ice cream more smoother. Another flavour you should try for ice cream is the Cornish cream tea ice cream. It is basically strawberry jam and clotted cream/vanilla flavours with scone. I really like the flavour for both, it is something you can’t get elsewhere in UK.

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Cornish Cream tea is another thing to have when you are in Cornwall. What it is scone with clotted cream and strawberry jam and English tea. It is something that you normally think of English afternoon tea. I quite like the clotted cream with scone, it just made the flavour and takes it to another level. The clotted cream is so much different to butter/cream on scone. The clotted cream is a mixture of butter and cream which is why it tastes so much different to it.

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Cornish pasties is another thing to have when you are in Cornwall. It is a hot pastry with stuffing inside, there are a variety of stuffing to choose from, from traditional (steak and gravy to mushroom to cheese). I’m not a good fan at pastry but I still enjoy one while I was in Cornwall. Although you can have it in London, but with the scenery and atmosphere, I think it does taste better at Cornwall.

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