Eat: The Rooftop Cafe

Thursday, 11 June 2015

For her birthday last week, my dearest Louise had planned a fabulous birthday celebration but we started with drinks at Aqua Shard. I'd never been - and won't be going back in a hurry. Overpriced cocktails and so packed there was barely anywhere to stand...and that was before the staff took away the seats we found at the bar. (He did apologise and later find us a table, but still). Also, it was a muggy, hot day and the all glass building had the greenhouse effect - I thought I was going to pass out, it was so hot in there. London always looks lovely but all in all I was not impressed!

Onwards, quickly, to The Rooftop Cafe for a breath of fresh air. Curled just around the corner from the Shard itself, The Rooftop Cafe is relaxed and charming, with homemade furniture and interiors as well as simple, sustainable menu.

Wooden decking, potted wildflowers and super strong Aperol spritz'. The perfect spot to watch the sun go down before we headed in for a cosy dinner in a secluded corner just for the birthday crew.

 My dress: Gap
Louise's jumpsuit: Asos

No food shots because we were all too busy getting drunk, being raucus and causing fires (me!) but I can assure you the charred squid with puy lentils and sherry vinaigrette was delish, the sherry providing a tang that offset the lentils perfectly. The butterfly mackerel was nice but I tried a friends pea orzotto with yellow courgette, ricotta and pine nuts was absolutely delicious and defo what I'd order if I go back. The creamy ricotta and the soft peas flavoured the orzotto, popping in my mouth. Yum!

The Rooftop Cafe is open for breakfast Monday to Friday and breakfast and brunch on Saturdays, as well as dinner Wednesday - Saturday, 6pm -10pm. The staff were lovely..even when we were there making a mess and pretty much refusing to leave.

Call for reservations as they often close the rooftop to those who have reserved a table to eat.

The Exchange
28 London Bridge Street
London SE1 9SG
0203 102 3770

Go: Secret Cinema, Star Wars

Thursday, 4 June 2015

Last weekend I was lucky enough to be offered free tickets to go down to Secret Cinema: Star Wars.
Having never even watched Star Wars (any, ever!) I was worried I wouldn't relate or enjoy the experience, but I was so wrong! Secret Cinema specialise in 'immersive cinema experience' often in a themed location that ticket holders find out about last minute, and sometimes with live interaction elements. Last year's 'Back To The Future' screenings occupied the whole of the Olympic Park in East London which was transformed into Hill Valley. I thoroughly enjoyed the screening of 'Empire Strikes Back', but not as much as the epic world Secret Cinema have created.

I can't give too much away, what with it being secret and all, but when you register you are given a rebel identity, complete with costume information and items to bring along, As soon as you arrive, actors are ushering you along and the unwavering commitment to the story and world that you now inhabit really helps set the tone. Inside it's well worth talking to everyone from security to stall holders and stopping in on as many interactive scenes as you can. I will say my friend and I sneaked, bartered and hustled our way all over the sprawling and authentic set. Unfortunately your phones and any cameras are sealed up pretty soon on arrival and we all signed contracts to say we wouldn't reveal the nature of anything from sets to these were pictures from before we went inside.

Dress up if you can! People really do go all out as you can see from the above pic. My friend and I felt decidedly underdressed. My Princess Leia style buns were a nod...and the scarves were absolutely pivotal. Also try the halloumi fries with pomegranate molasses and seeds. I literally don't know why you can't get these everywhere!

Secret Cinema: Star Wars opens to the public today and runs until September the 27th.