I'm Katie Glass from London. I've been Qyping since 12-11-2010
Katie Glass Blog
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Katie Glass's Qype profile
1 - 5 St James Barton, Bristol BS1 3JL
I’m not surprised about all the negative reviews about New ID Studios in Bristol. I’m also somewhat suspicious about all the positive reviews written by people who haven’t reviewed anything else on Qype…!
I was dragged here by my mum as she got given a photoshoot experience for her birthday. The thing was about to expire so she asked if I’d go with her for moral support (she wasn’t too enthusiastic about doing it either). When we got there, we were greeted by a bunch of overly made-up girls who looked about 19. She wouldn’t let them go near her hair but one of them trimmed mine – which was fine. However she then spend about 40 minutes faffing around trying to backcomb it into some chavvy hairstyle. My hair was obviously as resistant as I was to the idea, so she eventually gave up, thank god!
Next up was the make-over carried out by another, more surly 19 year old. Drag queen is probably too harsh a word, but can’t say I’ve ever worn so much make-up in my life – and I asked for a ‘natural’ look!
The actual photoshoot was okay, but as others have said, the charges for extra photos are ridiculous. I wonder who on earth pays £1,400 for a few photos?! We picked our favourite one and walked away.
The staff were sweet but it is definitely not a five star experience and a birthday present which makes you pay more money is a rubbish present in my opinion!
43-51 Great Titchfield St, London W1W 7PQ
I can walk to the Riding House Cafe in about 7 minutes, which is very dangerous for me as it means I tend to go more than I should probably! As a massive breakfast fan, the Riding House Cafe just has everything I need – impeccably polite staff (well, most of the time), great food and delicious smoothies served in glass milk bottles.
The decor is just fabulous – I rather like the fact that it doesn’t look very impressive from the outside, but when you walk inside it blows your mind!
My particular favourites are probably the pink window downstairs where you can spy on the chefs and the disturbing stuffed squirrels holding up the lamps.
If you’re going for breakfast, get the avocado on toast and the sunshine smoothie. Sorted.
71 Lincoln's Inn Fields, Holborn, London WC2A 3JF
Oh wow, this place is awesome. Someone took me here for a meeting today – I hope I wasn’t too obviously lustily eyeing up the amazing baked goodies on display! They also have chunky fresh rolls and pasta salad as well as a tasty array of apple juices.
I didn’t get a chance to try the coffee but apparently it is of an excellent standard, so I have a feeling I’m going to be coming back here regularly…
45 Fitzroy Street, London W1T 6EB
01-08-2011 (updated on 03-08-2011)
I tried to buy coffee in Polka Gelato this morning but didn’t have any cash. Unfortunately they only accept card payments for transactions over £5 so no coffee for me! And that’s another star gone :(
I pass Polka Gelato on my way to work, so I’ve been quietly watching and waiting for it to open its shiny white doors to the public for some time. This weekend it finally opened so of course Team Qype had to make the obligatory visit! The place looks lovely – gleaming shopfront, handwritten sign and cute Polka Gelato scooter parked outside. However, inside the place weirdly warm for an icre-cream shop and a looked a bit sparse with bare plastered walls.
Luckily, the gelato was fabby – they have some really interesting flavours on offer like roobois, salted caramel, chilli chocolate etc. I had pear and cassis&mint, both of which tasted really fresh and creamy.
I feel like I already loved Polka Gelato before it even opened so I am going to put my doubts about the interior to one side for now. And as it is so close, I’ll certainly be back to try out their coffee and some more gelato flavours soon!
31 St Martin's Lane, London WC2N 4BE
I found out about Notes a while ago and always thought it was a nice place to chill out. However, since the Qype coffee tasting session that Notes hosted, my appreciation has greatly increased!
The thing about coffee shops is, (and correct me if I’m wrong) most people just go there, order a coffee as a pick-me-up and don’t really think about what they are pouring down their weary throats. The guys at Notes change all that. They are so into coffee that to not think about where the beans have come from, how long the coffee is brewed for and how freakin’ hot the water even is, is comparable to a cardinal sin. They even have an ipad app to check that what they are doing is perfect. And their dedication is infectious.
Ben and his pals took us through the coffee tasting like we were drinking wine, not coffee – smelling and swirling and sipping with careful enthusiasm. They educated us as to what makes a good coffee and what makes a terrible coffee (hint: Starbucks!). I had no idea that some coffee shops serve coffee with beans that are up to 8 years old – whereas Notes only serve coffee with beans that are under 6 months of age. Much better.
I’ve come away with a keener taste for coffee and a venti-sized amount of respect for the coffee brewers at Notes. I’ll be back, and I’ll have it with no milk!
154 Curtain Road, Shoreditch, London EC2A 3AQ
I went to Saf for a London Cocktail Society meeting where they served us Gin Mare cocktails and vegan canapés. I can understand why other reviewers were not impressed by Saf, but I thought it was OK. The actual venue is very light and airy – it feels very relaxed and clean – and the courtyard out the back where we were sat was beautiful in the summer evening.
Drinks were served from Saf’s pretty little greenhouse which is home to various herbs, flowers and tomatoes. I did titter a little when they said that the produce was used in the restaurant – I can’t imagine a couple of pots of cherry tomatoes would go very far in a vegan restaurant kitchen!
The food varied. The first canapés we were served consisted of a lettuce leaf filled with chopped herby green stuff and pomegranates – most of which seemed to end up trapped in my teeth – not a great look when talking to people you have only just met! However, after a shaky start the mushroom burger was DELICIOUS (and I don’t usually even like mushroom) and the bruschetta heaped with Mediterranean vegetables was also really good.
So all-in-all, a mixed bag – it was a really interesting experience and tasty cocktails and food, but I’m not sure I’d be very keen to pay full price for the whole shebang.
I got the Chamomile Flowers tea in my goodie bag from the Qype Summer Party recently – it looked so lovely I almost didn’t want to use it as tea!
However, I’m glad I gave it a go, because it tasted lovely – really flavoursome and fresh unlike something from the supermarket like Twinings. The chamomile flowers also looked beautiful in water.
15 Greek Street, Soho, London W1D 4DP
It’s interesting to read other reviewers issues with the service at Patara, as when I went last night I thought the service was fine. My boyfriend and I were put into a quiet corner which was nice and we were served promptly even though it was still quite busy at 9.30pm.
The food was really very good and I was pleased that they did coconut rice – my favourite. I had the green curry which was tasty – although I’m not convinced it was worth the price tag. However, my boyfriend had the deep fried sea bass in light red curry sauce which was excellent – and exciting as it is a dish we haven’t come across in London before.
The actual restaurant is visually interesting and the ambience was bustling and generally enticing. Overall I would say this is a great experience, but perhaps a little overpriced.
Belvedere Road, Unit 9, London SE1 8XX
It has been a life-long dream of mine to attend a sushi-making class. All the classes I have ever come across have been so expensive (or I have been so poor!) that I could never afford such a luxury - until tonight that is!
This evening I was lucky enough to be one of the ten or so Qypers invited to a sushi-making class at Feng Sushi on the Southbank. The evening started with rounds of green tea and ginger beer, before we sat down and got our hands dirty with rice, wasabi and and lots of avocado! The incredibly charming and loveable manager Silla showed us how to make cucumber and avocado maki before promoting us to california roll level. Luckily she was also very patient when it came to fixing our botched attempts at rolling said sushi!
After filling a box of sushi for us each to take away for lunch tomorrow, we were then shown how to slice fresh salmon - they kept the sharp knives away from us Qypers which was probably a smart move! I love love love the fact that all of their fish is sourced sustainably - it just makes so much sense. Next up was how to make the perfect Japanese-inspired cocktail (hint: lots of sake!) before moving over to the BBQ to get some tips on barbecuing Japan-style.
The whole evening was lovely - Silla and her crew were so charming and thoughtful, making sure that we had every item of food and drink that we could possibly want. I am pescatarian (i.e. I don't eat meat) so the guys happily barbecued some mushrooms and tuna for me, both of which tasted divine. The food generally was incredible - my favourites were the self-made california rolls, the salmon sushi canapes we gobbled and the perfectly-cooked tuna steak.
I'm so glad I found out about this place - especially as I also noticed that they do vegetarian duck rolls. I'll certainly be back to give them a try! And until then, I'll be spreading the word about their classes...
16 Bury Street, St. James's, London SW1Y 6AJ
I went to Quaglino's to celebrate a friend's birthday and we had a lovely time. The venue itself is rather stunning to look at and makes clever use of light to make you forget the fact that you are dining underground. The bar is typically elegant for this part of town - plus you get a great view of the rest of the people dining in the restaurant below you.
The food was very good, but portions were on the small size for the one guy in our group. I had the pea soup and gilt head bream, both of which were tasty and filling. The star of the show, however, was the Eton Mess for dessert which was utterly divine and tasted ridiculously indulgent.
As it was my friend's birthday we had brought him a cake - we were then a bit horrified to discover that Quaglino's charges a 'cakage' fee of £2.50 per slice! What the -?! I have never come across such a ridiculous policy in my life. Apparently it is because they can provide their own cakes in such cases. Still, the staff were polite enough to put our cake on a plate and bring it over with some candles. We then celebrated and had it put back in its box to avoid the afore-mentioned cake tax.
Overall, Quaglino's was a lovely venue for a meal with friends - the staff were charming and attentive and the venue had a great buzz about it. Just a pity about the silly cake policy!
- Fitzrovia, London 4 reviews
- Soho, London 3 reviews
- City of London, London 2 reviews
- Paddington, London 2 reviews
- Leicester Square, London 2 reviews
- Oxford 2 reviews
- Chiswick, London 1 review
- Islington, London 1 review
- Cowley, Oxford 1 review
- Old Street, London 1 review
- Dalston, London 1 review
- Stoke Newington, London 1 review
- Fulham, London 1 review
- Westminster, London 1 review
- Hackney, London 1 review
- Canonbury, London 1 review
- St. James's, London 1 review
- South Bank, London 1 review
- Golders Green, London 1 review
- Shoreditch, London 1 review
- Covent Garden, London 1 review
- Holborn, London 1 review
- Bristol 1 review