Thursday, February 15, 2007

Check it out

This week's Time Out (click image for full size):
Same corner, same grey ghost, same unquenchable thirst for that monthly "three tickets an hour" bonus!

Euroblather, right there on the spot.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

More snow!

A decent blanket of the white stuff this morning. Of course London has ground to a halt again, as has the rest of the country. I got to wear my wellies to work tho!

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

My lunch of choice

Lina Stores in Brewer Street, conveniently located between my office and The Duke of Argyll is one of the last bastions of Soho's once thriving Italian community. Tony and Gabriella have run the store for years, and it's pretty well my favourite deli, worldwide.

Tony makes his own (pork and red wine) sausages, and heaps of different tortellinis (crayfish, pumpkin and ricotta, spinach and ricotta, veal, etc, etc) daily. As well as a huge range of everything Italian (except booze), you can get a fantastic sandwich with freshly cut meat, cheese, tomatoes, rocket, etc etc for what is probably the best value in central London.

Time Out sez:

"Lina Stores
With its pistachio-coloured fa├žade and 1930s lettering, this shop is an unmistakable old-timer. It was first opened around the corner, and relocated to its current site after World War II. The Filippis, from Piacenza, near Milan, bought the shop in 1974 when the original owner (the eponymous Lina) retired and it’s now run by Tony and Gabriella Filippi as a family business. They have not altered the decor, and its layout remains as it was in the ’40s, with long counters stretching the length of the shop, behind which are shelves piled high with wonderful Italian delights. Tony makes fresh pasta on-site daily, and sells it on to restaurants in Soho. The recipe for his popular garlic and wine sausages comes from his home town in Italy and was handed down to him by a local butcher when he was ten years old. The delicatessen is well known and much loved, and used regularly by TV chefs Jamie Oliver and Nigella Lawson.
Lina Stores, 18 Brewer St, W1 (020 7437 6482) Piccadilly Circus tube."

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

A visit to Ken's Kastle

The Greater London Authority, headed by the (colourful) Mayor of London, Ken Livingstone has it's HQ in City Hall, at More London, just next to Tower Bridge. Last weekend it was open to the public, so Katie and I went to have a peek. All photos in this album (except the first, wot I nicked from the GLA's website) were taken from the outdoor balcony on the top (ninth) floor of this impressive Norman Foster pile.

Friday, February 02, 2007

Knock me down with a Picasso

Far out. I went for a walk at lunctime, down to Fortnum & Mason's for some of their Tewkesbury mustard (yes, Tim) and some really strong cheddar. Today's free sample in the food hall was Gloucester Old Spot pork pie. No need to buy lunch today!

On the way back to work, I went past the Royal Academy (just opposite Fortnum's), where they've just put up the installation that's pictured in this post. After that I wandered down Cork Street, which is full of retail art galleries. I stopped at Flowers Central where there's a small exhibition by Patrick Hughes, whose three dimensional paintings really play with your visual perception.

Just down the road is Helly Nahmad Gallery. their current show is called "Picasso La Californie", where there about fifteen Picassos on the wall, all painted between about 1954 and 1959, and all for sale (or already sold). I was looking around, thinking they were pretty cool, and must be worth a couple of hundred thousand pounds each. Got to the desk and checked out the catalogue. The paintings ranged in price from £4,500,000 to £16,500,000.00, meaning there must have been over a hundred million quid's worth of canvas and oil in that one room. There's no security guards, by the way!

Walking back to the office through Soho, I ran into H, who was on the way to the Duke of Argyll for a quick snifter. Rude not to, I thought, so a couple of pints of Old Brewery it was.

London, it's a pretty mundane city........

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Ryanair contact details

Ever needed to contact Ryanair? Maybe you need to extract a refund from them, complain about a cancelled flight or destination, etc. The airline prides itself on it's uncontactability, eg they will only consider refunds if you send them a LETTER with a STAMP on it. Anyway, Sharon Hodgson MP has obviously had some issues with them, and decided to read their contact details into the House of Commons' Hansard. Those (now on the public record) details are:

Head office switchboard (Dublin): +353 18 121212
Customer Service Manager's email: