Fish in a Tie, Make A Wish, Childish Gambino and festive hiatus.

10 Dec

LOOK. I’M WRITING A BLOG POST. It’s been ages since I’ve actually sat down (pfft, ‘laid face down on my bed’) and written anything, so as I’m a bit ill (yay) I figured it’s time to get back on it. I returned from India 3 weeks ago now and my next blog is going to be about my travels in India… need to write it all down in case I forget anything!

However, that will be a reasonably epic blog post, so for now, Imma do my usual thing (rambling on about what I’ve been up to in London).

EAT: I have walked past a little bistro called Fish in a Tie about 5 times a week for the last 5 years. And every single week, I swear, I’m made a note to head in and give the place a try. Well, at long last, I managed it! And I have to say, it was an absolute dream!

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Fish in a Tie is an independent restaurant sitting on a street corner, painted purple, near the back end of Clapham Junction train station. On chalkboards outside you’ll see too-good-to-be-true deals (£7.95 for a two course lunch set menu, £19.95 for a two course a’la carte).. I admit, it’s the price and the fact the place looks so lovely that’s had my attention all these years.

So, the other day, I went in for lunch with my Dad. We did the £7.95 for two course menu and MY WORD, the quality of the food, and the portion size, was absolutely incredible. My Dad has told my entire family about it (seriously: my nan, mum and brother all asked where I took him because he’s been raving about it so much)!

For my first course I went with goats cheese croquettes (below). They were beautiful. They packed a punch in terms of taste but weren’t too overpowering and the came with a light, fresh salad. My dad went for whitebait; he’s a big fan of fish and he said the bowl of them were the best he’d ever had. Me and Dad were also 99% sure that the tartare sauce used is home-made because it’s DELICIOUS and I usually hate the stuff… it’s worth getting a fish dish for their sauce, honestly.

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For mains, I went for battered cod and chips and it smelled so good I didn’t even bother to take a photo. But the fish was cooked to perfecccctiioooon – super-filling, batter wasn’t too thick, fish was fluffy and beautiful. My Dad went for a fish that neither of us had heard of before – and it’s KILLING ME that I can’t remember what it was! Basically, if you don’t recognise a fish on the specials board, try it, because this place has fish totally nailed.

Finally, for an extra £3.50 I went for dessert (obvs). Behold the Amaretto cheesecake… I mean, like I could pass that up? Very light cheesecake, all in all a solid choice. Not the best I’ve ever had, but as part of a three course meal which ended up costing me less than £12, it rocked.

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To put this place in perspective; two starters, two mains, one dessert, two beers and two coffees cost us £30. In total, NOT EACH. Not only was the food quality fantastic, but the staff were nice, the place was charming and relaxing and I can’t recommend heading here enough. It’s one of the only true hidden gems you’ll find in SW11.

SEE: I was offered a place at the Make A Wish Winter Ball this year (I did their social media in exchange) and had a fabulous time. If you’re not aware of Make A Wish, they grant magical wishes to enrich the lives of children and young people fighting life-threatening conditions. Some of the wishes granted to these children are a trip to Disneyland, to fly with Batman, to be a princess or to meet their football hero… all of which bring them SUCH joy, but, of course, cost money to create.

The Make A Wish ball was amazing. Hundreds of people turned up for an evening of fantastic food, drink, entertainment and to take part in various charity auctions. The auction was amazing – the man I was sat next to on my table had just retired from the board of directors at British Airways and had donated the chance to fly business class to LA and meet Al Pacino. HOW COOL IS THAT?! Jeffrey Archer played the role of auctioneer and all in all they raised an incredible amount of money for children across the UK.

Wish-granting aside, the Winter Ball was held at The Dorchester… somewhere I have never set foot in because I’m not a classy bird. The hotel is beautiful and one day I would love to go there for a meal just to soak up the atmosphere. In the main room (the event was in the ballroom and you had to walk through the main room off reception to get there) where Christmas lights, a grand piano and a lot of fancy looking people sipping cocktails. Meanwhile, there’s me wandering through in the dress below (£15 from ASOS and now too big for me, so being held in with a safety pin at the back). See? Classy bird.

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I could go on for pages about the entertainment, but I’ll keep it short and sweet; there were dances, sing-songs and one or two surprise acts! One was a guy who had just got booted off of the X Factor (he seems nice enough) and the other was Madness. Which was SO cool – cannot believe I got to see Madness so close up. I also got to meet the band backstage and take their photo to use on social which was pretty wicked too. All in all, a wonderful night. Thank you to my colleague at M&C Saatchi PR for the invite J

If you could spare even the smallest amount of money to help grant a wish child with a life-threatening illness then please, please do so. You can donate here by clicking here.

LISTEN: Childish Gambino dropped his latest album, Awaken My Love, the other week. It’s a move in a different direction – if you liked tracks like Heartbeat and Sweatpants then this won’t be quite what you’re after. It’s funk-heavy, lots of smooth soul and bass, and it’s great. It’s taken a few listen to really get under the skin of it, but some standout tracks to start with are ‘Have Some Love’ (SO funky), Zombies (“we’re coming out to get you, we’re oh so glad we met you, we’re eating you for profit, there is no way to stop it”) and Me and Your Mama.

It’s a record which looks 70s funk and soul music in the face and tries to get to grips with it in 2016. Have a listen to Have Some Love and get a feel for what I’m on about (“have some time for one another, really love one another, it’s so hard to find”):

LOVE: giving up dating for a couple of months. At Christmas I get chubby and busy. Plus, I’m super poor for some reason (can’t quite work out what I spent my cash on because at the moment it isn’t Christmas presents…) so having one less person to buy for never hurts. A Scrooge when it comes to Christmas and the world of dating, it seems.

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