Shake Shack London

Shake Shack, in my humble opinion, is the be all and end all of burgers. I first sampled one by accident, wandering around New York on holiday. It was mid afternoon, we were a little lost on Lexington Avenue and had just ducked out of a fight brewing in Urban Outfitters (hipsters behave!) and sought refuge in the nearest pit stop- Shake Shack.

Best. Burger. Of. My. Life.

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So when I heard they were opening this summer in Covent Garden my little cholesterol laden heart jumped for joy. I gave it a few days to calm down before I attempted to go- we got there at 6pm on the dot. It paid off- we probably waited no more than 15 minutes to get through the queue to make our order- a double Shack Burger and fries for me, and a single Shack Burger with cheesy fries for my partner in crime. For dessert I opted for the Concrete Jungle- frozen vanilla custard with marshmallow, bananas and peanut butter sauce. Although it was pretty soupy by the time I got my mitts on it- tasty soup though. I have to also confess….I love American cheese. That bright orange goo makes me happy like no other cheese can.

About 5 minutes later, our little buzzer went off and we grabbed a booth pretty easily. Chow time!

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A nice little touch (its all about the little things after all) we asked for tap water. Normally in London this will get you tepid water in a sad looking glass. We got a pint size cup of water with ICE CUBES. Unheard of in this city. In this week’s heatwave, it was heaven.

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Apparently, there is a secret Shake Shack menu but wether or not this works in London has yet to be tested. But not to worry, I have ZERO problem with testing this out on my next sure-to-be-many visits.

A photobooth has also been installed- but I don’t think permanently. One of the many friendly servers came up to us to tell us to try it out and that you could get as many prints as you wanted for free. SOLD.

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The piazza is a great place to sit out the food coma and people watch. Not even the macarons of Laduree could tempt me away from the floor (note yet more grody looking concrete)

Have a look at the menu and go forth to Shake Shack! Your tummy will thank you for it forever.

How to paint your floorboards white

This weekend while the Rolling Stones were painting Hyde Park black, and Wimbledon cheered on Andy Murray, we decided to paint all the floors in the flat. Last year we painted the kitchen floor white but feeling braver this year (and all Pinterested out) we went ahead and made best friends with these guys:


Did we sand the wooden boards down and stick primer all over it? …no (we’re risk takers! and well, I blame Andy Murray for not paying full attention to this project) The Dulux paint dries fairly quickly and althought the tin says Gloss, it’s a good compromise between a matte and shiny finish. It’s not bad wearing either. It took 2 coats to get a decent opaque finish.

What we DID do was fill all the gaps between the floorboards with filler. No drafty little gaps this winter in this household! Sadly, I will no longer have anywhere to sneakily push my orange pips through when I’m too lazy to walk the 6 steps to the bin.



Here’s the first coat and section all done. If anything it highlights the ridiculous nicotine coloured skirting boards…but that’s a project we’ll tackle another time.

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Also, no amount of shouting NO to the cat will stop it walking through wet paint.

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The flat now looks like a beach house haven in the middle of N15. The problem now is I don’t want to put the rugs back! We also need a serious declutter.  Our next project will be the skirting boards and walls, but for now this satisfies the DIY bug.

*Update 2015*

I get a fair few hits on this post, so I thought I’d update to say that two years later, the floor is still fine. There has been no yellowing and it still looks fresh- particularly in the hallway. There are a few small scuff marks in heavy traffic areas but I feel like it adds to the look. 


Truck Stop Food Festival

Last week in my regular Pop Bitch email, there was a link to something called Truck Stop London. I soon realised this was my chance to live my Food Network inspired All American dream (thank you Man vs Food)  Held every first Thursday and Friday of the month, until September, this riverside pocket in Canary Wharf hosts 16 food trucks for you to dip your greedy fingers into. The ticket price includes 10 truck stop dollars, which got you a pretty hefty pint sized mojito at the Rotary Bar onsite.

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Mojitos purchased, we went straight to Anna Mae’s Mac n Cheese truck. I picked out the Kanye Western- cut up hot dogs, BBQ sauce and crispy onions in a pot of gooey mac n cheese. I’m lactose intolerant and I gobbled it up- it was that good. Yeezus wept (and so will I later on)

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There was Born and Raised, who made beef brisket wood fired pizzas, baked IN THEIR VAN, which is basically magic.

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The music was jazzy, the food was amazing and every vendor was just so nice( I’m looking at you Breakfast Club)  And at the end of it, we even got to stand next to Bella Swan’s truck.

Michael Buble at the O2

I’ve been to a my fair share of rock concerts, and I’d just like to say, none of them had fans as mental as Michael Buble’s. I ran out of North Greenwich station to get as far away from a gang of menopausal women shouting “GET YER TITS OOT” then watched Security drag hysterical drunken ladies out of their seats all evening. It made the Kings of Leon gig I had been to the month before look tame. Going to see Buble was a lovely little surprise from my uncle who couldn’t make the show, and I’ll admit I went expecting an evening of easy listening and arm waving. Wrong- Michael Buble is a flipping ROCK STAR. The guy is a comedy genius! And towards the end…little paper heart bombs onto the audience as he sang acapella motown hits. Well done Bubbles, I was impressed.

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As my 140 character Twitter profile says- I’m a London living, home design loving, red shoe wearing, gig going, Barefoot Contessa cooking, DIY walking disaster. A silly old bean (ok, so slightly more than 140)

I grew up on a little island called Borneo, surrounded by monkeys, purple buses and beaches. It was nice.

In 2001, I moved to a little city called London for Uni and never left. It’s almost the same except pigeons have replaced monkeys, the buses are red and beaches…well, sometimes I see sand when the Thames is at low tide. So really, you can see why I feel at home here.

I live in North London with this dude called Robin and a our gremlins, Pepper & Fat Louie. I say dude and man alot, like I’m the secret lovechild of Jeff Bridges or Matthew McConaughey. I like writing, hence starting this blog after alot of ummming and ahhhing, peppered with a few dudes and mans. Simply put:

If you never did you should. These things are fun and fun is good- Dr Seuss

If you like baking, or cooking, going to gigs, losing yourself in a book, shopping (online) and dream of a beautiful Anthropologie worthy home, maybe you’ll like this place too. Fun is good!