Do You Really Need to Detox this January?

January is the darkest, coldest, longest month. How do you spend it? Do you hunker down with good claret, hot chocolate, the book you got for Christmas, some sudoku and a fascinating documentary on the Incas whilst nourishing body and soul with chunky soups, pies and buttery mash with more mash on the side? Do you, hell. No, what we like to do is give up everything that comforts, nourishes, sustains, indeed, gives us any tingle of enjoyment in a mad attempt to prove to the world we are STRONG, we have WILLPOWER and, most importantly, food and drink are NOT THE BOSS OF US. Read full post


Seasonal Recipes – December

Last month we welcomed Head Chef Jon Los from the four-star The Bishopstrow to share with you his favourite seasonal ingredients to work with in his kitchen. Following on from last month’s recipe incorporating beetroot into a trout dish, this month Jon showcases how to bring out the best flavours from the traditional December ingredient – the humble Brussel sprout. When asked why the sprout he said, “I have chosen Brussel Sprouts this month as — love them or hate them — what vegetable better represents Christmas and that is what to me December represents. They are an easy vegetable to use and require very little preparation. This month’s dish is more of an accompaniment to your Christmas Lunch.”

The Vegetable Calendar showcases the ingredients Jon will be incorporating in his fine dining recipes.

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Double Standards

There’s an odd dichotomy in the word “kitchen”. When we think of a domestic kitchen, there’s still very much an assumption that a woman is at the heart of it, making the food with little fuss or bother as it requires no “real” skills – whether it’s still true or not, it’s a prevailing view, one we like to shine up from time to time and bathe in its nostalgic glow. Yet when we think of a professional kitchen, we suspect the immediate image is one of big shouty men in white, flames a-leaping and waiters a-dancing, all fire and metal and noise. That’s the only way our food – the food we pay someone else to prepare and clear away – can be cooked, with maximum strength and bombast. There’s no acknowledgment that both of them contain just… cooking. That’s it, just someone making a meal using exactly the same skills – time-management, people management, multi-tasking and so on. Read full post


Turkey Times Two

This is decidedly *not* a Hot News time of year. We cast around, thought about bringing you news of Pizza Hut’s new mind-reading menu technology, decided that was a little too Minority Report; pondered over McDonald’s branching out into churches, felt it was a little, um, non-newsy, had a cup of coffee and a biscuit and messed about on Twitter for a bit before nearly falling off our Health-and-safety-designated ergonomic chairs with excitement. Trending all over: #Happythanksgiving. In the UK. Like, hello, it’s a new foodie holiday *Screams. Falls off ergonomic chair again*. Read full post


Seasonal Recipes – November

Each month Head Chef Jon Los from The Bishopstrow will be providing exclusive seasonal recipes for Sugarvine readers to cook and enjoy at home. As a chef he prides himself on utilising the seasonality of produce to bring out the best possible flavours in his dishes throughout the year; the more local to the hotel, the better. The Vegetable Calendar showcases the ingredients Jon will be incorporating in his fine dining recipes.  Read full post


Words Will Cost You

Excuse us for just a moment, we’re just picking ourselves back up off the floor and composing our faces again, wiping the tears and so on. You see, some bright American spark (they’re always American) has studied quite a lot of menus and has come up with the fascinating hypothesis that the wordier and more grandiose a menu is, the more it’s likely to cost you. No, really, let us explain. Read full post


Hack The Menu

Word is, we’ve reached peak burger. And probably peak everything USA, as the proliferation of (hot) dog joints, burger shacks, waffle vans and diners continues across the country. Every chef, everywhere, is attempting their own individual gourmet take on these ur-fast foods, enhancing the quality of the bun, the meat, the sauce, the cheese, the cooking technique to ensure you have your “perfect” burger and so on without having to resort to the old sweet-sharp-sour pull of some of the more famous fast food chains. Read full post


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