Here comes the time of the year we do a little food round-up for the year! Can you believe it’s already the end of 2019?! I felt like this year flew by so quickly and it’s kind of scary how we’re already entering 2020. Nonetheless, 2019 has been another delicious year and I’ve compiled a list of my top 20 favourite dishes I’ve tried this year.
There’s no order of preference here, just all the good food I wanted to share with you guys. Hope you enjoy and wishing you all a happy new year!
Laksa from Normah’s Cafe
One of my happiest finds of the year – thanks to Normah reaching out to us to try out her cosy restaurant in Queensway Market. I love her laksa to bits. It was piquant, spicy and tangy – and most significantly, it’s got a beautiful homely touch to it.
I have returned multiple times since. Y’all better not get bored of me posting about Normah’s laksa on Instagram because I’m definitely going to keep coming back!
Beef Scotch Egg from Farzi Cafe
When you see a halal scotch egg on the menu, you’ve got to try it! This is one of my most memorable dishes this year. It’s tremendously crispy on the outside and bursting with flavours. The egg itself was beautifully-cooked as well with a soft runny yolk!
While I didn’t find many of their other dishes impressive, this particular one had been a winner.
Matcha Mille Crepe from Katsute 100
There’re many Japanese matcha dessert spots now in London but I think Katsute 100 is undoubtedly one of the best.
While my favourite is the Mille Crepe, all their other desserts have been exceptional too especially the Matcha Strawberry Shortcake (at the back of this pic)! If you’re looking for Matcha desserts and quality matcha tea, you just have to visit Katsute 100.
Tawa Carabinero Biryani & Masala Scallops from Brigadiers
My meal at Brigadiers was absolutely epic. I was tempted to list almost all the dishes I had at Brigadiers on this list. But after some thought, I decided to pick out both the Tawa Carabinero Biryani and Masala Scallops as my top favourite.
Sashimi from Hot Stone Steak & Sushi
I was never a sashimi fan before until I had these absolutely divine ones from Hot Stone Steak & Sushi.
We had the Sea Bass, Butterfish, and the Australian Wagyu – all were absolutely sensational! We also enjoyed a lot their sushi and of course their signature Ishiyaki Hot Stone.
Read full review for Hot Stone Steak & Sushi
Brown Sugar Boba Milk from The Alley
2019 has been quite a year for bubble tea in London! There have been big Taiwanese brands such as Tiger Sugar and Xing Fu Tang opening in London, but while they were good/decent at first, I struggle to find good consistency.
Then there was Yunique Tea, who I intended to put them on this list until The Alley all of a sudden decide to come along and break into the market. It feels as if my encounter with The Alley was just meant to be! Third time’s a charm (read full story on the full review) and they have met every expectation I’ve had with them.
BBQ Lamb from Shola
A visit to Shola felt like it was just meant to be and I’m so in love with their BBQ Lamb dish! Marinated for two days, slow-cooked for at least 6 hours before finished off on charcoal – the BBQ Lamb was just packed with flavours and so tender as if it melts in your mouth!
Barreh Lamb Kabab from Berenjak
I’ve always enjoyed Persian food but Berenjak definitely stood out from the crowd, especially with that ridiculously delicious Barreh Lamb Rump Kabab!
The lamb was so well-seasoned, and it’s so juicy and tender. Often times, grills tend to be overcooked at restaurants but this one was just spot on.
Baklava Ice Cream Sandwich from Darlish (Sumer Popup)
Bringing a classic ice cream sandwich to the next level, Darlish has opened up a pop-up shop in Covent Garden over summer this year serving up their heavenly Baklava Ice Cream Sandwich!
The Baklava Ice Cream Sandwich is actually available on the dessert menu at Berenjak. However, I thought it was definitely tastier at their pop up than at the restaurant. It’s still good at Berenjak’s, but it’s just better at the pop-up! Nevertheless, I think it’s safe to say Darlish’s Baklava Ice Cream Sandwich definitely hits the spot!
Colombian Coffee Tart from Bafarat
This may be slightly pricier than your usual coffee tarts, however, it is definitely worth it! First of all, it’s absolutely aesthetically very pleasing. Secondly, it tasted phenomenal.
It’s got the utmost perfect balance of coffee and sugary touch in it. The coffee tart was exquisite and simply such a pleasure to both the eye and the palate!
Wagyu Steak from Novikov
Novikov isn’t new to me but it’s the first time this year that I tried their Wagyu Steak and oh my that was so good! The steak was simply umami and tender as if it’s melting in your mouth. The flavours were absolutely phenomenal and to die for!
Gosht Barra Lamb Chops from Lucknow49
I’ve had quite a few lamb chops this year at different restaurants, but one that really left an impression are the ones from Lucknow49.
Their food, in general, is quite good and I enjoyed other grilled dishes, as well as the Chicken Qorma (which I find it hard to find a proper good one in London). Nonetheless, I ought to say I had the best lamb chops so far in London from Lucknow49 and am thoroughly impressed!
Bubble Tea Soft Serve Ice Cream from Yolkin
I have always been a fan of Yolkin since their pop-up days. While many pop-ups tend to decline in quality once they start opening their permanent shop, Yolkin seems to thrive even better!
There are constantly new flavours coming out and the quality never falters. One of my most favourite new creation is this Bubble Tea Soft Serve Ice Cream. If you know me well personally, it’s a no brainer that I’m going to be obsessed with this. It might seem just a simple combo but it all lies on the quality and execution – which Yolkin has done very well!
Gunpowder Collab Fish & Chips from Poppies Fish & Chips
This year, Poppies Fish & Chips have collaborated with Gunpowder on their curry sauce – and it was really good! When it comes to halal Fish & Chips, Poppies remains my favourite (not that I’ve had the chance to try that many though). We ordered Cod, the Gunpowder curry sauce, and their delicious mushy peas – just the perfect classic British combo!
Beef Brisket Loaded Fries from Hot Box
Situated at the new Market Hall Westend, Hot Box serves up some alluring barbecue. I thought the burger was quite good too, however, they put pickled cucumber in there which put me off a bit (I ended up picking all of them out). So I decided to give the feature to their Beef Brisket Loaded Fries instead!
The beef brisket was alluringly luscious. It’s well-seasoned, super tender in texture, and simply leaves that fatty melt-in-your-mouth sensation.
Pastel de Nata from Santa Nata
Pastel de Natas are the best treats ever! When in Portugal, I don’t remember a time that I’m not munching on at least one every single day. As I returned from my Portuguese trip this year, Santa Nata has opened up in Covent Garden – and guess what, their Pastel de Natas are definitely up to par with those from Portugal (sometimes even better)!
Crab Cake from Eggbreak
Crab cake for breakfast sounds like a dream to me and Eggbreak has made this dream come true. Each bite of this crab cake screams of fresh crab meat and super flavoursome. The poached eggs had been an absolute dream too – with the yolk literally gushing out as you slice it open. The sriracha mayo and chilli flakes on top added such a nice little kick to all the flavours!
Iced Latte from % Arabica
Started as my favourite coffee spot back home in Hong Kong, I was absolutely thrilled to find % Arabica opening up in London!
The Iced Latte is my go-to and it tasted just like how I remembered. Their shop in Covent Garden is very charming as well and I just love everything about them. There’s a small selection of pastries available too and I really enjoyed their Kouign Amman, which had been perfect to pair with the coffee!
Hay-Flamed Beef Fillet from Robata
Though it may seem small in size, this was definitely a worthwhile treat. Other dishes I feel they’re not particularly special but this Hay Flamed Beef Fillet had definitely been a memorable one.
It served to the table on a Robata Grill and releases a beautiful smokey touch of flavours. The beef was of good quality and simply very tasty!
Pistachio Iced Latte from JOLT London
From Saudi to London, even though Jolt comes at a higher price tag, it’s a worthwhile treat. Their flavoured iced lattes have been very popular, and my favourite is the Pistachio one!
Interestingly, I wasn’t at all impressed with their regular coffees so stick with the flavoured speciality ones!
They also do a range of delicious pastries (I really enjoyed my Creme Brulee Danish Pastry) and their Pistachio Milk Cake is also very popular.