2nd living room abroad

Dear Reader,

With limit living space in NY and a general preference for going out – instead of being homely – comes something I call 2nd living room. And I have more than a few of those.

During a visit to London, where Glynsky showed me around, I found one spot, that would become my 2nd living room. If I lived in the area, of course.

The area in question is Maida Vale. The atmosphere resembles Gramercy, one of my favorite residential areas in Manhattan. Glynsky showed me Little Venice, part of Maida Vale first. And then we looked for a place to have lunch.

When passing this place:


I noticed a sign: Cash Only. And I said: We have to go there.

Glynsky asked why, and I explained. If today a place can afford to kiss good bye to all credit card business, it must be worth visiting. From the top of my head I know only one place in NYC, that does, and that is the world’s best steak house, Peter Luger.

So we went there, and this is what we found:

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Small French meal

Dear Reader,

When I feel like celebrating with a little meal, the choice of food places is tremendous. Always a safe bet is one of my three favorite brasseries. And a good selection for a small meal is


sautéed Foi Gras with a slice of an apple on brioche as an appetizer, with a nice glass of cidre. Follow that with


Steak au Poivre with French fries as a main course, with a nice bottle of red wine. And


Crepes Nougat with caramelized banana as dessert.

Finish your meal with a delicious Calvados and an espresso, and you are pretty close to heaven.

On cloud #9,

Engine Room

red as a tomato, una paloma 3…

Dear diablog,

Tonight I am going with others to see Caro Emerald at Kew the Music. Can’t wait! Maybe we will take a real treat to eat whilst there and this made me think (as promised) of a super summer soup.

When in Madrid and at La Plateria (see ‘paloma 2’) Mme and I ate (discovered?) Salmorejo.

What we were given was called Salmorejo Cordobez though, if you read further, you will see that it appears to be known by a number of Spanish regions. Woteva it truly excellent and  if anyone wants to make it for themselves this seems a great recipe and very much as I remember it.

Yours, diablog, with a brief but recommended food post



Europe the American way

Dear Reader,

By now you know, everyone at diablog is somewhat nuts.

To fit in properly, I did a typical American thing. A European tour, the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, Austria, Tirol, Italy and France in a bit more than a week. You want crazy? We got crazy. Four countries in one day, usually that is reserved for our beloved


Smiles. He does that on a regular basis.

Anyways, it was great fun. It confirmed, I do not like mountains and narrow valleys. I need an overview and the sea. It also confirmed, I do not like the French.

Almost all of them pretend to not speak or understand English. And their prices are plain robbery. Ten Euro for an espresso? You got to be kidding me. 100 Euro for 1,000 km on the highway? Do I want to buy the damn thing?

But the worst was a hotel manager, again claiming not to speak English, also claimed 120 – 107 = 3. When I insisted on getting all my change, he had to consult a calculator. Yeah, right. Never mind that my room had been paid in advance and the whole procedure was a scam anyway.

Yet, I had a tremendous time even in France. Partially because I was allowed to stay in a 11th century fortress:


freshly restored, and refurbished to maximum luxury. The outside of the building isn’t what you would call pretty.

But have a look at one of the bedrooms:

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and talking of sauces…

Dear diablog,

I wrote earlier this week on the pleasures which followed the 96 club meet – and here it is!


yep, luckily Sunday was a reasonable day and there was time to try out Mme.’s latest toy – a pizza oven in the garden.

Armed with a wide array of possible toppings –


and no, that is not my hand taking a large amount of chorizo – we learned that it is imperative, contrary to say a barbeque…


Continue reading “and talking of sauces…”

so what’s not to like…

Dear diablog,

Glynsky’s back on the move and got stuff to report from the outside world.

I am lucky enough to have a sort of surrogate ‘son’ who is young enough to find good new things and places and who decided it was time for me to ‘leave the compound’ for an afternoon of silliness.

At the appointed hour I arrived in Marylebone Lane (to me, a previously unexplored London jewel) which seems crammed with all sorts of interesting ’boutiques’ and eateries. Still, I think, a poor cousin to Marylebone High Street but worthy of investigation as I arrived at the door of the unimposing


’28-50′ (don’t ask, have no idea) Wine Workshop and Kitchen – of which there are 3 other locations in town – which is rather nice inside!


Continue reading “so what’s not to like…”