Showing posts with label Food in London. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Food in London. Show all posts

Saturday, 13 April 2013

Sabrina's London Diaries- The End of an Era ~ The End of Part 1

Dear Reader of Sabrina's London Diaries:

I went to London in September 2008 just for a 3 week vacation. I was in my third semester of Graduate school, getting my MFA in Creative Writing at Goddard College and writing a Musical.  On the first night I arrived, the man I went to visit,  told me, " I'm sorry your not the one !"  I decided to not go home with my tail between my legs and decided to make the best of a bad situation and live there. Being what I laughingly, call, " dumped upon arrival", was the best thing that ever happened to me, I took my feelings of rejection and remorse and turned things around for the better. I realized this man was not my enemy, but my manivater ( a man that motivates) and catalyst for making me do my Human Revolution I ended up living in London  for two years and it was the best two years of my life ! 

 This blog is part travel journal, part personal memoir, sometimes private and sometimes not. I write about my initial culture shock of living in London, in articles, such as: My Initial Impressions of the Drinking Habits of the English and Some Language Differences I find Funny.

I also write about my Dating conundrums and mishaps in a self-deprecating blog (blog series within this blog),called, "Finding Mr. Darcy"---- a serious Austenite my dating blogs look at the romantic life of a single girl through a 18th century lens looking backwards, but then racing towards the future with exuberant optimism.   Having the opportunity to date and experience men from all over the globe, I write as a Romantic Anthropoligist, in blogs such as: Are Italian Men Really Great Lovers ? Israeli Soldier vs. English Gentleman, The Rugged vs. The Refined, and Dating in London: American Cowboy vs. English Bloke

Being absolutely nutty about History and it's great people, I also write about some of History's greatest people: Shakespeare, Winston Churchill, Jane Austen, and of course, Harry Potter

This blog evolved from someone telling me that I should write about my experience in London. One year and a half later, I am still writing about my experience in London. I came back to Los Angeles in 2010, after a 2 years sojourn in London, and I found that it has changed so much. But, it's like in the movie, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, Benjamin Button, says in the movie as he narrates his story, after he comes home for being gone so long and traveling all over the world, " It's not that Tenessee has changed it's that I have changed."  And, so, it's not that Los Angeles has changed so much, or even America, it's that I had changed. My views and perceptions of life and the world have changed along with that and I will never be the same. Living in London has changed the way I see the world, and now the way I see myself in the world and that is why I must share what I learned !

Living in London for me, was an absolute dream come true. In my blog, I live to tell the tale and I am still telling it after all these years, and plan to publish my memoirs.


Sabrina Grace~

p.s. This is the End of the First Part of Sabrina's London Diaries. In the future, I will be publishing more blogs on Jane Austen, Book Reviews, Dating in Los Angeles, Culture in Los Angeles, Food,  and Green Living.  As well as, anecdotal commentary on society in English society and my new perspective on the world, living and thriving again in Los Angeles, California as a Language InstructorChef and Writer.

All blogs are written by Sabrina Rongstad-Bravo More Tales and Adventures in Sabrina's London Diaries

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Monday, 12 April 2010

Is it Fair to Say English Fare is just Fish and Chips?

Many people when they think of English fare, they think of Fish and Chips,Shephards Pie,Sausage and Mash,mushy peas or overcooked vegetables. It doesn't sound very tantalizing, does it? Most people deem English fare to be lacking in taste and blase.I must say that English food is not bad food. I have to demystify this presumption for the rest of the planet and Americans. Since there are so many different cultures in London,there has been a long standing trend of English chefs to combine the spices and flavors of other cultures in thieir cuisine. There are the likes of famous chefs, like Gordon Ramsey and Jamie Oliver.They have combined traditional English food and made it more global and ethnic.Hence, a burgeoning fusion revolution has emerged.There has been many immigrants from India,China, Jamaica, Caribbean, Italy, Spain in London, and surely their influence has migrated into the food.But apart from that, I find English Food I find quite pleasant,and especially comforting on cold winter nights. Some dishes I enjoy are Chicken Roast, Coronation Chicken,Lancashire Hot Pot, Bubble and Squeak,Prawn Sandwiches with Watercress Soup, and so on and so forth. So, don't you dare think the English don't know how to cook, because they DO !!

I personally love Jamie Oliver. Apparently, he's now doing a food revolution, Campain in the US. I don't really care much of Gordon Ramsey and his F******G Show, where every other word is F***K This, and F***K that! I really don't think all that F*******G language is appropriate in this day and age, and it's a bad influence on society and children.I think it's stupid, and is waste of intelligence. I will talk about this later in another blog, but for now, I would like to say that Fish and Chips are a big staple and has been English fast food, since the times of the Romans. Actuallly, the first FISH and CHIPS restaurant dates about 1853.

FISH and CHIPS are wrapped in newspaper

Everywhere you go in London, what you get for food is CHIPS, CHIPS, CHIPS, and more CHIPS!!!There are around 8,500 fish and chip shops in the UK, with fish and chips probably being Britains most long-standing popular fast food. FISH and CHIPS shops are to be found in just about every part of the UK.The way the English eat their CHIPS, fries, or pomme frites is very hot and with vinegar and salt.

It would be fair to say, what you get in England for food is FISH and CHIPS, and then something else. The way the English do CHIPS is with FISH. But I can't say the same for other cultures.The way they do their CHIPS is quite different. Still, the English love their CHIPS,and apparently so does EVERYBODY else that immigrated there.When you go to a Middle Eastern Lebanese Falafe fast food place, you can order a Falafel and CHIPS. When you go to get Chinese Take out, you can get Egg Rolls, Fried Rice and CHIPS. When you go to an Italian Restaurant, and you maybe just want a pasta or a pizza, you can get Pizza and CHIPS, and then of course, a coke.

Frankly, that's a lot of greasy food, no wonder I gained weight. Oh, don't forget to down the CHIPS with a pint of Guinness. A little oil every now and then is great for your hair, nails and skin and scientist say does wonders for the arteries and has great healing properties.

Not all FISH and CHIPS are this greasy, so if the chef hands you this ask him to cook it again for you. Cheers !

10 Best Fish and Chips Restaurants in the UK
Ten Best Fish and Chip for London
A Recips on How to Make CHIPS

More Tales and Adventures in Sabrina's London Diaries

Sunday, 4 April 2010

History of the Pubs in London

The History of the Pubs

The arrival of the Romans and the establishment of a sound road network in the U.K. contributed to an increase in travel, and a demand for the establishment of simple ale houses where a traveler could stop and find shelter whilst quenching their thirst.The pub as we know it has its origins in the abbey breweries and monasteries, which emerged shortly after the Norman conquest of Britain in 1066. The Normans, upon conquering Britain set about building a huge network of places of worship throughout the land. Not long afterwards, many monasteries and abbeys began to brew their own beer, for sale to pilgrims. This led to the later development of ale houses, where travellers and locals could sit in for a drink or two. Temporary living accommodation was often sought by the travellers close to the ale houses, which led to the development of inns. Inns have, in turn, by and large developed again into simple drinking houses (though rarely attached to an abbey or monastery) called 'public houses' or 'Pubs' for short, often themed for novelty value, and central to entertainment and community life.

Some Interesting Pubs:

The George Inn

The George Inn, just off Borough High Street, survived the Great Fire of London, 1666 (as it was just south of the River Thames), only to be burnt to the ground in a large scale, lesser-known fire, just one year later. It was rebuilt, and continued to serve pilgrims and tradesmen on this bus route from Northern to Southern England. The architecture is still pure 17th Century, and in the courtyard you can almost touch the atmosphere, where travellers used to drink olde-English ale, their horses and carts tied up alongside them.

The Interior of the George Inn


For more gruesome drinks,The Ten Bellsin Spitalfields, is known to have been frequented by at least one of Jack the Rippers victims, whilst up the road in 'The Blind Beggar' the Krays carried out their most famous murder.

The Ten Bells in Spitafields. In the 1800's, the time of Jack The Ripper.

The Interior of Ten Bells

If you have a passion for the arts try 'The French House' in Soho, London where gangsters, sex workers and artists such as Francis Bacon rubbed shoulders in the 1950's and '60's.


Theory has it that pubs attract ghosts of the dead, for much the same reason that they attract many of the living; they go there to find a shoulder to cry on! So next time you are in a pub and feel a ghostly chill, don't fear, just lend an ear!

The Mermaid Inn in Rye, East Sussex is said to be the most haunted pub in England, with a history of duelling ghouls in the main bar, and several other sceptres that haunt the inn bedrooms. The inn serves excellent food, and has a genuine fire in the bar.

Pub hauntings are synonymous with old pubs. Perhaps try a ghost-pub crawl
with the London Walks people around your local area for a change: chase off your beer tasting evening with a different kind of spirit! Ha ha! London Walks has a different pub walk practically every night, I strongly recommend them.

Some Interesting Pub Sites

More Tales and Adventures in Sabrina's London Diaries


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