THE CURIOUS PEAR
The delicious duet that is Issey & Meg have dished out some of their treasured favourites this week and I'm really doing little girlie jumps in excitement.
These two make up the culinary uncoverings of the stellar blog The Curious Pear. With an eye for finding heart, soul and innovation in the kitchen they explore London, lifting lids on the incredible talent both here and sharing their adventures across far flung landscapes. Their discoveries are featured in some of my favourite food & travel rags, namely SUITCASE and LIFE & THYME and the bigger names like TIME OUT and FOOD & WINE.
They are really a rather magical double act and we are honoured to have them both deliver their cherry picked lifestyle favourites.
Dig into these delights!
WORDS FROM MEG:
The Curious Pear: We are two best friends, Meg Abbott and Issy Croker, who tell stories of the people of the food world. Issy is a photographer and I am a writer, and together we have travelled the world exploring food culture and the characters behind it for magazines like SUITCASE, Time Out, Food52, Life & Thyme and Root + Bone. We also live together, which means we spend 95% of our time together!
Recipes or restaurants...
Your FRI: HILL & SZROK
We live just off Broadway Market, and fell in love with Hill & Szrok in our first week of living here. It is a small master butcher's shop that turns in to a cookshop by night. The big wooden butcher's block makes way for candles, cheap red wine, great music and some of the best food in the area. They serve up their own meats with really interesting sides - think chicken supreme, lamb with mint and pork chops alongside cabbage with capers, blood orange salads, or fried eggs and anchovies. You can't book, but any kind of wait is well worth it!
Beverage, barista or bar stool...
Your FRI: SATAN'S WHISKERS
We love Satan's Whiskers. It is a really fun neighbourhood cocktail bar in Bethnal Green, covered in taxidermy, vintage liquor posters and red velvet. Their cocktail menu changes every day, and the bar tenders are the kind that love a challenge - so just tell them what you like and they'll make you something delicious!
Where to go, what to see & do...
Your FRI: COLUMBIA ROAD FLOWER MARKET
It might be a bit unoriginal, but Columbia Road Flower Market on a Sunday is still our favourite thing about London. The atmosphere is just amazing, with such a great mix of old East End market vendors, families and young people. We love the buskers, the Aperol Spritzes at Campania and, of course, the magical array of flowers.
Online or offline...
Your FRI: NOM LIVING
Nom on Columbia Road is a beautiful earthenware shop that is only open to the public on a Sunday. The selection is amazing, from bamboo placemats to hand-carved chopping boards, plant pots and plates. We always leave with something, however tiny. We also love Conservatory Archives on Hackney Road.
Blog, books or broadsheet...
Your FRI: THE GIRLS - EMMA CLINE
We've both just finished 'The Girls' by Emma Cline, and didn't talk for about a week while we were reading it. It's set in 1960s West Coast America, and revolves around a young girl who falls into a Charles Manson-like cult. The prose is very heady and beautiful, while the story itself becomes progressively disturbing. It's one of those books you wish you could un-read and read again for the first time. Highly recommended!
Silverscreen, series or soundbite...
Your FRI: LOOK AT THE PICTURES - ROBERT MAPPLETHORPE
Look at the Pictures is a feature-length documentary about the photographer Robert Mapplethorpe. He really broke the boundaries of contemporary art with his voyeuristic, sometimes pornographic photographs documenting his friends in New York during the 70s and 80s, mostly on the LGBT scene. After he died, many of his exhibitions were banned, and it's interesting to watch the change in attitudes to sexuality as the years progressed. He was an incredible character and such a talent, and this film really celebrates that. We didn't catch it at the cinema, so watched it on Googleplay.
Podcasts to popstars...
Your FRI: PALACE - BITTER
We just came back from New York, where we watched Palace play in an apartment at the top of The Standard, with 360 panoramic views of the city. They are such a fresh, ethereal band, and they suited the setting perfectly! Their song 'Bitter' was the first one we heard, and it's still our favourite.
Staycation, vacation or relocation...
Your FRI: LISBON, PORTUGAL
Lisbon is a phenomenal city. It is undergoing so much change, but doing it in a really creative way that champions independent businesses. The buildings there are all tiled in different colours, and everything is a little bit 1960s, in a really good way. We said it was like being in a Wes Anderson film! The food is amazing - there is more fresh fish than you will ever have anywhere else. We wrote a guide to the city for Life & Thyme magazine, so follow our recommendations for food, drink and everything else here!
HEALTH & BEAUTY
Treatments & tonics, tried & tested...
Your FRI: COCONUT OIL
We're probably very slow on the uptake, but we slather our hair in coconut oil every night that we plan to wash our hair the next day. It is always so so soft and (slightly) less frizzy! We went to India a while ago and all of the women swear by it. And we love burning Palo Santo sticks all over our flat. It is a sacred Mexican wood which last for ages, and smells absolutely incredible.
Treat them or teach them...
Your FRI: HAMPSTEAD HEATH
We both have young nieces and nephews and love taking them swimming or to London's parks. Hampstead Heath is always beautiful, as is Richmond Park.
Fun or function...
Your FRI: CLASSPASS
ClassPass is the only reason we get any exercise done. Without it, we would just do nothing...It allows you to book classes all over London and try out lots of different studios, which is lovely for people that work from home and want to keep things interesting. We love Tempo for reformer pilates, or Stretch on Broadway Market. We use the term 'love' lightly...
And then, of course, where would we be without Deliveroo?
Many Hands Make Bright Work...
Your FRI: MIND
Mind’ is a wonderful charity that does outstanding work getting people talking about mental health, from depression and anxiety to phobias and stress. It’s a cause really close to our hearts, and any organisation that get people talking about these issues goes a way to tackle the stigmas attached. Get involved!