1. New Post: What we’ve been up to.. La Forchetta, CocoBamboo and Dante Fried Chicken


    What we’ve been up to.. La Forchetta, CocoBamboo and Dante Fried Chicken

    For all our food-filled escapades, it’s rare we’d be indulging three nights in a row – but that’s exactly what happened on Friday, Saturday and Sunday as we went Italian, Carribean/Brazilian and finally Soul Food American at a variety of spots in town you might just want to book:

    First stop, Friday : La Forchetta, Bethnal Green

    They’re not your typical Italian outlet and favour authenticity over bougie branding – so eating here on Friday night was a real treat. Portions are extremely generous too, considering the friendly pricing (desserts under £4 are a rarity nowadays) and the ambiance was cosy enough to make a good option for a date.



    Info: www.laforchettabethnalgreenroad.co.uk

    2nd stop, Saturday: Coco Bamboo

    It’s hard to find a quality Caribbean restaurant in London that ticks all the boxes (top service, great food, decent location), but it seems this eclectic spot up North (which fuses Caribbean and Brazilian) wants to earn that title.  As our party exceeded six people Saturday night, our only option was the party menu, which gives you the choice of 2 or 3 courses featuring crab cakes, fritters, jerk chicken,  curry goat and traditional Brazilian dishes. Service was super attentive, and the dishes were beautifully presented but were a bit comme ci, comme ca for the charge (£23.50 got 3 courses) – but definitely worth considering for a night out with friends.



    Info: www.cocobamboo.co.uk

    3rd stop, Sunday: Dante Fried Chicken at Death by Burrito

    Surprisingly, this was the first time we’ve been to DBB, but we weren’t here for the Mexican – we’d been invited to get a sneak preview of the brunch LA’s Dante Fried Chicken will be throwing this weekend, and we weren’t disappointed. Breakfast tacos, biscuits, grits-styled polenta and of course, the fried chicken were delicious – and topped off with a sweet potato pie, made this the perfect finale to a weekend of good eatin’.






    Info: www.billetto.co.uk/en/events/dfctakeover


  2. New Post: Something you should see… Ty at the Jazz Cafe, April 10th


    Something you should see… Ty at the Jazz Cafe, April 10th

    Bog standard hip hop gigs come and go, but if you are looking for something a little bit different, say an international rap artist, producer and curator who performs killer live shows? Then, we will no doubt see you at the Jazz Café on  April 10th. British Hip-Hop artist Ty is launching his new EP A Kick Snare and An Idea and we reckon it might just go off.


    Ben Chijioke, aka Ty, has been making music for 10 years. He has made three albums and collaborated with fellow musicians from Tony Allen, De La Soul and Damon Albarn to Terri Walker, Scratch Perverts, Afro Reggae and Estelle. His second album Upwards was released on Big Dada records, the label that also works with Roots Manuva and the album’s success earned Ty a Mercury Prize nomination in 2004 alongside Amy Winehouse, The Streets and Franz Ferdinand.

    Despite these years of wall-to-wall musical achievement, Ty has also found time to run workshops in schools and beyond; a practice he has continued since his involvement in the Ghetto Grammar Organisation in the mid-90s. As an artist known for his wise lyrics and engaging mix of articulate wordplay and politics, Ty has also spared some time to appear on the BBC 2’s Daily Politics Show. Need we go on…?

    So cue the Jazz Café turned Hip-Hop Haven, filled with art, culinary delights and a few undisclosed surprises to boot. This party is sure to be something else. (Words: Laura Thornley)

    For More info, visit: www.facebook.com/events/158427924314206


  3. New Post: Something you should see… Project Colony


    Something you should see… Project Colony

    Fourth Monkey appears to specialise in productions that explore the darker side of human nature, or so their Edinburgh Fringe appearances say. Past productions include A Clockwork Orange in 2010 as well as 4.48 Psychosis in 2012, a production that left it audience slavering for the next installment. And, here it is: Project Colony, a new take on  Franza Kafka’s 1914 novel.

    Originally,  In the Penal Colony was written as a short and featured only four characters: The Explorer, The Officer, The Condemned, The Soldier. The story was written from the Explorer’s point of view as he is guided around the prison site, encountering the ‘torture machine’ for the first time. Thankfully, Kafka’s work always lends itself to interpretation and easily resonates with other ages and experiences, like the Fourth Monkey’s production will no doubt do for us.


    Throwing the minimal cast list to the wind, this new production features a 52 strong group and takes place at the Trinity Buoy Wharf,  an East London, regenerated dockland oozing with atmosphere. Hamish MacDougall and James Yeatman direct the production. Their last collaboration took place at the Barbican (nice work if you can get it) on Complicite’s  The Master and Margarita. The company have earned a rep for presenting challenging theatre experiences for both the actors and audience (no hiding at the back then?). The audience will meet at a designated point and from there on in, be transported into the immersive experience. The story is taken to the 1950s and features a travelling salesmen invited to witness the execution of a prisoner.

    This highly-anticipated production will no doubt take the immersive theatre trend to the next level and shock and impress those who visit. It is also a great opportunity to visit one of docklands new creative communities, located across the water from the o2, with stunning views of the river. Plus, it’s the site of London’s only lighthouse. Life just doesn’t get much better, does it? (Words: Laura Thornley)

    On until April 27th.  For more info, visit: www.fourthmonkey.co.uk


  4. New Post: Something you should see… Souzou: Outsider Art from Japan


    Something you should see… Souzou: Outsider Art from Japan

    New exhibition Souzou: Outsider Art from Japan at the Wellcome Collection brings together a host of visually stunning works in a wide range of media. Bold, blocky coloured pencil drawings hang beside tightly detailed scratchings in biro; chunky, expressive sculptures sit below elegantly abstract geometric patterns in pen. Souzou is full of works that are carefully executed, aesthetically striking and overall memorable for their originality; by conventional measures and in formal terms, the exhibition could be called a success.

    But this is not a conventional art exhibition as such. You are unlikely to have heard of any of the artists, and they haven’t thought about you as an audience. Neither are they particularly interested in – even aware of – their work’s marketability, or, in some cases, the fact that it is on display at all. All of the works brought together for the Souzou exhibition were created by adults with a range of mental disorders and illnesses, living in social welfare facilities across Honshu, Japan’s largest island.


    Souzou is a Japanese word that can be translated as either creation or imagination. Some of the works convey or communicate a particular idea or experience, others fulfil an essentially private function; in all cases there is little to no engagement with history and theory. In some ways, this exhibition represents a purer form of art-making, unshackled from a debilitating awareness of critical reception and the art market. The works are very personal to the individual’s particular outlook or perception of the world. Toshiko Yamanishi writes love letters to her mother in the form of multicoloured swirls of jagged patterns; Shota Katsube creates brilliant little action figures out of shiny bin-ties; Ryoko Koda reduces his name to one unique character and repeats it again and again in artfully arranged geometric patterns.

    Exhibitions of ‘Outsider Art’ like this one always throw into question what it is that defines the ‘Insiders’ of the (fictional) concept of a singular and cohesive Art World. The Wellcome Collection’s exhibition offers an alternative kind of self expression through the visual arts and is not to be missed. (Words: Florence Ritter) 

    Souzou: Outside Art from Japan, Wellcome Collection, runs until Sunday 30 June 2013. Click here for more info. 


  5. New Post: TCé picks: A selection of things to do and places to go – April 2013


    TCé picks: A selection of things to do and places to go – April 2013

    The fourth month of 2013 promises aplenty in the way of festivals, parties, exhibitions and food glorious food – so forgive us if we’re feeling a little giddy about what we’ll be getting up to this April…


    Bird’s Eye View Film Festival: Celebrating Arab Women Filmmakers, April 3-10th – This year’s BEV will be honouring the work of women in the Arab world, offering insightful docs, film shorts, Q&As, live music and a special Fashion Loves Films programme, offering a host of parties and galas.

    Art & Culture

    Gaia: A Show of Hands at Nelly Duff, April 11th – One of the most thought-provoking street artists of our time will be presenting his first UK exhibition for one week only. The New York-born, Baltimore-based artist has built an international rep for his street murals, and this show will demonstrate his continuous fascination with hands through his unique style.

    Eat & Drink


    Dante Fried Chicken at Death by Burrito April 11-14th – We happily chowed down at Mr Dante’s finger-lickin’ pop-up last year so pleased to hear he’s back on our shores, this time with a cookbook and an exhibition. He’ll also be joining forces with Death by Burrito for a guest chef residency, where he’ll be serving up an exclusive dinner menu and all day brunch on April 14th, to mark the final day of the show.



    The Doctor’s Orders Presents
The Doctor’s Orders 250 Featuring DJ Jazzy Jeff, The Nextmen And Rich Medina At Scala, April 13th – To mark their 250th event, the Doctor’s Orders guys are going all out to bring together some of the most celebrated DJs in hip-hop – and this is one party that won’t stop until the sun comes up.

    Art & Culture

    Pick Me Up 2013: Graphic Arts Festival at Somerset House, April 18-28th – Feast your eyes on an incredible array of illustrations and designs at this 11-day celebration of all things graphic. Highlights include workshops, creative forums and lively events every evening.

    Eat & Drink

    The Lab at Tobacco Docks, April 25-27th – The creators of the Taste of London fest are debuting a new experimental foodie weekend, featuring some of the most innovative chefs from around the world and masterclasses in experiencing food like never before.

    Best bits from last month


  6. New Post: What we’ve been up to… Loco Moco at The Diner


    What we’ve been up to… Loco Moco at The Diner

    I’m usually guilty of going for a traditional short stack with all the trimmings whenever I hit up The Diner (they do culinary Americana so well), but did you know they offer a famous Hawaiian brekkie/lunch called the Loco Moco?  Me neither, until a pal and I were invited to try this unusual dish that’s big in the Aloha state, and just one of the many all-day breakfast offerings you can get at The D.


    It’s quite a  full-on meal for 9am, as you get dirty rice topped with a generous burger patty (cooked to your liking), cheese, jalapeño peppers before it’s all doused in gravy, but it’s pretty darn good – and curbed the hunger pangs for a good part of the day. You’ll find Loco Moco under “The Blue Plates” on The Diner menu, but for more info about its history, visit www.whatscookingamerica.net/History/LocoMocoHistory

     Check out more of our pics from The Diner on our Tumblr


  7. New Post: Somewhere you should go… Popin’ Pete’s Pop Shop, Box Park


    Somewhere you should go… Popin’ Pete’s Pop Shop, Box Park

    If you’re from a gen’ of hip-hoppers who attempted to bust a move while watching Wild Style or Beat Street (on repeat, of course), here’s the sort of  rare homage to the good ‘ol days that should be in your diary. The Popin’ Pete Pop Shop has dropped into town courtesy of the legendary Electric Boogaloos dancer, who’ll be bringing back the old school at the Box Park through a week-long series of daily workshops, performances, DJing, Q&As, stuff for the kiddies,  live art and parties.


    Pic: BigWanPro

    It’ll be the chance to perfect your P&L’s (poppin’ and lockin’) and learn a bit of dance history before putting it all into practice at the Get Down Social Dance Party at Rich Mix with DJ Biznizz on Sunday, March 31st. Can’t wait to sign up!

    For more info, visit: www.boxpark.co.uk/popinpete

    Check out  Popin’ Pete in action: 

  8. Breakfast at The Diner - a great way to spend your 9am. 


  9. New Post: Something you should see… Max Mara Art Prize for Women: Laure Prouvost at Whitechapel Gallery


    Something you should see… Max Mara Art Prize for Women: Laure Prouvost at Whitechapel Gallery

    Last year, Laure Prouvost was awarded the Max Mara Art Prize for Women and sent on a six-month residency in Italy, where she busied herself distilling the particular atmosphere of the small rural North Italian town of Biella into drawings and film. Now returned to London, she delivers to us the fruits of her labours in a wonderful, sun-soaked installation at the Whitechapel Gallery.

    Prouvost captures her new environment by reaching out to all of our senses. Her ten-minute digital projection Swallow will have youimagine the taste of fresh, wet, pulpy fruit and the feeling of its flesh between your fingers; hear the hubbub of the street overlaid with chirruping birdsong; remember the feeling of clear, cold ankle-lapping water on your skin. Gleaming silver-grey fish press against velvety raspberries and a coterie of nymph-like women relax and play in a natural pool. There is a real eroticism to Prouvost’s work but the tone is playful, light and clean. It is a film about seduction, but seduction by fruit, running water and the warmth of the sun.


    Prouvost is mindful of how her artistic journey to Italy fits historically, and her installation contains visual references to classical antiquity in allusion to the Grand Tour of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. The film is shown within a freestanding construction which fills the main space of the Gallery, a vast pastel panorama collaged with photocopied material, photographic prints and swaths of paint. Its circular form mirrors the open, gasping soft lips that provide the breathy soundscape to Swallow and embraces the viewer with its world of imagery.

    Laure Prouvost’s installation at the Whitechapel Gallery offers a welcome refuge from this miserable weather (and the deep feeling of injustice in being forced to trudge through thick snow in late March). Her new immersive installation is a celebration of sensual pleasure which transports you to paradise and nourishes the soul. Oh – and the fresh raspberries which sit on upturned car mirrors around the gallery walls are replenished every day. Eat as many as you like. (Words: Florence Ritter) 

    On until April 7th.  For more info, visit: http://www.whitechapelgallery.org/exhibitions/max-mara-art-prize-for-women-laure-prouvost


  10. New Post: Something you should see… David Bowie is at V&A


    Something you should see… David Bowie is at V&A

    Ziggy Stardust, the man who fell to earth, a musical genius, a style icon, father to Duncan, husband to Iman, or Jareth (for female Labyrinth fans of a certain age); yes, David Bowie is many things to many people. His 40-year plus career has evolved and developed over the generations, constantly reinventing the man born David Robert Jones along the way. It’s no surprise then that his first retrospective at the V&A is set to draw record crowds.

    The curating team at the V&A have been given unlimited access to his archive and will be exhibiting those things that make Bowie one of the coolest and most radical performers of modern times. Everything from fashion, sound, graphics, theatre, art and film will feature and exemplify the astonishing character and icon that Bowie created for himself.


    There will be 300 items on display including costumes from his out-there period as Ziggy Stardust, handwritten song lyrics, his own artwork and even a mug shot from when he was arrested. Despite Bowie’s advancing years he’s still considered by many as Mr. Cool. Smooth and stylish, the aging rocker even managed to shake off some warped far right sympathising during his ‘Berlin-era’ to remain a much-loved British musician.

    The Chinese may have us believe it is the year of the snake but, with the amount of Bowie dedicated events around at the moment, you would be forgiven for thinking otherwise. This V&A exhibition follows Bowiefest at the ICA, Glam the Performance of Style at Tate Liverpool and of course, the release of his new album, The Next Day. It starting to look a lot like the Year of Bowie, but that’s not a bad thing in our eyes. (Words: Laura Thornley)

    On until August 11th.  For more info visit: www.vam.ac.uk/content/exhibitions/david-bowie-is