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eat.st at the Exhibition Road Show for the Olympics!

17 Jul

Lots of news on where we’ll be during the Games – first up we bring news on a project we’ve been working on for some time…

The Exhibition Road Show is all about celebrating the shared space that has got Exhibition Road all svelte and suave. For nine days – 28 July – 5 August – the entire Road will be taken up with music, dancing, games, brass bands, drums, bars and….US! So, not only will people be able to quaff proper cocktails from our old friends The Soul Shakers, but they’ll be able to graze on an array of great food from eat.st traders and friends.

 

 

Each day there will be 20 food stalls and vans, carefully selected by yours truly, to sling it good and sling it tasty on this iconic street. They will rotate throughout the week so that, in fact, if you were really greedy/curious, you could come every day and still not get through them all. Read the role-call of deliciousness and weep!

ANNA MAE’S – Southern street food and the Cheesus Loves You thing
BANH MI 11 – We can’t get enough of them
BHANGRA BURGER – Indian spiced burgers and hot pakoras
BLEECKER ST. – NYC no-messing burgers and sliders
BOSCO & BEE – Brixton-based chicken magic from a wood-fired Piaggio
THE BOWLER – gourmet meatballs from the biggest swinger in town
BUEN PROVECHO – straight from DF, this is the way of the calle and ceviche to die for

CARIBBEAN CHEF – award-winning jerk chicken and Puma’s official Caribbean food trader for the Games
CRUMBS & DOILIES – our favourite cupcakes in all of London
DAISY GREEN – fro-yo, Aussie style, with toppings to twist your melons
DOSA DELI – brilliant Indian dosas
FISH & – all the way from Leeds, amazing fish & chips from Northern Streats creator, Mr Critchley
FLEISCH MOB – Austrian chutzpah and a bit of leder-hosen
FRENCH & GRACE – Award-winning duo of brilliant cooks doing their uber-wraps
GREEN GOAT – ‘sustainable street food’ and some of the best we’ve had.

GURMETTI – they had us with the voice and the Mo’s – then we tried their food…
HORN OK PLEASE – dosas, pani puri and bhel puri heaven
JAMON JAMON – paella Valenciana from the ‘Godfather of street food’. Don’t mess.
KIMCHI CULT – Korean fusion burgers and tortas
LULABELLE’S – homemade cakes and tea from our girl in Yorkshire

MOLLY BAKES – cakes and shakes – hold tight
RAINBO – hand-made gyozas from a 1948 Ford pick-up – this is a thing of beauty
ROOST – Cantten creator, Cass brings us chicken every which way
RUBY VIOLET – home-churned ice cream from North London, served from a gorgeous old Bedford
SAVAGE SALADS – GRRrrrr – proper
SORBITIUM – Our fave ice cream couple, Suzaanna & Pedro know how to do sorbets, sherbets and ice cream
SPECK MOBILE – Owners Franz and Marco really understand the importance of butter to cooking. Eye-rolling
STREETZZA – pizza perfectionist, Hubertus brings us his own style of the good dough
TONGUE ‘N CHEEK – under-rated cuts of meat with an Italian edge
VAN DOUGH – thick-crust pizza from a Citroen H-Van
VINN GOUTE – Seychelles creole deliciousness from this lovely family business

WELL KNEADED – Wandsworth-reared Firebread with mad-flavours and toppings
YUMI CO – the real deal takoyaki – no pretending

Can you stand it? Can hardly bare how much choice there’s going to be. Here are the times so you can plan your life around getting your chops round as many of this lot as you can:

 

ROAD SHOW Times

Sat 28th July: 1030 – 2300
Sun 29th July: 1030 – 2200

Mon 30th July: 1800 – 2200
Tues 31st July: 1800 – 2200
Weds 1st Aug: 1800 – 2200
Thurs 2nd Aug: 1800 – 2200
Fri 3rd Aug: 1800 – 2300

Sat 4th Aug: 1030 – 2300
Sun 5th Aug: 1030 – 2200

And there is MAD PROGRAMMING to keep everyone amused on London’s second busiest street – from late nights at the museums, to areal performances, marching bands, dancehall, a ballroom and games galore.

We’re excited! Follow the Tweets (@EatStreet) for the latest on who is on when.

See you there!

exhibitionroadshow.co.uk

28 July – 5 August

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eat.st headed to Street Feast this Friday

22 May

People – we have a collaboration brewing. At the end of this week – Friday 25th May – eat.st will be shimmying up to the car park of Sclater Street, E1, home of the recent and perfectly formed Street Feast.

Members of the eat.st collective are no stranger to the seductive and gravelly ways of this new Friday night hotspot. Kimchi Cult, The Rib Man, The Bowler, BAHD, Hardcore Prawn and Homeslice have all been slinging there since the beginning, along with other great traders, serving up the good stuff, festoon-lit and flying.

This Friday, to add to the mix, will be a new group – especially selected by me, PB, for their freshness and swerve. More details on these seven to follow this week. In the mean time, for those of who don’t know (and for those of you who do), take a read of a piece of writing on last Friday’s Street Feast, by Jack Blocker – Food Waste Man – my cousin and one of my favourite writers on London fooding right now.

…..

While navigating the route to Sclater Street from Liverpool Street Station, I arrogantly peeked into Hawksmoor and St. Johns Bread and Wine, hopefully assuring the people inside that I would soon be eating street food twice as delicious and a fraction of the price of their meals. I was a bit tempted walking by Nando’s though. I have a couple of whole free chicken cards at the moment which I bought on eBay for a tenner. I caught my reflection in the door as I clutched my illicit vouchers. I stuck to the original plan.

After meeting my friends we realised that we had arrived far too early and took to Brick Lane for a few rounds. Once the epitome of urban trendiness, Brick Lane has recently evolved into a hang-out where young city-suits can indulge their edgier side. They get smashed on Jaeger Bombs and £5 pints, then make wild decisions to go out in Hoxton instead of Soho, or impulsively buy the new Keane record from Rough Trade East. Maybe even on Vinyl.  After we each bought a round of 3 beers for £15, we’d had enough. Good drinking sessions are often capped with bad food, so it’s fitting that this bad session ended with excellent grub.

The energy and aroma pouring out of Sclater Street pulled us along with a force stronger than ourselves – then security stopped us and made us finish our cans of K – then that force pulled us along again. I started with Luardos. Giant, Mission-style burritos filled with Carnitas, Beans and Guacamole. I instantly proclaimed it better than Chipotle, my measure for Mexican food made by non-Mexicans, and another statement that some say negates any opinion I have on food. My friend failed to finish his, so I readily took it off his hands ensuring my stomach was lined to protect it from the impending ribocalypse.

The Rib Man looked like someone you could trust to properly cook a dead animal. In fact, had he told me he just beat an animal to death with his bare hands before salvaging the ribs I was eating I would have believed him. This may also be because I put so much of his ‘Christ on a Bike’ sauce on my ribs that I began to partially hallucinate, seeing everything in purple for about 20 minutes. He explained that ‘Christ on a Bike’ has twice as many Naga Jolokia’s in it as the lesser ‘Holy Fuck’ sauce. Despite my drooling, tearful face, Rib Man had somehow managed to tame the world’s hottest pepper, giving the sauce a sweetness along with the heat. The ribs themselves were extremely tender but satisfying to gnaw. They avoided the ‘fall-off-the-bone’ cult that people inexplicably swear-by, letting me munch through to the marrow.

A couple of cup-cakes and a generous section of Margarita from Homeslice rounded off the night, and slowly brought feeling back into my lips. As my friends threw plastic cutlery at me while I lay recovering on the pavement, I thought of the Brick Lane suits. They had probably gone on to Hawksmoor and been told the wait was an hour, given up and headed to Nando’s, where they were forced to pay full-price as they failed to buy fraudulent loyalty cards beforehand. I had spent just fifteen pounds worth of genuine currency on all my food, the culinary victor slumped on the Sclater street curb, smoking a tab the bouncer gave me when he came to check if I was okay.

Street Feast: eat.st introduces will bring seven great new traders to the five already in situe to make a 12-pronged mega-hit; an assault on the reasonable as far as appetite is concerned and taking no prisoners.

25th May 2012 – 5pm-Midnight + Street Feast bar

StrEAT guest blog post – Monster trucks and munching pre-historic grubs

25 Apr

Guest blog post from Navina Bartlett of StrEAT

I love the UK’s street food movement so much. And I love what Petra’s been doing. She’s one of the visionaries, one of the ‘slog your guts out’ type people, who are passionate about street food. I wanted to find out where this movement was first cultivated, so I decided to head across the pond to check out Off the Grid first hand.

Off the Grid is the San Francisco equivalent of Eat.St – but on a much bigger scale.


Wow – pretty massive

Founder Matt Cohen and his team have been running regular food truck gatherings for over three years now. And they’d just mailed the spring schedule for the first weekly Fort Mason shindig when I arrived.

                                         Matt Cohen

Friday night shenanigans include a congregation of over 30 independent food vendors from countries like Peru, the Philippines, Mexico, India and Korea. Crème brûlée experts and purveyors of gourmet cupcakes are thrown in for good measure. I couldn’t wait to get stuck in and was lucky enough to have local blogger, @garysoup, as my knowledgeable guide.

Let’s start with the trucks. The bigger the better and they’re ALL custom wrapped.

Little Green Cyclo is a Vietnamese beast of mammoth proportions, with 27 items on the regular menu + another 10 specials available on and off. I personally opted to share a Masami lemongrass grilled pork banh mi with my new bezzie mate Dave (more about our fated paths crossing in the StrEAT blog post out next week).


Look at Dave next to that monster truck

Some of the other ‘big guys’ at Off the Grid include well loved veterans of the food truck scene – Chairman Bao (Chinese steamed pork buns) and Curry Up Now (with their veritable mix of dosa fillings including chilli gobi to ‘Am-ree-kan’ a combo of egg, ground beef & bacon (holy cow!). Then there’s Hapa SF which serves refined Filipino/Californian cuisine, by ambassador and head chef William Pilz. He conjures up beautiful dishes like sour diced pork sisig & marinated chicken adobo, all sold from the front of his truck.


Off the Grid has even more impact in real life

There are smaller vendors too – my personal favourite was Don Bugito whose specialty is pre-Hispanic snacks. Crispy cricket tostadas are served with mashed avocado, toasted sunflower seeds and pickled red onion (they also have a wax moth larvae option). The food is factually correct. How do I know this?

From CBBC’s ‘Horrible Histories’ of course – a credible source of ancient history as parents will know well!

Hmm, I look a bit like a bug, and I’m eating bugs

I loved Off the Grid. It has the same camaraderie as the UK scene and shows street food gatherings are  here to stay. It’s perfect for bringing communities together under the auspices of sharing and trying food. I’m really glad it’s catching on in the UK. Let’s just hope the rain doesn’t spoil our fun!

For all the latest goss from our little ole collective, knuckling down on the cool streets of Bristol, follow
@streatuk or sign up at www.streatfoodcollective.com

King’s Boulevard gets the eat.st/INSA treatment

25 Oct

Jimmy, Jesus and Mary have all had the INSA midas touch – now it’s the time of the eat.st collective as a whole to be treated to a bit of that sparkle.

When we first began speaking with King’s Cross about bringing eat.st to King’s Boulevard I knew that we needed some great signage that would reflect what eat.st is about – but also that would signify a departure from tradition and a nod to the future direction of open-air food slinging.

For this task, INSA was the only guy. As soon as we began talking about it we was picking up what I was putting down and then throwing it back even harder. The result – and with plenty of support from King’s Cross – is the following: dozens of separate painted boards that fan out from the King’s Boulevard ivy-clad hoarding, giving a brilliant 3D effect and firmly stamping eat.st’s name on the strip.

Or, as INSA says, we’ve created an incredibly elaborate frame for a blackboard…

We’ll be here for a while and now it’s official. Have a look at the different elements and how they were slotted together – and then come and see the thing in the flesh while you chow!

 

Choc Star, Bean & Gone and Luardos getting ready to mount.

 

Sizing up the women.

 

Drilling them on.

 

The first of the blackboard dates. People coming by were asking ‘Is it for bands? Who’s playing?’. Different kind of party, but still a performance.

Me with my mini-Jimmy.

And the final touches. Quiff-o-rama. See you there soon!

Anatomy of a paint job: Hail Mary

17 Oct

Here’s Mary, the second of Luardos‘ mini-fleet of burrito-mobiles. If Jesus’ exterior hit us with a lima ácida, LuarDOS is all about the rosa Mexicana hues. Starting off with this strawberry blamanche base, eat.st’s favourite artist, INSA, got to work on transforming this H-Van into a tattoed vision of gorgeousness and funk in London’s left thigh.

No one could ever accuse INSA of not liking pink.

El Dia de los Meurtos makes itself known throughout the van…

And the L.A-inspired Mexican roses soften the blow…

Them headlights on Mary’s grill get me every time.

Aztec coming through…

The man with the magic gun.

And suddenly, after several days of hard graft, a new icon on London’s street food scene emerges…


Look out for Mary (LuarDOS) at King’s Boulevard 21st and 28th October.

GQ paints a pretty picture

12 Aug

LOVE this (plus, we get to share a page with David Gandy – things don’t get much better than that).

Lucky Chip’s burgers got us in the buds

11 Jul

I took a trip up to Lucky Chip in Kensal Rise a few weeks ago. It was before Glasto and I had a mountain of stuff to get ready before submitting myself to the trenches and twilight zone of Worthy Farm. Plus London had just endured a calamitous deluge of rain (elemental trend of June 2011?) – so from the lowlands of Loughborough Junction to the crooked heights of NW10 it was quite a wrench. But I felt compelled to soldier on, convinced by various reports that what would greet me on arrival would negate the treacherous pain of the journey.

I went to pick up my mate from her barfly position in the Prince Regent. The electricity had blown and we drank bourbon by candlelight as the storm gathered itself outside. Finally it stopped and we sallied forth to the forecourt of St John’s church. This wasn’t my first visit; I had stumbled upon Lucky Chip on their opening night back in March on a balmier night than this and it was hopping. I could barely get close to the counter, let alone the burgers, so I gave it the visual once over and carried on about my business.

This night was howlingly different on the crowd front. There was something faintly Rocky Horror about the sight of this stainless steel box perched on the brow of the Harrow Road, gazed down upon by a great solemn looking church and bereft of another living soul save for Comar and Ben, the two bright sparks behind Lucky Chip.

As we approached an SUV pulled up and whirred down its tinted window. A hand reached out and received the foil-wrapped package that Comar strode over to it. Up went the window and off prowled the car, leaving the four of us stood there, bathed in the trailer’s strip light. The good news was that it meant we had no queue to negotiate and we got very personal service. Ben, ex head barman of the Cobden Club showed us his Antipodean flair with the wasabi mayo flourishes and beetroot marinated onion rings, while Comar gave us the full intro to Lucky Chip. To cut a long story short it was always going to be a diner but the burgers have been hogging most of the limelight – and here’s why:

Gorgeous.

Fabulous.

There’s nothing like watching your food being prepared on a blustery night to really get you in the mood. The forbidding sky throws you into the promise of the trailer’s delights. You want that comfort in edible form. You lean into the counter and soak up the steamy aroma of the patty on the hot grill, knowing it has your name on it.

I went for the bacon cheeseburger, while my pal got all excited about the ‘Sheen’, as in Charlie. It was loaded with beer-soaked onions, Philadelphia cheese, Applewood smoked bacon, cheddar and garlic aioli. She said it was delicious but I was too deep into mine to give it a spin. I’m not really into a million different things on my burger. I know everyone raves about the kimchi burger at Hawksmoor but it kind of killed it for me. I want the meaty patty, the hot meaty juices and the unobtrusive but oh so crucial plastic cheese. And then some ketchup. I got all of this plus fries and onion rings (with accompanying lollipop) on the side – and I even felt like dipping into the hotdog afterwards, such was the acceleration of my appetite when confronted with all that beefy addictiveness.

I like what Comar and Ben are bringing to the curbs of London – there is a kind of studied irreverence that shows they mean business but want to orchestrate something more than just the flogging of food. And the food is spot on – very neatly done – and it all feels very well thought out. I, for one though, am not averse to a little bit of looseness and chaos in the food that I eat and on the streets where I dine. I look forward to returning to one of their Netil Market days when they are once again surrounded by people and disorder and racking out some of the finest burgers on the streets.

Find Lucky Chip on Twitter @lucky_chip or, better than that, head to Netil Market, London Fields, E8 3RL, Tuesdays-Sundays to furnish yourself with their flavours.