El Al and the White Villa, Tel Aviv, Israel

Back to my trip to Tel Aviv, quickly… the flight over actually had quite good food… I took El Al and was not especially excited by the packaging and set-up of the dishes…¬† I mean, see below… lots of plastic and not great plating… but you know, the food was delicious. I had originally ordered the fish dish, which they ran out of by they got to my row, so I could choose between the chicken curry or the veggie mezze… and the flight attendant strongly suggested I go for the mezze, so I did.

And they were really good, different peppers, vine leaves and cabbage, all stuffed. Served on a bed of tomato roughly chopped base and slightly herbed and spiced, these were really good! A small jar of harissa and another of tahini acted as good dipping sauces on the side.

The next morning, at my hotel, the White Villas, I was treated to a delicious breakfast… labneh, fruit, a salad,a mni gazpacho soup with small mozarella balls in it, and lots of bread served with olive oil, nutella, and jam. YUM.

Then, it turns out that there is also hot food included in breakfast… the first day, I had to try it, as all the hot options sounded so good… I wanted to get the shakshuka (we are in Israel after all), but the lady suggested that I wait…

In her words, if this is your first shakshuka in Israel, don’t eat this one, as it’s kind of fancy… go into a hole-in-the-wall, shitty place and order one there first, an authentic one! Haha, I appreciated the honesty.

Instead, I got the two fried eggs served on a bed of sauteed greens and onions, and oh wow, was it delicious. Topped with some cheese (kind of like a fontina, but with more salt in it, and lots of black ground pepper.

I was disappointed that this dish wasn’t bigger, as it was SO good. The greens were varied and really fresh, so had a nice taste, especially with the sweet red onion. And the cheese melted over the eggs… yum.


The Nest Cafe, Ripley, Surrey

On a Saturday drive down into Surrey, we stopped in Riley, a cute town near Cobham, for a quite bite before heading into the Surrey Downs.

We had driven by the Nest Cafe before, but today, at 3pm, it was bustling with people!

We grabbed some food as we hadn’t eaten yet, and the tartines on the menu looked the best at the time. We went for an avocado toast… a generous portion with a side salad… which tasted like… avocado toast.

We also got one of the marinated mackerels on toast, which was very nice… slightly over-marinated, if you ask me, but there was enough bread to counteract the strong fish.. this was a delicious tartine!

Then, resisting all the delicious cakes and pastries that were sitting out, we hopped back into the car and drove off into the woods! Gotta love the small roads of the English countryside Рwith the late-fall sunlight at the end fo the afternoon, it was beautiful!

Sushi Shop, Montreal Airport, Montreal

My next stop after Toronto was Montreal, which I made it to at 3pm, a good six hours ahead of my 9pm flight. Great. And I couldn’t check in for another few hours, so what did I do? Eat again!

This time, I grabbed a sushi roll, called the Smoky. It was: smoked salmon, avocado, tempura, orange masago, spicy light mayo, spicy sauce, and sesame. And quite good. This kept me going for a while, and I figured I was done until the flight…

The Lounge, Billy Bishop Airport, Toronto

So try to leave town, I did, but they didn’t make it easy for me. I was supposed to be on a 3pm flight to Montreal, which was cancelled. Then, a 9pm flight, which was also cancelled (at 1am, after three hours delayed in the terminal and after we had been sitting on board for an hour after that, since the flight crew had now gone past their hours working deadline.) Right.

So I tried again the next morning, after a lovely four hours’ sleep at the Ramada Inn Newark, this time, going first to Toronto to then make it to Montreal, for my flight leaving back for London that night. So fun.

So my first stop was Bill Bishop Airport in Toronto. I had no idea that there are two airports there, but I will never use another one than Billy Bishop again, it’s small, veyr well organised, and right next to downtown. Check it out, see how close we are, about to land:

At this point, I wasn’t especially hungry, so opted for a mini salad in the lounge. Oh, that’s right, everyone sits in the waiting lounge and has access to free coffee and cookies – then, you can buy all sorts of healthy snacks, salads, wraps and other bites. Genius.

This was my chickpea and kale salad, which also had red peppers, tomatoes, courgette and pineapple, and was a very nice appetite whetter.

Harlem Food Bar, Harlem, NY

A Sunday afternoon, we cycled up Central Park and intro Harlem, looking for a delicious brunch! Everything was booked (especially Melba’s, oops!) so we ended up across the street at a place called the Harlem Food Bar.

The menu is your typical weekend brunch menu, with eggs and sandwiches. I eventually went for the turkey burger… I wanted some kind of meat but wasn’t feeling a regular burger.

Honestly? It was the juciest turkey burger I’ve ever had (I didn’t realise that they can be juicy, just overcooked or undercooked!) Yum. The fries on the side were good, not amazing.

Andre had their omelette with sauteed onions and mushrooms… his potatoes looked really nice, as they had four different kinds of potatoes roasted on the plate… but you know what? They really didn’t have much taste. Disappointing!

Then we went Halloween mark shopping…

The Islander bar, Miami-Dade International Airport, Miami, Florida

Then, from Palm Beach, it was down to Miami… and to a huge thunderstorm! It was biblical for a few hours, and then I finally ventured out to meet a friend…

At least the sunrise the next day made up for it…

And after my meetings, I rushed to the airport to catch  a flight back to New York, grabbing some quick lunch at the Islander, which was right across from my gate.

And, as I hadn’t had them yet, I went for the fish tacos, in this case, big chunks of fish with crunchy cabbage and just a light sauce, which I obviously topped with tons of guacamole and salsa (and a smidge of sour cream!) I was surprised at the quality of the fish, as you never know what you’re going to get in the airport… and happy with lunch overall!

Pizza al Fresco, Palm Beach, FL

A day of meetings in Palm Beach.. and I stayed at the BEST decorated hotel, the Chesterfield, on Palm Beach… check out the deco!

After my morning meetings, I had some time to kill before the afternoon meeting, so made my way up and down the main shopping street, Worth Avenue, and found a place for lunch! After checking out several places, each based in a courtyard off the main street, this seemed the most what I was looking for..  the menu had a number of pizzas and pastas, along with a large selection of main course salads.

I went for the Mediterranean seafood salad… it came with cold, marinated seafood (squid, small scallops, and prawns) on top of a vegetable medley (it tasted like pieces of marinated artichoke, carrot, and celery) with salad greens. I wasn’t expecting cold seafood, so it wasn’t exactly what I was hoping, but overall, a good salad. The marinated veggies served under the seafood gave the whole salad more taste for sure! And the courtyard? Lovely and quiet, with parasols everywhere to shade you from the sun. This would be a great place for another lunch or dinner!