Thursday, November 22, 2012

Epicurely Event: Hoxton Nosh - A 6 course Tasting Menu by Josh Posner

 Hoxton Nosh Josh Posner Epicurely Buon Appetito

When Josh told me about his next event, I was quite keen to attend. You might remember a review I did of his previous supper club held through Epicurely.

The setting this time was different from the first event which had about 8 diners. This was held at the Hoxton Apprentice, a beautiful space at Hoxton Square, owned by the charity – Training For Life. Tickets were £25 (+£2 booking fee) for a 6 course dinner and all proceeds from the bar went to the charity. While I do prefer the more intimate atmosphere of the previous dinner (watching Josh cook right in front of us was a nice treat!), I had to admire how the event was now scaled up to cater for 40 people.

The first course was tiny little boiled egg (quail I think) with horseradish and parsley. Unfortunately I have a rather tumultuous relationship with eggs and I’m not too fond of soft boiled eggs. So I can’t really comment on this course.

The second was a familiar one – burnt potato with brown butter and pickled cucumber slices. Earthy rustic flavours highlighted by that delicious brown butter.
Hoxton Nosh Buon Appetito Josh Posner GinFizzGirl Epicurely Boiled egg, salt water, horseradish, parsley
Boiled Egg, Salt water, Horseradish & Parsley

The third course was roasted cauliflowers with a mushroom glaze, toasted almonds and chicken sauce.  I absolutely loved this dish and was glad to see it on the menu again.

Next was the shallots cooked in rice wine with marjoram and pumpkin seeds. I was looking forward to this dish and while I still enjoyed the flavours – I think it fares better when served in a bowl rather than on a plate. With a bowl, you get to appreciate the chicken broth better – which I had waxed lyrically on about in my last post.

The fifth course was smoked ox cheek, Jerusalem artichokes, turnips and beef sauce – an utterly fabulous dish. I've never tried ox cheek before – it’s similar to the texture of beef brisket. It was soft, moist and tender and full of flavour – paired with a comforting mash. This dish went down really well. 

My only critique would be that there wasn't enough of it! I know this was a tasting menu but damn, that was good stuff. The ox cheek and the roasted cauliflowers were my two favourite dishes on the menu.

Then came 2 desserts – a mascarpone cream with a lovely Muscat grape syrup garnished with poppy and fennel – a nice palate cleanser and the other dessert was a milk jelly (like a panna cotta) with brown bread, golden orange raisins and honey.

 Hoxton Nosh Josh Posner Epicurely Buon Appetito Milk Jelly, Brown Bread, Pollen & Honey
Milk Jelly, Brown Bread, Pollen & Honey

There’s always an unexpected, playful element to Josh’s food. You never really know what you're going to get when you’re sitting down for a meal. A part of animal you've never tried before (pig’s neck, anyone?), a combination that doesn't quite make sense in your head but tastes amazing (mushroom-glazed cauliflowers) or a simple little vegetable elevated to centre stage by a few key ingredients (like the shallots in chicken broth).

I’m also starting to realize how these food events listed on the Epicurely website are a great way to meet new people. London is a large city and I remember how lost I felt when I first moved here. And now, just through these two events, I've met quite a few people whom I've enjoyed getting to know while discussing Josh’s food!

Josh is planning to do more pop-up ‘Nosh’ dinners which you can find out about through Epicurely so watch this space:

You can read about my review on the first event here which has more pictures.  Unfortunately most of pictures I took this time turned out rather blurry.

You can follow Josh on twitter @rogan_josh or email him at

Friday, November 2, 2012

Kati Roll vs. Mooli’s: Battle of the best Indian Wrap

London has two fabulous albeit tiny restaurants that do Indian Wraps a.k.a Kati Rolls – perfect for take-away food or if you want to grab a quick cheap meal.

Kati Roll is just off of Oxford Street, in between Oxford Circus and Tottenham Court Road. Their orange walls are plastered with old Hindi movie posters and classic 70’s Bollywood music plays in the background and you can order old-school mango soft drinks like Maaza. 

Buon Appetito The Kati Roll Company London

The wraps are made with fried flat bread called ‘paratha’ and you can even get a fried egg on top of it. It’s then stuffed with a meat filling like a chicken or lamb kebabs or a vegetable filling like paneer or potatoes, some tangy green chutney and red onions and everything comes together beautifully. I’m craving it just writing about it now.

Kati Roll

Mooli’s is a bit different. The fillings are more varied and seem a bit healthier. Well for one thing, there’s no fried egg in your roll. The wrap is lighter and stuffed not just with meat but other fillings that make it more interesting. For instance, they do a wrap with mutton which is a goat meat and it has pomegranate salsa which adds a crunchy slightly sweet, refreshing taste to it. Their chicken roll with pickled turnips is especially nice too.

If I’m wandering around Soho and want to grab a quick cheap lunch, I always end up in Mooli’s. I like how flexible their menu is – you can choose one gigantic large roll or if you’re like me and can’t decide, you can choose two small rolls with different fillings. And they even do a salad option – it’s an ideal lunch place if you work in Soho.

Mooli's Soho Buon Appetito
Mooli's Menu
Mooli's Soho Buon Appetito
Inside Mooli's

In the end, however my greedy little stomach would choose Kati Roll over Mooli’s – It’s tastier, definitely less healthy and perfectly satisfies any late night cravings you might have!

There’s also a nostalgic element associated with Kati Roll – back when I use to live in NYC, Kati Roll was the go-to place after a night out. In a tiny-hole in the wall shop on the corner of Bleeker St and McDougal St you would find a huge line snaking out of the store even at 4am.  In a city of so many choices – it was still the only place to go to, if you were craving a spicy Indian, meat-filled, egg-fried roll.

I’ve had friends visiting New York only for a weekend, who insisted on taking back a Kati Roll back with them to Boston – a 4 hour drive away. I’ve even had a friend faint in Kati Roll New York – she insisted on queuing for half an hour despite my protests and when we were finally in the shop at around 3:30 in the morning, she turns to me and says “you know what I’m feeling a bit sick, let’s go home”. And I ruthlessly told her no – she made me queue for so long and now we were so close to getting food – there was no way I was quitting this line.

A few seconds later, she dramatically swooned and fainted over a table full of people. It was quite a scene given that in the process of trying to catch her, I knocked a few bottle of orange Maaza over another girl’s lovely white dress.  I have never let my poor friend forget the incident and after that day, I believe Kati Roll put in a bouncer outside the door to deal with the late night crowds!

So you can see why I have a certain fondness for Kati Roll ;)

The Kati Roll Company

24 Poland Street London W1F 8QL
Tel: 0207 287 4787      
Tube: Oxford Circus/Tottenham Court Road    

Kati Roll company on Urbanspoon


50 Frith Street  London, Soho W1D 4SQ
Tel: 020 7494 9075
Tube: Picadilly Circus

Mooli's on Urbanspoon

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