“Sticky Wings” vs “The Orange Buffalo”

"Sticky wings"
“Sticky wings”

I developed my obsession with chicken wings by going to America’s best joints like “Talde”, “Pok Pok” and local unique BBQ places. London disappointed me with the American-style food before: my favorite Boston cream tasted like sugar and sugar only; proper pancakes were as rare as a “good hair day” for Donald Trump; franchise wings – sprayed thoroughly with vinegar.

Sticky wings” happened to be a friendly, cozy establishment. Waitress was very attentive, beer cold and wings – they were heavenly. “Sticky wings BBQ” & “American buffalo” were my favorite. If you prefer mouth-on-fire-effect, go for “Hot chilli”. All the accessories vital for a chicken wings ritual were there: wet napkins, buckets for bones, condiments.

"The Orange Buffalo"
“The Orange Buffalo”

“The Orange Buffalo” was a one of the most popular truck spots in the hipster part of Shoreditch. The owners were very warm and welcoming, beer…wait, no beer?! Yes, indeed, I ate my wings with sweet soda – it’s very hard to get an alcohol license in Great Britain. Wings were very tasty: double fried crispy deliciousness with a unique sauce.

Curly french fries
Curly french fries

There were a number of available gradations on the hotness scale, but we chose the “Original”. Shortage of napkins – only two paper ones for a couple people with messy hands – was a bit inconvenient as well.

"The Orange Buffalo"
“The Orange Buffalo” wings

Well, choosing between two of them was not very hard. Both places have delicious chicken wings, but only one has got great customer service and a quality product. “Sticky wings” is our victor and the place to satisfy occasional cravings.

 

 

Georgian Food In London

– Let’s eat Georgian tonight!

– Well, I am not a big fan of American cuisine.

Georgia is carved into many brains as one of the U.S states – not a beautiful country between Eastern Europe and West Asia. Yet its culture, people and food are well worth to be on travellers’ radars.

It was my grandmother who introduced me to this wonderful food culture – the Russians were always attracted to those aromatic-spicy, dewy dishes. I got nostalgic and started my search of descent Georgian food in London.

There are a couple of places here – all of them with relatively good reviews. We chose the one in our area: when your belly is full of delicious food, try to minimise walking (not a health coach advice).Khachapuri

“Tamada” has it all: incredible homely atmosphere, genuine Georgian food, clean menu (not “The 200 Club” never – ending list), warm southern hospitality and great wine selection.

We conditionally divided the menu into two affordable dinners, where all dishes could be assessed. Here are the favourite items: “Adjaruli Khachapuri” – cheese-filled baked bread topped with eggs, “Lobio “- red beans with coriander & garlic, “Badrijani” – stuffed aubergines with onions, Georgian spices, garlic & walnuts. Try to order some traditional flat bread alone with you dishes and enjoy the culinary art of spreading and spooning them over.

There are a couple of things you should bear in mind if Georgian cuisine is terra incognita for you: walnuts – crashed, chopped, grounded, fried – and pomegranate are the key ingredients in almost every dish. Like other Transcaucasian cultures, the Georgians use open fire and spit for meat and vegetable preparation. Thus the smoky taste is present. There is no espresso or americano served – only Georgian sediment coffee (with grounds for fortune tellers).Georg. food

If you are hesitating between Turkish, Russian or Greek cuisine, try Georgian – it combines many of the Eastern European and Mediterranean flavours, and you will get an interesting gastronomic adventure.

-Let’s eat Georgian tonight!

– Khachapuri it is then.

 

“Tamada” restaurant: 122 Boundary Road, London, NW8 0RH.
Tel: 020 7372 2882

 

Travelling With Pets To The UK

Gaspar the traveller
Gaspar the traveller

Moving your pet to another country can be challenging and heartbreaking, but the idea of leaving your friend behind is way more terrifying.

We had to make a move to London, UK from Lisbon, Portugal. There were no doubts – our cat was going with us, no matter what. We thought it would be a financially reasonable and a relatively smooth trip. If you want to make God laugh… We learnt on our mistakes and happy to share a recipe to an easier travelling to the UK with your pet.

As we figured later on, England is the most expensive and the strictest (let’s call it that way to avoid the word problematic) country to bring your friend in. Only Australia can compete with it.

Start getting ready at least three months in advance. Make an appointment with your vet and make sure your animal is microchipped, vaccinated against rabies and treated against parasites. It’s very important you do it beforehand, because animal would have to wait around 21 days for the vaccine to settle.

Pet travelling passport
Pet travelling passport

Since January 2015 a new passport version was introduced. It should have nine digits, an additional page for vaccine serial number protection and personal details of your vet. Most likely an animal courier company would require a new passport.

Next step is finding a courier. All the airline companies, except British Airways, have got embargo on animal transportation to the UK. Truly speaking, it’s a disgusting monopoly, but rules are rules. British Airways works with a couple of trusted animal couriers who take care of all the paperwork. You’ll be surprised when you hear the price. We paid 879 euros. Don’t blame it on couriers – they go through so much trouble to receive less than 100 euros. The biggest piece of pie goes to the Animal Scheme in the UK. They will inform you about all the procedures, updates and rules. Do not forget to contact them as soon as possible, at least 1-2 months in advance.

Carrier
Carrier

Your courier company screens the necessary paperwork, gives advices and receives permission from Boarder Police to travel with your pet. It takes time. We would advice you not to buy an animal carrier by yourself. It should be very specific, and the UK side is very picky about it. Your courier will provide you with the most appropriate one for the same price you’d buy it in a store. It is very well equipped, spacious and safe for your friend to travel. Leave this trouble to professionals.

Our courier was absolutely fantastic. Here are the contacts if you are travelling from Portugal: Adriano Malveiro adriano.malveiro@intercourier.pt

Intercourier Lda.
Rua Professor Henrique de Barros, Lote 2 Armazém 7
2685-338 Prior Velho
Portugal
www.intercourier.pt
Ph: +351 219 498 190
Fax: +351 219 498 199
Cell: +351 966 222 245

Make a new passport, get your pet vaccinated, microchipped and treated against parasites; scan the passport with all the details in it and send it over to your courier company together with your ID. When everything is cleared, settle a date of travelling and make sure you take the same flight as your pet, even though he’ll go in a separate cargo department. The best way is to fly with BA – at least you’ll arrive to the UK with your pet at the same time. You should schedule an appointment with your vet two days before the flight to check if the microchip is functioning and to eliminate parasites once more.

Do not feed your pet before the flight – last food intake should be the night before (latest possible). You can grab its favourite toys, blanket and Feliway wet towels to sooth his travelling. No matter what sources you use to inform yourself, do not give any tranquillisers or sleeping pills to your pet – they may harm it. Our cat is one of the most stressed kinds, but he was able to pass through the travelling without medication. Your courier company will supply the carrier with water.   As soon as you are at the airport in London, drink a cup of coffee, relax and move towards Terminal 4 – this is where the Animal Centre is located. You’ll probably have to wait for a couple of hours before you reunite with your friend.

I have to say, this is not the most pleasant experience for neither the pets nor the owners. Stress level is huge. It is not cheap. Recuperation may take up to one week. Our boy had his nose all bleeding and scratched up, while trying to escape the cage from airplane pressure. He was hiding under the bed for a couple of days. But it is all behind: wounds are healed, trust in people is recuperated, curiosity is resurrected and appetite is back. There is nothing compared to the feeling that you did not leave your friend behind and he purrs every morning next to your ear and happily climbs the stairs of a new home.