I know I raved already about the beautiful Brooklyn based Bellocq Teas shop, but that’s before I found out they are also perfect to brew ice teas!  It’s been so hot out, I’ve been making litres and litres of ice tea, flavoured water, cold brew coffee, juices….  The White Nixon is a lovely tea blend of organic white tea, lavender and flower petals and great to cool down after sitting in a 27°C car for two hours…(yes, unfortunately that happened to me yesterday).

Up next I’m going to add to the cold tea vodka and ruby red grapejuice for a refreshing cocktail according to this recipe on the Bellocq website.


Say hello

Stumptown coffee was a lucky find.  Walking back to the hotel after a meeting on Madison Avenue, we were first attracted by the view of the amazing glass lights in the window across the street before realizing we were standing in front of the Ace hotel (Stumptown is in its lobby).  This Portland based coffee roaster sources its beans from all over the world.

Now I only started drinking coffee when I was 35 but have definitely tried to make up for lost ground by drinking plenty of it everywhere I go.  Without exaggeration, Stumptown is the best coffee  I have ever tried.  I know there are a lot of photos of the interior in this blogpost and none of the coffee but really that is because once the coffee arrived I was pretty much speechless for at least a full 3 minutes… My mind just went blank… and I mean that in a good way!  The cold brew tasted fantastic: very soft and subtle (the complete opposite of cold brews that I usually find quite acidic and harsh) and the espresso an explosion of taste. I would consider moving to New York just to drink coffee here everyday!


Tags: , , ,

Say hello

If you google paleo and New York, chances are Hu Kitchen will definitely pop up a couple of times.   Hu does not use cane sugar, soy lecicithin, refined sugar, gluten, emulsifiers or GMO’s in its food.  They do not use palm oil, filter their water 5 times and have Frank Lipman as one of their advisers (I am a big fan of his Revive book).  The marbled interior is nice enough to look at but the real star here is the food.  Their delicounter has some amazing salads: wild salmon fishcakes, grilled asparagus, roasted butternut and sweet potatoes, grassfed beef meatloaf (my personal favourite) ….. I also tried the egg sandwich for which they bake their own glutenfree bread.  This was one of the best gf breads i have ever tasted with a really good texture, crumb and taste.  The bar has kombucha on tap and if you are still hungry after all that, they do an amazing banana bread!

Another of my favourite places was  Fat Radish.  I follow Nicole Franzen, a New York based photographer on instagram which is how I found out about this great place.  This Soho based restaurant is one of the more creative ones with a vegetable based (though not vegetarian) kitchen and was within walking distance of our hotel (a coincidence, I swear!).

The amazing Dark and Stormy came with crisp fat radishes smothered in black tapenade.  The radish/ tapenade combo doesnt sound like it would work but did!  The fat radish plate main course features all kinds of veggies and brown rice. On our second visit, i had the bacon cheeseburger with house pickles an duck fat chips. If you are planning a trip to NY, put this on your list of places to visit!

Tags: , , , ,

Say hello


Mast Brothers was actually what we were aiming for walking down from Bellocq towards the Southern part of Brooklyn.  The two Mast brothers definitely get creative with their flavours (truffle or smoked vanilla anyone?) though the darkest chocolate they do is around 75 percent which I find a bit on the sweet side.   I just found out they have a shop in London too, I’m definitely swinging by on my next visit to stock up on my favourite, the Stumptown coffee flavour!

A couple of houses down from their shop, they have a little cafe where we tried the chocolate beer, a 24 hour cold brew of ground roasted chocolate beans with sparkling water, this was one of the most intensely flavoured chocolate beverages I ever tried (and judging from the people’s reaction in the shop we weren’t the only ones thinking this).  With chocolate milk, the creaminess always distracts from the chocolate taste.  The (alcohol free) chocolate beer was all about the chocolate.  (that’s it in the picture there, I know it looks like ice tea but believe me when I say it has the most intense chocolate flavour ever!).  Mast cafe also serves grilled sourdough tartine with chocolate spread, unfortunately I wasn’t hungry enough to try but it looked delicious!

Next door to the Mast brothers cafe is the permanent home of the Sketchbook project.  More than 33 822 people from more than 135 different countries donated a sketchbook, well worth a look!

Tags: , , ,

Say hello

After we finished work, we had 24 hours in New York before we left.  At the top of my list of things I really wanted to do was a visit to Bellocq.  I know this tea brand from their pop up shop in London years ago and had heard a lot of good things about their Brooklyn shop which is also where their headquarters is (and probably the most instagrammed shop in the world…).  Not an easy place to get to (the shop is in Greenpoint which is the northern most area of Brooklyn which means changing subway lines… twice) but it was well worth the trip.  Bellocq makes their own custom blends with names such as Corazon de Cien Fuegos (a deep red hibiscus tea), Hindu Holiday and Ashram afternoon.  Their packaging is simple yet beautiful and the taste…  I am so looking forward to trying all the blends I bought!

After our visit to Bellocq, we walked south towards Williamsburg following the Hudson river.  I would definitely reccomend the walk if only for the view of the Manhattan skyline.  This area of New York is so much quieter with less noise from nypd and fire trucks racing by every five minutes.  On Saturdays there is a little market at the park with food stalls (and amazing coffee…). Up next: a visit to Mast Brothers!

Tags: , ,

1 comment

It is almost seven years since I last visited New York so I was pretty excited to spend a week there on a business trip.  The company I work for is restoring the cast iron facade and stairs of a beautiful landmark building in Soho – or the cast iron district as it is also called.  Soho is such an amazing part of Manhattan where history can be seen in every building on every street.

Luckily we also had some time in the evening to explore and I’m sure no one who knows me well will be surprised by the fact I had already planned every meal weeks before we even left for New York …. What I like about this city is there is something for everyone.  Even if you are a tea obsessed sugar free paleo eater….  Up next: a list of my favourite foodie places!


Say hello

In my continuing quest to pretend spring has started, I have been busy experimenting with refreshing drinks.  Now, I don’t like overselling things but I think it is fair to say water kefir has changed my daily life.  After cutting out fruit juice on the I Quit Sugar Program, I was getting a little bored with water.  Though water kefir does need sugar to start, the process of fermentation means the end result only contains a little fructose.  If you’ve never drank it before, kefir is a fermented drink with a slightly floral delicate and fresh taste.  It has plenty of lactobacilly making it a healthy alternative.  Personally, I find the taste a little strong (though not as strong as milk kefir which I detest) so I mix half kefir with half of San Pellegrino water and sometimes also add some lemon juice to make a refreshing lemonade.  I’ve also used it successfully as an alternative to tonic mixed in with some sparkling water in gin tonic. But then it is my opinion that gin makes anything better!  PS the water kefir grains keep on growing so I also add them to protein drinks befor I blend them…  If anyone needs any, let me know I am happy to share!


100 gr water kefir

1 litre bottled water

half a lemon (just the juice if you can’t get organic)

2 dried organic figs

75 gr sugar


Mix all ingredients in a large jar with lid and let it ferment for 2 to 3 days.  Midway, open the lid to let off some of the pressure.

After 2 to 3 days pour the water through a (non metal) sieve.  You can keep the kefir in the fridge.  If you wish you can do a second fermentation: mix the sieved drink with any herb you like or some ginger and let it stand outside of the fridge for another 2 to 3 days.  If you don’t open the lid, it will be more carbonated.

If you don’t re use the water kefir grains immediately, you can keep them in the fridge with some water and sugar.

Say hello