Advocate’s Close, Edinburgh
Remember when I came back from this trip….six weeks ago? Sorry about that. After a week in London with my family (and doing some diligent drinking with my brother) I hopped on the train north to Edinburgh. What a perfectly magical city. Edinburgh is intensely walkable; just over 100 square miles. I spent three days exploring the castle, drinking tea in every tiny shop, walking through the city, checking out the National Gallery, and enjoying a beer at the pub. Kirsty, of A Safe Mooring, and Lauren, wedding photographer extraordinaire, met me for lunch at Summerhall and they even brought me their beautiful babies to admire. Transitioning internet friends into IRL friends is one of the best parts of traveling.
I arrived in Edinburgh just a few days after their historic vote for independence. Scotland will remain part of the UK for now but the political climate remained charged with people discussing the vote everywhere I went and plenty of leftover campaign signs.
Harry Potter graffiti at the Elephant Cafe, Edinburgh
Fortitude Coffee, Edinburgh
Breakfast in bed, Edinburgh
Lucky Liquor Co, Edinburgh
Queen Street Gardens, Edinburgh
Social Eating Club, London
My brother and I are proud gluttons. We joke about our permanent membership in the Clean Plate Club, a club our parents invented to get us to eat dinner (as if that were ever a struggle). If the option is more Serrano, 9 times out of 10 we’re going to order another round of finely shaven pork. We savor, we relish, we order a third round of drinks.
London was a playground. I’m used to traveling alone and typically don’t drink much when I’m on my own in unfamiliar cities. With a companion we can conquer the cocktail menu in half the time and have someone to talk to while we do it. Bartending happens to be Mike’s profession so I also tag along as research assistant. Who is doing something interesting? What concepts work and which ones fall flat? Which ones could improve with tweaks? And most importantly, what tastes delicious? We met many great bartenders and visited many great bars in London. It’s hard to pick favorites so I included links to all the places we went to at the bottom. You can’t go wrong with any of them. And when in doubt, befriend a bartender and ask them for their suggestions. It is a strategy that has yet to fail me.
Sexy flower bento box, Artesian, London
White Lyan, London | via Purple PR
Blind Pig, London
Sager + Wilde, London
Sager + Wilde, London
We suggest: White Lyan | 69 Colebrooke Row | Artesian | ROKA | Sager + Wilde | Mission | Look Mum No Hands | On the Bap
Others We Tried: Happiness Forgets | Blind Pig
St. James Park, London
London, oh London, how I love you. This was my second trip to one of my favorite cities in the world. There’s something about the buzz, scale, and diversity of large cities that I find completely energizing. Add in a crap ton of completely free museums, an unlimited tube pass, great weather and you’re looking at a solidly kickass week.
My family hasn’t traveled all together since my brother and I were in high school. Group travel as adults as definitely a learning experience for all of us and it took us a few days to find our groove. I enjoyed my favorite museums (the V&A and Tate Modern among other) and long walks before meeting up with Mike in the evening for some aggressive cocktail research (he is a bartender, I am his enthusiastic research assistant). One of the highlights of our week in London was attending the 40,000 person strong Climate Summit march. The energy on the march was truly inspiring, so many people marching worldwide for change.
The Evening Standard deems 55% “decisive”. Noted for future.
Breakfast in Balham
V&A Museum Flower Garden
Climate Summit protest at Temple Green
Tiny marching humans
Mike never takes selfies….
Malevich retrospective, Tate Modern, London
A recreation of the original layout of Malevich’s 1915 Last Futurist Exhibition of Paintings 0.10, Tate Modern, London
Hampstead High Street, London
Ganton St, London