Tag Archives: オックスフォード・サーカス

Yalla Yalla Lebanese Restaurant @ Oxford Circus

Oxford Streetのすぐ北、Winsley Streetにある、人気のレバノン料理店、Yalla Yalla(ヤラヤラ)。SOHOの本店(→過去のエントリー)に続き、2010年末にこの第2号店がオープンした。黄色と黒がベースの外観は同じだけれど、狭い本店に比べ、スペースは倍増。一方の壁が全面窓の超縦長の店内は、広々と明るく、洒落た作りになっている。

本店のことを取り上げた時、「味は普通」と書いたけれど、今回頼んだHommos(フムス)、Tabboulé(タッブーレ)、Baba Ghannouj(ババ・ガヌーシュ)、Falafel(ファラフェル)、Batata Harra(ソテーしたスパイシー・ポテト)と計5品のMezze(メゼ)類はどれもフレッシュで、予想を覆す美味しさ。値段もお手頃、オックスフォード・サーカスで買い物の折りに、気軽にランチできそう。見直した。本店のことを悪く言ってごめんなさい!

SOHO’s popular Lebanese restaurant, Yalla Yalla opened its second venue in late 2010 on Winsley Street, just off Oxford Street in the north (see past entry for SOHO branch). Black & yellow appearance is the same, but the space is doubled the claustrophobic original venue. Long side of the restaurant is covered with windows, and it makes the place look bright and spacious. The interior is more sleek to match the fashionable Oxford Circus than sleazy SOHO.

When I talked about Yalla Yalla SOHO, I said that the food was “just normal”, but new Yalla Yalla pleasingly betrayed my anticipation. We ordered 5 mezze,  HommosTabboulé, Falafel, Batata Harra and Baba Ghannouj, and these dishes were all fresh and authentic. The price is reasonable, and perfect place for lunch or snack when shopping around Oxford Circus. I am sorry for talking negative about Yalla Yalla in the past!

Elegant Afternoon Tea @ The Langham Hotel

Oxford Circus(オックスフォード・サーカス)駅の北にあるThe Langham Hotel(ランガム・ホテル)で、アフタヌーン・ティーをした。ランガム・ホテルは150年の歴史を誇る5つ星ホテルで、2009年にリニューアルオープン。現在、香港に拠点を置くLangham Hotels International傘下にある。その顧客には、マーク・トウェインオスカー・ワイルドなど著名人が名を連ね、浜崎あゆみも宿泊したことがあるそう。

ランガムホテルは1865年に、ロンドンのホテルとして最初に、アフタヌーン・ティーを提供したとされる。アフタヌーンティーが頂ける「Palm Court(パームコート)」は、天井が高くて広々としており、エレガントにまとめられた内装は、高級感溢れるけれど堅苦しくなくて、居心地がいい。アフタヌーン・ティーの味には定評があり、UK Tea Council(イギリス紅茶協会)内のTea Guild(紅茶組合)により、2010年度Top London Afternoon Tea awardに選ばれた。メニューには30種類以上のお茶が並び、ティー・ソムリエがぴったりのブレンドを選ぶ手助けをしてくれる。私達は、ベーシックなWonderland Afternoon Tea(£38)と、フォアグラなど高級食材を使用した1ランク上のBijoux Afternoon Tea(£46)を注文。良い食材を使ったサンドイッチ、小さいながらも凝ったつくりのケーキ類、そして焼きたてのスコーンは、洗練されていて、さすがという感じ。カップが空になる前に紅茶を注いでくれるなど、きめ細やかなサービスも申し分なし。ボリュームがあり、お腹を空かせていったにも関わらず、食べきれなかったのが残念。できればお持ち帰りしたかった!

We had afternoon tea at the Langham Hotel, located on the north of Oxford Circus. The Langham is a five star hotel with over 150-year of history, and now part of Langham Hotels International based in Hong Kong. It recently underwent an extensive refurbishment, completed in April 2009. Its high profile clientele includes Mark Twain and Oscar Wilde, as well as Charlie Sheen who made headlines recently with his interview at Two and a Half Men.

The hotel claims to be the first London hotel to serve afternoon tea in 1865. The Palm Court offers afternoon tea, in its elegant but comfortable and spacious tearoom, and their reputed afternoon tea won the Tea Guild‘s Top London Afternoon Tea award 2010. There are more than 30 teas on its menu and a tea sommelier helps customers find the perfect blend. We got basic Wonderland Afternoon Tea (£38) and more upscale Bijoux Afternoon Tea (£46). Sandwich made with high quality ingredients, small but meticulous cakes, and freshly baked scones were all sophisticated and delicious, and deserve to the prestigious award, as well as pleasant and attentive service. Though each piece was small but quite large in volume overall, and I was so sad to leave some cakes and scones behind as I was absolutely full. I wish I could bring the leftover back home!

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Benetton Oxford Circus Store Reopens




The Benetton Oxford Circus store is one of our favorite stores and we often stop by the store when we go to Oxford Street. The store closed temporarily for renovation, but reopens on August 19th last week (details).  We like Sisley, the Benetton group’s high-fashion brand, as we can find elegant and stylish Italian-design clothes using good quality materials at affordable price.

The newly revamped Oxford Circus store is designed by Italian architect and designer Piero Lissoni, and he transformed this 19th-century building to a minimalist and sleek urban-chic space. The renovation of its Oxford Circus store is a part of an overhaul plan of Benetton’s flagship stores in world’s major cities, launched in Istanbul in 2009. With this plan, each store expresses the local culture. Piero Lissoni said,“For the London store, we wanted a clean and refined design using simple mediums: natural light, plain materials, clean lines and shapes, black, white”. The store layout is quite spacious, and you can shop at ease in the middle of chaotic Oxford Circus.

Benetton is not upscale brand, but their clothing range looks more sophisticated as its interior has been upgraded. I guess the store make-over really works.

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Melito Pizza Bar @ Oxford Circus

以前Mallettiのことを紹介した時に、ロンドンではPizza Al Taglio(ピッツァ・アル・タリオ。長方形にカットされたローマ風ピザ)があまりないとブログに書いたけれど、最近少しずつ見かけるようになってきた。Datte Focoもそうだし、オックスフォード・サーカスの1本北、Great Castle StreetにできたMelitoもその一つ。

イタリアのトラットリアを思わせる木のテーブルや椅子、天井から釣り下がるミラーボールのような照明を通り抜けた、細長い店内の一番奥に、ピザが並ぶカウンターがある。Pizza Barといっても、パスタやサラダ、デザートもある(メニュー)。ピザは、他のPizza Al Taglio同様、2スライスのセットとなっているが、2種類のピザを組み合わせる事もできる。私たちが行った時は出来たてがなかったので、どれもちょっとクタっとして見えたけれど、オーブンで温め直してもらったら、これがなかなか美味。ブラウンの厚手のペーパー・トレーも、気が利いている。ちょっと小腹が空いた時に、気軽に立ち寄れるお店。ただ、Mいわく、エスプレッソがペーパー・カップ入りで、今イチなのが唯一の欠点だそう。

I wrote that I didn’t see many Pizza Al Taglio (Roman style pizza by the slice) shops in London, when I talked about Malletti last year. But recently we’ve started to see more Pizza Al Taglio shops, such as Datte Foco and Melito, a “pizza bar” newly opened on Great Castle Street, just one street north from Oxford Circus.

When you go through the narrow and long store with Italian trattoria-looking wooden tables & chairs and funky mirror ball pendant lights, you see an order counter with pizza on display all the way back. Melito offers pasta and salads, as well as sweets, though they call themselves a pizza bar (menu). Like other Pizza al Taglio places, their pizza is also a set of two slices, but you can combine two different pizza if you want. There was no hot and sizzled pizza just came out from oven when we went, and the pizza all looked sort of dead. But after they warmed them up, and voilà – these were surprisingly good. I also like their brown paper tray. Perfect place for a little snack, after hours of shopping and desperate to regain some energy back. One drawback, though, is their espresso in a paper cup and according to M, it was not great.

左から、レッド・オニオンとローズマリー、Quattro Formaggi(4種類のチーズ)、マルガリータ(モッツァレラチーズとトマトソース)、そしてパルマハムとフェンネルのピザ。私のお気に入りは、シンプルなマルガリータ。

(From left) Red Onion & Rosemary, Quattro Formaggi (4 kinds of cheese), Margherita,  and Fennel & Parma ham. My favorite is simple Margherita with tomato sauce and mozzarella cheese.

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Costa Metropolitan Store @ Great Portland Street

Costa Coffee(コスタ)は、国内で1000店以上、海外で400店以上展開している、イギリス最大のコーヒー・チェーン。イタリア人のSergioとBrunoのCosta兄弟が、1971年にコーヒー焙煎業者として創業、1978年に最初のコーヒー・ショップをオープンした。1995年には、イギリスでホテルやレストランなどのホスピタリティー・ビジネスを手がけるWhitbreadに買収され、現在その傘下にある。

そのコスタが先月7月9日、都市型店第一号となるお店を、オックスフォード・サーカス近くのGreat Portland Streetにオープンさせた(詳細記事)。店内は、レンガ壁、トルコから取り寄せたコーヒーテーブルや使われなくなったタンクから作ったメタル製テーブル等モダン・デザインとアンティークを融合させたインテリア、洗練された照明、壁にかかった現代アート等々、オックスフォード・ストリートにたむろする、ファッションや流行に敏感な若者を惹き付ける要素が満載。ファーストフード店特有のスピーディなサービスも、待ち時間が少なくていい。


Costa Coffee is the largest coffee chain in the UK, operating over 1,000 outlets throughout the country and over 400 stores worldwide. Costa was founded in 1971 by Italian brothers Sergio and Bruno Costa, as a coffee roastery, and opened their first coffee shop in 1978. In 1995, the company was acquired by, and is now a subsidiary of, the Whitbread company, a hospitality company managing several popular brands in hotels, restaurants and coffee houses in the UK.

Costa recently opened its first more designy and sleek Metropolitan store on July 9th this year, on Great Portland Street near Oxford Circus (detailed article). The store has all the elements that attract fashion-conscious young crowd who hang around Oxford Street – including  exposed brick walls, combination of modern and antique pieces such as Turkish coffee table and metal tables made from a disused tank, funky lighting, and cool artworks – as well as their usual speedy customer service.

Big improvement in compare to their usual boring brown standardised chain-look!

It was Saturday, and lots of people came to the store to avoid sudden rain.

A tourist who seemed to be suffered a lot with jet lag and exhaustion of walking around a big city. I took a picture because it was so cute of her, sleeping from the beginning to the end, while I was staying there about at least 30 minutes!
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Benugo Sandwich Café @ Great Portland Street

オックスフォード・サーカスの近くにある、ロンドンのサンドイッチ・チェーンBenugoGreat Portland Street店。今の家に引っ越してきた頃は、近所にあるClerkenwell店やCity Road店に度々行っていたが、最近はお気に入りのランチ場所も増え、系列レストランのRiverfront Café & BarSerpentine Bar & Kitchenには行ったりしたけれど、Benugo自体はご無沙汰していた。先日、Great Portland Streetを通りかかったとき、フランスの田舎街の古い食堂を思わせる店のインテリアがなかなか素敵だったので、久しぶりに立ち寄ってみた。


I had lunch at London based sandwich chain, Benugo on Great Portland Street near Oxford Circus. Just after we moved in our current apartment, we often went to nearby Benugo in Clerkenwell and on City Road, but now the list of our favorite lunch places is getting longer and we haven’t been to Benugo for a long time, though we went to the Riverfront Café & Bar and Serpentine Bar & Kitchen owned by Benugo. We passed by Great Portland Street the other day and decided to stop by as its rusty old French country canteen-like interior was quite nice.

I remember their freshly made sandwich on order was pretty good, but I had a huge disappointment this time. Panino was not properly toasted, and fell apart with every bite. The taste was kind of blunt and was not as tasty as before. Was the problem just the worker who made it, or all Benugo shops have been deteriorated??

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Remembrance Sunday: National Commemoration @ Whitehall

CenotaphPoppy Appeal @ Oxford Circus

今日11月8日はRemembrance Sunday(休戦記念日曜日)、Remembrance Day(リメンバランス・デー/戦没者追悼記念日)の記念式典が行われた。Poppy Day(ポピーの日)、Armistice Day(第一次大戦の休戦記念日)、Veterans Day(退役軍人の日)とも呼ばれるRemembrance Dayは、第一次世界大戦とその後の戦争の死者を追悼する日で、1918年11月11日に連合国ドイツ帝国の間で休戦協定が締結されたことに因み、11月11日と定められている。当日11月11日にも2分間の黙祷が捧げられるが、通常、Remembrance Sundayと呼ばれる11月の第2週目の日曜日に、ロンドンのWhitehallホワイトホール)にあるCenotaph(慰霊碑)前で、王室関係者や政府要人が参加して行われる国の追悼式典のほか、各地の戦争記念碑(war memorials)で慰霊祭が行われる。


この時期、イギリスでは、胸に紙製の赤いポピーの花をつけている人を多く見かける。これは、1921年にRoyal British Legion(英国在郷軍人会)が、戦没者への募金を集めるために赤いポピーを売ったのが始まりで、第一次世界大戦の激戦地・西部戦線(フランドル戦線)のあった、フランダース地方に多く生えている赤い芥子の花(フランダース・ポピー)に由来しており、赤い色は戦争で流された血を意味する。この紙製のポピーは、退役軍人によって作られており、英国在郷軍人会の名の下で、街角での募金活動やスーパーなどの店頭で販売され、収益は退役軍人のサポートに当てられる。上の写真はオックスフォード・サーカスの街角での募金活動。下の写真は、Angel(エンジェル)の街角で、赤いタータンチェックのキルトに身を包んで、道行く人と楽しそうに話しながら募金活動していたおじいさんをスーパーで発見、こっそり撮影させていただきました。

Today is Remembrance Sunday and the Remembrance Day national commemoration was held in London’s Whitehall. The remembrance day, also known as Poppy Day, Armistice Day (the event it commemorates) or Veterans Day, is a day to commemorate the sacrifices of members of the armed forces and of civilians in times of wars since the First World War. It is observed on 11 November to recall the end of World War I on that date in 1918, when German signed the Armistice. Although two minutes of silence are observed on 11 November itself, but on Remembrance Sunday (the second Sunday of November), ceremonies are held at local war memorials nationwide, and the national commemoration is held at Cenotaph in Whitehall to remember those men and women who have died in action serving their country.

Under the gray sky at the this year’s national commemoration in Whitehall, the Queen Elizabeth laid the first wreath of poppy flowers at the start of a 20-minute religious service, in front of the prime minister, military leaders, representatives of the world’s religions, and Commonwealth representatives. After two-minute silence at 11 am, 7,500 ex-service personnel and 1,600 civilians marched past the Cenotaph. →BBC news

Around the Remembrance Day, you see many people wearing red poppy flower made of paper, as a sign of remembrance. The poppy emblem was chosen because of the poppies (Flanders poppy) that bloomed across one of the worst battlefields of Flanders in World War I, with their red color which is an appropriate symbol for the bloodshed of trench warfare. This artificial poppies are made by veterans and are sold on behalf of the Royal British Legion on the street by volunteers or at the stores. The sale go towards supporting former soldiers. The photo above is the fund raising at the junction of Oxford Circus. The photo below is the old gentleman in red tartan kilt, who sold the poppies at the street corner of Angel and enjoyed chatting with a passerby. I happened to have a chance to take a picture of him (secretly) at the Waitrose supermarket.

Poppy Appeal

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