The glory days of airline food are behind us, but it’s painful to let go | Tim Hayward

British Airways is moving with the times in ditching free meals in economy, but in-flight food was never just about practicalityWhen British Airways announced earlier this week that it was reducing the number of meals provided to passengers on some economy flights and providing the opportunity to buy M&S sandwiches instead, one or two commentators deplored the change. But, in general, the news was greeted with a collective sigh of relief by a travelling public increasingly ground down by the indignities of air travel.I have a dirty little secret about airline food. I love it. I know of other foodies who so loathe the whole business that they now travel with smug little hampers of goodies so they can wrap themselves in a pashmina, turn on the expensive headphones and bury themselves in a private world of airborne luxury. But I can’t go that way. Continue...

The weekend cook: Thomasina Miers’ kale recipes

Yes, it’s been hijacked by the clean-eating brigade, but don’t let that put you off kaleKale has been hijacked by the clean-eating brigade, much like the poor avocado, but while there is no denying that kale is packed with vitamins and minerals, I find too much emphasis on healthy eating off-putting. In kale’s case, that deliciously verdant flavour is equally important. It is also hugely versatile, as well as cheap, which may explain why my mother fed us copious amounts as children, and in every which way. One that we came to love was with mussels and a lemon butter sauce, and today’s clam recipe is my variation on that theme. The salad that follows, on the other hand, brings a touch of naughtiness (and bags of taste) to an otherwise totally virtuous vegetable. Continue...

Cocktail of the week: the ginger pear mocktail

A deliciously autumnal alcohol-free tipple to mark Macmillan’s Go Sober For October campaignAn autumn mocktail for Macmillan’s Go Sober For October campaign. Serves one.1 tsp honey2 sprigs fresh rosemary ½ tsp freshly grated ginger Juice of ½ fresh lemon200ml pear juice Ginger beer, to top1 pear drop (yes, really), to serve Continue...

10 of the best late-night bars in London – chosen by the experts

If you’re after a well-crafted cocktail or beer, these late-drink hangouts keep the party going across the capital. They’re what the Night Tube was made for Dandelyan is one of the world’s 50 best bars and one of my personal favourites. With a menu that explores modern botany, this could easily be a pretentious place of moody mixologists. It is not – these are bartenders, skilled in the art of hospitality, as well as drinks creation. This place has thought about all aspects of the bar experience. The decor is plush but not to the point you look yourself up and down before entering. Being part of the boutique hotel Mondrian London means there is sense of charm and elegance rather than overbearing luxury. The cocktail classes flock to see the concoctions of famed drinksmiths Ryan Chetiyawardana and Iain Griffiths, but thanks to its location, inside one of London’s coolest hotels, and on the South Bank, it attracts a wide range of customers. The modern-botany focus narrowed this January to “the effect botany has had on historical civilisations”. If you’re of a curious disposition, you’ll be drawn to the cocktails with esoteric descriptions. The Pinnacle Point Fizz stands out: tequila, mixtamalised blue corn, sloe, ginger bitters, sour pineapple and soda. Too safe? How about Heirloom, with whisky, Kamm & Sons, plant haemoglobin and exploded raspberry cordial. Up a notch? The 13th Century Boy has gin, palm and pine embalming cordial and mummified citrus. Like natural science, somehow the elements neatly weave together.• dandelyanbar.com. Open Mon-Wed 4pm-1am, Thurs 4pm-2am, Fri-Sat noon-2am, Sun noon-12.30amHamish Smith, editor of World’s 50 Best Bars...

Bronte, London WC2: ‘It doesn’t know whether it’s in Bangkok or Beirut, nor does it much care’ – restaurant review | Marina O’Loughlin

It will appeal to design-conscious restaurant-goers for whom food isn’t the primary considerationBeauty can dazzle you to all kinds of imperfection. And – gasp! – Bronte is an absolute stunner. It’s the sort of place that could move a Samuel Taylor Coleridge to paroxysms of poetry, a vast, multi-roomed pleasure dome in shades of clotted cream, rose gold, shagreen and candyfloss. The first thing that strikes you as you walk through the copse of “Fan” chairs on the colonnaded terrace, under a firework display of glittering lampshades, is a vast bar fashioned from polished pink concrete. Toto, we’re not in Trafalgar Square any more.Any restaurant design spod will instantly know who’s responsible: yes, it’s Tom Dixon. And what a job he has done, with what was previously the uninspiring Strand Dining Rooms. Chapeau, Mr Dixon, and your Design Research Studio, chapeau. We’re seated in the rearmost room by a luminous pewter bar, its subtlety highlighted by the gaudy beauty of many, many backlit booze bottles. Walls are punctuated by “Cabinets of Curiosities” collected from around the world, and the menu globetrots with the same giddy abandon: miso yoghurt, “weeping tiger dressing”, manuka honey, shiso, tabouli (sic). It doesn’t know whether it’s in Bangkok or Beirut, nor does it much care. Here’s one menu listing in its entirety: “Hot smoked, soy glazed salmon, purple potato, mizuna, edamame, kaffir lime & kalamansi.” Pass the sal volatile. Continue...