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Casa Negra & Union Jack

By February 7, 2014 2 Comments

Last night my team and I were treated to dinner by one of our SVPs of sales to thank us for the work we do managing her accounts and keeping the clients happy. As the work day came to a close we got ourselves together and headed out to take the short 10 minute walk to Casa Negra a hip Mexican restaurant in the Shoreditch neighborhood. The light mist in the air kept the temperature mild making it feel more like an early April evening rather than a wintry February one.

We first all sat in the bar/lounge for a pre-dinner drink. I ordered a raspberry and mint frozen margarita and we toasted to our hard work and success. Shortly thereafter we moved into the dinning room and settled in for a lovely meal. Appetizers of guacamole, ceviche and flatbreads were passed around and quickly gobbled up. For my main course I ordered the Cachete de Res en Salsa Negra a dish of braised beef cheek, pineapple, onion, coriander & morita and washed it down with a Vote Pedro made with El Jimador blanco, St Germain elderflower liqueur, cucumber, mint, fresh lemon & soda. Although I had my fill I couldn’t pass up the lemon cheesecake with lemon confit.

Pre-dinner drink

Pre-dinner drink










Brightly lit bar










Chic place settings



















Beef cheek

Braised beef cheek










Shy colleagues









After a lovely night I climbed out of bed at 10:30 and got myself ready for work. What better way to celebrate my time in London with a little fashion flair. I adorned myself with my Union Jack socks that I picked up at an H&M at the Atlantic City Outlets. At the time I never thought I’d be wearing them to London but Katie reminded me before I packed that not including them in my wardrobe selection wouldn’t be right!

Union Jack socks

Union Jack socks









I left my hotel in good spirits since the air felt mild and the sun had finally worked its way from behind the layer of clouds that seem to perpetually hang over London. As I turned the corner out of the hotel courtyard an onto the main street I couldn’t believe my eyes when I had a truly unexpected moment of joy. Across the street was a food cart selling coffee and breakfast pastries to the hungry passersby. But these weren’t just any pastries, they were FORNETTI!

Fornetti pastry

Fornetti pastry

One of my absolute favorite treats when I lived in Prague was to stop at the corner food cart vendor and pick up a bag of these scrumptious bite sized pastry puffs that come in both sweet and savory flavors. Since I haven’t been in Prague since 2008 it has been a long time that I’ve had the opportunity to indulge. I quickly crossed the street and stared like a child in front of Willy Wonka’s candy counter, drool beginning to form and cursed myself for not having any British pounds in my pocket. I asked the woman with the obvious eastern European accent how long she’d be there and I was glad to learn she would be there all day as well as tomorrow. When I told her how excited I was to see her food cart and my time in Prague she gladly handed over 1 free Fornetti to whet my appetite until my return!


My good day continued when I got into the office and began work on a presentation I needed to put together. Diligently working away on slide number 7 of my PowerPoint I sensed someone standing over me. When I looked up I saw that it was my colleague/friend Stephan. We used to work together in NYC but I moved back to Boston and he moved to Paris. We intended to get together a couple years ago in NY as he was running the marathon until the hurricane cancelled those plans. He happened to be in from Paris and is staying the weekend in London.  So at some point this weekend we will meet up for dinner or drinks or a combination of both. Sometimes the universe chooses to smile upon you!