The Crafty Egg

Located in the bustling, urban cultural hub of Stokes Croft, The Crafty Egg is a charming and quaint independent café, with a variety of alternative brunch options on offer. Nab a table by the window to enjoy views of street life and art that contribute to the café’s creative buzz. Its large windows and stained glass border make for a scenic façade, and the atmosphere is very warm and friendly. All food made here is homemade and locally sourced, encompassing Bristol’s sustainable and environmentally friendly ethos.

On a Sunday morning, the place is brimming with people – be prepared to queue – but it is certainly worth the wait! Locals wander in after morning classes with yoga mats ready for a sumptuous breakfast.


The full English breakfast option feels much healthier and less greasy than your standard order. The vegetarian option comes with delicious slices of crunchy halloumi and wilted spinach. For those who are really ravenous, the “Crafty challenge” may be right up your street. Choose the meat, veggie or vegan crafty breakfast and whack it on top of a pancake stack with maple syrup and 3 fried eggs.

Their varieties of baked egg-based options on offer are abundant (naturally free range) – from Afghan, Moroccan, to cheesy eggs. If you have a specific craving, you can add on anything from chorizo to avocado for a couple of extra pounds. More traditional options are also available, with a selection of bagels with salmon/avocado on the menu, or your standard avo-toast. A particular favourite of mine is the “salmon and avocado potato stack”, which comes with cream cheese, rocket, and a poached egg for a reasonable £7.50. If you have a sweet tooth, go for the pancakes or eggy bread with maple. Optional add-ons include bacon, sausage, eggs, mixed berries or nutella.

However, brunch is not the only thing on the menu – in the evenings, this haunt is very popular for its cheese fondue menu for two – perfect for an evening’s activity.


Its hot drinks menu is extensive – you can order anything from a beetroot latte to a Massala chai. They also offer a range of homemade smoothies and other soft drinks. The homemade mint & ginger lemonade is a particularly good option for those looking to quench their thirst. They also have a range of alcoholic drinks, such as their signature “The Crafty bloody Mary”, and a range of beers, lager and ciders.

What’s to lose?

This is just one of the many cafés that the creative area of Stokes Croft has to offer, the destination to be in for its tasty, alternative eateries with friendly service.

113 Stokes Croft

Photos by: The Crafty Egg (Photo rights obtained)

Wild & The Moon

Lets talk about nature.

Do you ever just want to fill your body with goodness? Well, I do. And it was with this spirit that I went on a hunt through the magical maze of the Marais, down that trusty Rue Charlot, when I came across the indoor green house and melting pot of Parisian passers-by, the post-yoga crews stocking up on their acai bowls fix, and those that know what’s up when it comes to naturally good food.

Introducing WILD & THE MOON. A self-proclaimed lifestyle movement created by a tribe of food lovers, chefs, nutritionists and naturopaths. Their principal aim is to bring wild, local, seasonal, organic and ethically-sourced ingredients wherever possible to the urban community.

But natural doesn’t mean bland or tasteless. On the contrary, you only have to glance at the contents of their Power Bowl – creamy banana and apple pudding with sprouted almonds, spirinula and linseed oil – to see that as well as being passionate about food that is good for the body, this nature tribe will not compromise when it comes to taste. The creamy, nutty, vanilla surge of their ‘C’est Top’ smoothie has me hooked for life.

Not only is their food good for you, but the planet is smiling too. WILD & THE MOON’s recipes have been designed by raw vegan experts and chefs, using only high quality products seasonally harvested by local farmers. And as if it couldn’t get any better, they are striving for 0% food waste by 2020. So, not only would you be doing yourself a service by stopping by, you’d also be treating the planet too. Happy Sunday!

While there is currently only one location in Paris, watch out New Yorkers and Dubai-based food lovers… branches are heading your way!


25-27 rue des Gravilliers
75003 Paris
+33 1 86 95 40 46

Photos by Marie Williams

Oma Bistró

‘Oma’, which means ‘grandmother’ in German, brings to mind feelings of comfort and warmth, and big dishes of homemade, heartening food. This sense of cosiness is reflected in this light and airy bistro, which boasts an extensive menu of local, seasonal products for every time of day.

The interior of Oma recalls a hipster-esque vibe, with exposed brick walls, glass vases of single flowers, mismatched, distressed chairs and, most surprisingly, randomly placed bicycles. However, the style seems more effortless than forced and serves to create a warming, cosy atmosphere – like the inside of a mountainous log cabin. The vast range of diners also reflects the unassuming feel and sincerity of Oma, with solo readers enjoying their morning espresso alongside family get togethers and students catching up over brunch alike.

There is a range of coffees for the caffeine-addict as well as fresh orange juice, milkshakes with chantilly cream, fruit smoothies and beer on tap. Whilst I went for classic scrambled eggs on toast with smoked salmon, my friend opted for the French toast with cream and fresh fruit. Both dishes were fresh and delicious and beautifully presented in simple, white bowls.

Oma has something for everyone, for every time of day. Located on a seemingly quiet corner on the streets of Barcelona, it is an oasis of calm and comfort within the bustle of the city.

227 Consell de Cent
08011 Barcelona

Anisha Mistry Pop-Up Kitchen

As life becomes evermore busy and more fast-paced than ever, we are often left with little desire to slave over the kitchen hob and rustle up something inspiring after a very long and stressful day at the office. Pop-up kitchens are the new trend, to not only sample delicious food, but also as a new-age way to socialise within the comfort of your own home, or even host fabulous dinner parties without the pressure of doing the cooking yourself.

I was delighted to discover Anisha’s Pop-up kitchen here in La Zubia, Granada. I was even more thrilled to discover that she also offers the service of cookery classes within the comfort of your own home too! Specialising in healthy cuisine, she prides herself on using all locally produced ingredients in season, so you are guaranteed only the highest of quality when you dine with her. Moreover, she works alongside many food manufacturers that supply sustainable produce, supporting local businesses in the south of Spain.

The type of dishes you can expect to find, range from a plethora of multicultural delights. Anisha successfully draws her inspiration from her heritage and travels, as well as her decade working in the food industry, to produce dishes from Thailand, India and Spain to name but a few! She utilises her expertise to create unique recipes she has developed herself over the years.

When I had the pleasure of dining with her, I was treated to a gluten-free menu consisting of a revitalising Asian chicken and ginger soup, courgette and halloumi baked fritters served with a greek yoghurt lemon dip, and a seasonal summer salad with jamón Serrano, blueberries and figs. These were served with the perfect sparkling white wine and strawberry accompaniment on her gorgeous sunny terrace in Andalucía. What more could a girl ask for?



The Danes are a notoriously secular population, however this doesn’t stop them making full use of their churches. Nestled in the heart of the Vesterbro district in Copenhagen, Absalon is one example of an innovative use of space that could otherwise be left untouched….

Absalon is a church located on Sønder Boulevard in Vesterbro, a stone’s throw away from the Meatpacking District and Central Station. It is open every day with a huge range of activities to suit every interest.

Fleamarkets (or ‘loppemarked’ in Danish) are held on the weekends where you can pick up anything from a vintage jacket or a pair of Adidas trainers, to kitchen utensils and paintings.

There are a range of yoga classes including Vinyasa flow, Hatha and yoga for children, all held throughout the week with experienced teachers. You can even join a capoeira class or take part in a session of swing dancing. If sports are not your thing, there are also quizzes and board game evenings, sometimes accompanied by a live band! There is a bar where you can refuel with a cup of coffee, or a glass of wine depending on what time of day it is. There is no end to interesting and sociable events happening at Absalon every day.

However, I think one of the best parts of Absalon is the daily food on offer (dinner during the week, and brunch on Sundays) which are both affordable and delicious. Diners sit on long tables next to one another, emphasising the egalitarian and community-driven nature of Absalon.

The sentiment, “consider Absalon as an extension of your living room”, sums up the warm, inviting and sociable atmosphere that the team behind it has created. Whether you need a hungover Sunday morning brunch, or want to search for one-off finds in the fleamarket, I recommend this multi-functional church next time you find yourself in Vesterbro.

Sønder Boulevard  73
1720 Copenhagen

Main photo by Tine Rosenkilde

George Street Canteen

To say I was pretty damn pleased when I first discovered the George Street Canteen would not be an exaggeration. As a long-time St Albanser, I was happy to see that a fashionable yet unpretentious and accessible socialising joint had opened in the centre’s midst. I’ve long been worried about this historic city losing its character, and the almost simultaneous openings of a Pret and a Costa – side by side on the main shopping street – a few years ago had only served to cement my negative feelings.

The George Street Canteen is everything Pret and Costa are not. It is family-run, characterful and hidden. A homely secret you’ll only know about if you look for it.

In summer, the courtyard is bustling with people and their dogs munching at the picnic tables. In the colder months, the courtyard is still sometimes bustling, thanks to a marquee with patio heaters. Inside, the Canteen is divided to a kitchen and room with a serving counter to the right, and a cosy dining room to the left. These multiple rooms give the place its homely and retro feel; the latter effect is multiplied by the peg walls and diner-style tables.

Food wise, you’re in for a treat whether you’re a meat eater, vegetarian, or gluten-free. Thanks to a previous visit before my vegetarian days, I can report that the ham-hock and wholegrain mustard sandwich, served on fluffy brown bread with crisps and coleslaw, is divine. My most recent visit involved a Mediterranean breakfast, but with the chorizo swapped for halloumi. The perfectly-cooked salty cheese and soft sweet potatoes provided a varied backdrop for bursting twin bubbles of poached eggs and juicy, roasted cherry tomatoes. These were served with a pot of avocado mash for good measure. This came in at £7.95 on its own, or £9.95 with fruit juice and a hot drink.

More importantly than anything, though, the home-made dog biscuits were absolutely delicious. Well, so my pooch’s face suggested.

Overall, the George Street Canteen does a great job at bringing a cosmopolitan but individual feel to a small city whose chain stores can sometimes make it feel like a smaller copycat of the ginormous capital city that is its neighbour. Considering how so many of its residents are commuters to the metropolis, the more places like this that St Albans can sprout, the more it will feel like a quirky and fashionable destination in its own right.

9a George Street,
St. Albans
+44 1727 831540

Pinkmans Bakery

A fairly recent addition to the plethora of buzzing cafés and restaurants to grace Bristol’s Park Street, Pinkmans offers a huge variety of fresh food on a daily basis, as well as cocktails, beers and wines further into the evening.

Upon arriving, you’re instantly drawn to the incredible display of cakes, salads and jam-packed rolls on show in glass cabinets, and soon become part of the audience of admiring customers. Pinkmans, being primarily a bakery, also offers a vast array of freshly baked breads – as they say themselves, ‘Bread out the oven at 8am’. From a white sourdough to a more adventurous ‘walnut boule’ (toasted walnuts and black treacle), this truly is a baker’s heaven. Inside, the décor is simple and minimalist – with rows of filament bulbs and long benches making maximum use of the fairly small interior.

For breakfast, a range of meals, including smashed sweet chilli avocado and salsa on toast (£5.50) are available until midday, or til 2p.m. on weekends. Lunches include salads, ciabattas as well as more hearty tagines and hot dishes. Having been to Pinkmans a few times, I decided to branch out and try one of their sourdough pizzas, which you can see being prepared and baked in the ovens at the back of the café. I went for the artichoke pizza (£8.50) – with toppings of artichokes, garlic, pepper, pesto and ricotta. The sourdough base made for a delicious, chewy crust, complemented by the excellent mix of garnishes.

With something for everybody, Pinkmans stands out as a café which attempts and succeeds in providing their customers with fresh food and drinks, making for a relaxed but stylish dining experience.

85 Park Street, Bristol
0117 403 2040

Tradewind Espresso

Whitewashed walls, hotchpotch furnishings and a counter teaming with dainty almond friands and hefty carrot cakes, Tradewind Espresso is an instagrammer’s dream. Occupying just a small footprint at the upper end of Whiteladies Road, with a little nifty design, owners Patrick and Tahi host seating for around 20 sippers and slurpers inside and another dozen or so in their wood-clad hidden garden.

Set up in September 2015 and business relation to Roasted Rituals, the Hengrove-based roastery, coffee is at the centre of this independent venture. With V60 filter methods and no paper French Press, you would be forgiven for feeling this is all a little too ‘on-trend’. Fear not, high chairs and local businessmen sit alongside the monochrome ‘straight out of Shoreditch’. Both beautiful and welcoming, this is style with substance.

Behind the perfectly scattered cushions and chunky wooden tables lies an unadulterated dedication to quality, the perfectly balanced coffee clearly benefits from their direct connection to source. Custom blends and single origin roasts vary on rotation, but you can be sure to rely on Highground, the house espresso blend offered year-round for its weight and complexity, versatile enough be supped alone or as part of a milkier creation.

Though their caffeinated offerings sit centre stage, the imaginative all-day brunch menu (available until 3pm) threatens to steal the show. Almost compulsory in Bristol these days, produce is sourced with attention to locality and seasonality, and everything that can be is made in house – nut milks, chutneys and cakes included. Sweet caramelised onions sit atop a pillowy soft rosemary focaccia, generously dolloped with peppery rocket pesto, spicy chorizo and oozy poached eggs (£9); an accomplished French toast (using house made brioche) provides the perfect sticky vehicle for cinnamon roast pears, a not overly sweet blackberry compote, creamy mascarpone and crunchy toasted buckwheat (£8); meanwhile the traditional Full English is lifted with smoky baked beans, wilted spring greens and slow roasted tomato.

With a well-priced menu of this calibre, Tradewind Espresso has firmly asserted its place on the teeming Bristol café scene.
118 Whiteladies Road
0117 974 3477

Photos by Tradewind Espresso

Café Pushkin

Café Pushkin is found on a stretch of road in Leipzig with more independents than chains. But this café is different. To start with, the creeping vines over the golden and maroon exterior, at once warm and inviting, makes Pushkin frankly impossibly to miss. And yet inside, you are transported somewhere else entirely. The Slavic influenced interior and memorabilia on the walls gives a nod to the 19th Century Russian poet, the café’s namesake.

I first came here on a drab Monday morning and pushing back the heavy velvet curtains revealed a cosy and warm café – the perfect refuge from the rain.  As a big tea fan I was delighted to see their great selection of loose leaf teas. There are also thirteen different hot chocolates to choose from – all very authentic, consisting of melted chocolate in a mug.

The breakfasts are infamous, too. You can rely on getting a hearty breakfast here a ‘Bauernomelett’ (which translates as the farmer’s omelette) will set you back €7.50 but is guaranteed to fill you up until dinner. That’s if you can get a seat. By 10.30am on a Saturday they are usually full and customers stand hovering by the entrance waiting to catch the next available table. There are also lunch and dinner menus and some satirical titles, such as ‘Formidabel cheese’ (a huge cheese burger) and ‘Huhnululu’ (Hawain inspired ‘Huhn’ chicken dish) are both inventive and ‘punny’. Their burger menu, the ‘Burgeramt’, is another amusing play on words for Germans’ love of bureaucracy and burgers.

‘Das Chillum’, which roughly translates as the ‘chill lounge’, is where the shisha-bar can be found, with countless numbers of cocktails and great music. Having been to Pushkin at various times of day for food and drink, I look forward to trying their evening set up.

Karl-Liebknecht-Straße 74,
04275 Leipzig
 +49 341 3910105 

Photo by Bethan Donaghey

Toma Café

This intimate little café is tucked away in one of Madrid’s small and winding backstreets in the trendy and pretty Malasaña district. Serving up excellent iced coffees in cool aluminium cups, the cafe provides a relaxing retreat from the intense heat of the day in the Spanish capital.

Toma Café is one of plenty of small, new independent businesses springing up in the city as it continues to forge its identity one of Europe’s coolest capitals. My recent visit to the city made me wonder why it remains so underrated as a holiday spot- particularly in relation to it’s beachside competitor, Barcelona. The city is fun and lively and full of young people (and not too many tourists!) and Toma Café is reflective of this.

With fast and friendly staff and a selection of delicious cakes, including chocolate and Guinness cake which I didn’t manage to try, but heard it is amazing, Toma Café is a great spot to grab brunch or relax with a coffee and watch hip young locals wander in and out (sometimes with their adorable dogs, see gallery below).

Calle de la Palma, 49,
28004 Madrid
+34 917 02 56 20

Mr. Vertigo

Mr.Vertigo is a relaxed and friendly cafe/restaurant in the North-Western part of Mitte in Berlin. Fresh salads, sandwiches and Mediterranean themed dishes are to be expected.

Unlike most other city areas of this description, that being those also brimming with museums and grand government facades, here, in the North-West Mitte area of Berlin there is a serious lack of good independent munch. Walking down the wide, outstretched roads, the lightly scattered food and beverage establishments are few and far in between, often weighed down by their mass market name tag or limited opening hours. An unfortunate factor if you fall out of the usual meal-time patterns, something not difficult to do in Berlin.

Varied, creative and healthy options are even harder to come by. Germany understandably runs a booming bread-based business machine, which is admirable, but again can also be a limiting factor for last-minute, light-weight meal options.

However then, there is Mister Vertigo. Despite arriving at four in the afternoon, there was still enough choice for us to request more time before placing our order. Exciting salads, made fresh every day range in colour and taste, to be eaten in or to be taken away (5-7€). Baked potatoes (5-6€), omelettes (5-6€), Paninis (3-4€) or hotter, slightly larger meals are also on the cards.

What I would 100% recommend here are the refreshing home brewed smoothies and juices – nothing better to quench the thirst on a hot summer’s day. We opted for pineapple and mint, and something with a strawberry flavor – perfectly pure & simple.

Seats can be found outside as well as in, depending on the weather. You will find yourself on a main road, but like much of the German Capital, roads are fairly empty in comparison to their European counterparts.

The owner and chef, Tarek Al Hussein caters mainly for the daytime and business trade. However, the average Businessman’s lunch price tag is not something you will find here. The food is not only accompanied with friendly and efficient service, but with an affordable price tag too. I hear the English breakfast is also something of a Berlin attraction, but on this occasion, as an English woman I had to at least try and avoid the stereotype, my attempt to somewhat integrate a bit more into German culture. However, if you do give it a go… report back with your thoughts!
17 Chaussestraße
10115, Berlin
+49 163 6010110


Le Serre dei Giardini is Bologna’s metropolitan hub for innovation and promotion of start-up culture, managed by the Kilowatt association. Its main aim is to serve as a space for incubating start-up companies, and providing them with shared offices, services and events. The hub is located in Bologna’s largest park, the Margherita gardens, which becomes lively with picnic blankets, bicycles and outdoor sports whenever the sun is shining. The Serre’s main building has a glass greenhouse-shaped wing attached to it, the hub’s own restaurant and café, called Vetro after the material it is made out of.

The best thing about Vetro is its unusual outdoor seating, consisting of wooden tables in booths among the vegetable garden’s herbs and vegetables. The menu includes a brunch option, a trend that new eateries in Bologna like to adopt, breaking with the traditional Italian eating times. The food is composed of natural and healthy ingredients, with a lot of fruit and vegetables chosen according to the season. However, please take note that they do not offer special vegan or gluten-free options! The brunch menu comes to 15€, and includes two ‘sandwiches’ with roasted vegetables and fish, bread and jam (the texture of which was more like jelly), yogurt, fruit, juice and coffee. There are also smaller options if you’re not feeling that hungry, and a cappuccino is only 1,10€ for those looking for a good cup of coffee. On the other side of the central outdoor seating area is a bar, offering a great setup for a drink on summer evenings, decorated with fairy lights and accompanied with events such as film screenings or concerts. In winter months the bar is closed but the restaurant, which also has plenty of indoor seating, stays open.

This brand new meeting place is great for escaping the city’s busy streets at the weekend. The Margherita gardens are one of Bologna’s most beautiful sights, and only a short walk away from the city centre. So instead of having to bring a picnic to spend the day enjoying the green open space, when tummies start to rumble Vetro is perfect for a refreshing meal among the mint, lettuce and tomatoes.


Via Castiglione,
134, 40136