Unmissable events in August
August feels like the month when everyone is off on holiday and the capital slips into a late-summer slumber. Of course, 2012 is no ordinary year, but since half the emails I send at the moment are bouncing back with a cheery out of office message, I figured there must be plenty of tickets free for events around London.
Here’s what I’m enjoying this August…
Until 12 August, it has to be (do I even need to say it?) the Olympics – there are live screenings at places like Bluebird and Quaglino’s (which gives away a free glass of champagne every time we win gold). Next time I'm in Mayfair, I also plan to sample Avenue's afternoon tea, which features home-made bread from chef Kimmo Makkonen (£19.50 per person).
For any beer lovers, it’s the Great British Beer Festival at Olympia this weekend (7-11 August). More my style though is the Japan Food Festival, which runs until 12 August and this year focuses on Japan’s third largest island Kyushu. Pop into the Japan Centre on Regent Street for free regional food tastings every day from 3-6pm.
I’m off to sample a few delicious glasses of champagne Billecart-Salmon along with canapés at the Orrery August tasting this Thursday evening (9 August) and on Sunday have tickets to see the London Contemporary Orchestra performing as part of Antony’s Meltdown Festival at the Southbank Centre.
I’m getting in touch with my inner-Italian later this month with a Puglian wine tasting at Sartoria on 21 August and a masterclass in making apple cake and panna cotta at Cantina del Ponte on Saturday 25 August. It’s also worth making the most of the Evening Standard offer to dine at restaurants across London for as little as £10. One of my favourite Indians is Carom on Wardour Street and I’m going to take my friend along for a special Soho tour followed by dinner (£25 per person for the tour and three courses) next week. It’s worth knowing you can also do the same but catch a show at Floridita for £35 if you fancy a bigger night out.
I can’t wait to try The London Picnic Club in a rooftop garden on Tooley Street. Until 8 September you can enjoy a delicious picnic hamper, theatre performances and summertime films. (The head chef comes from Ceviche, one of my favourite recent openings.)
Drawing out the Olympic experience, I’m going to make sure I see the outdoor photography exhibition, The World in London, which runs until 30 August.
Then, at the end of this month is a real treat – King Lear at The Almeida Theatre opens on 31 August. Or if you have kids clamouring for activities, I recommend The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe in Kensington Park Gardens, which runs until 9 September.
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Photos: The courtyard at Bluebird, sponsored by Moet. Credit Paul Toeman.
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