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Cozy London Restaurants To Visit This Winter

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When the weather outside is frightful, escape the cold in one of London’s coziest restaurants, warmed with open fires and snug interiors.
WiltonsALEX MAGUIRE

Wiltons
With a history spanning 280 years, Wiltons is an old-world institution in London, known as an aristocratic hideaway with sensational seafood and classic fare. With handsome interiors dressed in plush carpet, muted oil paintings and warm lamplight, there’s no better time to visit than in winter. Menus are delightfully vintage and indisputably elegant, with a full range of fish, in-season game, and freshly shucked and cleverly dressed oysters—a favorite of Queen Victoria, who graced the restaurant with her royal warrant. The silver carving trolley is another charming throw-back, serving a rotating selection of roasts with all the trimmings.
Maggie Jones’sMaggie Jones’s

Maggie Jones’s
A short stroll from Kensington Palace and the always-buzzing Kensington High Street, Maggie Jones’s takes its name from restaurant regular Princess Margaret, who would go by the alias of Maggie Jones. With glowing taper candles and dried posies of wildflowers, interiors are cozy and country chic. The menu presents comforting homemade classics with creamy soups, oven-hot meat pies, and generous roasts—plus retro desserts like charmingly simple-and-sweet vanilla ice cream with chocolate and brandy sauce and hot apple crumble served with a jug of custard.
Ekstedt at The YardEkstedt at The Yard

Ekstedt at The Yard
A roaring, wood-burning fire is at the heart of the newly launched and much-lauded Ekstedt at The Yard, hidden within the five-star Great Scotland Yard hotel in Westminster. The open fire is used to cook every dish, and the intimate, dimly lit restaurant is laid out so that every table has a view. Swedish chef Niklas Ekstedt is at the helm, using British ingredients with expert Nordic methodology. The menu changes seasonally and there is a highly praised tasting menu, as well as a new a la carte offering. Served as a trio, the Snacks from the Fire are a must as an amuse-bouche and include a moreish, savoury lovage doughnut prepared in cast iron and a completely unique, earthy hay-smoked custard, served with an assertive hit of chive and rich trout roe. This is the place to go for special dishes that you won’t find anywhere else.

BardoBardo

Bardo
Swathed in cardinal red velvet and glowing Murano glass-style chandeliers, Bardo in St James’s is a cozy subterranean hotspot known for jazzy live music and upscale Italian fare. While the setting is undeniably warm and welcoming and the food heartwarming and generously portioned, Bardo oozes with glamour. Though not required, the restaurant makes for a good excuse to dress up this holiday season, in sky-high heels and glittery dresses or tailored jackets and freshly polished shoes. Live music can be enjoyed nightly. Lavish dishes include truffle pinsa (a Roman flatbread); roasted branzino with violet artichokes, Romana style; and frutti di bosco (a fresh strawberry salad) for dessert. This is a must for special occasions, and the service is also known to be impeccable.Fischer’sJames French
Fischer’s
Hidden under a yellow canopy and lacy cafe curtains in Marylebone, you’ll find Fischer’s, a old-world Viennese restaurant and cafe. Cozy interiors evoke early twentieth century Austria with simple wooden tables, beer steins and bistro chairs, and the Mitteleuropa cuisine follows suit, with hearty röstis and crispy schnitzels designed to fill you up and keep you warm.

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ICE London 2023 to feature exhibitors from record 68 nations – IAG

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Industry trade show ICE London will feature exhibitors from a record 68 nations, topping the previous best of 65 set three years ago, according to organizer Clarion Gaming.
ICE London returns as a full-sized show for the first time since 2020 from 7 to 9 February, with the total 623 exhibitors representing everything from Argentina to Australia and Macau to Mexico.
“No other exhibition in the gaming space can come anywhere near the internationalism of ICE,” said Clarion Gaming Managing Director, Stuart Hunter.
“To have 68 nations represented by our community of exhibitors means that visitors are immediately part of what is a global experience with unique access to the smartest gaming innovators drawn from every corner of the world. There are very few exhibitions of scale in any industry sector which are able to compare with such international representation and legitimately lay claim to being a ‘global’ or a ‘world’ event.
“Once an event is recognized as being genuinely international, stakeholder groups including brands, regulators, trade associations, media groups and strategic industry-wide bodies focus their activities accordingly.
“Research that we’ve undertaken has shown that for many people ICE and iGB Affiliate London actually start on the Sunday preceding and finish on the following Saturday. In that week we estimate that over 100 gambling industry events will take place outside of the show hours providing a new and compelling perspective on why ICE and iGB Affiliate London are so influential and important to the world industry.”
IAG will have a team of four at ICE London next week. Visit us at Stand ND7-C.

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David Ford and Annie Dressner Live in London

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There’s something special about London on a Saturday night – there’s a certain buzz in the air as you head into the Capital city. For me that buzz was extra special, as I was going to see David Ford and Annie Dressner at The Lexington in Islington. I literally listened to their ’10 Days (Live)’ album for the first time a week ago, but since then it’s been on repeat and heading in I knew that the night was going to be special.
The Lexington is a great place for music, with a bar on the ground floor before heading up the winding stairs to the spacious venue itself. And as the crowd started coming in, the atmosphere in the room was growing by the minute.
Opening the night was Scottish singer songwriter Gary Stewart. He set the night off really well, with an engaging set that got the crowd onside from the start. He opened with his 2021 single ‘Hot To Trot‘ and you already knew the set was going to be a good one – a rousing folk song with great lyrical dexterity. The highlight of the set was ‘Frontlines’, a simply gorgeous song (check out a YouTube video of the song here – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tDCLwYwsesk). Gary ended with a fine cover of Paul Simon’s ‘Song for the Asking’.
It was time for a quick visit to the bar before settling down for the main event. 
The duo appeared on the stage to great applause, David in an orange shirt and Annie in a sparkling black dress. They opened with ‘Easy Falling’, the first song that I’ve ever heard of theirs, and a song that convinced me I needed to listen to the rest of the album. This slow and moving number is a touching love song and shows off the brilliant harmonies of David and Annie – there’s something special about the English (David) and US accents (Annie) mingling in the way that they do. 
Throughout the set, there were so many highlights. ‘Something I’ll Have to Learn‘ is a song with an almost timeless feel that feels like a conversation in song, Annie’s original ‘Strangers Who Knew Each Other’s Names‘ was simply brilliant and ‘Some Folks Are Lucky I Guess‘ is a song with a great sentiment. ‘Can’t Help What I Want‘ (below) is a great example of those brilliant harmonies that the two share.

‘Trash‘, a cover of the Suede hit, was a particular highlight – a song that was a nice surprise on the live album. As they break into ‘Oh maybe, maybe it’s the clothes you wear‘ it almost feels like this was a song that Suede wrote for David and Annie, their version is that good. Outstanding.
The set had a second cover, a song that Annie introduced as ‘an American classic‘. This classic was ‘Ain’t No Pleasing You‘ from Chas and Dave, a song that typified the cockney sound of London back in the 1980’s. I love the way they re-worked it and there was something special about the way Annie sings the word ‘Darling’ in her US twang that just resonated and put a smile on my face.
There were great moments of humour throughout the night, the chat between the two great. At one point mid-song, Annie passed her guitar to David, exclaiming ‘I knew there were chords in this song, I just didn’t know which ones‘ which had the crowd laughing.
The best of the night was saved till last. ‘Warning Sign’ had quickly become my favourite song from the pair and hearing it live in person lived up to all expectations. There’s such a beauty in live music, and hearing songs like this with other people in a venue can really bring a song home – and almost even change your own personal relationship with a song.
The final song of the night (there was no encore as David explained that they literally had no more songs!) was ‘Put Me In A Corner’. Annie’s vocals take the lead in this track and it was just magical, the emotion of the song emanating from the stage and filling the room. You can listen and see for yourself below.

You never know what to expect when you see an artist or artists perform for the first time. Some exceed expectations and some just don’t hit the heights you expect. In David Ford and Annie Dressner, it was definitely the former. The gig was stripped back – just two people on a stage creating a moment. And what a moment it was.
Annie and David and reviewer Nick Cantwell
Check out their websites and hit and follow the social links!
http://www.dressnerford.com/

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http://anniedressner.com/
***Note – I need to say a word about the audience for the gig. The audience was impeccable, with barely any talking at all at any point (apart from whispered orders at the bar). Credit goes to Gary, Annie and David, who managed to grab the audience from the start, but also to everyone there. If you were there yourself, give yourself a high five!***
Review written by Nick Cantwell (instagram.com/nickcantwellmanagement)
 
 
 


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Graduate Organist vacancy in London and Home Counties – Church Times

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Graduate Organist vacancy in London and Home Counties  Church Times

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