1 | For Truly Gourmet Hamburgers: Big Fernand (above)
Big Fernand is an eat-in or eat-out fast food joint that hails from Paris and serves some of the best burgers in London in a beautiful Georgian townhouse just off Charlotte Street. The focus here is absolutely on flavour, so while your burger may come wrapped in paper and served on a tray (inside 2 minutes flat), that doesn’t mean it’s not gourmet.
The traditional beef is wonderfully succulent and being French, the ‘blue’ option will actually arrive as it should – cooked on the outside, but like a sweet and tender tartare on the inside. The house speciality is veal, but lamb, chicken or veggie are all options too. Creating your own concoction from the beautiful French cheeses and sides on offer is also great fun. A tip: take your trays upstairs and find the rocking chair for a quality burger in incongruously charming surroundings.
19 Percy Street, London, W1T 1DY; bigfernand.co.uk
2 | For Easter Splurging: #Fryhard
Easter is a time of indulgence, when diets can fly out of the window. And if you’re going to do something wrong, then you really ought to do so in style. Help is at hand in Shoreditch’s Boxpark where, this weekend, a pop-up will make your plain old chocolate egg look like child’s play. It’s called #Fryhard, which is a clue.
Deep-fried doughnut anyone? Or how about a Battenberg? There’s an excellent quiche on the go if you’re in a more savoury mood. Yes, everything on this menu is sloshed in batter and thrown in hot oil – from gherkins to Crème Eggs, haggis to chocolate cake, pizza to Ferrero Rocher – with optional toppings if that’s not enough. The house special is an entire leg of lamb and sides (though that must be pre-ordered), and you can make menu suggestions via Facebook and Twitter.
2nd – 5th April at Boxpark Shoreditch, 2 Bethnal Green Road, London, E1 6GY
3 | For A Grown-Up Easter Treats: Regent Street’s Easter Cocktail Hunt
The restaurants of Regent Street are doing Easter for grown-ups this year with a Cocktail Hunt that amounts to a swish sort of bar crawl, with Crème Eggs served on the side. What else are weekend afternoons for?
Start at Brasserie Zedel with a luxury White Russian, dropping into Hotel Café Royal for a Cadbury Crème Egg Martini before heading upwards via Momo to Italian Frescobaldi, who are doing a Tiramisu Flip. The Heddon Street Kitchen, Mash and The East India Company are having a go, too, and you can make your own Old Fashioneds at the latter.
30th March – 12th April; Regent Street, London, W1
4 | For An Alternative Sunday Lunch: Trishna
Most people will be enjoying roasts this Sunday, but for a twist on the traditional Paschal Lamb, treat somebody to a meal at Trishna, who do an Andhra lamb masala that will blow your mind. The little sibling of fashionable Mayfair haunt Gymkhana (where it is nigh on impossible to book a table), Trishna is Michelin-starred and resides in the heart of Marylebone, but not everybody knows about it – which could work to your advantage.
You may dread hearing the term ‘contemporary Indian cuisine’, but Trishna does Indian flavour and spice properly – there are no gimmicks here. Elegantly presented with tip-top service, this is the perfect place to bring a loved one if you want to impress, and the bonus is that they do a lunch menu for just £17 – all week long. Opt for the tellicherry squid and the Andhra lamb masala and, if you’re feeling flush, go for the lunch bites menu so that you can try the quail stir fry, the seafood salad and the jheenga curry, which is teeming with massive great prawns. A sensational lunchtime option that won’t break the bank.
15-17 Blandford Street, ondon, W1U 3DG; trishnalondon.com