London Calling

I’ve been a little lax this month updating the blog, but with good reason.  I just returned from London for the Farnborough International Air Show.  My day job as an International Trade Specialist at the Department of Commerce allowed me to attend this event, which along with Paris is the world’s largest air show.  Although the trip was mostly about airplanes, I did find some time to eat some good food and purchase the work of some of England’s finest craftsmen.

This is the Airbus A380.  Imagine two Boeing 747 fuselages stacked one on top of the other and you get the idea.  This aircraft can seat over 800 people.  The tour was really interesting and I enjoyed speaking with the Chief Pilot.

Lamb chops at Harrods.  I kinda got turned off lamb chops after eating some underdone  kebabs a few years ago.  Thanks to Harrods, my aversion is cured.

The best pub name I saw in London.  If I ever open my own place, I am going to steal this name.

And the worst.  I don’t think I could’ve thought up a more unappetizing name if I tried.

Iberico di Bellotta pork at Marks and Spenser.  They slice the pork right off the whole leg using what looks like a wood plane.

If you are a Dr. Martens fan, you have got to go to this shop.  The British Boot Company was the first retailer of Dr. Martens in the UK.  The shop’s been in operation  since 1851, and the owner and staff are rightly passionate about their specialty, British made footwear.  Yes they do have some of the current “made in Asia” Docs, but that’s not what you should come here for.  What you DO come here for is a dizzying display of British made footwear.  I picked up two pair of boots (cherry red and black greasy) and they are awesome.  The store sells online, too and if you buy from them please let them know I referred you.

More boots.   In addition to Dr. Martens they stock Solovair (the original manufacturer of Dr. Martens), Grinders, George Cox and others.

Australian Wagyu beef in Harrods.  That translates to $128.03 a pound if you’re wondering.  Suddenly, wagyu brisket doesn’t seem so expensive…..

Harrods fish and chips.  It was the best fish and chips I have ever had.  Not that I’m an expert on the dish, but I think you’d be hard pressed to find a better example.

A vintage John Cooper Works Mini I saw near my hotel in Leicester Square.  It had the John Cooper signature badge on the hood.  Really sweet.

OK that’s all for London.  I had a great trip and met some very nice people (hey Marilyn!), but it was so good to get home.  Two weeks until the Maryland State BBQ Bash in Bel Air and Sharon and I are ready to get out there and compete again!

Published in: on July 31, 2010 at 8:34 am  Comments (2)  

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  1. I still have a pair of Oxblood 8-eyelet boots from high school (only one of the dogs ate the tags off the back). They’re parked out by the front door in my British boot aisle with my Hunters and my Burberry wellies.

  2. Bummer. My Solovairs have green tags, and the AirWair Docs have yellow tags. There is a world of difference between the UK and Asian manufactured boots. In fact, it was AirWair’s (the company that owns the Dr. Martens name) decision to move production abroad that freed up Solovair to make the “real” Dr. Martens under their own name. Solovair = “sole of air”. AirWair did go back and have a limited run of UK boots made for their 50th Anniversary (I have a pair of those in cherry red). Thinking I may go back and get another pair in a different color and finish and maybe go with the 10 or 11 eyelet.


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