Phundee The UK’s First Arts & Entertainment Crowdfunding Platform

Phundee is a hybrid reward and equity crowdfunding and social networking site focused on independent arts and entertainment. The platform supports projects and careers in nine sectors of the arts: film, music, art, games, literature, fashion, dance, theatre and photography.

Colin McGregor, Ashon Spooner & Jack Gaskin of phundee

Colin McGregor, Ashon Spooner & Jack Gaskin of Phundee

It also offers a free ambassadorial programme for every project owner to help mentor and connect them to industry insiders and other campaigners. The social experience is an aspect no other site has fully integrated, tending to outsource to Facebook and Twitter. 
But on Phundee, all aspects of social networking are kept on the platform.

West End producer of The Scottsboro Boys, Dominic Lindesay-Bethune’s is using Phundee to raise funds for a regional tour of new play, Honest. Dominic will also be one of the first ambassadors on the site.

Projects can be uploaded from July 25th and funds will be able to be raised as of August 14th.

Phundee has also announced the £5K DROP to inspire and give back to artists and entertainers and will be putting £5000 into five selected projects that sign up for funding on the platform on July 25th, to help them reach their funding target.

It’s thought as many as 40% of campaigns will actually reach their funding target.


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Hostelling International’s Big Blog Exchange #bigblogx is Back

Hostelling International (HI) are back on the lookout for 16 passionate, adventurous bloggers from across the globe.

big blog exchange logo 2014

When the big blog exchange first ran last year, it had never been done before, and 16 excited bloggers from all corners of the globe were sent on an adventure, swapping countries, cultures and blogs with each other for 10 days, all the while sharing their experiences with the rest of the blogging community following their journey digitally.

This project received global recognition with three travel industry awards, including one from the UNWTO for Excellence and Innovation in Tourism.

Bloggers can register into the competition on, and the winners will be announced on the 16 September.

Follow on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram using the tag #BIGBLOGX

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Instagram on your marshmallows ‘while-you-wait’ by @Boomf at @SelfridgesFood Hall

Originally posted on @wilkes888 - London based Food & Drink-o-phile:

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Boomf – Instagram on marshmallows

Get your Instagram and Facebook images printed on little square marshmallows! This seems like a good gift for all you Instagram lovers!

I did tweet about this fun little company in January 2014. They offer to send you a box of nine marshmallows personalised with your Instagram photos with edible ink. Personally I was rather hesitant to order as most marshmallows have rough surfaces and are quite porous. Assuming that they use a standard ink-jet printer I wondered if they would print anything more than a blurry smudge. However I had the chance to see their work in person today at Selfridges Food Hall.

Presented in a 3 x 3 box

Presented in a 3 x 3 box

In January they confirmed that you could only print your own images making it impossible to print a bunch of photos from a friend’s Instagram as a gift. However, their current website allows you…

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Gone Fishing at Pescatori London

Of course there are plenty more in the sea but when you get this quality of fish you don’t want to throw it back. A Mayfair staple for many years, going into Pescatori is like stepping into a Tuscan villa. White floor tiles, wrought iron chandeliers, harlequin chequered chairs and baronial fireplaces give it the air of grand old Italy.

Pescatori Mayfair private dining room and ground floor restaurant

Pescatori Mayfair private dining room and ground floor restaurant

Diving straight in, Pescatori’s spaghettini all’aragosta is one of the best pasta dishes in London – and if you are going Italian it always seems a shame to miss out an early pasta course. Dorset Blue lobster atop a mound of thin spaghetti bathed with the ripest, juiciest San Marzano tomatoes, white wine, garlic and tongue-tingling sprinkle of chilli. We had the starter portion but it’s worth pushing the boat out for the main at £22.50.

Spaghettini all’aragosta

A starter portion of the delicious lobster spaghetti

Lobster Fridays and Surf n Turf at Pescatori

Lobster Fridays and Surf n Turf at Pescatori

You can try the lobster spaghettini dish on Lobster Fridays for only £15.95 or with a glass of Prosecco at £19.50. There is also a surf ‘n’ turf mid week treat from £17.75 with ribs in Italian honey and a grilled, marinated half lobster tail.

If you are ordering a la carte you’ll be washed away by this scallop and cockles dish – with a wet foam from which Venus herself could have risen.  Capesante of Isle of Man queenie scallops, cockles, wild garlic & parsley liquor for £11.95. Cooked perfectly with a broth you will want to drink every last drop of.


Botticelli’s Venus on a plate

For a show stopper this takes some topping –  salt baked sea bass which, as it was still cooking, changed from blush pink to creamy white flesh as it was expertly unveiled before our eyes. Moist with a tingle of baked lemon and a bunch of samphire. Simplicity and delightfulness itself.

Salt baked sea bream

Salt baked sea bass  £17.50 on the Catch of The Day menu

Sea bream at Pescatori

Simplicity from the sea

Simple but tasty fish washed down by Vernaccia di San Gimignano which stands out among the top wines of Tuscany, being the region’s only white wine to have reached the lofty heights of DOCG status. It’s golden-hued color, full-body and floral with bitter aftertaste reflects the sandstone soils where the grapes are grown.

wine pairing with fish

Tuscany’s Vernaccia di San Gimignano £36.00 – herbal notes followed by a rich & creamy complexity on the palate

Italian food seems to bring out the best stories in dinner guests and even the excellent waiters - tales of truffle hunting in Turin, how the stockbrokers created the drink Punt e Mes, and a heart warming tale of the poor mother going door-to-door begging for the five fish stew cacciucco, and us quizzing the staff the about the names of the fish for each letter c in the dish’s name. Not having a grolla friendship cup to hand we raised our glass of Averna in bitter sweetness that such a great meal is over.


Averna Sicilian liqueur – macerated herbs, roots and citrus rinds soak in the base liquor before caramel is added.


Pescatori Mayfair

11 Dover Street, London W1S 4LH

T: 020 7493 2652

and a sister restaurant

Pescatori Charlotte Street
57 Charlotte Street, London W1T 4PD
T: 020 7580 3289

UK’s First Beetroot Yoghurt Launched By The Collective

The UK’s fastest growing yoghurt business The Collective is launching Britain’s first ever beetroot yoghurt with a daring root vegetable limited edition.


Traditionally pre-cooked, pickled and served with salad, The Collective is providing Brits with a completely innovative way to enjoy this versatile vegetable. Its striking, deep purple colour and rich earthy flavour produces a unique yoghurt unlike anything else available on supermarket shelves in the UK.

A double layer of sharp, fruity compote made with a blend of naturally sweet beetroot juice and tangy British blackcurrants are folded through The Collective’s signature thick and creamy gourmet yoghurt.

Free from any artificial colours, flavours or preservatives, and suitable for vegetarians or those with gluten-free diets, the yoghurt is packed with live cultures and contains just 5% fat.

In 2013 The Collective created the UK’s first alcoholic yoghurt with its Raspberry & Amaretto Limited Edition.

The Collective’s new Blackcurrant & Beetroot edition is available nationwide from Waitrose, Ocado, Wholefoods, Nisa and Booths, with an RRP of £1 per 150g pot.

Dispensary Scoops CAMRA Award For East London Pub Of The Year

The newly refurbished Dispensary Pub & Dinning Room at Aldgate East has been named CAMRA’s East London Pub of the Year, largely because of its appeal to female beer drinkers.

The Dispensary Pub & Dining Room, 19a Leman Street, London E1 8EN

The Dispensary Pub & Dining Room

With period features dating back to when it was the ‘Eastern Dispensary’ hospital for poor Eastenders in the 1870s, now updated with contemporary furnishings and subtle shades of Farrow & Ball paintwork,

The pub’s appeal endures, despite its historic links with “Jack the Ripper”.  One of the prime suspects in the unsolved serial killings was Queen Victoria’s surgeon, Sir John Williams, who practiced medicine in the building and only a few hundred yards from where most of the murders took place.

Eschewing the more usual spritzers, insipid Pinot Grigios and bland Chardonnays, The Dispensary serves real  ale and craft beers.

Glass for glass, beer is less calorific than wine, with a half pint of beer with 90 calories in a pint of compared to around 160 calories in 250ml glass of red (150 calories of white wine).

Chef David Cambridge’s new menu features carpaccio of beef “Harry’s bar” style; escalope of chicken cordon bleu  served with boulangere potatoes, homemade ground steak burger with relish and hand cut chips. Desserts include the delicious sounding Mars bar cheesecake and Coconut panna cotta chocolate shot.

For three days in October, real ale drinkers of both sexes will be able to sample an extensive array of Paulanier beers when the pub hosts to its own Oktoberfest. The Dispensary will be transformed into a Bavarian ‘bierstube’, complete with the ‘Bavarian Strollers’ oompah band and traditional German food.  Tickets are £15.

Open: Monday to Friday 11.30am – 11.00pm

The Dispensary Pub & Dining Room, 19a Leman Street, London E1 8EN

T: 020 7977 0486 Tw: @dispensarypub

ABA – Anything but Almonds: Wedding Favours at Yumbles has launched a range of different wedding favours such as handmade marshmallows & bespoke bride and groom cake pops, artisan jams, personalised biscuits and even a cake in a can  –  all selected from the UK’s best independent producers.

Food and drink marketplace decided to introduce the product category after receiving an increasing number of requests from wedding planners and brides-to-be looking for an alternative to sugared almonds and other, more traditional favours.

A stylishly designed can containing chocolate cake ingredients. You make a delicious cake in the can in 15 minutes simply by adding water £4.99

You make a delicious cake in the can in 15 minutes simply by adding water £4.99