Sunday, August 2, 2009

randomness at pret a manger

well. so much for good intentions.

i intended to blog more once i reached london. it didn't really work out that way. i've just finished packing for my flight to rome tomorrow. sigh. yet, i'll back up and tell you how things went yesterday.

the trip down to london was decidedly more mellow this time. i got up in manchester around 8ish am and then hopped on a train from manchester airport to manchester picadilly.


then transferred to another train which would take me to euston station in london. i grabbed my seat and was thrilled to find that there was free wifi. there were a few things i still needed to finish up for work and it made the next couple of hours quite productive. also, with a first class ticket (which is only a few pounds more if you book your ticket well in advance) comes with complementary snacks...in my case, it was tea and "biscuits" or cookies.

btw, that "stick" is a dairy stick. this was the first time i had seen milk put in this kind of packaging...


i think the free food is more substantial during the week. i remember taking first class w/DH in january and we were served sandwiches and tea. yet, the tea was a nice to have while i was working away.

anyway, once i reached euston station, i thought it was going to be uber simple to get to my hotel which was near oxford circus. logically this seemed quite reasonable since it was only two stops away. yet due to various construction issues as well as a security alert, i had to change to a couple of different trains to go the equivalent of two stops. normally, this wouldn't have been a big deal...but this time, i was carrying my luggage (computer + duffel) and i really got a work out carrying stuff up/down multiple flights of stairs and through the multiple train transfers.

if i had known, i would have just taken a cab.

anyway, by the time i made it to my hotel i was sweating profusely, pretty tired, and hungry. once i checked in and freshened up a bit, i popped out to get something to eat really quick as i needed to get back to the hotel to finish up the work stuff. i ended up going to pret a manger. i had never been in one before....although, i have seen them in nyc...and they seem to be all over london.

i was pleasantly surprised.

i grabbed the wild crayfish and avocado salad which was quite yummy and hit the spot...




and this caramel pudding thing....

that has custardy layers and a sour cream layer....and the caramel ....is almost like a caramel jelly....

it reminded me of something that would come out of japan. i am finding that the brits really know how to make the most out of cream....or any sort of dairy products.

going into pret a manger was a bit random and unusual for me. i usually try to stay away from "chains", but i did find myself in the super hungry state, wanting something quickly, and it being "off hours" (i.e., not the usual lunch time or dinner time). it seems quite a few places shut down between lunch and dinner. i liked their marketing messages regarding no preservatives and how the food is made on-site. i also liked reading that they give their food away to charity at the end of the day. it was all pretty decent. i'd take food from pret a manager over any other "fast food" places that i usually find in the states.

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