Welcome to Mackintosh's August Newsletter

Having polished up the BBQ in anticipation of the long hot summer promised by the Met Office, (will we ever learn!) we now have to cover them up until next year, unless of course we get an Indian summer.

Summer Barbaeque

So, you may be wondering how to have a summer party, without the certainty it’s not going to rain on your beautifully dressed table as it sits under what were just puffy clouds? If you still want to have the option of being able to use the outdoors then it’s quite possible to have a small marquee attached to the patio or garden doors, which will enable you to set up the buffet and drinks under cover so avoiding a lot of rushing around to save Auntie Mary’s Pavlova! It’s quite amazing how a small investment in a little ‘cover’ insurance will turn a potential disaster into a triumph. Mackintosh’s has experience of catering for small patio or garden parties in London. Whether it’s a drinks party with simple canapés or a full blown lunch or dinner party, the Mackintosh team will be very pleased to help you plan an event that your guests will keep talking about well after the summer has gone.

As a London caterer based in West London, Mackintosh’s has enjoyed a very busy and varied month, catering for the smallest tea party in Knightsbridge to a formal lunch for the Lord Mayor of the City of Westminster. No one can say that being in the catering business is monotonous when one moment one is styling an event around silver figurines and the next filling a room with pink balloons.

Everyone knows that garlic has special properties and with the garlic festival on the Isle of Wight approaching it has been featured in this month’s newsletter.

Some Recent Highlights

City of Westminster Lunch

On 20th June West End LIVE’s annual theatre extravaganza was launched in Leicester Square by Westminster City Council and Mackintosh’s was delighted to be one of the sponsors. West End LIVE is a weekend event to showcase the very best that the West End has to offer with performances from all the top shows spread over 2 days of fun and family entertainment which is absolutely free! Shows that entertained the public included Hairspray, Oliver! Avenue Q, Jersey Boys, Priscilla Queen of the Desert, to name but a few.

Apart from musical theatre, the performance arts, film and cinema, visual arts, flagship retail stores and some of London’s top tourist attractions all contributed to entertain the audience. Ultimately West End Live is about bringing people together to enjoy the very best entertainment that London has to offer in a safe, family focused environment.

The superb event was capped off for Mackintosh's on Friday 10th July as we had the pleasure of catering the West End LIVE sponsor's lunch in Westminster City Hall attended by Councillor Robert Davis DL and the Lord Mayor of Westminster, Councillor Duncan Sandys. This is the second year that Mackintosh’s has been asked to provide the lunch for the sponsors. The Mayor’s Parlour with its stunning views of London, sparkled with the glitter of the highly polished silver figurines that decorated the tables.

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Pretty in Pink Baby Shower

We were asked to style and cater a baby shower for a client on a sunny Sunday July afternoon in Knightsbridge. We dressed the room with over 200 pink balloons and in addition to our fantastic pyramid of bowl foods we also had a sweetie stall, as the mother-to-be had a sweet tooth. Pink champagne and strawberry coolers flowed all afternoon, and the day ended with tiered cake stands filled with: Strawberry shortcakes, raspberry palmiers biscuits, pink frosted cupcakes and oven baked blueberry cheesecakes which all went down a treat with the ladies. Once the guests had had their fill and the party had wound down, the ladies each received a small individual cake as a party favour a lovely end to a delightful day.

Fun things to do this August

Notting Hill Carnival
Last Weekend in August 30th - 31st 2009

The Notting Hill Carnival, is held every August Bank Holiday, on the Sunday and Monday of the last weekend in August and was, until a couple of years ago, officially the biggest street party in Europe. It celebrates the diverse cultures which make up Britain's identity. It's loud, vibrant and full of people of all ages dancing and grinding to the beat. Read more...

2009 Isle of Wight Garlic Festival
15 Aug 2009 to 16 Aug 2009

Prices: Adults £7.50; Senior £6.50 Children £4
Tickets are bought at the gate on the day.

This fun festival is the perfect opportunity to combine an interest in good fresh food with a lovely holiday to the Isle of Wight. Although the main attraction is garlic it is also a showcase for all of the Island's produce. Over 300 stalls sell a variety of foods from moules, sweetcorn, and prawns to lamb, beer, ice cream and coffee, all flavoured with garlic of course! With the added bonus of some local arts and crafts it promises to be a great day out. Read more...

Other events include:

The Tiger Beer Chilli Crab Festival in East London at the Big Chill Bar on 22nd and 23rd August.

The London Mela festival celebrating Asian Culture and food from 1pm - 8.30pm, on Sunday 16th August 2009 in Gunnersbury Park

The Shimmer Festival as Westfield London activities for children and adults in the atrium of the shopping centre on until the 17th August.

Did You Know The Facts About Garlic?

Garlic, also known as allium sativum, is related to the lily family, along with onions, shallots, chives and leaks.

Central Asia is considered by most to be its place of origin.

Garlic was being used in Egypt by 3,000 B.C. and was fed to the slaves building the pyramids to increase their stamina. The only slave revolt in Egypt (beside the Jewish Exodus) was by labourers over a lack of garlic one year when the Nile flooded the garlic fields.

The Ancient Greeks used garlic to bring strength to their athletes at the Olympic games and in other contests, and used it to help heal battle wounds.

Hippocrates, who lived 460 to 370 B.C. the 'father' of western medicine from whom come our modern 'Hippocratic oath', recommended garlic for pneumonia and other infections, for cancer and for digestive disorders, as well as a diuretic to increase the flow of urine and a substance to improve menstrual flow.

The Romans claimed that garlic was used to repel scorpions, treat bladder infections, dog bites, cure leprosy and asthma. It was thought that hanging garlic bulbs on doors would also stop the spread of smallpox.

During World War II, garlic was used as an antiseptic to disinfect open wounds and prevent gangrene.


Venue Of The Month - Westminster Abbey

Westminster Abbey is an architectural masterpiece. It represents a unique pageant of British History as it is the place of the coronation, marriage and burial of British monarchs since 1066.

Neither a parish church nor a cathedral and still dedicated to regular worship and to the celebration of illustrious events in the life of the nation, Westminster Abbey is under the jurisdiction of a Dean and Chapter making it a “royal peculiar” and subject only to the Sovereign.

With St Catherine’s Chapel Garden and the College Garden situated in the grounds overlooking the Houses of Parliament and both available to hire for summer evening receptions in June and July, there can be no better location in the country to hold a canapé party

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