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It's always one of our favourite foodie events of the summer and this year's Taste of London looks set to be an unmissable affair.

Hot Dinners spent a lovely lunchtime this week flitting between three of the restaurants who'll be at this year's festival for the first time, Scott's (which is serving up octopus carpaccio with slow roasted datterini tomatoes, capers and rocket, shrimp burger and strawberry posset with Mayfield lavender shortbread), Ora (Grilled Tuna and Green Mango Salad with tamarind dressing [pictured] and Green curry chicken with Thai aubergine served with Thai jasmine rice) and Le Caprice (a chilled plum tomato soup with basil and mozzarella, Thai-baked sea bass with fragrant rice and Cru Virunga chocolate crackle pot with raspberries).

We also bumped into Paul A Young who was there to showcase the new chocolate he'll be launching at Taste - a heavenly summer pudding chocolate with freeze-dried raspberries, blueberries and strawberries and Dijon cassis liquor. (Yes, it's every bit as delicious as it sounds).

Other new features at this year's festival will be Wine Walks to showcase the numerous wine stalls. There's also a British BBQ Championships where chefs including Tristan Welch and Atul Kochhar will battle it out on the coals to impress a line-up of food critics. 

There will be three bookable masterclasses pairing food and drink featuring Laurent Perrier, Estrella beer with tapas and San Pellegrino. But surely the best one will be the San Pellegrino masterclass on Thursday 16 June where wine writer Neil Philips hosts Food, Wine & Water Matching including a Q&A with Rene Redzepi of Noma. There'll be just 30 tickets available for that, and we're told participants might get the chance to go foraging round Regent's Park with Redzepi himself.

Tickets to this year's festival start at £22 if booked in advance on the Taste of London website. But look out for the Hot Dinners newsletter next week when we'll be offering readers the chance to win one of four pairs of tickets to the Friday evening session.

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