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Wednesday, 2 August 2017

The Brass Beetle


We were super lucky recently and were invited to the opening of the Brass Beetle, this is a new restaurant on Whitchurch Road in Cardiff and I think it fills a gap in the market.

The Brass Beetle 


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Tuesday, 25 July 2017

The Celtic Manor Resort Champagne and Beauty Bar


Hey all!

Hope you're all having a fabulous week. We were super lucky last week and were invited to Celtic Manor Resort for a sneak peek of their new Champagne and Beauty bar -  it's as fabulous as you are imagining!

We were so excited when the invite came through and just knew we had to go, not only was the event going to be amazing but we were hoping we'd have a chance to catch up with some of our blogger friends so couldn't wait.



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Friday, 2 June 2017

Afternoon Tea at The Cavendish, London


Hello!

A few weeks ago we went to London for the weekend, we managed to pack in quite a few activities in the 2 days we were there for and one of them was afternoon tea. Obviously!


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Wednesday, 19 April 2017

Dirty Martini Cardiff's Choctails


Hello there!

We couldn't help but notice Dirty Martini had a special Easter menu available so we absolutely had to go and try out their Choctails. We are already huge fans of their chocolate martini and I can't tell you how many we've had before - we often go out for a meal and stop there for one as our dessert!

However for Easter they also brought out two additional cocktails to make the trio of choctails. So as a start to the Easter weekend we went to try them out!

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Wednesday, 30 November 2016

Dirty Martini Cocktail Masterclass

Hey All

Last week we were invited to a cocktail masterclass as Dirty Martini. Of course we said yes, we were both gutted to have missed opening night and couldn't wait to try it out. If you've followed us from the early days you'll know we are big cocktails fans (the blog used to be cosmetics, shopping and intoxication) and used to post recipes to our favourite cocktails weekly.


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Sunday, 20 March 2016

Burger and Lobster Tank Talks


Hey all!

Have you heard of Tank Talks??

It's a new idea from Burger and Lobster where you can attend their restaurant on a Wednesday in March and hear all about the restaurant, try all of the food and matching cocktail items on the menu and generally have a fun time!

We went last week for the first session and were very excited. We both love food as we have mentioned many times and had never been to Burger and Lobster yet so it was a great experience to go to this event first.


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We were shown to our tables and there were 10 of us in total so it was a nice manageable number.
Amelia the restaurant manager was so lovely and easy to listen to, she told us a bit of background about the restaurant itself, where it came from and how many there are now.
I wrongly assumed Burger and Lobster came from the US, it actually came from London which now has 9 restaurants, plus a further three in the UK (Cardiff, Manchester and Bath). They also have a few others around the world in the US, Sweden, Kuwait and Dubai so it is still quite exclusive really.

The tables were decorated so half of us were Team Lobster, and the other half Team Burger. Our table was covered with fishing nets and it was a really nice touch with the aim of the evening to decide which team you were on.

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The menu is quite simple - there actually isn't one! Instead your server will explain your options to you - basically you choose burger or lobster! The lobster can either be as a lobster roll or server freshly cooked in the shell, either steamed or grilled.
All options are served with salad and chips - pretty easy to decide what you want!

As part of Tank Talks however you get to sample everything from the menu with respective cocktails all for the standard price of £20 - the burger or the two lobster options also cost this for a normal visit to the restaurant. First up, was lobster!

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We had a talk from the Sous Chef who told us lots of interesting facts about lobsters, including that you can age them like trees by counting the rings on their antennae, and also that they urinate from their mouths! Crazy!
Burger and Lobster go through around 11 tonnes of lobster a week which is a crazy amount to think about. They have a few tanks on each site with an absolutely huge one in London, I think they said it was the biggest that exists!

The Lobster roll was the first item we tried, this is cold lobster in a japanese mayo with lemon juice in a brioche roll made using their own recipe. I can't tell you how absolutely amazing these were and i really did savour every mouthful!

The lobster roll was also paired with the Ab Fab cocktail, shown above on the right (pink drink) which was light, floral and refreshing. It contains peach vodka, rose wine, lemon verbena and red currant. Unfortunately i was driving but that didn't stop me trying out the range of non-alcoholic drinks and the Hawaiian Cooler (left in the above photo) was really tasty. It was based on pineapple juice which i haven't had in ages so it was a great change.

Next came the real lobster and the respective bibs!!

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What a feast!!

Half of the lobster was grilled and the other half steamed. The grilled side tastes a bit meatier and chargrilled, the steamed side is more tender and also fishier so it depends what kind of meal you are looking for.

We got stuck in with the tools and cracking the shells, we've probably never got so messy with food but when you're given bibs it's kind of expected!

This was served with a Jalisco's Rose cocktails, which contained tequila, vermouth, apple cordial and soda.

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Next up it was burger time!

The meat for these burgers comes from Hereford and Aberdeen beef from Nebraska. They are corn fed to produce the marble effect. To make the burger they only use 3 cuts of the beef and add absolutely nothing at all, not even seasoning and they advise that you order it medium rare for the best taste.
The bun used in the burger uses the same recipe as for the brioche buns for the lobster rolls, this is then piled high with salad, bacon, cheese and their own recipe burger sauce.

Take a look at this beauty:

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The burger is huge! It's amazing though, the whole meal was really tasty and I'd find it hard to choose which one to have if i went again.
In fact we have already been back and shared the burger and a lobster roll!

This came with a cocktail called '8 Steps to the West' containing whiskey, pear, elderflower, rosemary and ginger ale. We think this was collectively our favourite cocktail, I ordered it on our second trip just so I could savour it after having to drive on our original trip!

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As if we weren't already stuffed, out came dessert!

As we were Team Lobster by this point we were given the cheesecake with a 'sand' topping, there was also a 'soil' topping for those who were Team Burger (basically digestives or oreos!) which was a lovely touch for the event.
They were very tasty but after all of the food we struggled to finish them!

The last drink we tried was the Hot Bergamot Toddy which contained Bergamot orange, honey, ginger, bitters and hot water. It was lovely for those of us who currently have a cold and I'd fully recommend it.

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The whole experience was absolutely wonderful and although we were invited for reviewing purposes and didn't pay for the food we were so impressed we actually went back to watch the Wales v England match that same weekend. It was a tense day for our friendship but even though England won our friendship survived....!

Have you been to Burger and Lobster? Have you booked in for Tank Talks?

We would fully recommend it for any foodie!

Let us know if you try it, and if you're Team Burger or Team Lobster!


L and M xxx


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Wednesday, 9 March 2016

Ten Mill Lane Cocktails


Hey All

Last week L and I headed down to Jacobs Market to try out some of the new cocktails Ten Mill Lane are launching. They're bringing out a new menu full of tasty cocktails which will be on offer mid week.

Ten Mill Lane is based on Mill Lane in the centre of Cardiff and is a great cocktail bar. L and I will be heading there for her birthday at the end of the month. We love a good mid week cocktail session (as you may know if you've followed our blog from the beginning and we were sharing our cocktail hour series found here)

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The event was held in Jacobs Antique and Ten Mill Lane had gone all out decorating it to showcase there new menu. The inspiration for the new menu comes from artwork and each cocktail is related to the piece of art that inspired. 

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Of course we found mirrors to take selfies in!

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Onto the cocktails, as mentioned above they are all inspired by artwork which I love and the cocktails themselves are a work of art. I love the thought that has gone into the presentation of them all.

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Self Portrait - Frida Kahlo

Tequila isn't a drink I'd pick and I don't tend to pick it even in cocktails but I was won over with this. The Tequila was a love of Frida Kahlo which is why it was picked as the base of this art inspired cocktail. The mix of it with mango add a sweetness and then citrus and peppercorn rebalance this out. Not once I'd pick of the menu without trying but it was delicious and one I'd order again.






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A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande - George Seurat

L and I couldn't wait to try this. Straight away this is one we'd have chosen off the menu based on ingredients. Sweet vermouth, raspberry and wormwood vodka. The combination of these is delicious and we could imagine drinking these on a chilled out sunny Sunday!


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Bleeding Medals - Gilbert and George

We missed this one as it came round for tasting but our love of tea means this will be the first one we order off the menu when we go back. I love the presentation of this, not only a teacup but tea too. This inspiration came that tea is seen iconically as an English tradition so the blend of gin tea bitters and earthy liqueur are said to be reminiscent of a black tea with lemon juice and sugar to balance out the flavour and a splash of milk! I can't wait to try this!

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The Treachery of Image - Rene Magritte

The presentation of this cocktail is amazing. Inspired by the art work it's based on it gets delivered to the table being smoked and served in a glass pipe! As expected it's base is a oaky whiskey but balanced out with a sweet vermouth. Also adding cloves, cinnamon and vanilla for flavour and warmth. A hint of absinthe brings the warm feeling to recreate the pipe! This sounds like a winning combination to me. I'm a big whisky fan.


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Blue Dress - Leonid Afremov

This is one of my favourite presentations. The sugared glass is a great touch and the delicate flower on top. This is also tastes as good as it looks with a mix of gin, green tea and elderflower cordial this is an easy drinker!


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Red Poppies and Daisies - Vincent Van Gogh

Another great presentation, with cocktails I'm perfectly ok with not drinking out of a glass if it looks pretty and this certainly does. This contains rum (probably L's favourite liquor!) brandy and mango juice which helps to bring out the flavours of both liquors to produce a sweet cocktail to represent the flowers. A hint of absinthe represents the foliage of the art work.


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I Saw the Figure 5 in Gold Cocktail - Charles Demuth

This is a cocktail that's right up my street, whisky, orange liqueur, and maple syrup with honey and bitters. Simple but works well and gives great flavours!



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Campbell's Soup Can - Andy Warhol

This is one I'd never have picked to try. Of course served in a can it's a new take on a bloody mary. Even served with a dash of parma ham if you're not vegetarian and chilli candy floss. Like a bloody mary it contains tomato juice but included is a mango vodka to give it a new flavour twist. This isn't something I'd order again but I didn't dislike it!

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Summer - Alphonse Mucha

The last cocktail I've got to share but there are a few more. This was an unexpected winner for L and I. It combines wine and gin (that sounds dangerous straight away!!) with elderflower. This really works. The wine and elderflower give a sweetness to this gin cocktail but still keep it light!

So that's some of the new menu from Ten Mill Lane. L and I were totally won over by these new cocktails and can't wait to try the rest when we celebrate her birthday! It's great to try new cocktails that aren't a classic. If you'd seen our 101 things in 1001 days when we did those one of my things was to try 10 new cocktails. If only we were still in those 1001 days I've have covered them!

Are you a cocktail fan? Have you been to Ten Mill Lane?

Love M 

xxx

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Monday, 14 December 2015

Quench Mojito Master*

Hey All

I can't believe it's only 11 days until Christmas! When the email came through to see if we wanted to try the Mojito Master I was interested straight away. Mojitos are something that are made regularly in my house as it's what me and my other half drank on our first date and one of our favourite drinks. I don't have the proper tools though and tend to just use a rolling pin and stuff to make them.

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The mojito master is the Swiss knife of cocktail making, it has everything you need and the bits pop out. It contains a muddle, drinks measure, knife, spoon and mint cutter.

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The knife was impressively sharp. I had assumed with something like this it wouldn't be that good but it is. All the bits pop out easily and there our measures inside the cup for the perfect mojito.

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It's comfortable in the hand when all assembled again to be able to perfectly muddle the ingredients! Apologies for my lack of pretty glasses. We opt for big mojitos!!

I make mine by squeezing the juice of half a lime into the glass, add 2 large teaspoons of sugar and muddle all of that together. I then add around 8 mint leaves to the glass (apparently if they give them a clap between your hands it released flavour. I then fill the glass with crushed ice. The smaller the better. Here the rolling pin is still used to smash it. I then add to large shots of rum and use the spoon to get right the bottom of the glass and kind of pull the liquid up so all the ice, rum and lime, mint, sugar mix is all combined. I then add a quarter of a lime wedge and mint sprig to garnish. I don't opt of soda in mine as the crushed ice melts and waters it down a little. We also prefer a spiced rum to a white rum or an aged rum!

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The result some very tasty mojitos! If you're looking for a last minute gift this is a great idea! I would have definitely grabbed on for my other half. The only thing I would say could be improved it the spoon folds out but then doesn't look in so bends halfway down. If I wanted making pints of Mojito though it probably wouldn't be an issue!

Are you a mojito fan? The mojito master is currently on offer for £9 at Handpicked Collection.

Love M

xxx



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Monday, 3 August 2015

Revolucion De Cuba Cardiff

Hey All

This weekend has been a busy one with a visit to Margam Park and Go Ape which was awesome! Last week I did a life lately post and mentioned I'd been to Brighton, when I got back from Brighton my parents were in Cardiff for the evening so we popped out for food. As it was raining and they were staying in the Hilton my dad suggested trying Revs de Cuba as he'd walked by earlier. For me I'd only been in there for nights out so wasn't sure what to expect but agreed! It was amazing so I decided it needed sharing. Not great food photos but we all just wanted to get stuck in.




Me and mum started on Pina Coladas! I love a Pina Colada and this didn't disappoint. It was a good mix of creamy and pineapple. I find sometimes in the UK they aren't very generous on the coconut cream and just shove in some Malibu! Even better they were two for one!

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My lovely mum!


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Revs De Cuba, Food, Tapas, Cardiff

On Sunday's all Tapas dishes are two for one. Revs de cuba do some great deals on the tapas dishes! We decided to opt for 6 dishes and sides of sweet potato fries and sourdough breads! The breads come with some tasty butters! For the food we opted for Calamari (forever a favourite of mine and this didn't disappoint!), Pork Belly Skewers (these were so tasty, and perfectly melt in the mouth.), Roasted Chorizo (this came in a wine and honey sauce, we all ended up dipping the breads in this too as it was too good to leave!), Serrano Ham Bruschetta, Cajun Cream Mushrooms and Patatas Bravas.

It was all really tasty tapas and we had full table service! I hadn't expected it to be so good and don't usually think of it as a restaurant.! I'll definitely be heading back and taking L with me!

Have you eaten in any Revs De Cuba?

Love M

xxx


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Tuesday, 16 June 2015

Taste Cocktail Kits*

Hey All

L and I are massive cocktail fans, we've spent many years sampling them on nights out and making up our own (check out are cocktail series from when the blog first started here!) so this was a box we were interested in receiving through the post.

Taste cocktails offer a subscription service where you get a box a month or you can order one off boxes. This means you can test it out to see if it's something you want or gift them as presents. With fathers day just around the corner I think they'd be great. Had we not already got my dad a bottle of whiskey I'd have ordered him the gin box but I think two alcohol gifts may not go down too well.

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As soon as the box arrived I loved the packaging. It just feels like something a bit different. Sometimes simple is all you need and the brown packaging with the stamp of the logo fits this well. Everything is well protected to help prevent any breakages in transit.

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Inside the box comes a recipe card explaining the background behind the spirits. I like this touch as I love to know random bits of information. You never know when it may pop up on a pub quiz! The recipes are simple and easy to follow and you get enough of the spirits to make about 4 cocktails (2 of each). The box comes with all you need except the lime juice and grapefruit peel.

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I love the little glass bottles. I've kept them and like to put single flowers in them. I love the slightly vintage feel to the presentation of these. 

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I am gutted my martini glasses are currently in storage so we had to use wine glass which don't look quite as good. L and I had a film night last week and got stuck into the cocktails. If we're honest the box wasn't to our taste as we aren't Chartreuse fans but the recipes were quick and easy to follow and the we're eyeing up the other boxes. The Daiquiri and Gin box we could see ourselves loving.

What are your thoughts on a cocktail subscription box? Would you like to receive it as a present? You can see all of the different boxes here.

Love M

xxx

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