Thursday, 22 June 2017

A Crochet Crush from Simply Be

It's been almost a month since I blogged about fashion! Feel like it's almost a record for me.
Well, now what perfect way to ease myself back in than showing off this absolute belter of a dress. Now, I'm going to be honest here; I deemed this dress as ugly. Channelling ultimate granny vibes, this dress looked like it belonged on the back of a couch. But putting it on, I clearly had to eat my words!

 

 

I usually steer away from tunic style dresses as they do nothing for my shape but this one clung to my curves just beautifully. 
With 3/4 length sleeves and sitting at the perfect height on my knees, it was not overly hot to wear either. I will say though, this dress does not come with a slip and was pretty much see through so I wore chub shorts and a little vest underneath. But not forgetting, this would be a great dress to pop over your bikini too. Or how about pairing it with cute boots for the ultimate festival look?

 
You can find this beauty at Simply Be here.

Wednesday, 14 June 2017

Brace and Browns Bottomless Brunch

For my birthday, I very kindly got treated to bottomless brunch at Brace and Browns on Whiteladies Road, Bristol. I've been meaning to come here for over a year now and had to cancel previously made reservations- which are hard to get! - Bookings fill up ridiculously fast and are rare to get up to 2 months before you plan to go. They are now already fully booked until August!

Arriving with an empty stomach, I didn't come here for an eating challenge but to sample practically everything they had on offer! The fact it came with unlimited Prosecco only sweetened the deal. We chose the Classic brunch for £28.50 Unlimited dishes and Prosecco at that price, it was certainly value for money. 
We were sat tucked away in a cosy corner, lit by candles which although felt wonderfully intimate, I did feel a bit hidden from the glorious midday sunshine outside which was a shame. 

 

We started with this delightful breakfast platter, consisting of cheese scones, yogurt topped granola and mini raspberry Danish pastries. I gave each a little taste, not wanting to spoil my appetite for the more 'brunchier' goods on offer. The yogurt and granola was the winner by far. Thick and very creamy yogurt was delicious. 

Smoked mackerel and guacamole bagel. This was my favourite of all dishes. 


   
Pulled pork hash brown with poached egg. The pork was a little under seasoned causing the flavour to get lost. However, the egg was cooked to perfection.

 
Smoked back bacon with hash brown & Romanesco sauce. This was also another beautiful dish. The Romanesco sauce was light and delicious.

 
Chorizo & tomato patatas bravas with sour cream. This was full of punchy flavours and incredibly hearty. My guests favourite. 

 
Field mushrooms & truffled spinach bruschetta. These were wonderfully light and earthy.

 
Coffee and walnut cake with chocolate sauce. Not a huge fan of this one if I'm honest. It wasn't overly sweet and had a bitterness.

 
Belgium waffle with espresso mascarpone. This was the perfect dish to end the meal on. I was incredibly full at this point but dessert stomach was in full swing! 

If there was one thing that did take me by surprise, it was the lack of toast on offer. Many of the dishes contained potato, which is possibly there to fill you up quicker, rather than toast that is easier to eat. Clever! But I'm a self confessed bread addict and felt a little cheated that there were so few bread based dishes on offer. I was also expecting a lot of avocado which is often a brunch staple but there was very little of that too. There was also pea shoots served with every dish. I do love a garnish but thought a variation could of been better. 
All in all, I really enjoyed my morning at Brace & Browns and look forward to returning now that the menu has now changed. 


Tuesday, 6 June 2017

SLABS; The Daddy Of All Crisps

 

So wondering round This Morning Live in Birmingham a few backs, I stumble upon a crisp stand. There's few things that get my attention so quickly in life, one being crisps. Cut me open, you're likely to find a third of me is made of potato.
Now, let's make this clear, SLABS aren't your average crisp. These bad boys are made from a Spanish variety of potato which make the crisp 4x bigger than your average shop bought variety. Plus they are cut super thick. So thick in fact, that they are less fatty than regular crisps because they absorb less oil during the frying process. 

 

 

It's June, with Fathers Day fast approaching, I thought what better gift for my husband than a good proper Ploughmans lunch. Maybe even a picnic by the river if it's warm enough. Pork pies, strong cheeses, apples and an 80g bag of SLABS. 
(Obviously I'm not going to go down the sexist route of 'Men's crisps'. Because crisps are crisps of course, we all love em'.)

 
But why stop at snacking? The beauty of SLABS being their size and thickness, why not try them with a topping? Smoked mackerel and mustard on Cheese and Onion? Or how about a starter of baked Camembert with a side of salted SLABS for scooping? 

 
You can buy SLABS direct from the site here. 
 

Sunday, 4 June 2017

Spring Menu Tasting at The Stable Bristol

Never one to turn down the offer of free food, I got the chance to try out the Spring menu  at The Stable on Bristols harbourside. Specialising in pizzas, pies and ciders, I'm surprised I hadn't actually visited this place sooner!

 
For starters we tucked in to an amazing sharing board, full of Devonshire cured meats and West Country cheeses. The pickled cucumber was especially beautiful! 

Then it was next on to salads and pizzas. My favourites being The Big Jerk; Spicy jerk chicken with full punchy flavours and Billy the Kid; with goats cheese, spinach and roasted hazelnuts. All pizzas were wonderfully thin and crispy and generous in size. The salads were packed full of flavour, the butternut squash and feta cheese was a firm favourite in our table.

 

Next came cider tasting. With over 80 varieties on offer, I was surprised at how much knowledge the in house cider masters knew! We got to sample a selection of various types and although I'm no cider expert, I learnt a few things and found new favourites. 

 

As the evening ended, it was only right that it ended sweetly. The dessert pizza! All hail this simple yet heavenly slice of delight that has now got me ridiculously hooked. The thought of it made me shake my head. With the idea that pizza should only ever be savoury. WRONG! I'm now totally converted. Rich hazelnut chocolate sauce, mascarpone and toasted hazelnuts on a wood fired dough base is the way to win my heart. 

 

Have you tried The Stable yet? Check here to see your nearest location.

**Disclaimer; Although the meal was complimentary, all opinions are my own**

Thursday, 25 May 2017

Spring Menu at Square Kitchen Clifton

Last month I spent the evening at The Berkeley Square Hotel, Clifton with some local bloggers.
Once we had all arrived, we got to order a cocktail from their extensive menu whilst we had a little look around the cosy, members only Square Club. I loved the decor which mixed a slight Morrocan feel with that classic urban look. (Think stripped wooden floors and glass bricks with an intimate nook full of rich colours and plush fabrics) I opted for a refreshing Champagne gin mojito. 



We were taken back upstairs to be seated for dinner in The Square Kitchen. The restaurant itself was light and spacious with plenty of diners even midweek but yet felt quiet and intimate enough if you were to dine as a couple. 
Here's what I ordered;


Ham hock terrine appetiser

 
Starters; Wild garlic soup with slow cooked egg, prosciutto dust

 
Mains; Slow roast pork belly with crispy squid, globe artichoke, white polenta, capers & gremolata

 
Dessert; chocolate bomb filled with banana mousse and peanut butter parfait

Starters range from £6.50-£9 and mains £12-£18.50 which I thought was very reasonable for a boutique hotel in Clifton.
The whole hotel is steeped in modern art and unique furniture. After 8 years of living in Bristol, I'm shocked I didn't know of its existence and I've already recommended to my friends and family. 
I had such a lovely time, not just eating but catching up with some familiar and new bloggers. Thank you to The Berkeley Square Hotel and Heather Cowper for inviting me.

Tuesday, 23 May 2017

Yours Store Opening Taunton

This month I had the absolute pleasure of yet again opening another Yours Clothing store, this time in Taunton Somerset. 

Arriving just before the official ribbon cutting, I was met with a queue of eager shoppers, all waiting to get their hands on the latest plus size fashion pieces. Something which sadly has become less available in most high street stores. 
Here are a few snippets from the day;

 
The wonderful staff 


 
 First customers cutting the ribbon

 
    The lucky prize winner of £100 gift card 

 
Taunton also stocks BadRhino men's range

You can find this store in the Orchard Shopping Centre, Taunton

Monday, 15 May 2017

Vegan Cupcakes by 280 Bakes

This weekend I attended a small, low key hen party with some new friends. What better way to introduce yourself to a new group of people than coming armed with a box full of delicious chocolate cupcakes. Not only that, but vegan friendly too.
280 Bakes is a small, independent bakery company in Bristol that specialises in homemade cakes, particularly vegan and gluten free for a majority of their customers and pride themselves on being able to deliver on the same day of ordering. Firm favourites include their Fair trade banana loaf and chocolate peanut butter cake (omg!)

 On choosing our cakes, I went for the cupcake variety as I had to travel quite a fair distance and knew these would most likely last the best. And of course it had to be chocolate! 

 
 
 The cakes themselves were beautifully moist and full of flavour. They seemed to go down a treat! There's something so special and comforting about home made cakes rather than shop brought and it's great if you lack the spare time to make them yourself, especially when it's so simple to have them delivered to your home or work address. 
 
The 280 Bakes page can be found here where you can find many more of their Bakes on offer, and details of upcoming events in and around Bristol that they trade at x