Terre à Terre, Brighton | Restaurant Review

During our recent day trip to Brighton, I was very excited to head back to my favourite vegetarian restaurant, Terre à Terre.  Although quite pricey for Brighton standards, I have great memories of coming here with friends during uni and having the sharing platter as an entire meal – both because that was all we could afford and because it was plenty of food!

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It’s a bit of a shame that they’re renovating the outside as I completely walked past the restaurant twice without spotting it, but once we finally walked in, I was immediately making Christmas lists from their wall of local honeys, oils and jams.

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In order to not break tradition, we started with the sharing plate of baba ganoush, rice balls, fried tofu, kale, polenta fries… The list goes on. It was absolutely amazing but a rookie’s mistake as we were both completely full after this alone.

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This was swiftly followed by a main of gluten free Thai rice balls on a peanut and kohl rabi salad which I still managed to finish somehow. Boyfriend on the other hand, went for the battered halloumi which was not amazing. It was nice how they made it look like fish & chips but it was very heavy and quite plain, especially compared to the dish that I ordered.

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Overall, the meal as a whole did not disappoint. I wouldn’t recommend going for the battered halloumi but everything we saw on other tables looked amazing too. Friendly staff, organic beers, delicious wine, delicious food… We’ll be back soon 🙂

Check out my video on the whole day here:

A Trip to Café Monico, Shaftesbury Avenue

Another new favourite of mine in central London – Café Monico is a new brasserie by Soho House that is just in the centre of Shaftesbury Avenue. Recommended to me by a colleague, I couldn’t say no after scrolling through their menu.

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Having arrived early (as usual), I started the evening waiting for my boyfriend at the bar downstairs with a glass of wine and just loved the people watching – the atmosphere was buzzing with business men and women standing around with plates of charcuterie and cocktails.

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We were seated upstairs on the rounded balcony where a waiter asked us of any allergies. I mentioned I was gluten-free but said that I was used to picking the right things from menus so not to worry. When my steak tartare arrived, the man kindly brought over some gluten-free toast with it! It’s little things like that which make me very happy 🙂

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As a main course, we both had the moules frites which, as you can see, went down very quickly. The garlic and wine sauce was one of the best I’ve had. At this point, you could tell that the plays in the area were ending as the place filled up and the waiters were getting more and more difficult to reach. However, it was a lovely evening with lovely food and lovely wine and I’m already looking forward to our next trip!

Slow Cooked Lamb with Kale & Leek Salad

If you haven’t yet heard of the Hemsley sisters, you’re missing out. After they created a complete spiraliser craze a couple years back, I was one of the first to pick up their cook book ‘The Art of Eating Well’ and it’s become my new food bible. Most of their recipes are low carb and gluten free, and they talk you through fresh ingredients and the best produce you can use for each dish.

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This Sunday was the perfect day (aka TV & laundry day) to test out their slow cooked lamb and we enjoyed it so much and I thought it would be rude not to share…

The recipe is pretty simple: add garlic, anchovies and thyme to lamb and leave it covered in the over for 3 hours.

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The kale & leek salad needs to be done at least an hour or two before serving, as you mix it with olive oil, mint and lemon, which helps soften the kale over time.

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Try this out and let me know what you think – if you like it I’d also recommend their ragu or curry with coconut rice recipes, or my cucumber salad that was inspired by this book.Screen Shot 2016-04-24 at 20.31.09

Bon appetit 🙂

 

Pharmacy Favourites:

Before I start this post I have to admit that I pick up most of my skincare products at Belgian pharmacies because they’re usually much cheaper, but you can find all of these in the UK somewhat easily, so I’ve added links to the cheapest UK prices for them throughout the post.

La Roche-Posay Lipikar Lait & Micellar Water:
I cannot recommend La Roche-Posay enough – their products are some of the only ones that I can be sure that my skin will not react to, and they always have a nice scent but nothing too strongly perfumed. I just feel very very clean after using these products.

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Soap & Glory Smoothie Breakfast Scrub:
Not one for scrubs because of sensitive skin, I have begun using this on my legs no more than once a week and have really noticed smoother, softer skin. It also smells amazing… 🙂

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OGX Coconut Milk:
This is the one product that I always save up my Boots points for! I have tried a few different OGX hair products and they’re all great – but this coconut milk shampoo & conditioner leaves my hair smelling amazing even the day after washing, and it really seems to nourish my hair without leaving a heavy or greasy feeling.

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Neal’s Yard Refining Cleanser:
This is one of those lovely face washes that comes with a little muslin cloth, so you put it onto dry skin and then use the hot wet cloth to gently cleanse the skin. I have been using this for a couple months now and feel like it really works with my skin – gentle but still gives the impression if giving you a full clean. If you suffer from eczema and have never tried Almond Oil, I would highly recommend popping into a Neal’s Yard store and checking that out too!

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L’Occitane Almond Shower Oil:
Shower oils are my new obsession, and this little beauty is where it started. Not a cheap one, but this shower oil is just the nicest texture and smells amazing! My bathroom also stays smelling like this all day, which isn’t a bad plus.

Rituals Yogi Flow:
I cannot express to you how good this smells. I’d say about 95% of why I use this product is the smell, and the other 5% is because it comes out as a kind of gel and foams up when you mix it with water into such a nice texture.

La Roche-Posay Lipikar Oil:
Have you noticed my little obsession with shower oils by any chance? As with the La Roche-Posay products above though, this shower oil is great for everyday use, and smells lovely but is not too overpowering. Out of all of these, it also keeps my skin the most hydrated after use so I would definitely recommend it for anyone who has eczema.

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So there you go, my secret pharmacy obsessions..! Let me know what you save up your Boots points for, or if you have any recommendations 🙂

Flat Iron Covent Garden – Restaurant Review

The best way to celebrate two years together, you ask? Steak. Lots of it.

I have to admit I was a bit reluctant to try out this new restaurant because although its Shoreditch restaurants are so very loved, I’ve never walked past it without seeing a massive queue, and you can’t book in advance. Although that butcher in the window was pretty mesmerising…

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Soooo in order to pull the good girlfriend card, I left work as early as possible and got to the restaurant by 6, to add myself to the hour long waiting list. Met the boy at our favourite pub around the corner just in time for a drink, and got a text about 45 minutes later saying our table was ready!

Walked past the incredible bar in the centre of the restaurant while being seated, with a casual bartender chipping off ice from a big block of ice into an endless row of cocktails.

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Then steak. That’s pretty much the menu, and I approved… big time.

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The steak was perfect, the wine was perfect, the fries were perfect… and cheap too! For such a fancy meal, I was pretty sure they’d given us the wrong bill by the end of the night!

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The meal was also rounded off perfectly, when the lovely waitress gave us mini steak knives, which were our tokens for free salted caramel ice creams!

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We walked out very full and very happy, with salted caramel ice creams to go. By this time the waiting list had extended to THREE hours!

Review: Smiths of Smithfield Market

What better way to celebrate my birthday than to try out the new menu at one of my favourite restaurants?

Smiths is a huge building right in the middle of Smithfield Market near Farringdon Station. It’s got a very New York feel to it, with the look of a renovated warehouse, with exposed brick and pipes going along each wall.

When you walk in, the ground floor is an amazing cocktail bar. I would recommend the Espresso Martini…. (:

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We had a drink at one of the tables downstairs and then walked up to the third floor grill.

Hint: their house rosé downstairs is amazing, but they don’t sell it upstairs so we picked up a bottle from the bar and brought it up.

As a starter, we had the sharing platter between the two of us. I’m pretty sure this changes regularly, but we loved everything that was on it! Worked quite well because I could shove all the gluten-y bits over to my boyfriend, and I got extra hummus! It’s all about the compromise, right??IMG_6214

I have to say the highlight of the dish was the thai steak salad!

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No surprise – I went for the steak frites as a main. I asked for it medium, and to be honest it was quite overcooked so I (very embarrassingly) sent it back. They brought me back a perfectly cooked steak within minutes, and the manager even popped by to check it was alright which was greatly appreciated.

Unfortunately, I struggled to find anything gluten free on the desert menu, but my boyfriend was very happy with the cheesecake and I had the chocolate ice cream that came with it (sorry, no images).

Overall, I love the atmosphere of this place, and the service is fantastic! I will definitely be going back soon, and recommending this to anyone visiting London.

Review: The Windsor Castle Pub, Victoria

This place has an amazing feel to it the second you walk in. For starters, it’s very popular, and is always buzzing. On top of that, the pub is split into five sections by huge opaque glass walls, that lead the way to the back room which is full of sofas and an open fire.

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It’s a Sam Smiths pub so no music, no TVs, no WiFi, but the sound of people having a good time catching up is plenty.IMG_7414

My boyfriend had a couple great beers, I went for the white wine as usual, and we decided to share a plate of nachos. They kindly had a big sign above the bar that said the staff could help with any allergen information, but I have to admit, the nachos were thoroughly disappointing.

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For £10, I was expecting a big plate of very cheesy nachos with tons of pulled pork and toppings. Instead, we got a healthy spoonful of pork, chopped tomatoes which were advertised as salsa, little pots of guacamole and sour cream, and barely any cheese on a small amount of nachos which pretty much crumbled each time we picked one up.

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I would really recommend someone at Sam Smiths take a good look into either the pricing of their nachos, or what’s on offer, because I won’t be ordering food there again. However, I will definitely be going back to the pub. Even though it was busy and probably understaffed, the bartenders were really friendly and the drinks were nice. The ambiance is also something that I haven’t found anywhere else in London to date.

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If you’re ever on the Pimlico side of Victoria, pop by and let me know if you agree!

The Windsor Castle
23 Francis Street
Victoria
W1P 1DN
RebeccaSophie