Tuesday, 15 April 2014

The Wolseley

Gap jumper & wedges, River Island skirt, Zara trench and Topshop bag
To be honest, I'm a sucker for an interior, so when a restaurant looks beautiful on the inside, I'll tend to overlook a fault or two elsewhere.

Fortunately, The Wolseley has no faults - it's one of those annoying women who is smart, beautiful, funny, endearing and can do the box splits. Damn that woman. 

Except the Wolseley feels more like a man, or even a machine; a well oiled machine that has been running since the turn of the century. In actual fact 2003.

Earl Grey & Green Tea.

The beauty of a long distance relationship, is that every visit becomes an event. The boy and I are reluctant to simply sit at home when we have such a beautiful city on our doorstep and a wonderful companion to explore it with. With that spirit in mind, we booked in for a Sunday brunch with no trouble. 

I'd recommend calling to book a table, as you'll have more luck on the phone than the net. Their website only published very early time slots. Everyone likes  a little snooze of a Sunday.
Fishcake, Poached Egg, Hollandaise & Spinach. Quite genuinely the most beautiful breakfast meal I have had a very long time. 

This week I made the step from pescetarian to vegetarian, and so this was to be my last fish meal. Very sad I won't be able to order this beauty again but quite proud of myself for taking the leap I've been meaning to for so long. 
I have a sweet tooth, so when it comes to breakfast it's hard for me to avoid stacked pancakes & sticky pastries. To do the trick we 
ordered some fresh bread & condiments in the form of lemon curd, chocolate spread, marmalade & the good old strawberry jam.
See? Beautiful.

Sophie X

Sunday, 13 April 2014


Since hearing that chef Ollie Dabbous & mixologist Oskar Kinberg would be opening their second restaurant in Fitzrovia, London, I had been eagerly awaiting the right time to pop into Barnyard and sample their rustic & 'hearty foods' menu. 

I say pop in because there is a no-booking policy, meaning you won't have to wait months in order to be seated. You will however, need to wait two hours for a table. This is if you dine as a duo on a Wednesday evening, two weeks after the grand reveal. The lovely bar-lady advised visiting between Sunday & Tuesday, to avoid the queue.

Luckily, the host at Barnyard was incredibly helpful and suggested some bars in the area in which we could have a cocktail until a table arose.

I popped my number down and rushed off to meet my Barnyard buddy, Vivien of Dainty Hummingbird. To pass the time we drank at local haunt, Salt Yard, until our bellies could wait no longer and we hurried back to see what was occurring.
Occurring, were the alcohol shakes in milk bottles. You just know everyone will order it for the bottle and then take a photograph. Like me. 

I opted for the Malt shake by recommendation and was not disappointed. Imagine drinking a Malteser. Got it? That's what it's like. 
Next we went for shandies. Not any old lemonade shandy my friend- elderflower & bourbon shandies! Vivi went for Barnyard Iced Tea (English tea, pink grapefruit, lemon, agave, Scotch whiskey, Mica beer) and I went for Country House Shandy (elderflower, lemon, ginger ale, bourbon, Goose Island IPA). Mine was sweeter and therefore in my eyes, yummier!
Warm Cornbread in a bag & freshly made (note the date) alongside Broken Eggs, with Mushroom, Garlic & Parsley. Cornbread - yes. Broken Eggs - no. 

I was intrigued & confused by the concept of a broken egg and discovered it was a gathering of egg slathers amidst a gravy-like sauce. Similar to when you poach an egg without boiling the water first, and the white separates. Generally the dish was just wet & lacked any 'stodgy' substance to sink your teeth into. Thumbs down. 

Vivi went for Chicken in a Bun & French Fries. Both were delicious apparently, but the fries were pretty special.
Corn on a Cob with Meadowsweet salted butter. You wouldn't think a vegetable was the winning dish here, but this little mug contained something to write home about.
Topshop top & blazer, Firetrap jeans, Red Herring pumps & Zara bag 
The atmosphere and service was superb and I'd definitely return, but order something a little different next time. On this occasion, the drinks outshone the food, and that's not altogether a bad thing for a restaurant that's co-owned by a mixologist. I look forward to another brown bag of sweet bread and Malteser in a bottle.

Sophie X

Friday, 11 April 2014

Company Style Blogger Awards 2014

This is a tad shameful, but if you don't ask, you don't get! 

I've never really gone for the whole blog awards extravaganza... mostly because I've never been nominated, but also because I have a habit of putting the blog on the back burner. 

I think it's easy to prioritise our work, relationships, & TV schedule over our little space on the net because it's safer that way. There's no pressure to have a success story via the web (if that's even what you're after) and definitely no fear of being rejected. 

I started this year promising not to do that anymore. Although there is still the occasional day when the Lovely Old Girl gets ditched, she's now pretty well looked after. And so with that in mind, let's show her some love. Only if you want to of course. 

If you enjoy the blog as a regular reader, or a one-off visiter, you can go here to nominate me in whatever category you see fit. For now though, here's another cheeky throwback...  

Sophie X

Monday, 7 April 2014

Afternoon Tea at The Angel

River Island top, Zara trousers & heels, borrowed bag
Note: This top actually has a floral print on it, and is not incredibly dull.

So Mother's Day has come and gone, and I'm a little behind on this post. Mama Bear depressingly had to work this year and so The Cousin, The Bump, and myself took our Grandparents out for Afternoon Tea. I visit home; Wales, pretty frequently due to the boy, though I don't always make the extra forty-five minute drive back to Abergavenny where my family reside. If you've not been, it's a Welsh, farmers town at the foot of the Brecon Beacons - or seven mountains to be exact. 

Seven mountains aside, it homes a wonderful venue called The Angel Hotel. Perfect is The Angel for a slumber, ball, wedding, meal, cocktail, pint or in this case, afternoon tea. Their marketing is superb - all of the area are pretty much die hard fans... of The Angel. Not Die Hard. 

Who am I kidding? Everyone loves Die Hard.
Nanny & Bappy. Or Margo Fontane and Degsy as I call them
We opted for the High Tea, which includes pretty much everything. This comes at £25 each, but as I said, provides you with some serious food & drinks baggage. 
Tea galore.
Savoury treats.
Do it Degsy.
Sweet delights.
The Bump.
Oh, aren't I funny.
Hamster cheeks, aka, mouth full of meringue. 
They even box up what you can't consume. I tried my very best but they really do pile it on heavy.

I don't really want the place to get any more popular and consequentially busier than it already is, but The Angel is an absolute gem. Fact.

Sophie X