All posts tagged: review

Can cook, but didn’t cook. A venture into (rather lovely) pre-prepared meals.

I think I can pretty much say we never eat “ready meals”. I am not averse to a good steak pie from a farm-shop or similar but ready-meals generally, nope. That is not because I am a food snob necessarily, (although I am, natch) we just generally don’t like the taste and my own food always tastes better. However, I made an exception this weekend, with a complicated Sunday of taxiing and trying to provide food, I decided extreme measures were called for to ensure we all got something decent for Sunday lunch. So I ventured over to “Cook” in West Bridgford. Cook is a frozen food specialist that claims they make “remarkable food for your freezer, made like you would at home” . I know, what you’re thinking  – posh “Iceland”. But you’d be wrong. Cook has a huge range of meals, mains, puddings, party food, even your entire Christmas lunch if you really wanted to push the boat out. The shop in West Bridgford is tidy, friendly and well designed, there is 2 …

Edin’s kitchen, all boho and ladies that lunch

How come I haven’t discovered this gem before now? After a wasted morning waiting for someone I was due to interview who didn’t bother to turn up (he and his business shall remain nameless for now as I am not a bitter person) I meandered back through Nottingham’s Bohemian quarter – Hockley – and stumbled upon Edin’s Kitchen. Having heard good things about it, I decided on an opportunistic lunch. Quietly unassuming on the outside, Edin’s Kitchen is one of those hidden gems you stumble across and, once inside, feel as if you’ve just become part of a little secret. Anyone watch “Goodnight Sweetheart”…where the chap walks through a wall and finds himself in wartime London? Well walking into Edin’s felt a bit like walking into a Parisienne back-street cafe that only the locals know, and then feeling properly pleased with yourself. Edin’s is set in a former jeweller’s shop and many of the original features remain – the glass display cabinets, wooden window shutters and even the glass panel at the rear (that now …

Don’t think I’ll be “rubbing my selfie” again in a hurry 😳

Easter this year, for reasons I won’t bore you with, was an unusual one. It was because of this, that we found ourselves eating our Easter Sunday lunch at Rub Smokehouse and Bar – whose eponymous hashtag is   “rubyourselfie” if you were wondering… We had been meaning to go here for ages, the many blogged and twittered pictures of giant juicy burgers and gushing reviews had tempted us and after an excellent experience at Red’s True Barbecue we thought, well, if we can’t do tradition, we can, at least, indulge in a post-Lenten meatfest. Well, what happened? Perhaps Easter Sunday wasn’t the best choice of days, but, hey, if you’re open then you’re still serving your best yes?  The place was reasonably busy, not packed, but a healthy 2/3 full I’d say. It took a while to take our drinks order and a couple of apologies for the tardiness before they arrived and we ordered our food. But then the food arrived in about 4 minutes! I kid you not. How on earth is …

Oaks Restaurant, Bromley Place, Nottingham

Well, I guess Nottingham is famous for at least one Oak, perhaps now maybe two. Oaks is fairly recently opened and has been the subject of quite a lot of Twitter traffic of late, so we popped in for lunch today. Oaks claims to serve simple, locally-produced sausages and meats cooked over wood-embers that are sustainably sourced from coppiced woods managed by the local Wildlife Trust. Pretty impeccable credentials then – kind of felt that in tucking into my sausage I was doing my bit to save the planet. All good. Forgot to take a photo of the outside (I know, I know) but for those that know Nottingham, it is on a corner facing up the hideous Maid Marian Way, thankfully something akin to a small paved “plaza” has emerged just in front during some renovation and reclamation work and so the aspect isn’t too bad. It matters not, anyway, as the inside is lovely. Inside has a lovely atmosphere – again pretty cavernous, but didn’t feel cold or unwelcoming, despite it being a drafty …

Newstead Abbey Festival of Food and Drink. I think Lord Byron would have approved.

Newstead Abbey, formerly an Augustan monastery before the Dissolution, is probably best known as the ancestral home of that old rake Lord Byron but this last weekend it played host to the Great Food and Drink Fair. I used to go to lots of these fairs but I have to be honest, they began to become a bit “samey” if you know what I mean. If you stay local, then you often get the same suppliers turning up, and lovely as many of them are, if you go to enough Food Fairs you tend to come across the same people time and time again. I am also a bit wary of Food Fairs that charge an entrance fee (or fleece you on the car-parking) as above a certain level I feel I am paying for the privilege of spending my money. Anyhow, we took a chance on Newstead as we’ve not been to a Food Fair there yet and, to be fair (no pun etc) it was pretty good, with some new suppliers I hadn’t …

Adam Handling at the Caxton, London, SW1…….lunch and a bit of a hot flush.

Way back in 2013 I sent one of the Masterchef (the Professionals) a tweet. I don’t normally tweet people on the television, I am a grown woman for heaven’s sake. But I did, and (based on the trailers alone) wished this rather attractive young Scottish guy good luck. As the series rolled out it was clear he was not only exceptionally talented, he was also funny and charming and responsible for a number of swooning moments in our household (might have been my hormones of course) but either way, it caused much mortified eye-rolling from my daughter. Still, Adam replied to my tweet and we have been “twitter followers” since then. He was a “runner up” in Masterchef (a travesty) and I can’t recall who won. But I have watched with great pleasure his ensuing success. So it was with much (“God, mum you are such an embarrassment”) enthusiasm that we arrived for lunch at the Caxton last week, on a sunny July day when Adam was cooking. I had stayed for work at the …