Thursday, 31 August 2017

Coach House Cafe - Tomich (Scottish Highlands) and Plodda Falls

The Coach House Café, as its name suggests, is an old coach house turned café in the Victorian Conservation Village of Tomich in the Highlands of Scotland. We happened upon this quaint little village out of luck as we passed through when going to see Plodda Falls.

The village was created by the Tweedmouth family, who built a large manor house (now in a ruined stated), and was to serve the Guisachan Estate. The estate covered around 1600 acres and much of the forna and flowers that were planted by the estate still remain.

Tuesday, 29 August 2017

The Village Inn - Arrochar (Loch Lomond & The Trossachs, Scottish Highlands)

To say that I love Scotland would be an understatement, and I didn’t actually take a trip north of the border until I was 23. I had just returned from New Zealand after an unsuccessful working holiday (it was the recession and all I could get in the way of work was working for accommodation, unfortunately my savings only stretched so far before I had to come home), it was mid-winter when I took the trip and there was snow on the ground as well as the mountains. We took a short car ride from where I was staying near Glasgow (Kilmarnock on the West Coast) to the lower parts of the highlands, Loch Lomond and the Trussachs. I remember exclaiming at this time that I had travelled all the way to New Zealand to see sights, that in fact, were on my doorstep.

Saturday, 26 August 2017

Baltzersen's - Harrogate

Ever since visiting Copenhagen in January this year I have been eager to find a ‘real’ Danish cinnamon bun in England. The types you find in Tesco, Sainsbury’s etc. are flat and a bit too flaky pastry to be anything like the real deal, the types you get in cans that you roll out don’t really meet expectations either. There seem to be a few in more Southern areas of the country but up North I was really struggling, that was until I started following Baltzersen’s Instagram account.

Sunday, 20 August 2017

Afternoon Tea at Creams British Luxury - Leeds

The Core in Leeds City Centre is an odd shopping centre, it underwent a refurb some years ago chucking out most of their tenants with exception to HMV. Since then I’m told it pushed up rates and it appears to be struggling to fill units. I can recall the days when the glass lift used to go up through the centre, with a small café at the bottom and an overpriced food hall at the top. With Trinity Leeds opening and it seemingly being a more attractive option for stores The Core has slowly been generating another food hall (the previous food hall pre-refurb was the top of the building and was overpriced and a little bit lacklustre), forgive me if I’m wrong, but it seemed to start with the opening of Burger King. Then one by one some more chains have entered the ring and started to open in the once redundant units.

Saturday, 19 August 2017

Richard III Hotel - Middleham

Those who know me (or follow me on Instagram) will know that I love a good castle, thankfully I live in Yorkshire and there are a plethora of castles around to visit. I have a Pinterest board set up just for the castles that I want to visit. Middleham Castle had been on my list for some time, so when the chap needed to dust of his car and stretch it’s legs a little I suggested that we take a drive up to Middleham.

Thursday, 17 August 2017

The Doubletree Hotel (by Hilton) - Leeds City Centre

Despite visiting a Hilton hotel many times I have never actually stayed the night. From what I can gather, the Doubletree brand of the Hilton is a more upmarket, less corporate and more personal (warm) than the run of the mill Hilton hotels. They focus on comfort over convenience and try to make their hotels look attractive and high end.

Tuesday, 15 August 2017

The Lock Kitchen and Bar - Doubletree Hilton - Leeds

Hotel restaurants can be hit and miss, some do it very well, some do it very badly and some play it safe. The Lock at The Hilton Doubletree in Leeds is, in my opinion, the latter.

The Doubletree in Leeds benefits from a very advantageous spot in the city, it has great views over the city from its rooms and it is situated beside the canal. It is fair to say it’s in one of the quieter parts of the city, if you stay at Park Plaza or The Marriott you won’t find a setting quite as tranquil. Don’t get me wrong in the evenings The Granary Wharf area livens up, and with lots of bars and restaurants around it can make for a rather good night, with slightly less of the crowds. The Lock has a relatively big outdoor area (for the city centre) which is nestled next to, you guessed it, the canal locks. This attracts guests of the hotel and locals alike.

Saturday, 12 August 2017

Tambourine Cafe - Saltaire

Tambourine café is a new independent coffee shop in Saltaire. It serves artisan coffee from local suppliers and roasters in Leeds and Saltaire. On the day I visited I had a cup of North Star’s House blend, served to me perfectly by the hosts and with the all-important Instagram worthy latte art.

Wednesday, 9 August 2017

Tharavadu Express Lunch - Leeds

I’ve written about Tharavadu before, I’ve been many many times since my first visit and I’ve been a few times for lunch too! Once of the advantages of going to Tharavadu is that you can book through their online system and as a bonus it’s not a bad price, especially for the amount of food you get.

Saturday, 5 August 2017

The North Star Coffee Shop - Leeds Dock

North Star Coffee has been on the coffee scene for around 4 years now, you may have noticed their bags of coffee in your local coffee-shop, and you may well have even have drank a cup. North Star was the first independent roastery based in Leeds. They work with suppliers all over the world to source the best beans for your cuppa. They use the right type of beans, Arabica, and have strict ethical guidelines about how and who they import from. Here’s an extract from their website:

“Quality and ethics are at the heart of everything we do, we work with both our origin and wholesale partners to continue a positive cycle of re-investment, innovation and sustainability in an effort to guarantee the supply of outstanding coffee for many years to come.”

Thursday, 3 August 2017

Sky Lounge (Doubletree Hilton) Brunch – Leeds

The Sky Lounge in Leeds is a notorious hotspot for cocktails on a summer’s evening. It has a stunning uninterrupted view over the south of Leeds and is considered the place to go when you’re dressed up to the nines. Admittedly, I had never visited Sky Lounge on an evening nor during the day, I’ve seen plenty of pictures of the Sky Line and I’ve heard the cocktails were rather good. Whilst staying at the Hilton I decided to pop upstairs to see what all the fuss was about before we headed out in to town to dance away the night.

Tuesday, 1 August 2017

Trinity Kitchen - July/August 2017 Street Food Line Up

The new Trinity Kitchen line up sees the return of a few loved street vans and the introduction of some new faces to Leeds. It never fails to amaze me how many street food vendors we have in the UK now!

So what can you expect from the July-August rotation?