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Antigua Dreaming


Now back from honeymooning in Antigua, and married over a month already, life is settling down back to normal. What a truly amazing experience it all was!
Obviously, we set out to try as much food as possible whilst we were away, and we certainly weren’t disappointed. Plenty of fresh fish and sea food which was fantastic for us!

We were staying in a picture-perfect resort called, Galley Bay. Fairly close to the main town of St. Johns. Unlike us, we actually socialised with other couples on the resort! A couple from Cleveland, Ohio, who got married and same day as us, and another couple from Rhode Island who actually got married on the beach whilst we were there. Our conversations mostly consisted of mimicking each other’s accents and then listing words that are different in the UK from the US.

Apart from the amazing food on the resort, we got to experience some truly delicious food when we went exploring the island in our hired jeep. A small restaurant right on the beach called OJ’s. Kayleigh and I ordered fresh grilled whole snapper. Wow, it was so delicious! Especially with some of the local hot sauce drizzled across the top! It was really great to be able to experience some authentic local food, but equally, we wanted to try a restaurant that Kayleigh had researched before we went. ‘Sheer Rocks’. A small restaurant and bar, located right on the rocks overlooking the beach and sea, voted the best restaurant in the whole Caribbean! It honestly was unlike anything I’ve experienced before, the setting was breath taking and the food was one of the best meals I’ve had in I can’t remember how long!

When we went to Sheer Rocks for lunch, we ordered from a tapas style menu so we got to try a few things from the menu! Giant grilled prawns, warm courgette salad, calamari, edamame beans, feta salad with watermelon martinis and banana daiquiris to wash it down! Delicious!



‘Grilled Mahi Mahi Tacos’

This was a classic dish that got served for lunch by chef Ivy, from a little beach hut by us. Mahi Mahi is a local fish that is often used.



In a small bowl add 1 teaspoon of smoked paprika, 1 teaspoon of garlic powder, 1 teaspoon of salt, ground cumin, dry cilantro, and 1/2 teaspoon of cracked pepper. Stir to mix.

Pat Mahi Mahi dry and rub spice mixture onto all sides of the fish. Set aside.

To a food processor add, greek yogurt, 1/2 teaspoon of garlic powder, chipotle pepper, 1/4 teaspoon of smoked paprika, 1/4 teaspoon of salt, and lime juice. Set aside.

Heat grill to medium high heat.

Add fish to grill and grill for 2-3 minutes per side. Remove from grill and let side.

Add tortillas to grill and grill 1 minute per side to warm up and remove.

To assemble tacos, add one strip of grilled fish to corn tortilla, top with thinly sliced purple cabbage, sliced avocado and a drizzle of chipotle lime crema.

Optional garnish: fresh lime wedges to squeeze on top and fresh coriander

A Table of Mexican Delights

IMG_3496.JPGMexican food is definitely up there on the top of our ‘favourite cuisines’ list. We love the depth and variety of flavours associated with Mexican food. Sweet, citrus, spicy all working together to give the best experience! Since we have been enjoying such amazing weather of late, last week we decided to set up a Mexican feast outside! We decided to go completely vegan, kind of by accident, but you will find that Mexican food can lend itself to vegetarian/vegan food really easily.

We ended up going with roasted butternut squash and peppers and making little tacos with all of the other sauces and sides we made to go with it. I will leave you with a couple if simple recipes.


Roasted butternut squash and peppers mix:


  • Butternut squash
  • Green Pepper
  • Desiccated coconut
  • Coconut oil
  • Coriander
  • Maple syrup
  • Cayenne Pepper
  • Lime juice




Pre-heat the oven to 200c and chop the butternut squash and pepper into bitesize chunks, marinate in cayenne pepper, coconut oil, maple syrup and season. Bake for around 20 minutes until soft but charred around the edges, at this point add the desiccated coconut to toast for around 5 minutes. Add a squeeze of lime and fresh coriander and pop in a large sharing bowl.

Chili herb dipping sauce:


  • Scotch bonnet x 1
  • Coriander
  • Parsley
  • Basil
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • Salt & Pepper
  • Olive oil 4tbs
  • Water 50ml


This is a punchy hot sauce, but it has a beautiful fruity flavour from the scotch bonnet. In a food processor add 1 scotch bonnet (seeds in) large bunch of coriander, basil and parsley with the stalks, garlic, olive oil, water and seasoning. Blitz into a smooth bright green sauce, add a squeeze of lime and pop into a dipping bowl with a spoon for the brave.

Quick & Easy pickled red onions


  • Red spring onions
  • 2 limes – Juiced
  • 10ml white wine vinegar
  • Salt
  • Small pinch of brown sugar


This is the easiest way to get a pickled onion bite to a dish without boiling spices and vinegar for hours! Slice the onions (these could also be shallots or leeks if that’s all you have), cover in the lime juice, vinegar and salt/sugar. This is so tasty added to your Mexican meal to add crunch! We would recommend serving these dishes with a plate of warm soft tortilla wraps, natural yoghurt, avocado, crunchy red cabbage and some mango for added fruitiness.



Every Little Helps


‘Plastic Free – Every little helps…’

IMG_3311It’s true, we are all talking about plastic waste more now, and although we may not all be aware, it’s certainly taken the spot light in news articles over the past couple months. That being said, are supermarkets really doing their bit to help? Still, every week when the Ocado order arrives, I am baffled by the amount of ridiculous packaging! Don’t get me wrong, it’s not only Ocado doing this. I get that some things currently are totally un realistic not to use plastic, but when you are receiving 1 aubergine wrapped in a plastic bag, or two lemons on a plastic tray, in a plastic package… Really? I know not everyone has the luxury of space to grow their own veg or be close to a farm shop or grocers so the supermarkets need to pull their finger out. For those of you that are local, I can highly recommend Lathcoats farm shop (Great Baddow) for fresh veg with of course no plastic! And you will be supporting a local business too.



‘Pea, Mint & Goats Cheese, Pearl Barley Risotto’

So, following on from last month’s edition talking about fresh home grown produce, we thought we would leave you with this fresh simple recipe since we had our first harvest of peas ready for picking!


  • 1 shallot
  • 3 cloves of black garlic
  • 150g pearl barley
  • 200ml veg stock
  • 1 lemon
  • 150g fresh peas
  • Mint (around 6 large leaves)
  • Big sprig of thyme
  • Goats cheese
  • Parmesan
  • Spinach



Finely slice the shallots and sweat them down in a pan with salt and pepper. Just before they start to brown too much, add the pearl barley and ensure you give it a good mix for a couple of minutes to give all the grains a coating of oil. At this point, add your garlic.

Add stock, bring to the boil and then simmer for 25-30 minutes.

Meanwhile, blitz up the peas (keep a handful to one side) with lemon, mint, 100ml of water. Season with salt and pepper to taste. The result should end up in a paste texture.

During the last 5 minutes of you pearl barely cooking, add the pea and mint puree that you have made and mix in well. Grate as much or as little parmesan as you wish at this point too and add it to the pan along with the peas you kept to one side.

Dish up into pasta bowls, top with chunks of goat’s cheese, thyme and a drizzle of olive oil.


BLUESHACK Beers – Chelmsford Brew Co.

Over the past year, Kayleigh and I have been planning our wedding for this August. Through this process and finding our band, ‘Three Mile Hill’, we have stumbled on a budding new brewing company in the heart of Chelmsford.


‘Who are Chelmsford Brew Co. ?’

BLUESHACK Beers – Chelmsford Brew Co. is a small family set up brewing company, located in brewery fields, in Great Baddow. Hans, the bar manager at the Lion Inn in Boreham, decided to set up Chelmsford Brew Co. with a little help from his dad and brother. Having made a fair few home brews in a little blue shack at the end of the garden, and refining some recipes, BlueShack Beers was born.



‘The Big Launch’

BlueShack Beers have currently already been out on sale in the Lion Inn, the Ale house, and most recently Chelmsford Beer and Cider festival. On the 7th March, they had an official launch event at the brewery which we were lucky enough to be invited to! It was a great afternoon, with 5 different brews being offered out, with plenty of snacks and live music from ‘Three Mile Hill’. It was really fun to be talked through the brewing process and actually see the process of their most recent brew, and to smell the hops fresh from the tank!



Currently there are 3 cask ales; (Port Jackson dark ale, Blueshack Pale ale and Blueshack Bitter), and 2 keg beers on offer; (Radio city pale ale and Fou-Fou Red American amber).


I would highly recommend getting down to a venue to try these beers out. The beers are all fantastic and imagine we will see these starting to appear in many other locations around town soon!


We were lucky enough to be invited to the Riverside Inn for the launch of Andi Walker’s taker over. Following the big success of his pop up, Andi has become a permanent fixture from January 2018, showcasing his new bistro inspired menu.

‘Who is Andi Walker?’


Andi first entered the public eye after appearing on MasterChef the Professionals back in 2015 and becoming a semi-finalist. Before MasterChef, Andi held the Head Chef position at The Woodford and at Kings College Cambridge. Andi has also had experience in a three-AA-rosette restaurant in Suffolk. Since MasterChef, Andi has hosted The Noise of Strangers Pop-up event in Leeds, as well as creating and serving an exclusive autumn menu at a fully-booked two-night event at Café Otto in central Paris. At the beginning of October, he also reached the finals in the Chef of the Year category at the Essex Life Food and Drink Awards.

‘The Big Launch’

Andi’s new set up sees the restaurant being split into three distinct areas, with three menus. There will be bar snacks and little bites in the bar area, a full gastro menu on the ground floor dining area and continuing the 7 course tasting menu upstairs. The tasting menu is set to run on Friday and Saturday nights whilst the Gastro and bar menu will run all week. For those of you that have been to the Riverside Inn before, you will notice a few decorative changes to the upstairs, but generally still keeping the same feel.


The evening started with some complimentary bubbles or cocktails which continued throughout the evening, and the bar area was full of family, friends and press. There was around 70 people there and unfortunately the canapés were a little light in the area that we were seated. That being said, what we did try was delicious. They showcased the bar snacks menu.

Ham Hock in a crisp breaded coating accompanied by a mustard mayo. Very tasty, and the first piece of meat I have eaten since Christmas! The meat was very soft and tender, still moist but maintained the crispy breadcrumb coating. I can see why this is on the bar snacks menu as they go down very easily, and could picture having a few drinks with them. Similarly, there was breaded monkfish with a tartar sauce. I have always been a big fan on monkfish anyway, but this did not disappoint. Monkfish has a real meaty texture to it, quite a robust fish, cooked really well so it was still soft and fell apart in the mouth. Perfect with the pot of tangy tartar sauce.

There were also samples of the ‘Essex sausage roll’. Now this is none of you Greggs mass produced stuff. This had to be one of the best sausage rolls I’ve had in a long time. The pastry was perfectly flaky and had a sweet honey coating, the meat was well seasoned, tasted fresh and homemade. Dipped in brown sauce? perfect! I did see some southern fried chicken and butternut squash bahji’s circling but unfortunately didn’t get to taste them! They flew off the trays. The bread and marmite butter, was also a hit. Well it was for me as I’m a marmite lover, soft fresh bread with some marmite butter slathered on; could have filled myself up on just that! I went and found Andi at the kitchen pass as he was plating up desserts. Raspberry cheesecake; topped the evening off nicely, not too rich, bursts of sharp raspberry and a really nice creamy undertone.

I would definitely recommend giving this place a go. It seems to be set for a drastic improvement on any of the previous food that has come from the Riverside Inn, and Andi will definitely bring the pub up to where it needs to be to compete with the ever-growing range of places to eat in Chelmsford.


‘A Few Words’

During the organised chaos of the evening, I was able to grab a few quick words with Andi. A truly genuine guy, He has worked his menus around fresh, seasonal, local produce. Therefore, the menus will be constantly changing depending on what is in season and what is available at the time. He said that he is “really looking forward to getting started and getting into service now. It has been really tough job and feels a little drained, but it’s all totally worth it. The area hasn’t really got much in the way of places to eat like this, so hopefully the locals really get behind it and help make it a success.”


‘Our favourite, foodie recipe books right now’


So, it’s a new year and the January resolutions of drinking kale smoothies, eating nothing but chicken and broccoli with not a carb in sight are over.

As a couple, we try to eat in moderation but cutting out foods never happens as we love to cook and love eating even more. We cook from scratch every day but with busy lives and workloads, we can get into a recipe rut very easily. To inspire us with new ideas and ingredients we buy lots of cook books, where we try out and adapt lots of recipes.

Our favourites at the moment are – ‘Lagom’ by Steffi Knowles-Dellner for Swedish recipes asking for minimal cooking and lots of raw ingredients; Elly Pear’s ‘Fast day & Feast days’ great for the 5:2 diet; ‘A Modern Way to Eat’ by Anna Jones with over 200 vegetarian recipes; Yotam Ottolenghi’s ‘Plenty More’ which takes vegetables from side dishes into bold and spice laden meals and lastly; ‘A lot on her Plate’ by Rosie Birkett who writes crowd pleasing and accessible recipes full of seasonal tips.


We both hate the word diets as it tends to feel negative and, let’s be honest, depressing – we prefer to think about how to cook meals that make you feel happy and a full of goodness, a change in lifestyle.

Elly Pear’s book shows recipes for both fast and feast days within the 5:2 plan; these are fantastic when considering moderation, there are pages that show you which types of food go with others to assist your digestion. Some examples of the recipes we cook on a monthly basis are; Root veg and Halloumi fritters along with the Pear café Frittata which is perfect for lunch boxes the next day.

Everyone is joining the veggie band wagon, whether is Meat Free Monday or Veganuary, it seems vegetarian recipes are most sought after at the moment.

IMG_2289Anna Jones’ book has hundreds of recipes perfect for showing us all how to make the most of seasonal vegetables from breakfast through to dinner; with pages of cooking times, alternative combinations and everyday cupboard staples. The ones we love to cook are – The really hungry burger, she uses brown rice and tonnes of mushrooms to make this convincingly meaty patty, which beats the usual sad and dry bean burgers. The ‘Killer roast’ is brilliant, no flabby Quorn chicken in sight; just well-cooked and beautifully flavoured vegetables and succulent sauces.

Rosie Birkett is a food writer and an Instagram storm, often presenting on programs such as ‘Sunday Brunch’ (we met her at Taste London last year and took a cheesy selfie…)

Her book gives us recipes for dinner parties and family meals, all of which include recipes where ingredients are easy to get hold of and quick to cook; but put on an impressive show to guests. Our favourites are the ‘Octopus, avocado & butter bean salad with a chilli garlic dressing’ and ‘Crispy sesame-crusted tuna tacos with mango salsa’ – both are fantastic for sharing plates, when everyone can dive in. There are even a few cheeky cocktail recipes at the back on the book!

So, why not put the chia seed pudding and protein shake down; pick up a recipe book and give some of these healthy and fresh dishes a try.

Tasty Travels.

So, it’s been a while since we have posted. We wanted to tell you about our recent travels and everything we tasted on our way, here it goes…


In October last year, we went on a wonderfully romantic trip to Venice, Italy. I heard mixed messages about the culinary and cultural scene, a lot of negative comments about it’s heavily tourist led restaurants and over priced drinks.

I went on my usual pre-holiday research frenzy and found some gems and made a list of where to eat and what to visit.

Il Ridotto was rated high on lots of food blogs, had won some foodie awards and seemed like our more ‘date night’ suited restaurant (with a 4 day trip, we wanted a wide variety of places) On first impressions, we found the atmosphere friendly and inviting. The waitresses suggested an Italian wine and we opted for a tasting menu of five course.

IMG_0967First to be served was a refreshing mackerel dish with textures of fresh tomato and carrots.






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Next was the Scallop dish seared and served with pumpkin and tomato purees, topped with crispy black potato sticks. YUM!






Then this delicious pasta dish with seafood bisque. It was creamy yet light. Some of the best pasta I have ever eaten.






IMG_0976 2



This piece of cod was perfectly crispy yet light and fluffy. Served with cabbage and a white wine, garlic sauce.





Last, but not least on the menu – Tiramisu. Vanilla custard ice cream, chocolate crumb, coffee jelly cubes, chocolate mousse and caramel twill. It tasted as amazing as it looks.



We came across a little cafe by Rialto market, after walking for a while over bridges and in and out over archways. This cafe was full of locals and it wasn’t much past midday, the smells and authentic menus got us through the door.

We ordered two mushroom risottos with two Aperol spritz, and soaked up the relaxed Venetian vibe.

IMG_1018 2

We walked down the canal to Rialto market and admired the fresh fish and chaotic chat from one to another.

Yes, Venice is a little tourist heavy and can be expensive but we loved it. You just need to do a little hunting to find the real Venice.


In February, we decided on a last minute trip away for Valentines day. We spent a fantastic five days in Copenhagen, exploring the unexpected foodie hub and enjoying the welcoming company of the locals.  It was a freezing 5 degrees or below but it didn’t dampen the fun; bars and restaurants with roaring fires and duking into markets or museums meant we weren’t cold for long.

The first thing we did, when arriving at breakfast time, was follow the recommendations to visit Kalaset; a little cafe bustling with locals and a long wait to sit down (not to worry though, the bar staff make sure you can perch up on a stool with a delicious coffee to defrost your fingers)

We loved the vegan and vegetarian options here (something that continued to surprise me about Copenhagen – we fell into the myth that its all pickled fish and cured meats!)

Billy went for the popular Mormor, a selection of spicy sausages and bacon, scrambled eggs, cheese, roasted baby potatoes, fruit, bread and yoghurt. I had a rye bread and scrambled egg dish with a side of those wonderful herby roast potatoes. An amazing welcome to food heaven!


The meatpacking district is full of cool and industrial looking buildings in the heart of Copenhagen. We spotted a place called Warpigs, as soon as we walked in we were hit with smell of barbecue food, and automatically perked up and felt ready to get drinking due to the amazing buzz of the place. We had a chat with the barman and ordered a couple of locally brewed beers.

If we hadn’t had booked a place a few doors down, we would have stayed longer.

We tried out a restaurant called Kodbyens Fiskebar, there was a perfect mix of fine dining and chilled dinner in the decor and music.

We ordered a couple of cocktails and went in for a seafood feast.



Haddock roe fried in butter until crisp, served with a herb sauce and textures of egg. I took a risk with this one, as roe is something I thought of as greasy and a chip shop last resort. This dish blew all of those previous roe meals out of the water, really soft and moreish with a salty and citrus balance that worked so well.




Billy went for a seafood selection with fresh fennel shavings and a green risotto.






For main, we both chose the haddock cooked in butter and served with a wild mushroom puree, potato foam and crispy kale. SO good.






On a cold early evening, we were on our way back to the hotel to get ready for dinner when we walked past a charming French Bistro. We went in and admired the huge bookcases and spiral staircase. We settled in for some cheese, chutney and Aperol Spritz. Love a pre-dinner meal and drink…

We walked down Nyhavn, full of people enjoying the views and pouring in and out of the various restaurants, cafes and bars. We decided on a cosy meal in Cap Horn, we sat by the roaring fire and settled in for a few hours of wine, food and relaxing.


I went for a warm and hearty lentil, butternut squash and kale salad topped with a light goats cheese mousse. Was perfect for a cold night by the crackling fire.


Billy had lamb shanks with crispy fried brussel sprouts, bacon and mash. He loved it.




One of our favourite foodie days out was at Papiroen or ‘Paper Island’ as its commonly known. It was one of the best street food markets I have ever been to, none that we have visited in London match up. So many choices of amazing food, for both veggies and meat eaters, amazing bars and pubs with a toasty fire and seating in the centre of it all.



We couldn’t pass up a hot cup of mulled wine in the snow. The skies were bright blue every day!

We both went for a burger and beer. Billy opted for a cheese burger with pickled pink onions and kale. Mine was a vegan pulled pork burger with pickled cucumbers, homemade spicy mayo and topped with crispy plantain (mine was SO much better!)



Billy loved being in charge of the fire and kept adding logs/poking it around…


For Valentines day, and our last meal in an amazing city, we went to the restaurant Vakst.

It’s decor was stunning, like a greenhouse full of plants and the food lived up to the surroundings. We chose to have the special ‘date night’ menu which gave us a selection of wines and food…


This was the ‘starter’. Little crisp potatoes hidden in a thyme plant, Salmon fish roe broth, silver leaf potatoes, rye bread and fresh butter, beetroot crisps.


Main was a pork and fennel dish for Billy, a seasonal veg dish for me and a side of whipped goats cheese.


And then there was dessert – an amazing selection of madeleine cakes, marshmallow and lemon curd, sorbet.



In April, we wanted to get away to some sunshine. We chose a trip to Port d’Alcudia.

It was a beautiful trip full of sunshine, cocktails, seafood and lots of time on our private rooftop with jacuzzi (yep, I know. Showing off)

We went to a lovely little restaurant called Restaurante S’Arc in the old town, we sat in the court yard which was full of twinkly lights and trees. Ate a delicious three course meal and drank a few glasses of Prosecco.


Whilst staying in Port d’Alcudia we were lucky enough to be there at the time of the annual ‘Sepia festival’, a celebration of all things cuttlefish; a local catch at the port. We tried some beautifully crisp cuttlefish croquettes with smokey aioli. It was so exciting to see the town filling the marquee and ordering food and drinking wine.


We spent most afternoons on the beach, walking in and out of cafes and listening to music outside the bars. Billy always ends up with the most extravagant cocktails wherever we are…


That’s all for now, thanks for reading.

Love Kayleigh x


Summertime Cooking

So, whilst we will all be making the most of August and the nice weather (fingers crossed) it usually means BBQ time for most of us. Let us leave you with these simple BBQ recipes to impress your guests!


Our jerk marinade

This marinade takes a little while to put together but it really is worth it! Super tasty! It will be enough for a whole chicken, so adjust accordingly to the amount you need.

Obviously the longer you leave this the better, but even after 1 hour you will have some tasty jerk chick or whatever you decide to marinade. I used chicken drumsticks and wings. Coat your chicken in the marinade and leave it for a few hours. For best results, after the chicken has been marinated, I recommend cooking the chicken pieces for around 35mins in the oven at 190 degrees’ fan. This will make sure the centres are cooked through! Now for the best bit, put your cooked chicken pieces onto the BBQ for around 5 mins. This will give that smokey flavour and really crisp up the skin. Whilst you have your chicken on the BBQ feel free to add a little more marinade with a basting brush if you have any left over.



1 tbsp All Spice

1 tbsp Black peppercorns

½ tsp Ground cinnamon

½ nutmeg, freshly grated

¼ bunch of thyme, take the effort to pick the leaves

4 spring onions chopped small and roughly

3 garlic cloves chopped roughly

1 scotch bonnet chopped small and roughly

1 tbsp dark brown sugar

2 tbsp dark soy sauce

Juice of 1 lime





Watermelon Chow

We personally recommend making this simple chow to accompany your jerk meats! its so refreshing and knocks the burning heat out of it for those that aren’t too great with spice! IMG_1366

I have put this recipe here, but feel free to adjust to your own personal liking and for the amount that you want to make.

You will want to start with cutting up some fresh watermelon into small square chunks and put into a mixing bowl. For this, I have gone with half a small watermelon. Add a tbsp of olive oil, a small crack of salt and pepper and the juice of 1/2 a fresh lime. Cut up a small hand full of mint and coriander and mix in with the watermelon, and that is it! serve as a side for those spicy dishes.


BBQ Rum Pineapple

A perfect dessert for those BBQ’s! this is really simple. You will need a ripe fresh pineapple that you must cut into slices and take out the hard core. When everyone is eating their mains, take your pineapple slices and put them in a bowl. Add a good serving of rum to the bowl and leave the pineapple to soak it all up! I left this to soak for about 1hr, but again you can leave it soaking for longer if you wish. Use as much rum as you feel appropriate for what you want. I like a strong rum taste so added a fair bit! I used a dark Jamaican rum for this. (I would definitely recommend using a good dark rum).


One you’re ready, you’ll need to BBQ your pineapple slices on a nice hot grill. Keep an eye on them as you don’t want to burn them, but a nice charing of grill lines is good! Serve up a few slices per portion, drizzle over any rum thats left in the bowl they were soaking in and add a nice scoop of good vanilla ice cream and drizzle of maple syrup. So tasty, and looks great!



Cheers, Billy

Summer G&T’s – Lamb and Watt tonic

Okay, so as I have mentioned before, we LOVE gin. There are so many gins out there on the market now that our choices seem simply endless! But, regardless of how good your gin is, unless you get yourself a premium tonic, its always only going to be ‘just a G&T’ in my opinion.


You’re all probably quite familiar with the current tonic brand leaders at the moment such as Fever-Tree or Fentimans. Now don’t get me wrong, these taste really good and I’m a sucker for the Mediterranean Fever-Tree, but! theres a new tonic on the market that I think is going to start to rival these top two if it gets the traction it deserves!

I first discovered Lamb & Watt tonic at Taste of London festival this year and can honestly say it was a taste sensation! They currently have four flavours on the market; Original, basil, cucumber and hibiscus. The flavours are so clear and fresh, and I know it sounds silly to say but the cucumber one literally tastes like you have just cut fresh cucumber and put it in, or when you try the basil tonic its like you have put half a dozen basil leaves in. I was quite shocked at how good they taste. They are all made using spring water from the lake district which may be the secret of their taste!

Im a big fan of the hibiscus & basil tonics at the moment. I bought a selection online when I got home from Taste and have used them all already! I honestly cannot recommend these enough, definitely worth a try! Plus you can get them from between 79p and £1.19 per bottle depending on how many you buy. I bought mine from but they are appearing on various other online sites now.


Here is a really simple summery G&T to accompany those BBQs!

IMG_1306What you will need:

Gin! I will let you decide, but for this one try not to pick one thats too heavy on the spices and go with something a little lighter and more floral,

Lamb & Watt hibiscus tonic water,

Frozen mixed berries,




Method for one glass:

Nothing hard here at all! use a nice big wine or spritz glass if you have one, throw in a hand full of frozen berries. I have used these instead of I’ve, but feel free to add ice too if you wish. Slap a few mint leaves to wake them up and release some of its oils and throw them in along with a nice thick wedge of pink grapefruit. Add a good sized double gin, topped up with a bottle of Lamb & Watt hibiscus tonic water. So tasty!


Cheers, Billy

Brighton & Hove food and drink festival

Last month, Billy and I went to the Brighton & Hove food and drink festival on Hove Lawns. We have been before and love the relaxed atmosphere and the wide range of food on offer. The weather held out with no rain (miracle on bank holiday weekend!) and we ate our way through stalls and demonstrations hosted by Andrew Kay.

First things first, we hunted down the Gin…


We wanted to eat everything, far too many choices to decide! I went for a seitan pulled pork burger from a great vegan stall run by Earthlings Edibles. Billy opted for a Lamb flatbread with, literally, everything in it made by Space and Thyme who make delicious healthy kebabs.



*I couldn’t wait to eat it, excuse the bite marks! I cant rave enough about this burger, Im not a big meat alternative fan and as tend to opt for options with vegetables instead – this was one of the best I have eaten, had great texture and the spicy sauce was so tasty. As you can see, Billy was starving too!

We had a walk around staring at other peoples food (and the 100’s of cute sausage dogs that took over Brighton that weekend) We grabbed another drink from the Blackdown stall which was a summery Gin cup full of fruit and definitely full of alcohol. brighton2

Suitably full and a bit tipsy, we decided to watch some demonstrations in the tent with Andrew Kay. Started off with Matt Gillan from Pike & Pine, who made new season lamb with strawberries and samphire and charcoal hollandaise; it looked amazing and smelled great (I didnt eat it as I’m Pescatarian but watching Matt create this dish was a treat)

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Next up was Dan Cotton from Market restaurant, who was getting ready to prepare a mouth watering dish of confit tuna, compressed watermelon and wasabi; it tasted as incredible as it sounds, all of my favourite things on one plate. It was so good that we forgot to take a photograph!



Once we had tried and tested almost everything and made the most of the festival, we walked to the Cocktail Shack which is part of the Artist Residence hotel. The atmosphere in this place makes it feel like summer, the bartenders are wearing Hawaiian shirts with matching decor and light flooding through the bay windows.

We had a Brighton cocktail week wristband and made the most of the special weekend cocktail offers on the menu. Billy went for a Truffle Shuffle – Havana 3 year old, banana, truffle honey, ginger and lime (plus, who doesn’t love the Goonies?)


I opted for the Keffir and Loathing – Casabel Tequila, Montolobos Mezcal, Campari, Pineapple, Agave, Lime and Keffir leaf. It was delicious, I love Tequila anyway but this was really fresh and zesty.




We stayed at the Grand Hotel for the night, again deciding to try out their cocktails on offer for the Cocktail week. We both went for the Espresso Martini which came served in dry ice. The drink itself tasted perfect and did the job at waking us up and giving us both an energy boost ready for dinner.

Dinner was booked at 64 Degrees, somewhere I had been dying to try for months after it had won so many awards. When we walked it, the Chefs pass was full with people eating and drinking, watching the theatre of making the dishes. Billy and I decided on a table when booking as we wanted more time to enjoy the evening. Sitting down and looking around, the restaurant is tiny and only seats under 20 guests, so booking is vital.

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As soon as we took our coats off, water was bought over and we ordered a bottle of wine which came in minutes served on ice. Once we had ordered our dishes (we ordered a lot, and it took a while to decide but the waitress wasn’t pushy)

We were presented with homemade dark rye bread rolls, which came with marmite butter; was the nicest combination, so much so we asked for more.


When you order, they tell you that the chef will decide which dishes he wants to send out to the table first so that he can make the tasting experience work as best as possible. Each dish came out one by one, in the middle of the table, with sharing plates. The first dish was the grey mullet, red pepper and mussels. The fish was cooked perfectly with a crispy skin and crunchy seasoning, it was sitting on a bed of red pepper puree, pepper and herb oil and steamed mussels.


After a short break and some chilled wine, the next dish arrived – this was the asparagus, grapefruit and brown butter. I couldn’t shut up about how tasty this was, the asparagus was al dente and salty surrounded but a caramalised butter crumb which gave amazing texture but the crowning glory had to be the pool of rich hollandaise next to it – beautiful!


Following this, came the jerk trout, avocado and pineapple. Usually I order spicy food and don’t feel the heat, and end up being disappointing but this had a real kick! The fish was served as a ceviche with the spiced pasted around the fillet, blobs of avocado puree, red chilies and pineapple cubes. Was full of flavour, didn’t want to share it with Billy!


Next was another of the vegetable dishes, the pressed potato, parsley and baby gem; again the title of the dish allows for a little surprise once it arrives. This came as a stack of potato, crispy,  full of leeks and butter served with a grilled gem lettuce and herb puree. I loved the contrast between the bitter lettuce and almost creamy potato.


Lastly from the savoury dishes to some to the table was; cauliflower, pangritata and grape. Beautifully roasted vegetables, against the sweet dried fruit.


We were SO full but had to try out the desserts. I chose the rum bear, which was a grown up giant gummy bear full of alcohol and sour with sherbet – so nice! Billy had chosen a ridiculously huge coffee, caramel and chocolate dessert with malted ice cream and so many textures I had to steal some. Overall, 64 Degrees was one of the most down to earth and relaxed places to eat, some of the most experimental and delicious food which makes the most of minimal ingredients. Ten out of ten.


The next morning, before we drove back home, we had to grab an ice cream and take a nap on the beach. We tried some lovely favours from Boho Geleto – Vegan custard cream and salted caramel.

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