C2C Moments - Festive Preview

Wednesday, 29 October 2014

I'm not ashamed to admit it but I love Christmas... I don't mind that every year the Christmas things go in the shops earlier and I have been known to purchase presents in June! I like looking at overdone houses (not mine) and can think of nothing better than singing (or screeching) along to Mariah Carey, All I Want for Christmas in the shower, however there is one person who out-does me at all things festive and that is my good friend Nicola. So when I received an email inviting me along to a preview of the Christmas Menu at Coast 2 Coast, I jumped at the chance & texted Nic to keep the night free.

After a quick pre-drink after work, myself and Mrs. Christmas headed to Coast to Coast in The Gate, in Newcastle. We got there just in time and were handed a warm Spiced Apple Cider which made me think of sitting in my pj's in front of the fire at home - it was delicious. Now I'm not a big drinker, almost t-total but if it's in a cocktail glass or has a bit of fizz, I can't say no. So the first drink in our cocktail class the Mimosa had me at hello. A twist on a classic Bellini with a splash of Grand Marnier - I will be indulging on this on Christmas morning!

Next up was an egg-nog inspired mix with rum raisons polished off with a sprinkle of chocolate, and then I got picked on! I'm a natural as you can see from the photos (thanks to Nic & Jeff) of me whipping up my white chocolate orange martini. My second favourite, these were delicious.

Then came the food which was all explained by Coast to Coast Newcastle's Head Chef - despite both being petite in frame, Nicola and myself managed to munch through, 2 starters, Goats Cheese Bruschetta Bites and Mushroom Risotto, 2 Mains, A cheese burger in a brioche bun with bacon marinated & drizzled in maple syrup with a side of fries and colesaw.... AND A Christmas Dinner, complete with turkey and all the trimmings. Just when we thought we were about to pop desserts arrived, pecan nut pie with side servings of chantilly cream and vanilla pod ice cream, a massive chocolate brownie sundae and a scoop of each flavour ice cream on the menu.

If you've read Girl in the North before you'll know I'm an incredibly fussy eater due to my black pepper/sulphur allergy and quite often have to opt for gluten free however there was no need and so I took advantage and ate pretty much everything put in front of me. Everything tasted so good and I made sure to do an extra 30 minutes in the gym today for it. After dessert we all rolled to the bar for one final cocktail, The Snowman - seriously tasty and very cute, he's topped off with twiglet arms, Oreo eyes and a carrot.

It was such a lovely evening and what was really nice to hear was how much thought had gone into the Christmas offer at Coast to Coast... From the stories behind the cocktails to the reasons for the food choices, it was nice to hear the brand wasn't just another machine churning out the standard and that it actually really valued it's employees and customers. I had such a fun night, I cannot wait to go back now - anyone for a burger?

Find out all about Coast to Coast & where your nearest restaurant is.

October Updates

Wednesday, 22 October 2014

In typically British fashion, I'll start off with saying how rubbish the weather has been lately and how unprepared I was for it's arrival. Sandals in the pouring rain did not go down well the other week at all! One of the nice things about the weather turning though, has been heading home at the weekends for catch up's with my family and cups of tea in front of the wood burner.

Last weekend my Mom and I headed to the new TK Maxx store in the town near to where we live. Mom was Christmas present shopping for various friends and family so I won't spill all the details on here just yet about what we bought but we got some amazing bargains.

I took a long walk round our fields when we got back past my favourite trees which you can read about on Instagram. I'd left my Hunter wellies at home so I borrowed some of my Mom's, wrapped up in my Barbour and headed out into the wind with the dog.

It was such a lovely chilled weekend, I plan on doing exactly the same this week.

September 2014

Wednesday, 17 September 2014

Girl in the North September 2014

1. There's been lots going on this month and I feel like I've had hardly anytime time to blog! I treated myself to a manicure while Norman (my mini) had a trip to the valet. He came back polished and just in time as the weather the next weekend was perfect to put the roof down.

2. Lush night time walks on the Quayside have been more pretty than normal... I'll be sad to see the sign go down. 3. I joined the #GirlBoss club and I was pleasantly surprised. 4. You can never have too many trainers, especially when your boyfriend is a PT. My new Nike Free's make me feel like I'm floating but I'm still having issues with my shin splints.

In other news, I've been enjoying these: Restaurant reviews especially Tasha's review of Fat Hippo - Love their burgers. I'm planning a trip another trip back to London this Autumn (I miss my London friends), so these tips for free things to do will come in handy.

My absolute favourite offline read is The Guardian's Blind Date column so when I spotted this on Buzzfeed I had to share. Finally, recently I worked out I'd been writing online for a crazy amount of years which made me feel really old so I was glad I wasn't the only one when I saw this.

Great North Run Million Opening Ceremony

Thursday, 11 September 2014

Great North Run Million

Every year I am amazed by the sheer amount of friends, family and colleagues who sign up to do the Great North Run and this year, was an extra special year! This year the Great North Run was even more special than usual because it was the first event of its kind to reach its one millionth finisher! An incredible achievement for the organisers and brilliant for our region.

So to celebrate, Bupa and the Great North Run Culture people threw a bit of a party down on the Quayside on the Thursday evening before the race. I grabbed my Barbour jacket fearing a chilly Autumn night and the Mr and I headed into town. I have to say it was one of the best events I have ever been to and completely blew away Disney's Epcot fireworks... if you've seen this then you'll know it was incredible!

From Mark Knopfler, Sting, Jimmy Nail, The Unthanks and Chase and Status, the whole night was a treat for the eyes and ears. It truly set everyone up for a great sporting weekend. When I got home, I stayed up late looking at everyone's photos but my favourite set were featured on The Chronicle website here. It was an absolutely amazing night and I hope that the Opening Ceremony returns next year.