Fenwick Food Hall Relaunch

Monday, 2 November 2015

Fenwick Food Hall

Fenwick Food Hall Chocolates

You might already know this if you've followed my blog for a while but one of my favourite places in the North East is Fenwick department store. Growing up, it was always and still is a treat to go see the Fenwick Christmas window display and my Mom and I will often pop in for a special occasion shopping trip. Fenwick is the place I was taken to choose my first Mulberry handbag and was the place I bought my first pair of designer shoes. It's where I go for special presents for the people I love and for the little luxuries that you can't seem to find anywhere else.

Now I have to admit, I only really used the Food Hall at Christmas. I'd pop in for stocking filler lollies and Charbonnel Truffles. Or if I was in desperate need of a sugary treat mid-shop, I'd pop for a macaroon. However I shall most definitely be spending a lot more time there now!

Fenwick Food Hall Cakes

Fenwick Food Hall Mason and Rye

The new Food hall officially launched on October 23rd and it looks absolutely stunning. I went along with Tasha and I didn't know where to look as we first went in. Just like children in a sweetshop, we stood a little bit in awe until a lovely lady from the marketing team popped over to tell us all about the new look Food Hall and what was planned for the evening.

What I love is how the new Food Hall combines local businesses such as The Naked Deli and OCC with well known National brands such as Fuego and Mason & Rye. And as we explored the store Tasha and I literally 'Oooooh'd' in sync as we spotted all the delicious food on display and tucked into the cakes and canapés. I was also really impressed with the amount of gluten and dairy free products as it's a struggle to find luxury allergen free treats.

I couldn't possibly manage to squeeze everything into one blog post so you really will have to go see it for yourself! For more information on opening times and the store, take a look here. Thank you to Fenwick for such a lovely evening - I absolutely cannot wait to pop back in and do a little pre-festive food shop!

Byron Burger Grey Street

Wednesday, 30 September 2015

Byron Burger Newcastle Grey Street

Four years ago when I was working in London my lovely boss at the time, Ellie, took me out for lunch in Camden. Though nothing particularly unusual happened that day, I remember everything about it... It was a baking hot summer's day, I was wearing jeans and a black top and we got on a bus only for it to be diverted and had to get off and walk back to Soho. However the best part of the day and probably the reason I remember it so well was because it was my very first experience of a Byron Hamburger!

Now anyone who has eaten out with me will tell you how much of a nightmare I am because of my allergy to black pepper/sulphur. The stuff is literally in everything nowadays. Waiting Staff look at me in despair when I explain and run to the kitchen only to usually come back and say the chef will make me a salad. Now don't get me wrong, I love a good salad but what I love more are burgers. Big, meaty, juicy burgers are the key to my heart but I've struggled for years to find a patty not pre-seasoned. That was until Ellie introduced me to Byron.

So for the past few years every time I've popped back to London, you guessed it, I've been getting my burger fix across the city. That was until an email pinged in my inbox last week inviting me to the launch of Newcastle's very first Byron! I did an excited scream in the office and rsvp'd myself and my good friend Debbie straight away. And let me tell you now, it didn't disappoint.

Who takes a vegetarian to a burger joint by the way?! Oh wait that's me... because Byron have no problems with that! Veggie lovers have a choice of veggie friendly patties which can be subbed into any burger choice. So Debbie opted for the Mushroom burger while I tackled my favourite, a classic cheese and we shared courgette fries, french fries & a blue cheese dip. All Byron burgers are cooked medium, unless asked for otherwise, perfect for me as I think over-cooking can ruin a good piece of meat (sorry Debbie)!

We polished it off with an Elderflower Cordial and a cheeky glass of Sauvignon Blanc, ready to leave when our super friendly waitress (who I really wish I'd got her name from) said 'Are you sure you don't want desert?... I'll just leave the dessert menus here.' One Banoffee Mess and a Caramel & Honeycomb Sundae later, Debbie and I pretty much rolled down Grey St!

A massive thank you to Byron for having us along and treating us to such a lovely evening. The great news is if this post has got your mouth watering, Byron now have restaurants all over the place. Find your nearest here! And if like me you've got a fussy allergy, Byron have that covered too - check out their allergen info here. As for myself and Debbie we've already scheduled in our next visit to Grey St!

Please note Byron did provide me with a complimentary meal on their opening night, featured for the purpose of review. Although this post is sponsored the above ramblings are my 100% honest opinion.

A Night in at The Bridges

Sunday, 2 August 2015

Love Sunderland

I hate blog posts that start with 'A few weeks back I got an invite...' but there's really no other way to start this! In fact, I got more than one invite, I had about three emails and a Facebook message inviting me along to a little blogger soirée at The Bridges in Sunderland. I was attending a wedding the day after the event and I'd actually already planned a trip into the city after work to get a few bits and pieces, so the invite couldn't have come at a better time.

The event wasn't just about The Bridges and was instead about the city as a whole. Now I've moved back into Durham, I have to admit I haven't been into Sunderland shopping for a while so it was nice to hear from the experts, Sam & Andy at The Bridges and Gemma at the Sunderland Bid, about all the exciting and new things going on!

Now everyone knows what a shopping centre looks like and Sunderland's Bridges is no different! (So I used my favourite photo I've ever taken in Sunderland for this post!) It has everything you'd need which is why I'm often surprised when some locals say they'd rather go elsewhere. Convenience is key for me. So the news that late night shopping on Thursdays now included free car parking made my day.

As well as the retailers in the Bridges, Gemma gave a lovely talk about all the fantastic independent retailers in the city, like Serendipity (my favourite vintage teashop), Hot Rats Record Store and Pop Recs, Frankie & the Heartstrings very own shop! And about the events like the Airshow and the stage shows at the Empire! There really is so much going on, I'd be on all day if I tried to write about it all!

After hearing all about the new developments in the city, we were invited to make our own bath bombs in Lush and have make overs at Debenhams. I left everyone to their own devices at this point though and went on my confetti and last minute bronzer finding session. Thankfully I managed to get both plus a few other bits and pieces! If you're stuck for something to do or fancying a shopping trip I'd definitely recommend a little visit to Sunderland. The Bridges even has a really handy page which tells you about all the events either in the centre or in the city - click here to take a look! And finally a big thank you to Sam, Bernice & Gemma for having me along!

An alternative Friday night out.. at the Cricket!

Monday, 15 June 2015

I love a good night out in town, dancing with cocktails as much as anyone but it's nice to have a change every now and again - don't you think?

Durham CCC is somewhere I've drove past lots of times but never actually ventured in! Though I don't mind watching cricket... I've always been more of a football or tennis kind of a girl myself but a few months back an email asking if I'd like to attend landed in my inbox and I thought why not?!

So the other Friday, myself and my friend Debbie grabbed our warm coats and headed for Durham's first ever nighttime match under the floodlights. We grabbed two glasses of Pimms from the bar and made ourselves comfy outside and tried to figure out the rules. The atmosphere was really relaxed and much less intense than football matches but still just as fun.

It was a successful Derby night for Durham who won against Yorkshire by six runs! Tipsy and tired, J had kindly offered to pick us up and take us home so after a short hunt in the car park for him, we were on our way.

If you fancy something a little different for a Friday night out then I'd definitely recommend giving the T20 matches a go. They're much shorter than your usual cricket match and there's lots of other things going on too to keep you entertained! Thanks very much for having us Durham CCC!

Please note Durham CCC did provide me with the two complimentary tickets for the purpose of review. Although this post is sponsored the above ramblings are my 100% honest opinion.