Vinitus – Barcelona, Spain

Renata and I went for a weekend in Barcelona and after a day of walking around shops and markets, our feet needed a bit of a rest of we went for a well priced and very very tasty tapas and wine stop.

I absolutely love tapas and this is a good place to get large variety of tapas choices (literally anything you could think of including fresh seafood!).

corina-landa-vinitus-5661

We sat at the bar and in front of us was a gorgeous array of amazing dishes. We wanted them all!

bancone

20160722_192156
Jamon Iberico
20160722_193125
Padron Peppers
20160722_192111
Crab Stick Salad with Pan Con Tomat
20160722_193206
Burrata

Massive selection of great tapas, well priced and a very chilled atmosphere!

https://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/Restaurant_Review-g187497-d1228300-Reviews-Vinitus_Barcelona-Barcelona_Catalonia.html

Petitbo – Barcelona, Spain

Barcelona is one of my favourite cities in Europe. I love the quirkiness, the independent restaurants and cafes, the artsy vibe, the liveliness, the food, the sun, the drinks, the markets – just everything.

Renata and I went for a weekend away recently and we went for breakfast at Petitbo. It is a very cool-speakeasy-warehouse-type vibe with its mismatched chairs and comfy couches in the corner.

20160722_102400

20160722_103337

20160722_103920

20160722_103934

We started off with some coffee and breakfast. I went for the scrambled eggs with jamon (the intensely flavoured Spanish ham) which came with homemade sourdough bread and Renata went for the porridge. The food was perfect and what a great way to start our first day in Barcelona. We finished the meal with fresh juices that we took away with us.

Good food, good drinks, chilled out vibe. If you are looking for a breakfast spot in Barcelona – I’d definitely recommend this one.

20160722_111034

Spicy Crab Restaurant – Temple Street, Hong Kong

20160809_210319.jpg

Temple Street is a night market in Hong Kong where you can buy jade stones, Chinese tea sets, trinkets, bags etc. As you walk along the street you will find an interesting array of vendors, fortune tellers and opera singers. Yep – they stand on stalls singing away (no joke!).

Spicy Crab Restaurant is on the corner of one of the streets and here you can get fresh seafood every night. Just pick a number of seafood dishes and share in the middle of the table. It is very much on the street so it isn’t the nicest of venues but its a good experience being in the middle of the hustle and bustle having street food.

Steamy Seafood Cuisine – Jordan, Kowloon, Hong Kong

In Hong Kong, food is very much about the experience as well as the flavour. There are hot pot dinners, cartoon character dim sum brunches, the Chinese 12 course banquet -style dinners and even outdoor barbecue spots where you have a buffet of foods available to cook.

The current new craze is the steamed seafood restaurants, which I had never been to before, where they steam an array of different dishes and then underneath there is a congee to finish off the meal which is flavoured by all the seafood, meats and vegetables that have been steaming on top. It is GLORIOUS!

20160811_193833

20160811_194004

IMG-20160811-WA0026

My Mum, her childhood friends and I went to Steamy Seafood Cuisine in Jordan. I had never been to one of these restaurants before but a banquet of dishes came over to our table for steaming in the middle of the table in an in built steamer.

20160811_195240

There is a section in the restaurant where you can create your own sauce to go with your food. I made mine with soya sauce, fresh chilies, garlic and coriander.

The meal began with seafood (lobster, scallops, razor clams, clams and fish) and then we moved onto some chicken, steak, vegetables and Chinese turnip cakes.

20160811_195236

20160811_195601

20160811_200900

20160811_205720

20160811_205706

Then once all the steaming had been done, the steamer came off and in the pot underneath (instead of water boiling like a normal steamer) there was congee cooking away the whole time so it had absorbed all the flavours from the foods that had been steaming above it.

It was a really good experience and the food was really fresh. The food was so fresh in fact that they have all the aquariums with the seafood swimming around at the front of the restaurant. I definitely recommend.

20160811_212950

20160811_213004

http://www.openrice.com/en/hongkong/r-steamy-seafood-cuisine-jordan-guangdong-hot-pot-r474217

The Drunken Duck Inn – The Lake District – Ambleside, Cumbria, UK

20151002_152413

Towards the end of last summer 2015 (yep a tad bit late I know) – Jack, Flex and I went up to the Lake District to visit the South Lakes for a day to explore as I had never been before.

Our first stop was Lake Winderemere where we sat by the lake and went for a walk. Next was Ambleside where we went to The Drunken Duck in for lunch (recommended by Jack’s mum).

20151002_152058

20151002_152046

It is an inn that dates back to (apparently) the Victorian era and now also has a bar and restaurant with a lush yet cozy interior and an outdoor seating area that looks over the Lake District Fells.

As you walk into the bar there is a fire place that is burning away wood to keep the place warm and as you turn into the restaurant you pass a buffet of all the freshly made quiches, stews and salads that the chefs are making in front of you.

20151002_152035

20151002_152019

We sat outside as it was a lovely sunny day.

I had the Lancashire cheese, red pepper and leek quiche with a mixture of all the salads and Jack went for the pork, chili and chickpea stew with a side of polenta. The food was delicious and full of flavour.

They have their own brewery to brew their own beers which have won awards!

20151002_145504

20151002_145528

20151002_145438

We then finished off the trip at Lake Coniston where we went for a long walk and finished off with a coffee by the lake.

It was such a gorgeous day out!

Flex thoroughly enjoyed himself too – playing fetch on the large fields, swimming in the lakes and finding lots of choice of stones to put at our feet for us to throw for him. What a lad!

I definitely recommend The South Lakes and The Drunken Duck in. Perfect for a day out or to stay for a weekend.

http://drunkenduckinn.co.uk/

Double Six Beach Bakso Street Stall – Bali

Once upon a time in a far far away land, there lived a man and his wife who worked, everyday without fail, at their own magical noodle soup street stall which cures all hangovers of all the village people. All the people from the village would travel from far and wide to come and try his magical noodle soup after their village parades and fetes…

Is what would be a great start to a wonderful fairy tale. Instead I will tell you about the real noodle soup stall that I am absolutely in love with.

On a beach called Double-Six Beach in Bali, Indonesia there is a street stall which call themselves Bakso Gerobak Biru, which makes such a great Indonesian meatball noodle soup. Eating this, while sitting on the beach and looking out at the waves, in the sunshine, seriously is the best hangover cure. The meatballs are the bouncy oriental type and the noodles are a mixture of egg noodles and rice noodles which comes in a broth soup. He has the best homemade chili sauce that I love to pour all over it for a bit of spice. Costs just 50p (Rp10,000).

20150624_15315520150626_154435

While sitting on on Double-Six Beach you will definitely have a coconut seller come up to you. My advice – GET ONE! It costs a mere 50p (Rp10,000)A fresh young coconut that someone has cut open right in front of you is definitely better than any of those packaged drinks from the supermarket. This refreshing thing, partnered along with that gorgeous bowl of noodle soup, is the answer to all your hang over questions… best cure ever!

You just need to get a flight out there.

Street Food – Istanbul, Turkey

My gorgeous girlfriends and I got our back packs on flew to Istanbul in May this year for some exploring. We managed to see loads of historical sights, visit the two big bazaars and do some shopping. This post is about all the street foods I tried while I was there.2015-05-03_14.45.31

Midye Dolma (Stuffed Mussels) – Found at the Ferry Port on the Asian Side20150504_194533

20150504_194553Emma, Astrid, Esme and I got a ferry across from the European side, where we were staying, to the Asian side, where my friend Hannah lives, as she was having a garden party at her house that evening. As we got off the ferry onto the Asian side, we saw a couple of these Midye Dolma street vendors. Obviously we had to try them. They opened up the mussel for us, scooped it all into one shell, squeezed some lemon onto it, and then it was served.

They make a rice mixture and then stuff it into the mussels to cook – it tastes very much like a seafood risotto or a seafood paella. DELICIOUS!

It costs 1 Turkish Lira for 2 mussels (£1 = 4 Lira at the time) and they are such a good tasty little street snack.images (1)

20150504_200510

Corn on the Cob and Chesnuts – Found around Sultan Ahmet20150503_181931

To be honest, I wasn’t too impressed with the grilled corn that I got. It was cold and the kernels was so hard and tasted like they were probably cooked in the morning and just laid out all day. They sprinkled it with salt which didn’t melt and infuse into the corn and instead lay over it dry. I doubt I will be rushing to have one of these again, but if you are to try these I would suggest asking for a freshly cooked one. Not my favourite. 2 Liras for 1 corn.

Islak Burgers (Wet Burgers in English) – Found in Taksimdownload (1)The Islak Burgers are found lining the streets of Taksim. You will see them in the windows of most of the shops. Emma, Astrid and I had one of these on our way home after Hannah’s garden party. It was surprisingly good.

It was a bun similar to a McDonalds cheeseburger bun, with a very thin meat patty inside, but what makes it a “wet burger” is that, not only is there tomato sauce on the inside of the bun like a normal burger, but it is absolutely covered in a tomato sauce. The sauce doesn’t taste as strong with flavour as a tomato ketchup. It had a lighter taste to it. This sauce somehow gave the burger bun a chewy texture, like the texture of a bagel.

A delightful midnight street snack AND it was only 2 Lira!images (2)

Simit (Turkish Pretzels) – Found all over the streets in Istanbulimages (3)These are great if you are hungry and on the go. It costs 1 Lira for one. Plain chewy-bagel-type-pretzels that are sold on every street corner.

Overall a fab place to visit and many interesting flavours. I still need to go back and try to famous fish sandwich which is also a street food.

Istanbul, I’m coming back.