Tuesday, 30 June 2015

June Japes: Monthly Round Up

Life Lately: Wedding, christening, wedding, christening...repeat... We've loved attending all our friend's special occasions but the big wedding season is sadly coming to an end for us...

In terms of blogging, I've had the chance to catch up with some of my favourite bloggers this month as well as meet some of them for the first time! Meeting new bloggers and making new friends is one of my favourite things about writing SilverSpoon. As well as my usual slew of blog posts I've also had a few guest blogging spots with a round up of my top restaurants in Belgravia on Culture Trip, a post on my favourite scenes from South Africa for the Twins that Travel and an interview on Amanda's blog, Rhyme and Ribbons.

Restaurants of the Month: We had a delicious taste of Paris at Brasserie Gustave, a hidden gem in Chelsea, and I ate Italian at Cucina Aselina and the Baglioni hotel.

Other highlights included a seafood feast at Randall & Aubin, a spontaneous date night at Pachamama and dinner at Flesh & Buns which will be on the blog next week. Best of all was visiting The Dorchester for dinner at Alain Ducasse and subsequently The Grill, a hotel I love because I has so many wonderful memories from there including our wedding reception.

Events: This month I enjoyed visiting Taste of London twice, it really is a highlight of the London foodie calendar. I visited for the opening night on Wednesday and very much enjoyed a tasting masterclass with Laurent Perrier and basically everything at my favourite restaurant, Roka. When I returned on Saturday night, Mr S and I attended a tasting with Celebrity Cruises to check out the award-winning cuisine served on the ship.

I also enjoyed an incredible Blogger's Brunch at Salmontini where I got to eat ALL the salmon and drink ALL the champagne! A full write-up will be on the blog later this week.

Travels: A few more of my Rome posts were on the blog this month including our anniversary dinner at Terrazza dell' Eden, my top ten things to do in Rome and a few ideas of places to try for lunch in Eternal City. Most exciting was my bloggers' trip to Paris starting with a night at the St Pancras Renaissance Hotel before catching the Eurostar to Paris to stay in the Renaissance Arc'de Triomphe. I had some incredible experiences during my day in Paris including a  2CV, a trip to the Jean Paul Gaultier exhibition, a party on a roof terrace and a limo tour of Paris with talented pop-up acts performing around the city.

I also had the chance to have a staycation in one of my favourite local hotels, The Conrad St James, a luxury hotel with a political theme running through the public areas.

In July, I'll be returning to France for a trip to Cannes with the entire Silver family... that's Mr S's parents, his older brothers, his younger sister, their other halves and all our nieces and nephews. Seven children in total...I'll be blogging about it all so watch this space!

Blog Love: This month I enjoyed reading about Cosy Traveller Emily's trip to Paphos and her horse riding trip to Eagle Mountain Ranch. Emma checked in to the Hotel California, Sarah enjoyed drinks at the Westbury and Monica from The Travel Hack had a trip to Wales that looked more like a beautiful Mediterranean holiday.

Suze visited Ormer in Jersey and had the opportunity to meet fellow blogger Melissa, also known as Jersey Girl, over a wine tasting. Some of my favourite travel posts of the month came for Travelista Jess who's writing and video of the Serengeti nearly made me shed a tear as I remembered my own emotional safari experience. Finally, I loved revisiting my time in Australia and the Whitsundays through Rosie stunning visit to Hamilton island. Seeing the look out point where we had drinks, the local ice cream shop and the beautiful scenery bought back many happy memories of my stay at qualia.

That's it for this month and as usual loads coming up in July, I can't wait to share it all with you!!

Monday, 29 June 2015

Best of British at Northbank

Northbank is located just by the Thames River with sweeping views of the river and some of London's best known landmarks...

From the private terrace there's a view straight across the river to Shakespeare's Globe, The Shard and the Millenium Bridge and just behind the restaurant lies St Paul's Cathedral...

Dining at Northbank certainly allows for some of the best views that London offers without hurtling to a high floor in a great glass elevator if you have a fear of heights. 

Inside you can make the most of the view with a window seat... 

Or choose a comfortable green leather booth whilst admiring the funky wallpaper that features little iconic images of London.

With the floor to ceiling windows that show off the gorgeous view it's also the perfect restaurant for a blogger as there's so much natural light to take pictures of bread rolls... 

Joining me for lunch today was my old school friend Gemma, who had just come back from an incredible trip to Vietnam and Cambodia - two countries that are high on my bucketlist - and it was great to get some first hand advice for when I eventually go! 

The menu at Northbank is classic British with a Cornish influence and it showcases ingredients from owner, Christian Butler's home town of Falmouth and the surrounding areas of Cornwall. 

Gemma's starter was a whole dressed Dorset crab with celeriac remoulade, a decent sized portion served with hearty slabs of toast. Gemma really enjoyed the succulent crab and could taste the freshness as the fish is delivered daily, straight from boats of the Cornish shore. 

I loved my sauted tiger prawns and the spicy chilli and ginger marinade, the accompanying watermelon was a happy reminder that summer menus are finally here. My only complaint about this dish was the small amount of prawns, but at least it meant I had room for the surprise intermediate course that the waitress brought out

A perfectly pink duck breast served with truffle shavings; the duck was beautifully prepared but my favourite thing about this plate was the asparagus which was cooked perfectly tender with just the right amount of seasoning. 

Head Chef, Jason Marchant skilfully uses the ingredients sourced directly from Cornwall to create these stunning plates of food. He is also keen to promote independent British farmers and has strong connections with suppliers in the Lake District. Everything about this restaurant truly is best of British right down to the mascot, Christian Butler's bulldog, Veronica. 

Main courses were seasonal too and Gemma chose a Cornish lamb cooked two ways both shoulder and rump with feta, peppers and mint yogurt. The meat was perfectly rare and the accompaniments gave the British dish a rather Mediterranean flair. 

I chose the catch of the day which was pan fried trout served with pureed cauliflower and swiss chard. My fish had delicious soft flesh, crispy skin and sat on a buttery bed of spinach. 

We decided to save the dessert calories and head for a walk by the river instead...

Gemma and I loved Northbank and I couldn't fault it, the food is fantastic as is the service but most important of all is location, location, location and it's ideal for city workers and tourists alike. 

Millenium Bridge
One Paul's Walk 

020 7329 9299

Our lunch at Northbank was complimentary
Square Meal Click to add a blog post for Northbank Restaurant and Bar on Zomato