Monday, October 30, 2017

Weekend in New Forest.

I spent the weekend in the New Forest, Hampshire, this weekend, and it was so rejuvenating to get out of the city and soak in the verdant environment!

Some photos:

I have black nail polish on, in honour of Jessica Chastain's bitching performance in Miss Sloane.

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Happy Questionnaire Day.

Before I saw Happy Death Day on Saturday, representatives from Universal presented me with this survey which is, er, comprehensive, to say the least:

Needless to say, I didn't fill the whole thing in, but, Universal reps, if you're reading, I gave your film a 7/10. I thought it was nonsense, but unchallenging, enjoyable nonsense, anchored by a fine comedic turn from Jessica Rothe (the one in the green dress dancing behind Bugeyes in La La Land) and I also enjoyed the presence of Ruby Modine (aka Matthew Modine's daughter), who is very pretty, a decent actress, and testament to the good kind of nepotism (the bad kind being Cokehead Delevingne, naturally).

Also at the cinema, I saw this rather striking poster for My Little Pony: The Movie.

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Restaurant review: STICKS’N’SUSHI (Covent Garden)

Despite meeting Per Mertesacker at Sushisamba, I’ve never actually dined there, and thus the mantle of fanciest sushi restaurant I’ve been to is Sticks’n’Sushi at Henrietta Street, London.

We had the ‘Gala’, which, at £75, wasn’t cheap. The option included Beef Tataki, Edamame, Hotate Kataifi, Nigiri, Chicken with chili & teriyaki, lamb chop with miso herb butter and duck breast with panko & wasabi Caesar, so there was plenty to fill two people’s boots!

Friday, October 20, 2017

Cooking: salmon and pomegranate salad

I made a salmon and pomegranate salad today. It was easy to cook and tasted so delicious, so I shall share my recipe!

Step 1: Buy a few fillets of salmon from your local high street. Before putting them in the oven for the time allocated, chop a few fine chillis (as shown in the first photo) and evenly distribute these on the salmon:

Step 2: While the salmon is cooking in the oven, cut open a pomegranate. Break all the individual pieces into a salad bowl and throw in a healthy quantity of greens. Use a spoon to spread the two fruit/veg out, before drizzling delicious balsamic vinegar over the combination.

Once the salmon is ready, boom! There's your dinner! Including preparation time, this took less than 20 minutes to make, and the end result is delicious and nutritious. Am definitely going to follow this recipe again (I may make amendments) - watch this space!

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Bar review: THE HIDE (Bermondsey Street)

London has some venues which do some fabulous cocktails, ranging from Yauatcha to The Escapologist, and I wondered if The Hide, about a 10 minute walk away from London Bridge, would join this pantheon of greats.

I had a White Russian, which tasted lovely, although I was slightly disappointed it wasn’t served in an Old Fashioned glass (God, I love Old Fashioneds), but a generic tumbler instead. If the varied cocktail menu wasn’t for you, then there was also a decent beer and wine list, meaning it would be literally impossible not to cater for an alcohol drinker in The Hide.

Décor was low-key but elegant, and the contemporary music playing in the background straddled the line between atmospheric and obtrusive well.

However, remember what I said about how I was a little uneasy with La Trompette, because the waiters kept checking up on me? Well, those waiters were aloof compared to those in The Hide. I told the waiter I would need a few minutes to decide, and they came back almost immediately.

I was savouring my White Russian (it had been a long day, one needs #TreatYoSelf sometimes) at a leisurely pace, and another waitress came to my table, as if to pointedly say that me drinking one drink on my own wasn’t enough to merit a place at the table.

So, whilst I have no qualms with the quality of the drinks, or the range of tipples on offer, I have to take umbrage with the way they tried to railroad me into ordering more drinks than I wanted.

Those kind of games don’t work on me, fam. You won’t swindle Emma that way. But you will get a negative review for your troubles.

Grade: C


For more of my bar and pub reviews, click here.

Monday, October 16, 2017

Film review: THE THIRD ALIBI (Montgomery Tully, 1961)

Composer Norman Martell (Laurence Payne) is the very definition of would pass in 2017 parlance as 'fuckboy'. Married to a devoted wife Helen (Patricia Dainton), he nonetheless carries on with her sister Peggy, which leads her to getting knocked up.

Out of betrayal and spite, his wife refuses to grant him the divorce he needs and being the nefarious individual that he is, Norma devises a plan to dispose of her, with the help of his mistress and a piece of recording equipment so that he has a watertight alibi.

Sunday, October 15, 2017

OOTD: Watching THE LION KING at the West End followed by an amazeballs Dishoom meal

T-shirt: Hollister (a very versatile piece, having worn in in this and this OOTD as well)
Skirt: Missguided
Gingerbread man earrings: Market stall

Trainers: Adidas
Faux leather jacket: TK Maxx
Toy: Disney Store

Friday, October 13, 2017

LFF Film review: ON CHESIL BEACH (Dominic Cooke, 2018)

Summer 1962. In a Dorset hotel, overlooking the seaside, two virgins, Edward and Florence, navigate their wedding night with shared trepidation, although the root of their anxiety are worlds apart. He, a History graduate from a humble but loving home, can’t wait to get his hands on his beautiful bride. She, a talented violinist from a richer family, is filled with revulsion at the thought of sexual contact with anyone.

Monday, October 09, 2017

Bar review: THE JAMAICA WINE HOUSE (Monument)

During Friday nights around Bank, it is extremely difficult to find pubs or bars where one can sit down and have a proper conversation. Not altogether surprising, given that it represents the busiest day of the week in one of the most bustling parts of the capital. But still, I like to unwind after a long week without having to strain my voice to talk, and I was certain there must be some options.

Sunday, October 08, 2017

Fashion review: FLORAL RUFFLE TEA DRESS (Missguided)

When I was at Bath doing my undergraduate degree, I used to have the nickname 'Chelsea bitch', given that I was prone to making some catty comments about players of opponent teams, or taking the banter too far in order to prove a footballing point. Just think, Gone Girl-levels of batshit and petty, conflated with football tribalism. 😳

I quite liked living up to this sobriquet, which is why, despite the fact that pink is my favourite colour,  I tend to have more outfits featuring the colour blue (ladies and gentlemen of the jury, exhibits onetwothreefour and five). 

The way I saw it, by wearing blue, I was repping my club in my fashion choices.

So when I saw this floral ruffle tea dress on the Missguided website, I had to snap it up. It had an average 4.5/5 review score, and had such a pretty, girly print, as well as being in an adorable shade of baby blue. It would have been rude not to!

Oblig selfie: - 

As you can see from the picture above, the dress suffers from the some problem at size 10 as did the Miss Selfridge khaki dress, which is that if you're on the chesty side, then the neckline pretty much puts your tits entirely on display. The next time I wear this dress out, I'm going to be more prudent and wear a camisole underneath, because the amount of cleavage on display in the photo above is a bit much, haha!

Aside from that, I'm a fan of the dress. The fact that it has long sleeves means it's a good alternative to the Miss Selfridge floral ruffle dress (I clearly like flowers and ruffles!), for when the weather is a little cooler. And at least with the Miss Selfridge dress, I don't have to lie down in order to do the zipper up!

The shortness of the dress means I would rather wear this during the Summer, when one can get away with shorter hemlines. But if you have confidence to wear whatever you want all year round, by all means, wear this pretty blue number with pride!


Saturday, October 07, 2017

Restaurant review: LA TROMPETTE (Chiswick)

Pre-La Trompette, the closest I’ve come to dining at a restaurant with a Michelin star was at Chapter One in Orpington. Chapter One used to have a Michelin star, until it was stripped of it (bit of a kick in the teeth). So I was both excited and curious about my foray into experiencing how the other 1% do live!

Unsurprisingly, given the level of prestige surrounding La Trompette, the service is second to none. The moment our water jug was anywhere below a third full, it would be topped up, and the waiters were always offering us more bread (it was too delicious to turn down!). The bread, fresh from the oven, was complemented with deliciously salted butter. 

Everything about the venue was pristine, which meant it fitted in well in the salubrious part of Chiswick.

In part because the bar is so low for me, because I’m used to the attentiveness-levels of central London waiters that can most politely be described as ‘laconic’, and in part because I’m too self-conscious, but the elevated customer service in La Trompette made me a tad uncomfortable. But I don’t begrudge the waiters and waitresses that; they were doing their jobs exactly as they should have. This one’s on me.

The food was far more ornately made and lovingly crafted than Theo Randall, another restaurant of comparable price to La Trompette. For my main, I had the loin of Cornish cod, gnocchetti, chanterelles, cavolo nero and hazelnut pesto.

Bathing the cod in foam was an inspired touch; it meant the seafood felt more textured, despite not actually having much fat on it. My only gripe was that the portion was too small, but people who can afford to dine at places like La Trompette on the regular will understand that it’s the quality of the cuisine, not the quantity. And the quality of the fish was spectacular; succulent, and brimming with flavour. The fact that there was so little of it made me cherish the meal more!

Despite it not being cheap, I can definitely understand the ‘You get what you pay for’ adage about La Trompette, which I most certainly did not feel about Ladurée and Theo Randall, two other expensive London restaurants which charged handsome prices for ugly food. If you feel like treating yourself, you could do much worse than this Michelin starred venue.

Grade: A-


For more of my restaurant reviews, click here.

Wednesday, October 04, 2017

Film review: MY MAN GODFREY (Gregory La Cava, 1936)

Irene Bullock, a pampered Park Avenue princess falls for her butler Godfrey and is not used to being met with resistance as said butler gives his employers some much-needed schooling in humility in La Cava’s screwball comedy that dextrously traverses themes of love, class and humanity.

Monday, October 02, 2017

Restaurant review: BYRON (Farringdon)

Having visited the Covent Garden venue of Byron earlier this year (after I saw Patriot’s Day at the cinema), I thought I’d sample the Byron that was closest to my place of work, to compare notes.

I went on a Thursday night, and despite it not yet being the weekend, the place was grossly understaffed. Someone I was with ordered a beer and the waitress completely forgot about it until we prompted her.

Happily, the quality of the food didn’t differ hugely by central London location, meaning that the burgers still delivered. There was a hearty steak in the centre of the bun (default cooked medium rare, but you can stipulate otherwise) a few organic vegetables you wouldn’t find in your McDonald’s burger, as well as French fries that are tasty but palpably not coated in oil as would be the case in your local fast food chain.

Nonetheless, I don’t feel the overall dining experience at Byron Farringdon is worth the near-£20 bill you’d rack for up for a burger, side and a beer. The service was just too capricious for someone who is used to getting her order within 10-20 minutes of ordering, and the waitresses didn’t even have the grace to apologise for their mistakes.

The pot luck that is visiting burger joints in London continues.

Grade: C-


For all my restaurant and bar reviews, click here.