Thursday 29 March 2018

The new menu at Stanley's Bar and Grill...

Stanley’s Bar and Grill at Titanic Hotel in Liverpool unveiled their spring menu last week and I went along to a press dinner to sample some of the new dishes. We gathered at the bar for a round of welcome drinks, before taking our seats at a long table in the centre of the elegant dining space where lofty ceilings and exposed brick walls conjure up an air of New York cool. Classically trained in the French style of cooking, Executive Chef Bradley Lean has worked in kitchens all over the world from Toronto to Hong Kong and he has already put his own stamp on the cuisine at Stanley’s over the 18 months he has been at the helm. He talked us through the inspiration behind the new menu and how he has balanced traditional favourites with sophisticated creations and we nibbled on rosemary and oven dried cherry tomato focaccia with pressed olive oil as we deliberated over the menu. The range of tempting dishes include crispy cod cheeks with summer peas and tartare sauce and hearty classics such as char grilled steaks, beer battered fish and chips and the Titanic house steak burger.
I adore Indian cuisine and Bradley explained that the onion bhajis are his favourite starter on the new menu, so I decided to try them for myself. The bhajis were perfectly seasoned and the spiced cauliflower, golden raisins and mango added earthy and sweet flavour to this new take on this well-loved starter.

For the main course, I was drawn to the cannelloni of aubergine, which was served in a generous portion with a ragu of roast tomato and basil pesto which brought in the bold layers of flavour synonymous with Italian cuisine. A side order of crispy courgettes and parmesan rounded off this satisfying meal.

On to dessert and there were difficult decisions ahead, with choices including lemon treacle tart with lemon curd ice cream and sticky toffee pudding vying for our attention!

Crème brûlée is always a particular favourite of mine, so I could not resist the peanut butter crème brûlée with jam doughnuts. The brûlée topping cracked satisfyingly beneath my spoon, revealing the peanut butter layer which had a light texture and a delicately sweet flavour which paired well with the freshly made jam doughnuts.

Each course was paired with a cocktail and we enjoyed several throughout the evening, starting off with a refreshing aperitif of prosecco and limoncello. The show stopping flaming zombies were a particular highlight of the evening and they were strong and full of tropical taste and heady Venezuelan rum.

I also loved the Titanic update on a classic Cosmopolitan which blended gin, port and prosecco.

Stanley's Bar and Grill
Titanic Hotel
Stanley Dock,
Regent Road,

It was such an enjoyable evening at Stanley's Bar and Grill and the new menu was a roaring success, with a variety of dishes to appeal to all tastes. This is just the place for dinner and drinks in a stylish setting and dining here is always a pleasure. 

What do you all think, do you like the sound of Stanley's and which of these dishes or drinks would you like to try? As always I cannot wait to hear your thoughts and thank you so much for reading this post. 

Until next time,



Tuesday 20 March 2018

Supper Club at The Club House...

Grey skies and snow showers, the weather recently makes springtime feel far away so it was just the right timing last week to soak up the coastal ambience of The Club House* in Liverpool who were launching their supper club with a new food and cocktail menu. The Club House has a beach house style inspired by the Hamptons and walls lined with quirky ephemera, a sweeping staircase and a glittering chandelier conjure up a feeling of grandeur. A visit here is a great way to inject some sunshine in to the day even when winter is still clinging on stoically outside and the new supper club has a limited edition rotisserie menu which makes me dream of beach barbecues. There are plenty of mouth-watering dishes to choose from including meats cooked ‘low and slow’, deli boards and vegetarian options and we started the evening with a farmhouse loaf and chicken gravy; this is the perfect sharing dish and the crusty warm loaf was a treat with the rich gravy.

Camembert is hard to beat as a starter and the baked Camembert with honey, rosemary, skewered croutons and Braeburn apple wedges was a winner and the nutty cheese worked well with the tangy apple.

I can never resist the Club House houmous, which is made in house and has a rustic, chunky texture and a subtle chickpea flavour. This was topped with tangy blackened tomato salsa and crudités and toasted flatbreads rounded off the dish. 

I am a big fan of halloumi so I was immediately tempted by the rotisserie salad of grilled halloumi in Moroccan spices with bulgur wheat, apricots, chickpeas, pomegranate and toasted almonds. I don’t often order salads as I am usually drawn to something a little more indulgent, but this one was full of flavour and the pomegranate and apricot added sweetness while the mint and cucumber dressing added a summery quality. 

My dining companion went for the outdoor reared pork seasoned with rosemary and garlic sea salt. The ‘low and slow’ style of cooking made the pork very succulent and the accompaniments of skin on fries and honey and cider mustard complemented the dish.

There could be no question that we had to try the warm baked white chocolate chip cookie dough with salted caramel ice cream and toffee sauce – the soft cookie dough was served in a skillet and it made a decadent and fun treat to end the meal.

We also ordered sticky toffee pudding, it is no surprise that this timeless classic appears on most dessert menus and its appeal never fades. This was a delight, with rivers of toffee sauce over the sponge and a scoop of vanilla ice cream.

Since the new cocktail menu was also launching, we were lucky enough to be treated to four cocktails. The Miami Vice was a delicious blend of pina colada and strawberry daiquiri and its tropical taste made me yearn for summer. Peach Bellini is another favourite cocktail of mine, so I loved the Peach Melba Bellini blended with ice, which was so refreshing. The Strawberry and Pomegranate cooler topped with Old Mout cider and garnished with frozen fruit was equally inviting and the Pineapple and Coconut Mojito was a cooling blend which will be perfect to sip in the sunshine once the warmer weather finally arrives! 

The Club House
Chavasse Park,
 Liverpool One, 
L2 9SQ

What do you all think, do you like the sound of a Supper Club and which of these dishes would you like to try? As always I cannot wait to hear your thoughts and thank you so much for reading this post.

Until next time,



*I was a guest of The Club House for the launch of their Supper Club, this meal was complimentary. All opinions stated herein are my own and honest. 

Friday 9 March 2018

Burgers and shakes at Almost Famous...

There are some restaurants which I have been meaning to visit for a while but somehow I never seem to get around to it and Almost Famous* is one such place. I have heard so much about over the years yet somehow I have never made it to dine there - I missed two recent launches of their new menu in Liverpool and Manchester due to other commitments, but I finally arranged to pop in to the Great Northern location of Almost Famous in Manchester last week to sample their new menu, thanks to my lovely pal Martin who is the General Manager there.

I love the vibe of Almost Famous, which sets a fun and relaxed tone with a décor featuring neon signs, bold artwork, cascading fairy lights and an eclectic playlist which gives the space a real buzz. It was busy when we arrived, with plenty of people tucking in to towering burgers and indulgent milkshakes to banish the winter chill outside.This is just the place if you feel like a casual dining experience and to get the evening underway, I ordered a boozy shake which came topped with lots of fresh cream and a Bourbon biscuit. My companion went for the equally decadent 'fudgin ridic' made with chocolate fudge and Oreos.

If you have not already guessed, Almost Famous are all about American diner style cuisine and sometimes there is nothing more appealing than to let your hair down and tuck in to a burger so big it is nearly impossible to hold. They tick all the boxes in this regard and the sheer scale of my partner’s choice of the Awesome HQ was a sight to behold – this huge creation consisted of a double cheeseburger topped with buttermilk fried chicken, halloumi, slaw, peri peri BBQ and bacon bacon mayo – phew. Silence fell as he enjoyed every bite and he confirmed this was one of the best burgers he had ever tasted, which I had already discerned from his silence as he dedicated himself to eating it.

I have something of a fixation with halloumi and you can always find a couple of blocks of it stacked in my fridge, so when I saw the Phok-Meat burger on the menu, I just had to try it. This vegetarian option did not disappoint, with deep fried halloumi tossed in smoky and sweet pho-king sauce topped with iceberg lettuce, red onion, jalapeno, smashed avocado, chipotle mayo and jalapeno mayo. This was a seriously tasty take on a vegetarian burger and there was a generous amount of halloumi, while the other toppings added heaps of flavour and I loved the subtly spicy chipotle mayo.

The loaded fries served at Almost Famous elevate the humble potato to something spectacular and an order of Phoenix Fries topped with bacon rain, JD maple glaze, shoestring onions, frazzle dust, chillies, bacon bacon mayo, redneck BBQ were full of flavour.

Meanwhile I opted for a classic side of Winning Fries, a mixture of skin-on and sweet potato fries  served in a generous portion.

Another side of Mac Balls - crispy coated mac n cheese balls served with bacon bacon mayo dip were the kind of treat which you can just carry on eating. I love mac n' cheese at the best of times, and coating it in breadcrumbs and frying it just makes it even more irresistible.

We also ordered some Blasts  (Boneless buttermilk fried chicken pieces) smothered in delicious Pho-King (hot teriyaki) sauce, which made the ideal side dish to share. 

It was time for dessert and while I was too full to contemplate it, my dining companion enjoyed an ice cream cookie sandwich, vanilla ice cream sandwiched between chewy chocolate chip cookies and topped with salted caramel and cookie dust. It was quite a creation, just perfect for a sweet tooth and there was easily enough to share between two. 

The food was delicious and the vibe was fun, this was a perfect laid-back evening and I enjoyed finally dining at Almost Famous!

Almost Famous 
Unit 2 
Great Northern 
Peter Street
M3 4EJ

What do you all think, do you like the sound of Almost Famous and which of these dishes would you like to try? As always I cannot wait to hear your thoughts and thank you so much for reading this post.

Until next time,



*I was a guest of Almost Famous, this meal was complimentary. All opinions expressed herein are my own and honest. 

Sunday 4 March 2018

Sampling Pothecary Gin...

It feels like winter is dragging on forever, so if like me you are ready for a little dose of springtime then I have just the drink to recommend to you. I was recently sent a bottle of the award winning Pothecary Gin to try and I can honestly say I have never tried such a delicious gin before. Last weekend when the sun was shining (a little!) I mixed up some gin & tonics with Pothecary Gin and I ventured outside to take photographs of them before we settled down to enjoy the drinks. I garnished the gin and tonics with ice cubes, blueberries and pink grapefruit and they tasted so refreshing - I was transported to the heat of summer as I sipped my drink.

I love when the Snowdrops begin to bloom as these are usually the first sign that spring is on its way. I thought the Pothecary Gin looked really pretty photographed with the Snowdrops as a background. Pothecary Gin is made by Lukasz Dwornik and Martin Jennings, two friends united by a passion for gin which inspired them to create their own.

Pothecary won Double Gold at the San Francisco World Spirit Awards and it is no wonder, considering that the blend includes botanicals such as Provencal Lavender, Anatolian mulberries and Tilia flowers as well as Juniper from Bulgaria and Sicilian lemon.

This is a gin with real character and plenty of flavour, it has a taste unlike any other gin and the bottle has a lovely vintage feel to the design, which means you can display it with pride as part of your drinks collection. I will be saving the rest of the gin for when the warmer weather comes around so that I can sip a Pothecary Gin and Tonic in the sunshine!

When Lukasz and Martin first started making their gin, they bought a 35-litre copper still and they began making the gin in the spare room of Martin's house! This has been an incredible journey and it is great to see something which started off as an idea between friends flourish in to such a successful and growing gin brand.

The fact that Pothecary Gin contains so many unusual botanicals is what gives it such a rare quality of flavour and I never thought that I would sample a gin which contains lavender but I love it.

Thank you so much to the team at Pothecary Gin for sending this bottle to me. It is such a treat to enjoy a gin of this taste and quality and you can order Pothecary Gin from their website:

What do you all think, do you like the sound of Pothecary Gin and are you looking forward to sipping a Gin & Tonic in spring? As always I cannot wait to hear your thoughts and thank you so much for reading this post.

Until next time,