Eight things I ate this December

I ate a lot of food last month and reminiscing about everything I ate over the period Christmas is making me incredibly peckish…

This first weekend in December I headed to the Peak District with my family and we went straight to The Red Lion in Litton. It’s one of my favourite pubs and serves good, hearty food (and the fact that they’re dog friendly is a huge bonus!)

red-lion-liton

A boozy Christmas lunch with my colleagues happened at The Blues Kitchen  where they’re all about big plates of BBQ food. I indulged in their Christmas burger, ‘the baby cheezus’ – a turkey burger served with cranberry sauce and bacon, wedged between two brioche buns, topped with a pig wrapped in a blanket, served with both sport coleslaw and sweet potato fries!

blues-kitchen

Buying groceries for one is a challenge, you either over buy or end up having the same meals again and again, and that’s where Gousto step in. Scott swears by them and has whips me up a meal from them every time I stay at his flat. I loved their spicy haddock linguine, creamy with a hint of chilli, plus there’s hardly any prep!

gousto-haddock-linguine

Scott’s birthday falls in December, so of course, we got burgers and craft beer at The Exmonth Arms in Euston with a dozen of so friends. They’ve got 32 bottled beers displayed on the ‘wall of beer’ – nothing beats a Beavertown gamma ray with a mac n cheese burger served with hashbrown bites.

For Scott’s actual birthday, I took him to Maltby Street Market, and these buttermilk waffles served with fried chicken and maple syrup where the highlight of the market – a perfect combination!

maltby-street-market-waffkeon

I also took Scott to Camino for a birthday meal after we visited the Escape Rooms. It’s a great place to head to and you’re always guartenned good food and all the Spanish classics. Although the food itself it quite basic, it’s still incredibly tasty.

camino

I’m guilty of heading into Central London when it comes to going out for dinner, and I’m attempting to try out all of my local restaurants. Last month I headed to Thalassa with my parents. The food here is plentiful and delicious, but the restaurant itself needs a refurbishment.

thalassa

To ring in the new year, Scott and I headed to The Isle of Man, where we dinned at 14 North, a cosy restaurant located in Douglas in the North Quay. I loved the fact they only use seasonal and local ingredients to showcase what the island has to offer. If you’re ever in the Isle of the Man you’ll seriously regret not going here!

isle-of-man-14-north

 

Active in the Isle of Man | Why the Isle of Man should be on your British travel bucket list

Scott and I have developed a little habit for getting away from London for new year’s eve – last year we headed to Edinburgh, and this year, to ring in 2017 we headed to the Isle of Man.

The lowdown

It’s smack bang in the middle of the Irish Sea, between the coastlines of England, Scotland, Ireland and Wales – and if you climb to to the submit of Sneafell you can actually see all four! It’s 33 miles in length, and 13 miles in width. Make sure you walk the width of the island along the Heritage Trail from Douglas to Peel along the old railway, which can easily be done in a day. The Isle of Man is just a short flight from London, and it’s rugged coastline, medieval castles and picture perfect bays make it the an ideal spot for a weekend break.

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Where to stay

If you can’t drive, I’d highly recommend staying in Douglas which is the capital of the island and is the hub of the bus networks. The town is also home to two of the main railway lines: the steam railway to Port Erin and the electric tramway to Ramsey, these however only run in the summer months.

Scott and I used Air bnb to book our cottage, but Grenabye Estates have some beautiful properties in the south of the island. Next time I visit, I’ll definitely be staying in Sheerghlass  – a two bed contemporary cottage just outside of Castletown with a sleek open-plan set up, garden and sea views!

sheerghlass-isle-of-man

What to do whilst you’re there

Lace up those walking boots and get outdoors! Stroll along the Douglas promenade and along the coastal path to Laxey. You’ll be surrounded my lush hilltops with the sea by your side. On your way through Laxey head to the Shore Hotel which is the islands only brew pub. Grab yourself a pint of Old Laxey Bosun Bitter as it can only be found here.

If you’ve taken the Heritage Trail from Douglas to Peel, have a short stroll around the town and have a dip in the sea (if it’s warm enough!). Pay Peel Caste a visit and watch the sunset over the bay.

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 Where to eat 

Queenies (giant scallops) are the local speciality, they’re dead cheap and you’ll find them on almost every menu. Try a Queenie bap at The Fish House in Port St.Mary, they pile them high on in between slices of thick white bread.

If you’re looking for somewhere to dine in the evening, then look no further than 14North. It’s located in the heart of the North Quay in Douglas (which is the islands dining destination). They aim to use seasonal and local ingredients to showcase the best of the island. Scott and I feasted on this Pork Belly which was served with a black pudding sausage roll and heritage carrots.

isle-of-man-14-north

Best time to visit

Visit during the summer months in order to make the most of the island’s beautiful beaches and walks. But even on a rainy weekend in December cosying up with a good book, and a log burning stove in a cottage isn’t the worst thing in the world…

isle-of-man-douglas

How much does it cost? 

Prices are similar to London, if not slightly cheaper – a pint will set you back around £4. Manx pound is an actual currency, but you’ll get on fine with sterling.

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The Isle of Man is a perfect place to visit if you’re had enough of long haul flights, love the outdoors and want to explore more of Great Britain.