She and Home: The Burger Joint, Bristol

She and Home: The Burger Joint, Bristol | She and Hem | Food She and Home: The Burger Joint, Bristol | She and Hem | Food

It’s fair to say that maternity leave is being kind to us as far as eating our way around the West Country is concerned. Kind to us that is, but perhaps less so to the old waistline! It’s been lovely going for nice long lunches whilst the babies sleep (or don’t sleep) and gives us a chance to have a catch up and talk about how much sleep (or no sleep) we’ve had the previous night. Now, we aren’t exactly famed for our cutting edge restaurant reviews around here but, seeing as we are now chowing down on a more regular basis, we thought it was about time we upped our game and you will be seeing quite a few over the coming weeks! First up, The Burger Joint!

We should probably begin with a full disclaimer: we are massive fans of The Burger Joint. We’ve been visiting this tasty establishment for years – before even She and Hem was a thing, if you can imagine such a terrible time! So dedicated are we to the burger cause that until recently our faces graced the banner photo of their website and Jo even had them cater her wedding in 2013. See, massive fans of massive delicious burgers. So, you won’t be surprised to learn that we were more than happy to try out their new menu options at their branch on Whiteladies Road in Bristol!

She and Home: The Burger Joint, Bristol | She and Hem | FoodShe and Home: The Burger Joint, Bristol | She and Hem | FoodShe and Home: The Burger Joint, Bristol | She and Hem | FoodShe and Home: The Burger Joint, Bristol | She and Hem | Food

We really love the unique the ordering system at Burger Joint, it kinda feels a little bit like playing a really tasty lottery, but everyone’s a winner (especially if you choose the sweet potato fries!). Everything from starters to sides is broken down into tick boxes so you can build your perfect meal. As well as sampling their new offerings, we must admit that we did add a few long time favourites to our order – their sweet potato fries are seriously the best in Bristol! Although the menu was already super extensive, they have recently tried to broaden their appeal to the Vegan’s and Vegetarian’s of Bristol and beyond, by introducing The Vegan Joint and The Beetroot and Feta Joint. Nice.

I (Victoria) can highly recommend The Vegan Joint. Although admittedly I did add a bunch of not-so-vegan meat and cheese options to my burger, the patty itself was delicious. Owner Dan explained how labour intensive the Vegan Joint is to create, with a heroic veg chopping effort taking place behind the scenes. I also had the sweet potato fries, which I can’t imagine comes as much of a sweet potato surprise!

Jo is a creature of habit (just check out her Deliveroo history for proof) so went for her usual combo of the grilled chicken burger with smokey streaked bacon and brie, but threw in an extra cheesy curve ball by opting for the newly added, smoked applewood cheddar. DOUBLE CHEESE! It was delightful! As were the parmesan and truffle fries (MAKE THAT TRIPLE CHEESE), another new addition, which were so scrummy that I may have pinched a few when Jo wasn’t looking. Anything is improved by cheese, in our dairy-fueled opinion.

She and Home: The Burger Joint, Bristol | She and Hem | Food

We’ve actually been back since with visiting friends, so have managed to sample even more of the new menu. We really wanted to mention The Beetroot and Feta Joint as a standout. It’s as delicious as it is colourful! We’ll definitely be ordering it again next time we go. If you fancy getting your hands on any of the above, Burger Joint has branches in Clifton, Fishponds and Bedminster in Bristol. See you there!

V&J x

*Burger Joint very kindly provided our lunch to review but all opinions are our own. 

Afternoon Tea at Hotel Du Vin, Bristol.

Afternoon Tea at Hotel Du Vin, Bristol | She and Hem Afternoon Tea at Hotel Du Vin, Bristol | She and Hem

Afternoon Tea at Hotel Du Vin, Bristol | She and Hem

Afternoon Tea at Hotel Du Vin, Bristol | She and Hem

Afternoon Tea at Hotel Du Vin, Bristol | She and Hem

Last weekend, we were invited out of She & Hem towers to sample the new afternoon tea at Hotel Du Vin in the heart of Bristol. We’re happy to announce that it was, in the words of Mary Berry, absolutely scrumptious. Served daily from 12pm to 6pm, Hotel Du Vin have added their own spin to the traditional afternoon tea, by combining standard savories such as salmon sandwiches and sumptuous scones, with more unusual treats in the form of chocolate tea cakes and candy floss. Yes, you heard correctly, sugary sweet candy floss as part of an afternoon tea. What a treat! We had a lovely few hours devouring the two courses, admiring the gorgeous hotel and even making new blogger friends (Hi New Mum OnlinePurple Ella and Forget Me Knit!). What a perfect Sunday!

Jo and I (Victoria) have both previously had the pleasure of staying at Hotel Du Vin, and after attending this event, we are both lusting after a return visit. A former Sugar House with contemporary loft style bedrooms and exposed brickwork, it’s definitely one of the most luxurious hotels in Bristol. In fact, the hotel’s restaurant is so inviting that when my husband and I stayed over recently for my birthday, we decided to eat in the hotel, something we rarely ever do.

Unfortunately, neither myself nor Jo were able to partake in the cocktail tasting this time around (damn babies!), so we’re itching to go back in a few months time to try the new drinks menu, all created especially for the hotel by the Bristol staff. Don’t feel too sorry for us though, as the ever accommodating Hotel Du Vin were more than happy to whizz up some iced coffee’s just for us! Turns out this pregnancy thing does have it’s perks.

Afternoon Tea at Hotel Du Vin, Bristol | She and Hem Afternoon Tea at Hotel Du Vin, Bristol | She and Hem Afternoon Tea at Hotel Du Vin, Bristol | She and Hem Afternoon Tea at Hotel Du Vin, Bristol | She and Hem

Thank you for having us Hotel Du Vin, we hope to see you again very soon!

V&J

 

Nespresso @ The Lido

Nespresso @ The LidoNespresso @ The LidoNespresso @ The LidoNespresso @ The Lido

Nespresso has recently opened a pop-up boutique in Cribbs Causeway, Bristol. To mark the occasion, those fine, caffeine loving folks hosted a coffee inspired dinner at the wonderful Lido Restaurant in Clifton. What does this have to do with us? Why, we were lucky enough to be invited along! Head chef Freddy Bird created an incredible bespoke menu, with all three courses infused with Nespresso coffee. The food was seriously good and looked almost too beautiful to eat. We were really spoiled rotten by the team at The Lido, and the tables full of empty plates was testament to the quality of the grub. Before we sampled the food, there was a tasting masterclass, as well as a talk on Bristol’s buzzing food scene with food and drink expert Andy Clarke, which made us feel especially proud and lucky to live in a city with so much choice and diversity when it comes to eating out.

Nespresso @ The Lido Nespresso @ The Lido

The salmon starters were beyond delicious, thanks to a cheeky burst of vanilla and lemon zest. Oh and edible flowers of course! Next up was veal, slow cooked in a coffee and wine sauce, served on a bed of potato puree. To the surprise of no one, we both made short work of this delectable main course. However, that was all just a warm up for the main event; dessert. And they really saved the best until last, producing a true She & Hem favourite, an affogato! This wasn’t just any affogato mind you. This one was made with vanilla and cinnamon ice cream, heavenly rum and dulce de leche ripple and topped with a shot of (you guessed it!) coffee! Affo go on that! Truly, this was a Rolls Royce of desserts.

Nespresso @ The Lido Nespresso @ The Lido Nespresso @ The Lido

Thank you so much for inviting us along Nespresso. We can’t wait to check out the pop-up boutique very soon!

V&J

Wahaca, Bristol.

Wahaca | Bristol | She and HemWahaca | Bristol | She and HemWahaca | Bristol | She and HemWahaca | Bristol | She and Hem

At long last, the people of Bristol can enjoy the delicious taste of Mexico in style at the brand new Wahaca restaurant in Clifton. Located on Queens Road, Wahaca has won numerous awards for it’s flavoursome street food, so we popped along to try it for ourselves. As luck would have it, super glam former Masterchef winner and Wahaca co-founder Thomasina “Tommi” Miers was in town to see how the things were going, so we took full advantage of her insider knowledge and asked for her top picks. What a lovely lady. She really is juan in a million…

But enough waffle, let’s taco ’bout how awesome the food was. I (Victoria) am always annoyingly indecisive when it comes to ordering, because I genuinely love most food. So somewhere like Wahaca is perfect for dawdlers like me as it has a bountiful Street Food section from which you are encouraged (although no encouragement is really needed for me!) to order 2-3 dishes per person. On Tommi’s recommendation I chose the salmon sashimi tostada, sweet potato and feta taquito, and the scrummy spicy crab special, whilst Jo opted for the grilled British steak taco, the chilli quesadillas, and another salmon sashimi tostada (great minds etc.). It would have been guac-ward (ha!) to leave without trying the desserts, and as they all sounded so appetising, we decided to share the churros y chocolate and the salted caramel ice-cream! I’ve already booked to go back, as I’m desperate to try the buñuelo with Tommi’s tomatillo jam. I’ll be in sweet fried pastry heaven!

Wahaca | Bristol | She and HemWahaca | Bristol | She and HemWahaca | Bristol | She and HemWahaca | Bristol | She and HemWahaca | Bristol | She and Hem

V&J

SummerDine @ Cabot Circus, Bristol.

SummerDine  @ Cabot Circus, Bristol.SummerDine  @ Cabot Circus, Bristol.SummerDine  @ Cabot Circus, Bristol.

On a sunny evening last week I caught up with a few local bloggers to eat and drink our merry way around the centre of Bristol to celebrate the launch of SummerDine at Cabot Circus. We made a rendezvous at Coal for a catch up over cocktails. Unfortunately, I needed to drive to the event, so I wasn’t able to indulge quite as much as I would have liked, but I took contentment in giving my cocktails to a very loved up couple in the corner of the restaurant. Bless ’em. I’m almost Valentine by name (7 weeks to go!) , but certainly Valentine by nature!

For our mains, we popped down a level in Cabot to TGI Friday’s, where I found myself quickly distracted by the mountains of meat on offer. It must be my short attention spam…

As well as tasting the new menu, I volunteered to try my hand as a mixologist, as I do love to lift people’s spirits! As you can see by the picture below, the guys at TGI’s were astounded by the amount of maple syrup I decided to put into my concoction. Next time I’ll have to use it a little more syrup-titiously…Kudos to Lily for tasting the scotch bonnet and posing with the biggest piece of steak I’ve ever seen. Bristol bloggers got beef, but only the good kind!

SummerDine  @ Cabot Circus, Bristol.SummerDine  @ Cabot Circus, Bristol. SummerDine  @ Cabot Circus, Bristol. SummerDine  @ Cabot Circus, Bristol.

The last stop on our foodie tour was dessert at Brasserie Blanc in Quakers Friars. Ooh La La! Emily and I chose the chocolate souffle with pistachio ice cream. Merci beaucoup and bien joué to Raymond Blanc for creating that little piece of chocolate heaven. Now I know why you are (probably) the nations favourite Frenchman! Désolé, Monsieur Ginola.

SummerDine  @ Cabot Circus, Bristol.SummerDine  @ Cabot Circus, Bristol.SummerDine  @ Cabot Circus, Bristol.

Don’t worry if you don’t have an iPhone or Android, you can download and print out all of the SummerDine offers right HERE!

Vx

Four go mad in Manchester

She and Hem | Manchester | Travel

She and Hem | Manchester | TravelShe and Hem | Manchester | Travel

She and Hem | Manchester | Travel

A wee while ago we ventured North for a girls weekend with fellow appreciators of quality cake, Kelly and Deesha. Whilst we were there we decided to eat and drink all of the prettiest things we could find! Which turned out to be pretty damn easy. Manchester, we salute you.

Our first port of call was milkshakes at the incredibly popular Home Sweet Home. Kelly and Jo went for the blueberry topped with Lucky Charms (!), whilst Deesha and Victoria plumped (plumped being the operative word…) for peanut butter and jelly! Breakfast of champions. It was the perfect place to spend a Saturday morning. After spending far too long browsing the many floors of Afflecks, the home of She and Hem faves Chocolate Ape, Pop Boutique and Thunder Egg, the sight of Ginger’s Comfort Emporium was quite the comfort indeed! We perked up and planned our evening over a few brews. If you fancy reading about the evening in question, click here! *Warning* This link involves Harry Styles.

She and Hem | Manchester | Travel She and Hem | Manchester | Travel

On Sunday morning, before catching the train back to Bristol, we took a (very) leisurely stroll to Sugar Junction. A vintage tearoom serving freshly baked cakes, homely meals and some of the best milkshakes in Manchester. There is no such thing as a light lunch in the life of She and Hem, so after much discussion we settled on milkshakes (duh), pancakes and a large slice of cake to set us on our merry way. Bristol, you seriously need to up your milkshake game. Or maybe that’s just the sugar talking.

She and Hem | Manchester | Travel

She and Hem | Manchester | Travel

She and Hem | Manchester | Travel She and Hem | Manchester | Travel She and Hem | Manchester | Travel She and Hem | Manchester | Travel

Manchester, we’re mad fer it!

V&J

 

Coffee with Currys

Coffee with Currys | She and Hem | Cardiff

Not a day goes by in which I am not fueled up to the eyeballs by delicious coffee. Without it, I am pretty despresso. Although I am slowly but surely working my way through the South West Independent Coffee Guide (look, here’s me really enjoying a hotdog at the launch party), when recently invited to a whole day of coffee based fun with added cocktails and cake, I just couldn’t say no to #coffeewithcurrys. The event was held at Waterloo Tea in Cardiff, a blooming lovely place which is located in the equally lovely Wyndham Arcade. Having only ever been to Cardiff once before to boo Luis Suarez during the 2012 Olympics, I really enjoyed wandering around the city and it’s charming arcades before the event.

Coffee with Currys | She and Hem | Cardiff Coffee with Currys | She and Hem | Cardiff Coffee with Currys | She and Hem | Cardiff

During the event there were five stations, where you could take part in different activities, such as latte art, coffee cocktail making and testing your taste buds at a coffee cupping session. Once you had bean (HA!) around them all, a glorious lunch was available, courtesy of Waterloo Tea. A gorgeous array of gourmet salads, artisan breads and cheeky truffles was our reward for a hard morning’s work (it was work, right?), and I would definitely go back the next time I am in Cardiff, as the food was absolutely delicious. Later in the day, they even provided a seemingly endless parade of cakes, presumably just to counterbalance the high caffeine intake with a healthy dose of sugar. Definitely my cup of tea!

Coffee with Currys | She and Hem | Cardiff Coffee with Currys | She and Hem | Cardiff Coffee with Currys | She and Hem | Cardiff

As if that wasn’t enough, the main event was saved for the afternoon, and it was certainly a case of last but not least. Two contests, requiring all the skills, knowledge and intellectual guile that we, naturally of course, had picked up throughout the day. First, the coffee cupping contest, a fierce battle of taste buds, brain cells and who could pull off the most dignified slurp (not me). Representatives from each group were called forward and asked to blind taste test a selection of coffees, matching them in turn to a list of brews, based on flavour profile alone. Challenging, but oh so tasty! The techniques we learned earlier were especially useful in tasting the coffees and picking out certain tastes and styles, and it helped that we were guided along by the dutiful, knowledgeable baristas. Contestants submitted their cards, with the winner being the person with the most correctly matched coffees.

Then, the latte art contest. Latte art is always something I’ve wanted to have a crack at, and while I very much enjoyed my first attempt earlier in the day, I’ll be the first to admit that the end product wasn’t the most sophisticated of art ever seen. More broken jigsaw piece than a cute balloon unfortunately…

Again, representatives from all teams were called forward and tasked with producing a latte art heart. The end results were displayed before the crowd, with the winner determined using the tried and tested “applause” scale. A bottle of champers to the winner, whose foam heart made me swoon with delight! Generous to the last, Currys also offered up a Nespresso machine to the attendant who posted the best Instagram pic, using the #coffeewithcurrys tag. Can we do this every weekend please?

All that remains is to say thanks a latte to Currys, Nespresso and the team at Joe Blogs Blogger Network! I had a great time, and have been on a coffee high ever since. I hope to get some sleep in again in the next two to three weeks.

Vx

Ask Her Friends November Panel

Ask Her Friends | She and Hem | November Panel

As members of the Ask Her Friends panel, every month we will be picking our favourite pieces from the Ask Her Friends website. This month we went a bit kitchen crazy and selected our items around a super sushi making experience, as we had such a blast at the workshop we went to. We had lots of fun searching and chatting about the perfect  pieces, so do let us know what you think!

Ask Her Friends are running a competition to win three different prizes this month. All you have to do is vote for your favourite panelist’s choices. It’s almost as easy as Deal or No Deal. Also on offer is £10 off if you spend more than £30 by adding sheandhem10 and a further £20 off if you spend more than £50 by adding sheandhem20. We promise we’re not trying to bribe you…

V&J

Beer52

She and Hem | Beer52 Review | LifestyleShe and Hem | Beer52 Review | Lifestyle

One of the many areas in which Bristol excels, alongside balloon fiestas, harbour festivals and street art, is craft beer. New establishments are popping up everywhere, showcasing the weirdest, wackiest and, most importantly, tastiest brews from near and far. Some have been critical of this upswing, but it is 100% fine by me. You can be a fan of traditional pubs and these new fangled craft beer hang outs. I know this, because I am one, and many others are too! Furthermore, as a budding connoisseur of all things hop, and a keen fan of having all my food and drink arrive on my doormat, when I saw that Beer52 were looking for people to review their beer delivery service, I was more than happy to volunteer. The opportunity to have 8 different craft beers delivered to my front door was too good to pass up, and having previously given a beer subscription as a Christmas present (Beer52 offer this service here) I was really keen to try it out for myself!

I was flipping excited when they arrived, so much so that I spent several hours days researching and meticulously planning and pairing the beers with the perfect food accompaniments to really make the most of the review experience. I roped my OH in to help with the cooking by promising to share of all the beers, and having prepped a little 4 course menu to spread over the day, here is how we got on.

She and Hem | Beer52 Review | Lifestyle

After some extensive background work looking through all the beers, researching the styles and earnestly discussing food pairings, we chose the beer with a pig on the label. Because, pig. Setting aside the excellent, porcine themed label design, this is “Cerdos Voladores” from the Barcelona Craft Beer brewery, a zesty, fruity IPA of a style very much at the vanguard of the craft beer movement. As a fan of the city, I was keen to keep in the spirit of our Catalan chums and pair this with something typically Spanish. Hence, gambas et ajillo! That’s garlic prawns to me and Google Translate. From my admittedly limited knowledge of beer and food pairings, I know that your typical IPA is said to best be accompanied by a spicy dish, and so we went for this chilli infused creation. I can confirm that the taste makers don’t lie – the punchy, lemon-y flavours of the beer took the edge off the heat, whilst enhancing the sweetness of the dish. A light and refreshing lunch, especially when paired with a simple salad.

She and Hem | Beer52 Review | LifestyleShe and Hem | Beer52 Review | Lifestyle

From such big flavours, there was really only one direction to go; bigger. The second beer we chose (and not just for the equally excellent label art) was “Ascendancy” from the Panda Frog Project, an experimental offshoot brewery of North Tyneside’s Mordue. As a girl normally into her chocolate stouts, and one known to get a bit giddy at just the thought of a second round, I was a bit nervous about this higher ABV beast of a beer! Especially one described as a “Belgian Double IPA Weizen Hybrid”, I had no idea what to expect! After being assured by the OH that it would be a good ‘un, we dove on in, pairing this big flavoured brew with an equally big flavoured Teriyaki Chicken stir fry (with home made teriyaki sauce and garlic paste of course). I can confirm that the floral, tropical kick of the DIPA side of the beer was present and correct, a lovely thirst quencher after the spicy, marinaded chicken, and an appealing accompaniment to fresh crunchy peppers, bean sprouts, pak choi and red peppers. The “weizen” element (a traditionally German style of hazy wheat beer, brew fans) gave the beer more body than I was expecting, and helped to soften the impact of that big tropical tartness. Unusual, but highly recommended.

She and Hem | Beer52 Review | LifestyleShe and Hem | Beer52 Review | Lifestyle

And now we’re back in my comfort zone. For afters, we naturally opted for my go to sweet food of choice, the prince of puddings, the don of desserts, the sultan of sweets, the chocolate brownie. Paired, most appropriately, with the delicious coffee-infused Toasted Porter from Iceland’s Einstok brewery, a brewery from which I’ve tried and enjoyed beer from before when visiting Iceland. It was a satisfying and waist expandingly indulgent way to end a satisfying and waist expandingly indulgent day. As keen coffee fans (who, us?), we even added a little local flavour to the brownie, sticking some of Extract Coffee RoastersKiangoi in the batter. The porter was smooth and rich, and unlike a lot of similar beers, neither too heavy nor overpowering. As we head into winter, I can imagine settling down in front of a Christmas box set or two with a bottle of this, idly sipping over the course of a few hours.

She and Hem | Beer52 Review | LifestyleShe and Hem | Beer52 Review | Lifestyle

Oh sorry, you didn’t think we were done did you? All that eating really made us work up an appetite, so a little more research later, and we found that you simply can’t enjoy an Oatmeal Stout without a good chunk of aged cheddar. So naturally, we followed this advice and opted for a simple, paired down snack of cheese and beer, using the Belhaven Brewery’s Scottish Oat Stout. The oatcakes, crackers, apple, pickles and chutneys just forced themselves on us, ok? Again, the tastemakers are on it with this – the velvet-y, silky texture of the stout was a nice base for the strong cheese. As a person not normally into such cheese, I was surprised and impressed! This was another delicious beer from the darker end of the scale, perfect for warming one’s cockles by the fire candle on a cold night.

candle

Thanks Beer52 for expanding my beery horizons and for giving me a good excuse to get creative in the kitchen! If you fancy having a little tasting session yourself and want a cheeky discount code, just pop SHEANDHEM10 into the ‘got a special code’ box on the Beer52 website for £10 off of your order. Also, if you would like any of the recipes for the food items in this post, please get in touch!

Vx

Champagne Super Nola

She and Hem | Nola Vodka Spritz | Lifestyle She and Hem | Nola Vodka Spritz | Lifestyle

As we are both lightweights very responsible drinkers, sometimes we know that gin is not the answer to every boozy question. Although we got the moves like Jäger at the weekend, if we fancy a weeknight drink, it needs to be lighter, so we were pretty excited when the postman delivered this huge box of delights from Nola. We saw this magical delivery as a fine excuse to invite our favourite ladies over for a good old catch up and to sample some sweet sweet spritz.

She and Hem | Nola Vodka Spritz | Lifestyle She and Hem | Nola Vodka Spritz | Lifestyle She and Hem | Nola Vodka Spritz | Lifestyle

Hidden inside the Nola box was a cocktail of delicious accompaniments to enjoy with the drinks, including delicious mini meringues from Meringue Girls and tip top popcorn from Propercorn. Nothing corny about that! Many laughs were had dancing around the dinner table, sipping from teacups and discussing our plans for Halloween. We wore our fun Emily and Fin dresses and thankfully felt more pickled than plastered at the end of our girly powwow.

She and Hem | Nola Vodka Spritz | Lifestyle She and Hem | Nola Vodka Spritz | Lifestyle She and Hem | Nola Vodka Spritz | Lifestyle She and Hem | Nola Vodka Spritz | Lifestyle

Have a great week Hemsters!

V&J