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

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