Wednesday, 30 July 2014

The Carmelite Hotel

If you've read my last few posts (if not, where have you been?!) you'll know that I had a bit of an epic foodie weekend for my birthday. The Friday night was no different. The Carmelite is a fairly regular haunt for us - we've had some great experiences here, as well as one not so great, but that's never deterred us. Gordon was craving his favourite St Mungo's beer, and the Carmelite is the only bar in Aberdeen that serves it, so that was it, decision made. Plus it's a hotel so we could rest our weary (drunken) heads at the end of the night too!


I'd show you Gordon's beloved beer but my Flaming Love Potion was much prettier. Yep, I actually had to ask someone for that... better than sex on the beach I suppose. The passion fruit concoction tasted delicious, even if the stemless glass was a bit awkward to hold to begin with! Seeing as it was my birthday we went all out with an epic 3 courser... ha as if I need an excuse!


My haggis, neeps and tatties starter was epic and I loved the unusual presentation. Haggis bon-bons, potato and swede cake with chilli mayo. I'll be expecting my Burns suppers like this from now on! 

I don't know why I even bother telling you what Gordon ate. A tasty, well presented (although average in my opinion) prawn cocktail, followed by...


Steak! Please don't die from shock. Again an average, almost boring, dish in my opinion but he enjoyed it as usual. My posh fish and chips didn't look even slightly posh but tasted gorgeous. The salt n pepper squid and king prawn were good if a little random. Best part of the dish was definitely the proper home made chips though!


I washed it down with another cocktail while I prepared my second stomach. (The one we reserve for pudding, you know you have one.) The pictures don't do the "Smoking Jam" cocktail any justice. Actual smoke is released when you peel back the lid of the jam jar and you can taste the smoky maple flavour throughout the sweet drink. If I was posh I'd describe it as "smoky undertones". But I'm not. Anyway, the point is, try one of the smoking cocktails! I'd love to see how they're made next time.


You'll be amazed to know Gordon didn't have sticky toffee pudding... he had stick toffee pudding sundae. I don't think it compared to the last one he tried in Aberdeen though, unfortunately The Albyn wins that competition. My vanilla creme brulee was ace with it's buttery shortbread and berry compote. I've had this every time we've visited so can highly recommend! 


The live music at the Carmelite is one of my favourite things about the place. It makes for a perfectly relaxed, yet sophisticated evening. Just what we needed before the chaos at Bos'n! If you're staying in Aberdeen I'd highly recommend the Carmelite Hotel. It's a stylish, contemporary place with everything under one roof! Our bedroom was beautifully decorated and super comfy, the meal was lovely and the friendly breakfast service is one of a kind! If you're looking for something a bit more upbeat they also do quirky afternoon teas, Mad Hatter's tea parties and even have a "Waltzer" seat which turns around your table. I imagine it'd make me feel sick but each to their own!


Have you ever tried The Carmelite?

Christy xx

Monday, 28 July 2014

another weekend... in the gym #20


FOOD
Basically lived off omelettes, chilli and birthday chocolate this week. I don't really do much cooking when Gordon's on night shift as one pot of chilli lasts me a few days and omelettes are the easiest meal for one! I've been having turkey wraps for lunch and loving them - just get a slice of turkey breast, place some cucumber and houmous on top and roll it up! My body fat % is almost at 25% which is high for me, so I'm setting myself a challenge to see what difference I can make in 6 weeks. I'm back on plan, clean eating and training hard. I even managed to be pretty controlled at a BBQ on Friday night! Lets get rid of this bloated belly!
Would anyone be interested if I kept a more detailed food diary on here? Or would that be too long and boring...?


EXERCISE
Monday - Yoga (Hannah sums up my feelings on yoga perfectly in this post.)
Tuesday - Kettlebells & metafit
Wednesday - Rest day
Thursday - Started PT again! Agony.
Friday - Rest day. (Metafit was cancelled!)
Saturday - Rest day.
Sunday - Weights.

Christy xx

Sunday, 27 July 2014

24


Yes my birthday was a week ago and I'm still milking it! Last Sunday I walked into my Mum's house expecting to just have a cup of tea and piece of birthday cake, but instead I was met with this...


ALL of the food. How cute is this little massive picnic set up? I had said I'd like to go for a picnic in the park if the weather was good but of course, in typical Scottish summer style, it was peeing down. I did not expect to find this in my parents living room and was touched by all the effort my Mum and sister had put in. They served up an abundance of sandwiches, homemade cupcakes, pancakes, cheesecake, sweeties and other little picky bits. We were literally eating cake for days.

As usual the grand finale was this epic strawberry tart which they order for me every year...


I was spoiled rotten by my family and friends - I was gifted a collection of healthy eating books (to combat the picnic eh?) and some super cute Lulu Guinness bags...


My wardrobe did pretty well too. And I've never had so much flowers in my home at once!


We spent the evening watching films and it ended with scones, jam and cream, all washed down with a cold glass of prosecco... as every birthday should! #luckygirl ;)


What's the best way you've ever spent your birthday?

Christy xx

Thursday, 24 July 2014

Thaikhun - The Launch


The latest addition to Aberdeen's Union Square is authentic street-food style eatery Thaikhun. Opening it's doors just last week, the restaurant is a big hit with hungry shoppers and cinema visitors. Thaikhun stands out from the crowd of pizza and burger chains and brings a little piece of Bangkok to the Union Square table. Last Thursday they closed for a spiritual blessing from Buddhist monks, and I was lucky enough to be invited along to the VIP launch event in the evening with Gordon as my (more than willing!) sidekick.


Although part of the Chaophraya Thai Restaurant group, this is only the 2nd Thaikhun location (the 1st being in Manchester) and offers a far more casual dining experience than it's opulent Chaophraya sister restaurants. The interior is a mish mash of authentic decoration, collected by the owners themselves. A map of Thailand covers the far wall while the rest are filled with family portraits, heirlooms and other interesting artifacts. The open kitchen provides the background noise and the effect is a fun, exciting atmosphere. Picture a busy Bangkok street filled with colour, bright lights, a never ending stream of happy people chattering away over traditional Thai food, made with love by local street hawkers...


The bar was serving up some top notch cocktails. The Full Moon is a refreshing mix of vodka, triple sec, watermelon and cranberry juice but the lemongrass cosmo, bursting with flavour, was my favourite by a mile! I haven't stopped thinking about it since. As designated driver, this is the closest Gordon got to any cocktail action...


The food more than made up for it! Chef and owner Kim was warm and welcoming, making sure I had a drink to hand! Her passion for her country's food is at the heart of the restaurant and Kim draws on her personal experience as a restaurant owner in Bangkok, using secret family recipes, to create the delicious dishes on offer. The trays of beautifully presented, great tasting finger food were an absolute treat. We tried everything from pork skewers, to fish cakes, to crispy won tons, but the peanuty "Gai Satay" was my absolute winner! I'm looking forward to returning for a taste of the traditional green curry and pad thai in the near future.


We were entertained by uplifting speeches and a magician who made my engagement ring disappear (!). After an evening of excellent cocktails and even better food, we left with smiles on our faces. Thaikhun is the real deal. The name Thaikhun literally means "your Thailand" and their mission is accomplished - I'm inspired, not only to return for more foodie treats in Aberdeen, but to hop on a plane to that beautiful country on the other side of the world! Now where did I put my passport?


Christy xx
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