Wednesday, 28 October 2015

Move it or lose it!

Warning, warning: there are a couple of hippedy-hop happening things happening soon in Leicester, so you'd better move it or lose it!

Pumpkin Gutting

Friends of the blog and all round nice dudes, the Real Junk Food Project are offering a pumpkin gutting service, so you can get your pumpkin taken down to the shell with no effort, ready for carving, and they will use the guts for their awesome Pay as You Feel cafe. Love food, hate waste - get yourself a super Hallowe'en decoration and some delicious grub to boot.

Just take your pumpkin to LCiL at the West End Centre, LE3 5PA between 2pm and 5pm on Thursday (tomorrow - 29/10/15) or 9am and 11am on Friday, then don't forget to attend the Pay As You Feel cafe on Thursday evening or Friday lunchtime to reap the delicious rewards!

One Big Day Out for £20

A new day is coming to De Montfort Hall Gardens next April. On Sunday 31st, the Brand New Heavies and an amazing line up of fantastic funk and soul will be performing and if you buy your ticket before the end of October you can get it for just twenty squids. Well, maybe English pounds rather than ten armed cephalapods, but you can't deny it is a ripping deal.

We'll also be treated to The Specials' Neville Staple, Midlands jazz funk collective Stone Foundation and of course Johnny and the Good Time Boys (and undoubtedly much, much more). October ends on Sunday though, so get a shake on! Get your tickets from the De Montfort Hall box office, before you have to pay more!

Fabulous food, without breaking a seam

I was blown away by the 7 course menu for 700 calories at The White Peacock in September, so I won't be missing the next Dine on a Diet, which will be held at North Bar and Kitchen on Hinckley Road on the 19th November. Tickets are strictly limited, so don't miss out on a fabulous five course tasting menu of traditional British food with a contemporary European twist developed in association with U Fit Studio so it'll be big on taste but still healthy and nutritious. A culinary feast without the guilt, if the last event was anything to go by, you can book your tickets through this link.

Tuesday, 27 October 2015

Best of Leicester: Wine Tasting Special

I got to pop along to Best of Leicester's latest event last night as Rothley Wine's partially glamourous assistant. They put on a marketing workshop for SME's with a million handy hints and tips about how to market your business effectively (and without much outlay!) which went down really well with everyone who attended. It was part of the Leicester Business Festival, which is still going on, so check out their website for more events near you.

After the business was finished we moved on to a wine tasting with Liz Robson from Rothley Wine. She gave attendees an interesting and short talk about English wine and its production, before moving on to the serious business of the tasting.

There were lovely folk there from a wide range of businesses, the National Space Centre (now available for weddings - how cool is that?), Shadow Media, Talking Point Events and of course the evening's charity partner, Charity Link to name but a few. As we learned more about taking in the look, nose and taste of the local wines we also got to know more about each other. I was on a great table of people full of fascinating stories about wine, their work and everything else.

She has the technique...? Then the cork hit the ceiling...
The wines went down really well and everyone wrote down their thoughts about the Best of Leicester(shire) food that they could be matched with. More on that when the results have been collated and analysed by a team of wine scientists back in the lab. 

Much cheese was consumed, discerning palates were pleased and everyone was happy and a little bit full.
Checking the bubbles
I used to shudder at the mention of 'networking' but since meeting the lovely ladies in the Aspiring Business Women Network, I've since discovered that it is actually a nice way to meet new people, learn about new things, get loads of help and advice and also, sometimes, to create fab new opportunities that you never expected. Certainly I think the blog's better because of it, although I'm still not making any money - hardly a business! Ah well, I'm having fun. Hope you're enjoying reading it... Hello... Is anybody there? Go on, comment below and let me know what you think!

Saturday, 24 October 2015

The Hoosiers at Meatcure, Leicester

We were treated to some very special entertainment on Thursday here in Leicester. The Hoosiers popped by to local dirty burger purveyors, Meatcure for a very lovely acoustic set. It was great to have something a bit exclusive and a lot fun happening just five minutes away from the office. Sadly I could only stay for the first half of the set as I was on my lunch break but I did very much enjoy it!

As ever, the Meatcure staff were super friendly. They always offer bright, personal and attentive service in there. I love the relaxed vibe in the restaurant and having some acoustic music to enjoy at the same time was perfect.

Of course, I grabbed myself a Dirty Burger, which comes with a soft drink for £7.50 (20% off for Council employees) which I thought was supposed to be the smaller, sensible lunch time option, however, it came with an absolute mountain of fries which I couldn't possibly finish.

The Hoosiers performed a selection of material, both their old favourites and some bits from their new album, The Secret Service. I have to admit that I'm not hugely familiar with their work, but they had great timing, and their songs stripped down for acoustic really nicely. It was a perfect fit with Meatcure, just laid back and a bit smiley.

So, it just goes to show you never know what will happen in Leicester - there's always something fun going on. This week I'm going for cheese and wine tasting and on the weekend it's the Diwali lights switch on - hooray!

Thursday, 22 October 2015

Paisley Pumpkin

Hallowe'en falls on the same weekend as the Diwali light switch on here in Leicester this year, so I decided to give my pumpkin a bit of a mehndi makeover. This is a quick, easy and particularly effective way to decorate your pumpkin because it means that you preserve all of the flesh so you can still eat it all afterwards. Winning.

If you also love Diwali, and have similar concerns about not wasting precious, precious pumpkin flesh, then you'll probably enjoy my Foodie's Guide to Diwali 2015, so pop over and have a look. If you're feeling creative, you've still got time to stock up your Hallowe'en Haberdashery too...

Wash your pumpkin. If you don't have to wash your pumpkin, then you probably haven't grown it yourself. Do that next year. It's easy and fun.

Get a permanent pen and find yourself some inspirational designs. I've gone for a traditional Indian theme, the sort of thing you would see done as henna patterns. But you can do whatever you like - spooky ghosts, spider's webs, or even something way out there, like a dolphin. Why not? It's Hallowe'en. It doesn't mean anything, it's just a bit of fun.

Draw on your design. Careful of the ridges in the pumpkin, make sure it doesn't send your design astray. Left handers, you know by now, but watch the side of your hand doesn't smudge the bit you've just drawn. And that's it! Told you it was easy.

Wednesday, 21 October 2015

The Foodies Guide to Diwali 2015

Diwali is nearly upon us and the celebrations here in Leicester are going to be bigger than ever before. Since Extreme Housewifery is a blog obsessed with food, here's my guide to the top Foodie events that will be taking place in the city over the next few weeks. Fat pants on everyone.

Belgrave Business Association presents: The Golden Mile Diwali Festival 
Sunday 1 - 15 November
Belgrave and Melton Road

Shops all along the Golden Mile will be taking part in a festival to showcase the very best that Leicester has to offer. Expect food tasters, fashion shows, prize draws and other events and activities taking place up and down the Mile.

Even if you don't happen to catch a special event, you should definitely head down the Golden Mile to enjoy a foodie paradise. Bobby's is one of the oldest and most well known, particularly for its awesome Indian sweet shop, but there is plenty of other places to choose from, like Khyber Restaurant and probably the best buffet restaurant Leicester has, Feast India. And of course, this year you can see it all from a bird's eye view from the Wheel of Light!

@Leicester_Merc Big wheel's here ready for Diwali!
— Annie Brookes (@beaverbrookes23) October 17, 2015

A Taste of India 
Wednesday 4 November
12noon – 2pm
Market Square

Britain's best food market is adding to the celebrations by showing you how to make the perfect samosa and giving you the opportunity to have a go yourself. Not to be missed!

Kohinoor Radio 
Saturday 7 November
11.30am - 4pm
Humberstone Gate West

An afternoon of traditional Punjabi entertainment will fill the stage as Kohinoor Radio broadcasts live. Once you've had your fill of music and Bhangra, have a try of some traditional Punjabi food. Fabulous.

Diwali Mela Bazaar  
Sunday 8 November
11am – 5pm
Humberstone Gate West 

A feast of Indian shopping awaits, which will include a range of delicious cuisines from all across the Indian subcontinent. The spaces for catering stalls are completely sold out, so it promises to be a delight for the palate!

Healthy Diwali Family Day 
Sunday 8 November
12noon – 5pm
Peepul Enterprise

Diwali with a healthy twist from the former Peepul Centre - Learn how to cook healthy delicious food with a demonstration by Tamarind Catering’s Head Chef and DHAL project leader Gulshinder Chadda, just £3 a ticket. There are a wide range of other activites happening that day too, including a performance from the Peepul's own ukelele group!

Govardhan: Celebrating the Mountain of Food 
Thursday 12 November
6pm – 10pm
Iskcon, 31 Granby Street

Now settled in their new home on Granby Street, (which is worth a look if you haven't seen the interior of the building) Iskcon celebrate nature's gift of food in the traditional manner, as it has been celebrated for 5000 years. The event is free and you can eat as much as you like.

Monday, 19 October 2015

When vintage goes obsessive...

I love a bit of a crochet. I enjoyed a sneaky guerrilla crochet during Knit in Public day right when I had first started to learn the art and I've been all over the place with colour and pattern ever since. But recently, I've really, really got in to doilies.

This is unfortunate, because there is no place in my house for doilies. And no place in anyone else's house either it would seem. They are totally vintage, totally retro, but for some reason they are the only bit of vintage homeware that doesn't seem to have come back into fashion recently. Which is annoying. 

However, as undeterred as I am by passing fads, I shall continue to make doilies and give them to all my friends until such time as I am no longer obsessed with making them. Who knows, if I make enough, maybe the weight of numbers entering the market will mean that I tip them into trendy again.

Where do you stand on doilies?

crochet, cat, doily
Cat doily. Just what the internet needs.
Pinwheel doily - it's a bit 3D and that.

Little bit in love with this one, rather unique pattern

Friday, 16 October 2015

French Toast

Well, I was going to make another 100 square metre toast mosaic this week, but sadly the Great British Weather has put the kibosh on the whole thing.

You may remember me from such oversized food art as the Toast Mona Lisa, the Cupcake Cherry Tree of Ultimate Blossom and The Coffee Bean Shop Sign of Extreme Backache.

On my knees for my art, again.
This time, the producer of a well-known primetime TV show (which shall remain nameless, in case I get the chance to do another one for them in the future) asked me to create a 10 by 10 metre portrait of comedienne and national treasure, Dawn French. It would have been French Toast. It would have been beautiful.

Sadly, the day we were planning to lay it out, in an outdoors location, is the only day that it is due to rain in central London next week. With no alternative indoor location suitable to set up overhead cameras for both the time lapse and the final money shot and no wriggle room in the scheduling, sadly it was not to be.

However, I had completed the first draft of the design and so as not to waste the first 10 or so hours of work I put in, I thought I'd share it with you all. There was still plenty of work left to do to finalise the design. Her hair isn't quite right, the fringe needs proper definition, and there was definitely a lot of work left to do around the jawline and chin, but it was definitely coming together. 

So here she is, the giant toast creation that never was. I hope the lady herself would have found it amusing. Fingers crossed somebody else finds themselves in possession of a lot of the same thing that I can make giant art out of soon. I do love these projects.

Wednesday, 14 October 2015

Harvest time at Rothley Wine

I've been volunteering at the Kingfisher's Pool vineyard in Rothley, Leicestershire for a number of months now and the time of year I've been waiting for with anticipation has finally arrived! Yes, it's harvest, time to pick the grapes and get the new vintage underway.

A team of dedicated volunteers showed up last weekend to help pick the grapes and between us we picked an incredible 1.25 tonnes of grapes - which the internet reliably informs me will be enough to make over 800 bottles of wine! And there were a lot more left to pick....

I spent all day on just half a row of Solaris, which I didn't quite finish picking in 6.5 hours, despite my best efforts - although I did get over 7 baskets of fruit to show for the effort. The Solaris has grown vigorously this year, and it hasn't yet been cold enough at night for it to start to drop its leaves. The thick canopy can make it difficult to reach, or even see the grapes, which certainly slowed down the progress of the harvest to some extent.

Wheelbarrow full of grape stems anyone?
Sadly, the significant storm that we experienced just 4 days before the harvest led to an outbreak of Botrytis - even more sadly this was very definitely grey rot and not the Noble Rot of the French which creates your beatifully flavoured dessert wines. Cutting out the affected grapes and making sure they were separated from the harvest so they could be properly disposed of also added to the time it took to pick the grapes as well of course as losing those grapes. I was amazed by the mould, which sent out its spores with a great cloud when you dropped them into what I referred to as my 'Botrytis Bucket'.

As ever, we were royally looked after by vineyard owners Liz and Matthew, who treated us all to fish and chips from Rothley's own chippy - a much needed and well enjoyed treat in the midst of all of that physical labour. 

The EMT crew in front of the winery
On this occasion I did not get the opportunity to tread the grapes, I think mainly because the schedule was thrown out so much by the arrival of East Midlands Today who wanted to feature the harvest on their evening programme, so of course the presenter was duly up to her knees in grapes in due course. I'm hoping that I'll be able to get back to help with some of the remaining grapes, if the botrytis doesn't take them all, so my time may still come!

Tuesday, 13 October 2015

Leicester Tapas Trail: Eat your way around the world!

Did you know that falafel is thought to have originated in Egypt? I didn't, but I looked it up because I wanted to write you a post about all the groovy global cuisines that are available on the Leicester Tapas Trail!

You just have until this Sunday, 18th October left to get on the Tapas Trail and get a bite to eat and a drink for £3. Each of the venues has developed their own drink/dish combination, so I've tried to summarise all the global cuisines which are represented.

Natterjacks - Falafel, delicious deep fried balls of chickpea goodness which are most popular in the Middle East but may have originally have developed in Egypt.

Queen of Bradgate and 33cankstreet - The true Tapas pioneers on the Tapas Trail, you can snag yourself a portion of patatas bravas at the Queen of Bradgate or sample either a Spanish tortilla, Pan Tumaca, Agave & Seasalt popcorn or olives at 33cankstreet. If you're looking for the Pinchos Path this week, you've found it here!

Turkey Cafe and Firebug - Inspired by a visit to Las Vegas, the Turkey's garbage fries are an utter delight of avocado and bacon joy. Firebug's menu includes the choice of a beef, chicken or bean mini burger with wedges or a serving of beef or veggie chilli with rice and bread - it's kind of the Tex Mex option of the Trail.

Rutland and Derby - One of the most exotic options on the Trail, you can pick up a steamed salmon bun - inspired by a real Japanese classic. Steamed buns are becoming more common in the UK now, and they're fabulous.

Roxy's Kitchen at Bossa Bar - I struggled to decide what country to classify Roxy's Kitchen under, so I decided to pick one dish from her Street Food menu to focus on. Inspired by Mexican street food, their spicy, cheesy sweetcorn dish is warming and satisfying.

Bruxelles - Where else could Bruxelles focus on but Belgium? Mussels, Belgian beef stew and waffles each served with a matched beer for £3 means you can have a complete three course feed for just £9.

Taps - And just a stone's throw away from Brussels/Bruxelles we have Oktoberfest at Taps - with a specially created German sausage spiced cassoulet with a homemade bread. It's marvellous and warming, especially now Autumn is really starting to kick in.

The Exchange and Gelato Village - Our Italian friends at Gelato Village make wonderful, fresh gelato in the Italian style having been trained at Gelato University in Bologna. Yes, that's a thing. And down at Exchange you can try their anti-pasto platter for a very special Italian Job.

Monday, 12 October 2015

The Real Junk Food Project at LCiL

Can you remember the Real Junk Food Project? We met Alison and Bobby back in May. They were busily engaged in intercepting food and creating pop-up cafes in Leicester. And now they have made their permanent home at the Leicestershire Centre for Integrated Living (LCiL) which is in the old West End Neighbourhood Building on Andrewes Street.

The cafe is now running on Thursday evenings from 7pm until 8.30pm and the Social Media Cafe runs on Fridays between 11am and 3pm. As ever, you head along and pay as you feel for your meal. They intercept food from all around the place, feeding bellies not bins, and so you are helping to support your local community, preventing food from being wasted and having a great social experience at the same time.

The great thing about intercepting food is that the menu is different each time and they are super creative with their cooking, so you're guarenteed something very special! Manned by a team of friendly volunteers, mains, drinks and desserts are served with a smile. The cafe was buzzing when I visited, full of people, but there is definitely room for more to go and support.

I opted for a pulled pork roll, which was oozing with cheese and served with a raw slaw, which had delicious flavour and was packed full of delicious vegetables - it definitely felt a litte healthier than your average cafe because of all the wonderful fresh produce that they use. There were also lots of homemade soups available which were also packed full of veg.

After all that I was just in the market for a small dessert, so I passed up the rhubarb and apple crumble in favour of the Spiced Orange Cracken. It's not very often that I see a menu item where I have absolutely no idea what it is, so I couldn't resist finding out more, and in fact I've tried googling it and I can't find it on google either!!

In essence it was grated orange, peel and all, mixed with spices, vanilla and syrup and then pressed into disks and baked. It was served with a delicious warm, thick chocolate and banana sauce and I got myself a cup of coffee to go with it. A very satisfying lunch and well worth the donation that I made, to help support the Real Junk Food Project to pay for their utilities and to hopefully expand their mobile catering further so that they can continue to feed people who need their support (and those of us who just want to jump on the bandwagon and make sure food gets a good home - in my belly).

I also enjoyed having a browse in their bookswap. I will have to remember to take some books down myself next time I visit as I didn't know it was there! I picked up a lovely old illustrated book on pub signs from the 1940s which I have really enjoyed reading. If you choose not to give a cash donation you could always take some books along in exchange for your meal, or you can even sing a song, tell a story or draw a picture. There was a chap there when I visited doing the most amazing caricatures.

In case you're unfamiliar with the LCiL, have a little browse of their website. They are a user led organisation which provides a range of services that empower disabled people and help their friends, family and other organisations to help achieve independence and inclusion for all. They've been around for nearly 20 years now, doing great work. If you want to support them, as well as attending the Real Junk Food Project cafe, you could see if any of their events appeal to you. They produce their own magazine and will be running the #LCIL24 24 hour newsroom on Thursday 3rd December to capture stories and projects of how people around the world are re-affirming rights for people with disabilities. It's a free event and a great way for everyone to get involved and to share their own experiences.

Sunday, 11 October 2015

The Tapas Trail at the Turkey Cafe

There's just one week left to enjoy the Leicester Tapas Trail! Don't say you haven't been warned and come complaining to me on the 19th October when you haven't had the chance to enjoy a dish and a drink for just £3 at 11 of the city's best independent venues... If you've just stumbled across this now, click this link to find out all the facts.

Today the spotlight is on the final venue in the Trail - the Turkey Cafe. Nestled in one of Leicester's most beautiful and creatively designed buildings, the Turkey Cafe have made their name for fresh, home-cooked food and innovative cocktails.

The Turkey Cafe have jumped aboard the Leicester Tapas Trail with gusto. Their offering consists of a drink and a mini portion of their legendary Garbage Fries. We went down to review the Cafe back in August and I was raving on about the fries then, so I'm super pleased to have them on the Tapas Trail. Cheese, bacon and avocado anything is a good thing, so adding all that to fries, with tomato and spring onions is pure genius. Plus the fries aren't just topped, the added extras run all the way through the dish, so you get avocado wonderment the whole way down.

Drinks on offer include Pilsner Urquell, a small glass of house wine or a soft drink. I would recommend the Sauvignon Blanc if you go for the wine, it's a nice light wine and goes well with the toppings on the fries.

The Turkey Cafe are serving their dish until 9pm Monday to Thursday and until 6pm Friday and Saturday, so there's no excuse not to get down their and give it a go. Why not team it up with a visit to Roxy's Kitchen at Bossa Bar and get a bit of Granby Street love on the go?

Friday, 9 October 2015

Beautiful Baubles at Iridescence

I have been foisting doilies on the unsuspecting today. Apologies all round. This time my unlikely victim was the lovely Samantha, the owner of a wonderful local jewellery business here is Leicester, Iridescence. Her company logo is a butterfly, so I decided to make her some butterfly doilies. The first came out a little more cumbersome than I'd hoped, but the second was much more delicate so I was a lot happier with it.

In exchange for having unsolicited doilies thrust upon her, I got to have a good looksee at some of the beautiful pieces she sells on her website. Iridescence is a great shop if you are looking for something just a little bit different - just perfect for me. They carry a wide range of treats - bags, scarves and hair accessories as well as a wide variety of jewellery. Sam had brought me a wide range to see.

In particular, I loved the silver, sparkly pieces she showed me. Themes of butterflies and angel wings - light designs, full of hope - are a predominant theme in the collection, but there are also a number of pieces which have a distinctly vintage edge to them.

I think we all know that there is never enough diamante in the world (sparkle, sparkle) but sometimes you have to think outside the box. The angel wing statement necklace, pictured above, has plenty of sparkle, but this detail comes from a grey glass stone, cut to refract the light subtly - which complements the swooping wings as they sit around the throat. It has an antique silver finish and puts me in mind of 1950s cocktail parties, but with a very contemporary edge.

If you like the angel wing motif, I would also recommend the brushed silver angel wing bracelet which has a stretchy fit. This actually surprised me when I picked it up, you can't tell at all by the finish, it looks like a solid piece, but of course the stretch means you can get a better fit on to the wrist without it necessarily needing to have all the diameter to go over your hand.

I was also really interested in the pieces I saw which are made with floral fabrics set in perspex. This means the jewellery is both lightweight and strong, and gives a really interesting finish that I have not seen before.

I liked how retro and colourful these pieces were. The perspex foundation means that they can take an infinite variety of fun shapes and some were interspersed with beads to add further interest. The long bird necklace caught my eye particularly - perhaps it's my twitter obsession seeping into real life... Check out this bracelet too, pictured below - sparkly and colourful!

I was very impressed by everything Sam showed me - they are very reasonably priced and of course we all love to support our local businesses! I'm not sure anyone in Gelato Village, where we met for a coffee, had any idea what we were up to, strewing the table with gorgeous jewellery and photographing it!

Iridescence do home jewellery parties and pop up shops so even if you're not a big online shopper there's no need for you to miss out. They also offer a VIP service if you are looking to do something very special for somebody close.

Thanks to Sam for showing me her wares and even bigger thanks for the lovely gift of this beautiful brooch. I'm not sure it was a fair swap, something so eyecatching in exchange for my bizarre crochet - but it was a gift that will be very well loved nonetheless. Despite the unsolicited gift, as you all know by now, my opinions are my own - my review of what I saw is my honest opinion and I truly hope you check Iridescence out and find something you love too!

Thursday, 8 October 2015

Patatas Bravas on the Tapas Trail

This is your 10 day warning. You have just 10 days left, until 18th October 2015, to enjoy the Leicester Tapas Trail. That's 11 venues, all serving a drink and a dish for £3. If you haven't heard of it, click on this post to check out all the details, and don't delay.

We've nearly checked out all of the Tapas Trail venues now. You can check back and see my thoughts on the Tapas Trail dishes and drinks available at Bruxelles, Bossa Cafe Bar,  The Exchange, 33cankstreet, Rutland and Derby, Gelato Village, Taps, Firebug and Natterjacks. Click on the venue name to find out more, or stick with us to find out about what you can currently get for £3 at the Queen of Bradgate.

The Queen of Bradgate, on High Street, has an excellent selection of craft and cask ales on draught. Very generously, they're letting you select a half pint of any one you fancy on the Trail, so you can try the Boy's favourite, Yakima Red, from Meantime Brewery. Alternatively, have a look down the cask ale row and take your pick. Personally I always like to pick the beer with the most amusing name, it's a tactic that hasn't let me down so far.

You can also pick yourself up a glass of house wine if you prefer - 125ml. I enjoy the house white. And for your dish, you'll team up with a super portion of their house Patatas Bravas. It's a great size, lovely and filling - soft potatoes in a tomato and onion spiced sauce, spiked with fiery slices of red chilli.

It's not quite a traditional Spanish bravas, it is very much an English twist, but it is delicious. And all this for just £3, I don't know what you're waiting for to be honest. The Tapas Trail isn't around forever. Act now and enjoy it before it's too late!

Wednesday, 7 October 2015

How does one meal feed two?

So we popped in to Leicester's Highcross centre yesterday and made our way to a very reasonably sized queue (in that it was much shorter than we expected) outside Byron Hamburgers. You may recall I reviewed it just after it opened, weirdly exactly one year ago. Well, we enjoyed it and we have been back since. So why was there this queue? What was all the excitement about?

Yesterday was 25p burger day. Yep, that's right. 
Did you miss it? You're going to hate me now.

Byron were offering members of their Burger Club a burger for the bargain price of 25p to celebrate their partnership with One Feeds Two. This is a charity which gives some of the world's poorest children a school meal each day so they don't go hungry, are encouraged to attend school more regularly and therefore come out with a better education. Brilliant! 

Each school meal costs just 25p, and so Byron are now donating 25p from every sale of their Special hamburger each month to One Feeds Two. Simple!

It was fabulous. I had my firm favourite the Smokey and the Boy opted for the B-Rex. As ever, they were served medium and were delicious, with great quality meat and toppings being used throughout. I really enjoyed the brioche bun too - it held together really well but was still lovely and soft. Well worth 25p!

As we've come to expect, the staff were wonderfully friendly and cheerful, despite the fact that it was clearly madness and they were absolutely rushed off their feet trying to serve everyone. Big thanks to the manager for recommending we try the India Hell's Lager, which was a fabulous punchy and aromatic American IPA style beer and could not have matched better with my Smoky burger. A real find - I love food and beer pairing and this was a super one.

Get yourself down. I know it's a chain, and it's expanding rapidly, but the burgers truly are awesome - sometimes you just have to accept that a business is successful, and expanding, because it is just quite simply, lovely. Don't forget to try the special burger - currently Run Rarebit Run - and know that you'll be buying a child a school meal at the same time. We donated some extra meals through our tip - and even more thanks go to the staff for agreeing to donate all their tips on what must be the busiest day they've ever had. Kudos.
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