It’s my birthday this month or as our Nadine Coyle would say ‘Date of birth 14th of the 6th 94 makin’ me a geminiii!
We kicked off the birthday celebrations with a well overdue visit to Blank, we’ve been wanting to visit Blank since they opened back in September & we certainly weren’t disappointed, Blank pride themselves on celebrating exceptional seasonal Irish produce and the people behind it. Rather than a typical menu they have their “Blank list” a list of the local produce they’re featuring that season & the dishes you’re served up are a complete surprise until the plate hits the table.
They recently won an award for their veggie tasting menu & ranked no.70 in the UKs Top 100 restaurants this year, which is no surprise as all four of us thought it was exceptional from start to finish. Situated just off the Malone road walking into this Georgian building you’ll find Blanks classic monochrome interior & green velvet seating finished with flourishes of gold, you’ll be greeted with warm customer service & an extensive wine list to go along with their outstanding food, we went for a bottle of their montepluciano-kept at perfect room temperature which was a fantastic touch.
I’ll not divulge exactly what were served up incase anyones planned a trip themselves, I wouldn’t want to ruin the surprise, that’s half the fun after all.
Another visit to the Creamery, honestly I need to move further away from the creamery, their new twix sauce is to die for! I doubled up on my bubble waffle & went for twix ice cream & twix sauce - no regrets, I balanced it all out with strawberries to get in one of my 5 a day & we always walk there & back so you definitely deserve a big dirty dessert after getting your steps in, right? With the hotter weather approaching I definitely recommend you take a trip here.
For my birthday we treated ourselves to a wee trip to galgorm - any excuse for a spa day eh?
As you can see I was delighted with my massive bowl of pasta in fratellis, we went for a little smorgasbord of frattelis offerings, some cicchetti, bruschetta, garlic bread & fries, I hogged the pasta to myself though, you deserve a big bowl of carbs after a hard day at the spa, right? We enjoyed a drink in mckendrys bar after dinner with some live music, before heading back to lounge in our outdoor bathtub with a “cheeky wee Prosecco”.
The breakfast selection the next day was on another level, such a massive selection of pastries, yoghurts, fruit, a full build your own granola bar & a fry up buffet, I hope I win on the euro millions & can just move into galgorm.
After our relaxing trip to galgorm we drove up the North coast to Portstewart & if I’m honest it was specifically to visit Vittle bakehouse, I’ve followed these guys on instagram for forever & their pastries always look insanely good, but between covid & us always seeming to be up the north coast when they’re closed (at the start of the week) I’ve not been lucky enough to visit! so I was super delighted to finally get in to see the guys, we went for a lemon meringue cruffin, a croissant & muffin hybrid, I think its one of the messiest things I’ve ever eaten & I’m pretty sure there’s possibly still some meringue up my nose, all in a good way though. We also had a chocolate & hazelnut cronut, yes another croissant hybrid but the time with a donut! & a pastel de nata to take home of course. The coffee was great served up with the friendliest, warmest service, just sad I couldn’t make this little spot my local - although I think the 2.5hour round trip would be worth it.
After our visit to Vittle we walked along the coast to the beach for dinner in Harrys shack we went for a pretty classic order of fish & chips & a burger, all excellent, I would just love to come up and stay a night to enjoy some drinks on their gorgeous beach terrace.
I tried out another one of our lovely local products this month, Carolyn Stewarts blueberry & chilli jam, I really didn’t know what to do with this if I’m honest but it has quite a mild spice so it was delicious over some French toast with crispy bacon.
I met the girls for another birthday night out at Bo Tree (I know I’m really taking the piss now aren’t I) Bo Tree is a top favourite restaurant of ours & I’ve really lost count of how many times I’ve been, located in Belfasts holylands, its not just a student favourite, you’ll always find an eclectic crowd here & it’s not hard to tell why, the food is always top quality, it’ll never be more than £20 a head & they’re BYOB
After a little midweek shopping trip we treated ourselves to a late boozy lunch in whites tavern, I went for the portavogie prawn scampi while Mark went for the stew, we’d visited a few months ago for lunch & ordered exactly the same thing we’d had the last time, boring I know but it was just so good! Whites is a great little spot & they always have the fire lit no matter the weather.
After Whites we took a very short walk across the entries to the jailhouse to try out their new summer cocktail menu & of course couldn’t resist a pic with their ever changing alleyway decor
We had a little overnight stay in Dublin at the end of June to finalise some bits for our wedding, almost on the 3 month countdown now, ahhh! I couldn’t go without my wee bag for all my shappin’ of course, & we finally got to visit a couple of places that have been on our hit list for so long!
We headed to Doolally for dinner, a beautiful Indian restaurant which definitely gave me some Dishoom vibes, you really can’t beat an Indian in our opinion & Doolally definitely hit the spot, along with a great cocktail menu. We FINALLYYYY got to visit Chimac, we have been trying get in here for forever, the last time we were down they unexpectedly had to close due to a covid outbreak & we were gutted, for the staff with covid as much as our wee bellies lacking in fried chicken. We went for their monthly special ‘chicken fillet roll’ some chicken wings & fries, all so good we had to get a bottle of their sriracha caramel to take home.
I’m sure everyones been waiting with bated breath on my garden update, due to our glorious summer weather my repurposed Born & Bred mugs have been filling nicely with rain water, so I’ve moved them to my windowsill to be on the safe side, hopefully by next month I’ll actually have something to eat that isn’t just mint.