Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Meat:Stack at No.28. New name, same great taste.

Last night I was invited along to the re-launch of Meat:Stack.... formerly known as The Grind. If you don't remember my last post about these guys, I labelled it as "the best burger I'd ever tasted." With a rename and re-brand, I was eager to know if the delicious, loved burgers remained the same. 

You might not have heard of Meat:Stack as they are based in No.28 - a hidden bar. This cool venue is tucked snuggle upstairs in the Grainger Market, Newcastle. I love this spot, always guaranteed to make my ears happy with their sick playlists. We tasted some cocktails before getting down to business with the menu. 

 When I last tried these burgers, I tasted the West Coast Classic which is a waaay better upgraded version of a Big Mac. Classic burger, slathered in delicious cheese and a handmade patty. This time I wasn't sure to expect on taste, quality, if the recipes had changed and such so I went for the Classic again for comparison....

Safe to say, this juicy and succulent burger didn't disappoint. The name may have changed but the taste remains! I'm yet to try a burger better than this. A hand thrown patty on a soft bun covered in melted cheesy goodness and a dash of lettuce for the classic crunch. Each component carefully thought about. The taste that makes this is the secret sauce. For all you classic cheeseburger lovers, this one is for you! 

My friend tried the Fried Chicken & Parmesan Burger which was again another tasty winner. Juicy chicken, cooked to perfection with honey mayo and that classic lettuce crunch. My other friend tried the Mid Western Burger which is a butter burger packed with french onions, charred green chilli, miso butter and whipped garlic. Still no faults to be had, each burger had its own distinctive taste but the quality remains. The Mid Western has a hint of gherkin taste to it. Anyone in search if something out of the ordinary, you've gotta give this a go!

So while you're tucking in and your senses are going crazy, add beef dripping fries to the mix and this will tip you over the edge. These guys know how to make your tummy happy! Crunchy, yet perfectly crispy american style fries, fried in beef dripping and seasoned with salt. Unreal! Again, I tried these last time but no change in the amazing flavour. 

An exception to last time of tasting, I got to try the Legendary Buffalo Wings which were spicy but flavoursome and crispy. The meat is tender and everything you want from a chicken wing. Bite size chicken goodness. And I'm not a huge fan of meat on the bone or beef burgers per say but these guys just know what they're doing! Hand thrown patties right down to their sauces. 

 We were also treat to Dog Hot Fries which are filthy fries drizzled in in secret sauce, ancho chilli honey, buffalo hot sauce and topped with cheddar cheese and gourmet hot dog. Spicy on the taste buds but just as addictive... once you start on these you cant stop. The sauce is a unique taste yet still an american vibe of a classic. 

If you're a burger connoisseur or just looking for something delicious to satisfy the hunger, get yourself to Meat:Stack at No.28. The burgers range from £6 - £8 and sides are reasonably priced too. I'll for sure be back to taste their Parmesan & Truffle Fries and maybe even test the desserts if I leave any room. And if you can't eat a burger without the all important fries, the £10 offer Monday - Thursday is insanely good value for money with the addition of Buffalo Wings too. Good food, done very well. Still the best burger I have ever tasted. 

Until next time... 


Saturday, 9 September 2017

KISS Couture Lashes Launch

Tucked on the corner of the Grey Street, at the intersection is Grey Street Hotel in Newcastle. The venue for the KISS VIP Event to launch their Couture lashes range. With a promise of a fun girly night filled with canapes & prosecco, I was looking forward to it. 

We arrived at the uber chic location, complete with lime green seating and neon signage to boot. Yes, I'm an interiors geek with no shame! We waited in the lobby and were taken down to the spa were the KISS event was being hosted. On entrance, we were greeted with a glass of bubbles (priorities), and were taken through to the lovely spa area. Not a large spa but cosy and a getaway from the hustle of the city view from the level above.

There was a nail bar set up and also lash stations in the side rooms. We headed for the lashes first, and got to choose a pair from their huge range to wear on the night. I was totally spoilt for choice and I'm not sure if any other high street lash brands offer that many shapes and variations of lashes. 

I opted for the Peony lashes which are a natural looking lash but with a little fullness and a fluffy finish. My regualar faves are the Whispie lashes from Ardell so these look like my style too... 

The lashes they were launching on the night is the Lash Couture Faux Mink Collection. A set of 6 in total, different lashes which claim to have weightless volume and non-mink which is a plus with many mink lash brands popping up. It really isn't necessary when there's so many decent non mink lashes out there. The contour range is bold so if you're wanting to make a statement look with some killer lashes these are the babies for the job! The lashes range from apx £4.99 - £7.99 in Superdrug if you're wanting to grab a set yourself.

Once the lashes had been applied, prosecco in hand, I went to explore their nail range. Emerging from the lash room... the even had filled up extremely quickly and obviously everyone wanted to get in on the action too. 

Canapes circulated the room but they surpassed me many times as I was waiting to get a look at the nail selection - also an impressively large selection for a high street range! The designs go from matte, pearlised, sparkly, matte, glossy, squared, talon shaped and the list goes on. The nails come in either press on manicure (which last some time from trying a set for myself) and traditional glue on sets. I've always been weary of the sticky back pre - adhesive type as they seem to ping of fairly quick but these have some staying power! 

In Superdrug, the nails retail from arounf £6.99 - £7.99 a set. Personally having tried these and knowing how long they last and the quality if the finish on the surface I think that is a very reasonable price. 

To top the night off, we were gifted with an amazing goody bag packed of their different products to test at home. thanks so much KISS for the generous goodies!

Until next time... 

Thursday, 31 August 2017

Newcastle In The Sky: Bucket List Experience

So, most people have a bucket list, right?! A list of things they wanna tick off before they 'kick the bucket shall we say. So when I heard Newcastle In The Sky was heading to Gateshead again, I had to oblige when they invited me along. For those unaware of Newcastle In The Sky's concept... it's basically a dining experience suspended 100ft up in the air. The sun was just setting as we were arriving, making out for a beautiful evening!

Okay so here's how it went down. Myself & Ruth (Pretty Little Gym Addict) arrived at the hospitality tent and were greeted with a glass of champagne. Good for those with a fear of heights... take the edge off. We were both really excited and not frightened of the height aspect which was fun. There was already a flight taking place so we watched from the tent. As you can see, we opted for the evening flight. Each flight is hosted by a different North East Restaurateur or Cocktail Bar and ours was hosted by Livello with 2 cocktails served in the sky. 

When it was our turn, our group was gathered together and talked through the safety instructions. No bags, hold on tight to all possessions for obvious reasons etc. By this point I was itching to get in my seat. Seating is a very organised affair as there is a certain way you need to be harnessed into you seat for safety - always good news! Once we were fastened in, another safety check by another member of staff happened which was very reassuring. We were one of the first to be seated so it seemed to take a while and the anticipation was building... 

Once all safely secured in our seats, the platform slowly began to move off the ground and we felt weightless. As we floated above the ground, our compare talked us through the staff serving the cocktails and that we would rotate after the first drink so we would all get both views of Gateshead & Newcastle. Not going to lie, some people were clinging on and I overheard someone say "dont look down" and I stupidly though pfft why not?! Heart in my mouth moment. Turns out 100ft is higher off the ground that you think. And from the ground doesn't look far at all. I took a few gulps and prayed my cocktail would be in my hands soon. After a swift talking to myself (in my head of course) I soon adjusted.

I was sat right in front of the bartender making our cocktails, which was fun to watch with the view of the river tyne over her shoulder. 

Once drink number 1 has been finished, this is the half way point so they rotate the platform. I managed to get some shots of the Millennium Bridge lit up and there is something magical about the quayside at night time. Twinkling lights in the velvet black sky...

Pinched this gorgeous shot from Ruth! A moment we'll not forget... 

The first drink went down a treat and do it was on to the 2nd which was aptly named the Blushing Geisha. Blush pink, flowered with berries and topped with crushed ice. 

Once the 30 minute slot was over, we were lowered back down to ground level. Which surprisingly seems to be quicker than going up! We were allowed to finish our drinks in the refreshment tent and the staff were very welcoming.  This truly is the experience of a lifetime but not for the faint hearted. The cocktail night time flight lasted half an hour and costs £75.00 pp which is fairly reasonable given the uniqueness of the experience, friendly staff, drinks on entrance etc. If you're after an unbeatable dining experience, Newcastle In The Sky have got you covered. 

Until next time... 

Monday, 7 August 2017

August Adventures

Me and Zoe  had a free day and we really wanted to get out and do something. The weather has been so Jekyll & Hyde recently so it's difficult to choose what to do, where to go and what to wear. We checked the weather forecast today and with sun but strong wind we decided to head to the train station for an adventure!

We decided once we got the the train station our destination and opted for a train ticket to Hexham in Northumberland. The train had already arrived by the time we got to the station.... good timing us! We set off and on the train we discussed where we should hop off the train and opted for Corbridge. 

We really had no plan, and just let the day happen so we headed out of the station and headed for the town centre.... The houses are literally country side goals. Stunning country houses nestled in the Northumberland countryside with the sun breaking through the clouds. We spent alot of time swooning at the houses and the views....

We popped into some of the little shops for a mooch, and discovered a little independent bakery. The produce looked so good, that we couldn't not go in for a peak. The Lemon Curd French Meringues were calling our names, so needless to say we couldn't resist! Shortcake, quiche, beer bread.... Mmm. They are literally the size of my head and can't wait to tuck in to some with my family after lunch with whipped cream.

Tea & Tipple saved us from a little rain shower when we dove in for a coffee and a scone. This was so nice for a little sit down and to chill. The staff were lovely and the jam is delicious!

After the treats, we headed back to the train station and even though we had to wait about 30 minutes for our train, the wait in the sun (and wind) was so enjoyable. I really do think we could all do this more, living in a world where we our tied to our phones and technology - getting the chance to get out in the countryside and breathe in some country air really has been refreshing for me.

Until next time... 

Thursday, 3 August 2017

Kiehl's Bloggers Event

Situated on Blackett Street in Newcastle, I had been meaning to try Kiehl's Skincare for ages... and then as if by magic I was invited to their bloggers event. Perfect opportunity to be introduced to the brand. 

On entering the store, the staff are dressed in white coats which instantly gives you a chemist/science type vibe which makes sense as the brand was founded back in 1871 by a pharmacist in Brunswick, NYC. The company has seen a change of different owners introducing new ranges for men, oils and even introducing generous samples in the 1970's. The brand has had quite a prolific existence in the skincare world and even launched a product in collaboration with Andy Warhol in the sixties. The staff were full of information for all of the products, the brand history and all were passionate about skincare. But first things first, we got tucked in to a slice of cake. Because.... cake. 

I had a mooch around the store to see what type of products they have on offer and a reoccurring theme were very fresh ingredients like orange, cilantro, jasmine. The Cilantro and Orange extract smells divine btw. I had heard amazing things about the Midnight Recovery Concentrate so that was on my list to check out up close and ask questions.

So after speaking to the staff about the Midnight Recovery Concerntrate, and doing some reading online this comes highly recommended. A lot of the staff tagged this as their 'fave' product in the whole range. This is a midnight recovery cream that works its magic while you sleep, it has an oily consistency and comes in an iconic blue glass dropper bottle. It's key ingredients are some of the reasons this helps skin appear fresher, brighter and repaired. Primrose oi, lavender oil & squalane (from olives) are some of the natural ingredients helped to boost skin recovery whilst you get your all important sleep. 

I've noticed from browsing their website that a lot of the glass packaging is recyclable and the cardboard packaging comes from recycled sources. In the world we live in where mass production and the throw away concept seems so evident, I think this is a great concept to hear from big brands and I wish more would follow! 

As an addition to the cake and skincare, we were treat to cocktails by the lovely staff from The Alchemist, Newcastle. They served up the Bubblebath cocktail which, let me tell you... it's so delicious and a dream to watch being made! 

I thought the collaboration of The Alchemist and Keihl's was genius, these 2 brands are built on alchemy so it was a perfect match! If you're around Newcastle craving a cocktail, I totally recommend this as a sweet cocktail and instagram worthy too!

Sipping cocktails and eating cake (AND learning about skincare) I was asked if I would like a skin assessment. I was totally up for this because I'm a little bit obsessed with skincare and always wanting to understand my skin more and how to look after it. So I had a skin test with a little swatch - you can request these at your store (no need to remove make up).... and from the swatch they recommend the best products and treatments for you. 

So my skin was slightly dehydrated (I do moisturise every night and have a skincare routine) but I was advised to drink more water and to try using a combination of oils and serums to help moisture reach deeper into my skin. This is a free service they offer and would recommend it to any skin lovers out there! 

Until next time...