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Culinary Experiences

A Happy Stay at The Howard Arms

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“On this cold and wet Sunday in January I came home from our stay at The Howard Arms in Ilmington. It was just before midday and I had no other plans than sitting down by my computer to write this very feature on our wonderful experience. But then life happened… the kids needed the mum-taxi, the house looked like it had been robbed (which, thankfully, it hadn’t), the washing needed doing and the fridge was empty so shopping needed to be done… but it was okay, I was in a great mood and I could do anything!

Then the dog was having it no longer, he wanted to go out, so off we went for a long walk. It was really cold, I wrapped up warm, put some music in the headphones and off we went. As I was walking around this enormous field, Lady Gaga and I were singing our hearts out (“You look at me and, Babe, I wanna catch on fire”, my favourite song these days: ‘Remember Us This Way’ from the ‘A Star is Born’ soundtrack) and I was thankful there was nobody around to hear me but the dog (and he’s nearly deaf so he doesn’t mind), I realised I was still in a great mood, I could still do anything… in fact, I hadn’t stopped smiling all day and no amount of shopping, taxi’ing, washing, cleaning, dog-walking and tidying was going to change that”.

Mette ♡

The Howard Arms works wonders

It turns out a wonderfully relaxing time with your loved one in a beautiful and cosy country pub like The Howard Arms does wonders for your wellbeing… not that we were overly stressed to begin with, but life is busy and without even realising it, a nice afternoon walk in the Warwickshire countryside, a delicious meal by a country pub fire, a lovely room with a super-comfy bed and a hearty breakfast in the morning was just the thing to get us to wind way down and find ourselves again at the end of a busy week… Ahhhh!

BOOK YOUR STAY AT THE HOWARD ARMS HERE.

 

 

A cosy and luxurious Bed & Breakfast

The Howard Arms in Ilmington is a luxury Bed & Breakfast, an incredibly popular country dining pub and quite the destination for people from near and far in the UK and beyond. Located right in the centre of a quiet Cotswold village, it overlooks a stunning old chestnut tree on the green and is mere moments from several great walking paths. An idyllic setting indeed.

When we arrived, we decided to explore some of the beautiful scenery surrounding the pub, so we wrapped up warm, put our walking boots on, found the nearest public footpath and off we went on the most wonderful walk across some beautiful fields. It was only when it became a little darker that we decided to turn back, but we could have walked on and on.

 

The pre-dinner snooze

When we returned, it was time for the pre-dinner snooze (yes, it’s a thing, you should try it, it’s fabulous!) in the comfortable and super-soft bed in the beautiful room and before we knew it, it was 7 o’clock and time for dinner. In the cosy restaurant the fire crackled, the bar was buzzing and the restaurant was filling up nicely. It was a very busy Saturday night but from the standard of the service, it could have been a slow Monday at lunchtime, because they did not skip a beat and our every need was met with a smile from start to finish.

BOOK YOUR STAY AT THE HOWARD ARMS HERE.

 

Wonderful Food

The award-winning Head Chef at The Howard Arms has created a menu of top-quality pub favourites alongside imaginative starters, mains and irresistible puddings and we had the most wonderful dinner experience on this Saturday night. The food was amazing, the atmosphere fantastic and we so enjoyed our nearly 3 hours at what must be the best table in the house, close enough to the fire to feel a comfortable heat, surrounded by happy fellow diners but tugged away in the window seat creating a nice, private space for two.

 

A hearty breakfast to finish

The next morning we came back down for breakfast to see the very same restaurant transformed into a calm morning scene with a lovely Continental breakfast buffet and a mouth-watering menu of cooked breakfast dishes. We went for a traditional English breakfast and salmon on toast, both utterly delicious.

BOOK YOUR STAY AT THE HOWARD ARMS HERE.

 

And so was the conclusion of our wonderful, relaxing stay at The Howard Arms in Ilmington. We absolutely will be back again… anything that can set your mood on a positive path and keep a smile on your face for days, is worth revisiting for sure.

Mette ♡

Culinary Experiences

Awesome Autumn Supper Club by Seven Mile

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“Now the weather is turning and we invite you to cosy up with us and some delicious autumn fare, welcome the changing leaves and celebrate all that is wonderful with the British harvest. I think this is our best menu yet.” ~ Seven Mile Supper Club.

“I’ve been incredibly fortunate to eat at some amazing restaurants over the years but I had never been to a Supper Club until this evening when I went to the Seven Mile Supper Club at Purity Brewery in Great Alne. Now I’m home, full and happy, it’s nearly midnight and I’m tired, but I still just wish I could turn back the clock four or so hours so I could do the whole thing again… it was fabulous!”

~ Mette

 

We arrived at the Purity Brewery in Great Alne in Warwickshire at 7.30pm and we were greeted warmly by Janine from Seven Mile. Janine is the event planner and manager of Seven Mile, and thus in charge of the event. Jake was cooking the evening’s meal in the Seven Mile food truck which was parked right outside the room where the dinner was to be served. Janine had created a beautiful, autumnal setting with fairy lights and lit candles. The Evening was off to a great start and it was time to take a peek at the menu.

 

 

An Awesome Autumn Menu

The menu looked amazing. It was to start with four different canapés, spiced kohlrabi fritters, monkfish skewers with a sorrel and lime mayonnaise, venison carpaccio and crunchy artichoke & camembert. As delicious and mouthwatering as the canapés looked on the menu, the main course was the one that got me the most excited as I love duck and the menu said it was “Duck Two Ways”, a duck confit and a seared duck breast served on a bean and pak choi cassoulet. Mmm, I loved the sound of that. And the big autumn finish was damson panna cotta with damson & sloe gin coulis and sprinkled with honeycomb. All courses were to be accompagnied by a different beer or ale from Purity, even dessert. The menu, I’m sure you will agree, seemed UNBELIEVABLY DELICIOUS (see the full menu below) and we couldn’t wait to sit down and get stuck in.

 

 

The food turned out to be every bit as delicious as we thought it would be… and more. The canapés came out about 15 minutes apart and they were all mouthwateringly delicious. Paired with different beers, it was an incredible taste sensation to experience the various beers and how they were matched on taste to the canapés so well. The duck dish was amazing, a real autumnal main course. And the pudding was wobbly, sweet and just right. Oh, wow. Just wonderful.

 

 

The Perfect Evening

We had the most wonderful evening at the Seven Mile Supper Club. We enjoyed the food so much, Jake is a fantastic chef, he put this autumn menu together skilfully and with the greatest respect for local and seasonal produce. We enjoyed the atmosphere just as much, Janine set the stage for the food beautifully and created an atmosphere that was perfect for eating great food, drinking local beers and having a super time. The perfect evening.

BOOK A SEAT AT THE TABLE AT THE NEXT SEVEN MILE SUPPER CLUB.

 

 

The Evening’s Full Menu

Canapés

Spiced kohlrabi fritters.  Shredded Kohlrabi mixed with cumin, coriander, ginger, garlic and caraway seeds. Deep fried. Accompagnied by Purity Pure Gold – Golden Ale – 3.8%.

Monkfish skewers with a sorrel and lime mayonnaise. Baked seasoned cubes of monkfish, served with a sharp sorrel mayonnaise. Accompagnied by Purity Lawless Lager – 4.5%.

Venison carpaccio.  Fillet of venison soaked in port and herbs. Quickly sealed in a pan and served raw. Accompagnied by Purity Pure UBU – Amber Ale – 4.5%.

Crunchy artichoke and Camembert.  Breadcrumbed artichokes with a baked Camembert to dip. Accompagnied by Purity Session IPA – 4.5%.

Main

Duck two ways. Duck confit and seared duck breast served on a bean and pak choi cassoulet. With roasted fennel and a plum and balsamic reduction. Accompagnied by Purity Mad Goose – Pale Ale – 4.2%.

Dessert

Damson panna cotta.  An indulgent panna cotta with a fresh damson and sloe gin coulis. Sprinkled with honeycomb. Accompagnied by Purity Maravilla Sour – 6.2%.

 

 

What’s a Supper Club?

So what’s a supper club, then? For those who, like me before this evening, have ever been, let’s start with what it’s not. It’s not a pop-up restaurant. Before this evening I thought a supper club and a pop-up restaurant was kind of the same thing, but they’re not. I’ve been to a pop-up restaurant, and they are pretty much what the name indicates, a restaurant in a place where it isn’t normally, a restaurant where you and your friends and family can book a table and enjoy a meal.. just like a restaurant. A supper club is nothing like that… except for the enjoyable meal, of course. A supper club is when a group of people who don’t all know each other beforehand, come together to share a meal and an evening of good laughs and great conversations. A supper club is a complete food experience, and one I am completely sold to, I can’t wait to go again!

 

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Culinary Experiences

A Really Delicious Frozen Dinner… by Seven Mile.

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“As I write ‘Really Delicious’, I realise that actually doesn’t quite cover it… it was ‘Completely Amazing and Mouthwateringly Delicious’. And I write ‘Dinner’, but really I mean ‘Feast’! Of course that would have made the headline a bit of a mouthful, but our dinner from Seven Mile really was A Completely Amazing and Mouthwateringly Delicious Feast“. Mette ♡‬

 

 

Socially Distanced Frozen Meals

Seven Mile Cookery & Events have transformed their business during lockdown from social events, festivals and supper clubs to socially distanced frozen meal delivery. The hearty, nutritious food normally served at Seven Mile’s dinner parties, weddings and corporate environments, now available right in the comfort of homes in the Cotswolds (Worcestershire, Warwickshire and parts of Oxfordshire).

Book your Frozen Dinner Feast from Seven Mile HERE

 

 

A Piping Hot Feast

“We had our dinner delivered frozen in oven proof boxes with easy heating instructions around midday on Saturday. I popped them back in the freezer, as instructions said to cook from frozen, and when it was time to think about dinner, I heated the oven to 170, which they all needed to cook at, and 45 minutes I had a piping hot feast ready with an absolute mininum of faf and effort.

Book your Frozen Dinner Feast from Seven Mile HERE

 

 

A Meal For Five… Plus Leftovers

We had a £22 meal for the five of us in three mains, three sides and a pudding… and there was still food left for a leftover feast for lunch the next day. Really great value. We just added garlic bread (the kids LOVE that) and some fruit and yoghurt accompanying the pudding.

Book your Frozen Dinner Feast from Seven Mile HERE

 

 

Nothing Like Frozen Supermarket Dinners

Our dinner was a mixed bag that went beautifully together and gave all of us a taster of the mastery of Seven Mile cook, Jake. We had a Thai Green Curry, Lamb Rogan Josh and Lasagne for mains, Red Cabbage and Cauliflower Cheese for sides, and Sticky Toffee Pudding as the sweet treat for dessert. Each and dish was absolutely nothing like the frozen meals you can buy in supermarkets. Nothing like it. It was very clearly expertly and lovingly prepared from the best fresh produce. It was like the dishes one would expect in nice restaurants… only I had just heated it up in my own kitchen 45 minutes earlier. It was all A Completely Amazing and Mouthwateringly Delicious Feast. Mette ♡‬

Book your Frozen Dinner Feast from Seven Mile HERE

 

 

Seven Mile Supper Club

Also, check out our experience with the Awesome Autumn at the Seven Mile Supper Club HERE. We’re hoping Seven Mile Supper Clubs can come back again after lockdown… when they do, we’ll be there again for sure.

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Culinary Experiences

Bonds Lifestyle: Shop, Cafe and Antiques Emporium

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“On our way to Stratford-upon-Avon a few years back, we drove past a sign to a shop and cafe we had not visited before, one of these places where you’ve seen the sign a couple of times and decided to definitely pop in sometime.. and today was that time.

Well, to say we didn’t know what to expect and that we were completely bowled would be the understatement of the century. Because Bonds Lifestyle is…. ‘Amazing’, ‘Fantastic’ and ‘An incredible shopping experience’? Yes, it’s all of those things, but they don’t actually quite describe Bonds Lifestyle well enough.

We just have to show you… click the video above and when you’ve watched it, if you think you’ve seen what it’s all about, you’d be closer but you still wouldn’t have seen even a fraction of the utter fabulousness that is Bonds Lifestyle”.

Mette ♡

Bonds Lifestyle are all over social media – follow them here: FacebookTwitter and Instagram.

 

 

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