Birthday Fun: Favourites This Week

I love October because it’s got all my favourite things – Halloween, the start of autumn… and my birthday! This year I went to an escape room in my home town before a meal at Mango Thai Tapas – the escape room honestly wasn’t that brilliant, but it did inspire me to try out my own!

My husband got me a beautiful pair of Monica Vinader earrings – as seen on the Duchess of Cambridge (naturally!). They’re my first pair of MV earrings and I absolutely love them – the packaging is gorgeous! (You can find the earrings online here.)

October is also the start of the party season for me – from here on in it’s three months of birthdays, celebrations and family meals. It can be difficult to find something sophisticated and low-effort to keep your guests happy in the time between when they arrive and the start of the festivities, so I was really excited when The Fish Society offered me some sturgeon pâté to try! It’s so handy to keep in the cupboard and bring out as a canapé! I heaped it on crackers with a slice of lemon, and Alastair Blair, founder of The Fish Society suggests serving it on Melba toast with a sliver of dried tomato – or for a luxury touch, some grains of caviar! Find the pâté here and the caviar here – and check out their gift section too for some great ideas for Christmas!

I’ve been spending a few days in London recently, mooning around Jo Malone counters and wishing I could nab one of those gorgeous advent calendars… But, they cost £280 and are sold out – my credit card breathes a sigh of relief!

I’m also still thrilled about the Halloween afternoon tea at Lancaster London – they have regular themed teas throughout the year so don’t worry if you missed out! Find them here (you won’t regret it – the head chef, Ben Purton – is a genius!)

Another tradition at this time of year is to head to Fortnum & Mason to check out their glorious Christmas room… I have to get some of the themed felt decorations; there are so many gorgeous London ones I just need. I mean, how can you resist?!


And while you’re there, go to the basement to check out their glorious food hall – if you pop in late there are some great reductions… let’s just say I came home with some reaaaaaally good ribeye! 

Perfect Picnic

Perfect Picnic

I absolutely love a good British picnic – whether it’s from a fancy hamper in the grounds of a glorious garden, or a couple of sandwiches eaten on the beach, there’s something about eating outside that transforms a humble meal into a fun event!

I’ve always had a crush on Fortnum’s gorgeous hampers, but the one I have my eye on is priced at £400 – so when I saw Joules’ had a fantastic hamper on sale from £99.95 to £59.95, I jumped on it! It does help that the straps are the same shade of teal as Fortnum’s signature Eau de Nil colour! So, once I picked up the hamper, I also nabbed a matching picnic rug, coolbox and corkscrew to match! It might not be a Fortnums hamper, but it’s the next best thing…

Do you have a dream hamper in your imagination? What’s your favourite picnic food? Let me know in the comments!

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Easter 2014 at Fortnum & Mason

Fortnum and Mason is one of my favourite stores in London – and when it comes to holidays and celebrations, they always push the boat out with a great range of beautiful presented food and amazing displays!

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Obviously, the main attraction for Easter celebrations in the UK is chocolate, moulded into the shape of eggs or Easter animals. I really liked the chocolate duck eggs, encased in a cardboard egg container!

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There were a variety of edible animals, including this sweet little pig – although I don’t remember pigs being an Easter animal!

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There were also various chocolate offerings, varying from the restrained to the extravagant.

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You could also get an Easter egg hand decorated in the store, which was a nice touch!

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You could also pick up a pretty batch of macarons if you preferred something less traditional, but still colourful!

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There were loads of simnel cakes – can’t say I’ve ever had one at Easter but I’d love to try it!

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One of the best addition to the range in my opinion, were the Easter biscuits. Again, they ranged from the subtle:

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To the adorably over the top!

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You could even buy a little meringue chick!

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And there were some spectacular yellow flower arrangements in the basement too!

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If it’s Easter, it has to be lamb – and the butcher had some very tempting morsels on display!

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All in all, Fortnums is definitely worth a visit at any time of year, but particularly during holidays and festivals! (If you’re not into food, there’s also an amazing millinery selection, accessories and toiletries on another level, including a beautiful perfume department!)

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(Obligatory Fortnums selfie!)

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You can find Fortnum & Mason online at www.fortnumandmason.com, or visit in person at 181 Piccadilly, London, W1A 1ER. It’s a short walk from the nearest Tube station – Piccadilly Circus.

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