Friday, 31 January 2014

Delicious London: Zucca Restaurant Review

My boyfriend and I had our first visit to Zucca last Sunday and we absolutely loved it. Sundays for me are always meant for big, hearty meals, so we always try to find a good lunch place that`s gonna fill our bellys and satisfy our cravings. And Zucca has done a remarkable job in that.
We started by sharing a few small dishes: the zucca fritti, the sea bass carpaccio, some sort of meatballs in chicken stock that I can`t remember the name, and the octopus with fennel. 

The zucca fritti (14/20)  
zucca fritti
The sea bass carpaccio (18/20) definitely my favourite starter. It was really delicate with very quality fish and the peppers added that extra spice to it.
zucca sea bass carpaccio
The meatballs in chicken stock (12/20) were a bit too heavy for my taste so I only had one but my boyfriend made sure he didn`t leave any behind.
zucca meatballs
The octopus (17/20)
zucca octopus
For main we shared a large portion of pappardelle with hare ragu (18/20). By the time the main came I was already full from all the starters but I couldn`t resist this dish. 
zucca pappardelle hare ragu
For dessert we had the banana panettone with peanut butter ice cream (13/20). It was good but definitely not as good as the starters and main. 
zucca banana panettone
zucca restaurant review

Alina Anghel.xx

Zucca on Urbanspoon
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Thursday, 30 January 2014

Today`s Outfit: Double Denim

denim on denim outfit
denim on denim outfit
denim on denim outfit
denim on denim outfit
(Pull & Bear coat, River Island jeans, Nike trainers)

It was a horrible rainy day when we took these photos which you can probably notice from my frizzy hair and casual outfit. When the weather is this miserable I just throw the first thing I find that`s comfortable, warm, and preferably makes me look presentable. Probably my seriously ripped jeans failed me with the last part.
On another note I had a moment of madness a few days ago and signed myself for a fashion design course at Central Saint Martins which I`m super excited about. I`ve always wanted to learn what are the steps to design a collection, ok let`s start small, maybe just a dress, from planning to marketing so I`m really looking forward to my start date.

Alina Anghel.xx
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Tuesday, 28 January 2014

Today`s Outfit: Tweed

tweed top
tweed outfit
tweed outfit
tweed top
tweed outfit
tweed outfit
(Tweed blouse from Bangkok, Asos black midi skirt, Zara necklace)

These were the last days of sun in London before the weather suddenly turned for worse with grey skies and relentless rain. This beautiful day was the perfect day for taking out to play one of my favourite midi skirts and my new tweed blouse from Bangkok. I`ve always wanted a tweed two piece but I could never find the right one. This is why I was happy to find this lovely blouse in one of the huge Bangkok shopping malls although I would have been even happier to find a matching skirt or shorts. Oh well, I guess my search continues.

Alina Anghel.xx
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Monday, 27 January 2014

Travel in Style: Siam Kempinski Bangkok Hotel Review

We stayed at the Siam Kempinski hotel in Bangkok for the last 4 days before we returned back home and right after our trip to Phuket. Quickly going from the beach lifestyle to city life is not an easy thing but we had such a great stay at Kempinski that it definitely helped us in getting us excited again for Bangkok and ready to explore. One of the wonderful things about Thailand (among billions of others) is that hotel can be very cheap which means you can easily stay at amazing 5 stars without breaking the bank and I would definitely recommend giving a try to the Siam Kempinski for it`s great central location (middle of shopping district!), delicious breakfast, and beautiful pool.

1. The room (17/20)

We stayed in the double room which was slightly smaller than the Peninsula room but I guess smaller space it`s something you would expect due to its very central location. Everything in the mini bar was complimentary which we thought was a nice touch and I think more luxury hotels should implement it. The tv had a great selection of movies (I finally got to see "The Great Gatsby" yay!) and the bathroom was lovely. The only thing we found slightly annoying was that you had to get up if you wanted to close all the lights there were no buttons near the bed that automatically switched all light including the bathroom. I know this sounds incredibly lazy but the wall between the bathroom and the room was made of glass which meant that if you forgot the bathroom light on then you would have to get up and close it. It`s also not the best thing for your partner if you suddenly have to wake up in the middle of the night and use the toilet. Anyway, enough toilet talking for one day.

siam kempinski bangkok room
siam kempinski bangkok room
siam kempinski bangkok room
siam kempinski bangkok room

2. The breakfast & other dining options (20/20)

This gorgeous breakfast was so good that it made it into my number 1 top 5 hotel breakfasts of 2013. You had a great variety of prepared to order dishes, cold dishes, pastries, fruits, basically anything you would want in a breakfast. 
siam kempinski bangkok breakfast
siam kempinski bangkok breakfast
siam kempinski bangkok breakfast
siam kempinski bangkok breakfast
3. The pool, garden & surroundings (18/20)

The lobby was gorgeous as well as the pool which surrounded the garden and terrace. 
siam kempinski bangkok review
siam kempinski bangkok lobby
siam kempinski bangkok pool

Room (17/20)
Breakfast & other dining (20/20)
Pool (18/20)
Spa & activities (17/20)
Other facilities (19/20)
Service & atmosphere (20/20)
Location (20/20)

Overall score: 18.7 / 20


Alina Anghel.xx
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Sunday, 26 January 2014

New on Instagram: December & January

instagram photos
From top left: banana & berries pancakes/ new reading by Tina Fey/ sad to say good bye to Thailand
2nd row: best lunch in Phuket Town at Raya/ and the best breakfast in Bangkok at Siam Kempinski/ view from our hotel room in Bangkok
3rd row: catching the sunset in Phuket/ Paradise Beach (no really, that`s its actual name)/ view from our room in The Peninsula
Bottom row: Harrods pretty even in rain/ finally tried Pierre Herme macaroons and loved them!/ new Moschino Iphone case

Alina Anghel.xx
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Saturday, 25 January 2014

The Outlaws at the Capital Restaurant Review

The Outlaws is a lovely 1 Michelin star restaurant at the Capital hotel, very close to Harrods that we got the chance to visit last week for dinner. The food was good but what really stood out was the amazing service. 
For starters we have tried the crispy oysters with cucumber and caviar (12/20) and the lobster risotto with orange (14/20). Although the oysters were good what really stood out was the risotto which was beautiful. 
crispy oysters caviar
lobster risotto and orange
The risotto was very filling so I was lucky that I chose to order another starter instead of main: the pork belly with pickled plums (11/20). My partner went for the brill-on-the-bone with seaweed butter and potatoes (14/20). The strongest dish here was the brill and I felt a bit sorry for not going with another fish option as well. 
brill on the bone and potatoes
pork belly and pickled plums
The dessert menu had a lot of combinations of sorbets, ice cream, and fruits. We went for the pineapple with passion fruit and mango sorbet (10/20), and the honey ice cream, honeycomb, lemon curd and figs (8/20). The desserts were as good as you would expect a combination of fruit and sorbet to be. Pleasant but not really something that will stay in your mind. We couldn`t really finish most of the honey ice cream, honey comb and figs as we felt was a bit unbalanced. You had a few figs and a lot of honey ice cream which was a bit heavy and you couldn`t really eat that much of it by itself. One of the waiters noticed that we haven`t really touched it and actually left it out from the bill which we thought was a very nice gesture.
pineapple and passion fruit mango sorbet
honey ice cream figs honeycomb
Overall (11.5/20) I would say that The Outlaws is a restaurants definitely worth trying for their great starters and amazing service.

Alina Anghel.xx

Outlaw's at The Capital on Urbanspoon
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Thursday, 23 January 2014

Travel in Style: Bangkok & Phuket Photo Diary

Long overdue but you know what they say, better late than never. Here is my Bangkok and Phuket photo diary with a few of the wonderful things we got to experience. I always like planning ahead before going to a new place otherwise I find that I lose precious time trying to figure out where I wanna go, how to get there and other small details that can actually take a lot of time. The less time I spend on my computer on holiday and the more out and about (or alternatively on the beach sipping from a delicious coconut) the better. I`ll also be posting in the following days a short guide to Bangkok and Phuket with a few of my favourite attractions, restaurants and things to do that hopefully a few of you will find useful. Until then, enjoy the photos! :)

Bangkok

The first few days in Bangkok due to jet lag we used to wake up really early which means by 6am we were already hungry and ready for breakfast. We didn`t really mind that because we got the chance to catch these beautiful sunrises every day while having breakfast...
bangkok sunrise
Drinks at the Sky Bar at the Lebua Tower.
lebua bar bangkok
lebua tower bar
Dinner at Blue Elephant. This place was mentioned in almost all travel guides and although the food was ok we found it a bit too touristy. We much rather enjoyed eating at more local restaurants.
blue elephant bangkok
blue elephant bangkok
Lunch at Issaya Siamese Club. We had the most wonderful lunch at this place and I`ll be posting more photos of the food in one of the next posts.
issaya siamese club
Phuket

Most people come to Phuket for the beaches but if you want to explore a bit more, Phuket town is a wonderful place with almost no tourists, great restaurants and beautiful architecture. Baan Chinpracha (photos below) in Phuket town is a beautiful Sino-colonial mansion opened to the public and one of my favourites places that we`ve seen.
baan chinpracha
baan chinpracha
baan chinpracha phuket
baan chinpracha

baan chinpracha
baan chinpracha phuket

Catching the sunset at Kata Viewpoint.
kata viewpoint
kata viewpoint
 The highlight of our holiday was definitely the speedboat trip to Phi Phi Islands where we spent a day exploring a few of the wonderful bays and beaches. One of our stops was Monkey Island where we made some great friends that were very eager to help us "safe keep" our bananas.
monkey island

And a few of the other beaches where we got the chance to do some amazing snorkelling. The water was incredibly clear so we got the chance to see some beautiful, colourful fishes. 
monkey island
phi phi island
phi phi island
phi phi island
phi phi island
phi phi island
Kata Noi beach. A lovely oasis a bit further away from the hustle and bustle of the main area.

Alina Anghel.xx
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