Sunday, 30 April 2017

Hadley's Coffee House n some happy snaps

I was reunited with my super cool pal Leo, so we celebrated with coffee. No better way to celebrate right? It actually took us a while to find a cafe with any space which can mean only one thing!... coffee culture is evidently growing and I am definitely not complaining about it. 

Eventually we found a cute little place called Hadley's Coffee House and we both ordered Cappuccino's. The coffee was goood although slightly on the weaker side. Still yum though and I LOOVE when cafe's have sugar cubes rather than sugar sachets. I swear they taste nicer?

The decor of the cafe is really cute and very wooden themed. The upstairs is actually currently being renovated so i'm intrigued to see what that's like when it's finished! 

Queue cute decor pics...

Oh and is it even a proper coffee trip if I don't nag my pal to attempt to take a nice photo of me?

Here is a visual representation of how happy I am when presented with coffee...

Thursday, 13 April 2017

I have an obsession with pancakes (a v simple & v yum recipe)

Why are pancakes everywhere at the moment?????? I swear every other pic on Instagram involves a pancake of some sort. This current craze combined with my recent trip to the double Dutch pancake house has resulted in me having an obsession with all things pancake!

I decided to have a go at making my own American style pancakes and thought I may as well share my cute pancake pics and recipe with y'all. 

This recipe made what you can see in the picture - the perfect amount for one brunch serving.

You will need
  • 65g of plain flour
  • half a teaspoon of baking powder
  • a quarter of a teaspoon of salt
  • 1 tablespoon of caster sugar
  • 65ml of milk
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon of melted butter
  • Whatever toppings your heart desires

Basically all you need to do is mix the dry ingredients together and mix the wet ingredients separately. Then beat the two mixes together until a smooth batter is formed.

Heat up some butter in a non-stick pan on a medium heat. Once melted, add a tablespoon full of batter to the pan (at this point you could add on chocolate chips or blueberries mmmm). Once bubbles start forming on the top, flip your pancake over. It should be fairly obvious when the pancake is cooked (they don't take long at all) but apparently it should have risen to be 1cm thick. Keep repeating until you have a cute stack of pancakes on your plate. 

And voila. Time to feast on your delicious fluffy pancakes! I had mine with berry coulis and banana which was ever so tasty. They're actually really nice just on their own but hey, that doesn't make for a great Insta picture so I highly recommend toppings.

Monday, 10 April 2017

The brunch of dreams (best granola ever)

On my birthday, me and some friends made a very hungover trip out to Coffee Culture in York. My bestie India, very kindly treated me to a birthday brunch. LOVE YOU (if you're reading this). 

Coffee Culture is a little cafe on Goodramgate. It's a small but tall building with 3 floors and steep rickety staircases. Each floor is so cute and cosy! 

I ordered a berry smoothie and granola in the hope that it would cure my highly hungover state. In all honesty it didn't cure me.. but at that point I don't think anything could. Lol. Nonetheless it was still an absolutely delicious brunch! The smoothie was refreshing and sweet enough for me - I'm not a fan of an unsweetened smoothie that tastes tart. The granola was served so cutely. In a bowl with a ramekin of yogurt, ramekin of fruit coulis and a little bottle of milk on the side. AW! I love how I had the option to add what I wanted even though I ended up just adding it all - standard Rach.

I'm a big granola fan but this was without a doubt the yummiest I have tasted. Super crunchy with looads of dried fruit and nuts. I'm now working literally just across the road from Coffee Culture so I'll for sure be heading back here for lots of my lunch breaks!

Sunday, 2 April 2017

The double Dutch pancake house, York

I met up with a friend from Sixth Form for a little catch up. I originally wanted to go to Brew & Brownie which is an adorable little coffee shop in the city centre. I've tried to go 4 times now and EVERY single time it is packed. I WILL get in one day.

My friend recommended the Double Dutch Pancake House so we went there instead - another place that had actually been on my list of cafe's to go. They sell authentic Dutch pancakes along with other traditional Dutch foods like stroopwaffles (yummiest sweet chewy cinnamonny treats EVER).

I'm yet to come across someone who doesn't like pancakes. Pancakes are just, so, Y U M.

The menu has soooo much choice which means I'm going to have to make many more trips to try them all. There's savoury, sweet and breakfast pancakes, all available gluten free. As I'm trying to be healthy and I wasn't starvingly hungry, I went for a pancake topped with yogurt, honey and berry compote. My friend went for a pancake topped with banana, salted caramel and whipped cream - I know, I soon regretted my own choice. He also ordered a banana milkshake and I went for a standard latte. I'm definitely getting the peanut butter milkshake next time I go though. 

As you can see in the pictures, the pancakes were served looking ever so aesthetically pleasing. Mine tasted amazing although I could have done with slightly more honey as I am a bit of a sugar fiend. The coffee was also actually really good despite the lack of latté art. 

I love the bright and cutesy decor of the cafe and the really chilled vibe. I also don't normally take much notice of this but the waitress who served us was very very lovely and it really does make a difference to the cafe experience ha ha. 

I'll definitely be making another visit soon! 

Here is me posing with my latté

Thursday, 30 March 2017

Filmore & Union, York

After becoming besties 2 and a half years ago through our blogs and social media, I finally got to meet Emily! (You should all check out her blog here). She came to stay in York for my birthday weekend which was just f a b u l o u s. I probs scared Em a bit with how hyper/over excited I was when she arrived. Sorry Em lol. 

Of course this meant a cute cafe stop (or two) would be an essential (next post coming soon). We decided to make a visit to Filmore & Union which is one of those super healthy, eat clean places. It has an instagrammable cafe bit downstairs and then a more ambient restaurant area upstairs. We initially went upstairs but then discovered the lack of white table and made our way back down - I don't think the staff were too happy about it hahahaha. Again, sorry to Em for causing a bit of a scene but y'know, priorities. 

Everything on the menu is gluten free as well as there being lots of dairy free, vegetarian and vegan options. Me and Em were in more of a sweet kind of mood so we both ordered a white chocolate and raspberry blondie and one of the super antioxidant juices.

The white chocolate blondie was DELICIOUS. I would've never guessed that it was gluten free and made of clean ingredients. Not going to lie, I was pretty impressed as It's rare to find healthy treats that actually taste just as indulgent as unhealthy ones. They came with a little ramekin of unsweetened natural yogurt which went with the super sweet blondie perfectly! If only I knew the secret recipe.

The super antioxidant smoothie came in a cute mason jar and admittedly we chose this smoothie because it's a pink one.. again, priorities. Made of strawberries, blueberries, cranberries, apple and coconut water. It was really refreshing but in all honesty I would have preferred it to be a bit sweeter, maybe with an addition of agave syrup or something? It was also quite watery and not the usual thick smoothie consistency I was expecting. Still a perfectly nice and refreshing drink though. 

It came to £8 for the smoothie and brownie which I guess is a little pricey - but when you consider that it's all healthy and expensive ingredients.. not too bad really! it's also a super instagrammable experience so can't really complain!.. it's somewhere that I'll definitely go back to again. I'm keen to try the savoury food! 

Friday, 24 March 2017

Coffee for your face, Scrub Love

You all know how much I love coffee. So much that I want to coat my body in it. Lol. 

I was very kindly send a coffee body scrub from Scrub Love and I tell you what, I can confirm that smelling like coffee while sipping on a latte is a very nice experience. One that I recommend to all coffee enthusiasts out there. 

The scrub came in the cutest packaging. I got the mint flavour (there is also original and a coconut one). I'm glad I got the mint one though. It's really refreshing and has gives that tingly minty feel. You're supposed to use it all over your body but i've just been using it on my face. Admittedly it's a really messy product and if I attempted a full body scrub there would be minty coffee all over my bedroom. 

I found the scrub to be very cleansing and refreshing. Probably the perfect scrub to use when you're hungover after a night out and you're feeling mega gross. My skin was left feeling super smooth and the perfect base to apply makeup on. 

Wednesday, 1 March 2017

The Flat White Café, Durham

After wanting to go for a very long time (thanks to all the amazing looking pictures on Instagram), I finally made a visit to the Flat White Café in Durham. It was very busy when we arrived but thankfully there was a free table! The decor was cool and very shabby/rustic kinda chic. Everything is mismatched yet it all seems to work together and look ever so cool. I took a LOT of pictures which is always a good sign.

Since it's the Flat White Kitchen I thought I better stick with the theme and order a flat white. Actually a vanilla flat white because I'm not grown up enough to drink coffee without an overload of sugar. The art was amazing and there's something about coffee served in a clear glass that makes it so much more appealing than when it's in a regular mug. The coffee was supER strong but in the best way possible. There was no bitterness and it was silky smooth. Ahhh just thinking about it is giving me all the coffee cravings. I think I must have downed the coffee in less than a minute. I hate to say it, but after experiencing all these amazing coffees I am now unable to drink Costa/Starbucks coffee. Not that I'm a coffee snob or anything.. but independent coffee shops serve coffee that is soooo much nicer and with no gross after taste. No going back after that!

The food was equally as amazing. I ordered a chicken and home made pesto sandwich because pesto is the besto. Haaaaaaaa. The seeded wholemeal bread was super fresh and tasted home made. The pesto was DELICIOUS and the filling to bread ratio was spot on. All in all, what I would describe as being the perfect sandwich. I'm dying to go back for brunch so I can try out the amazing pancakes they have (BAKEWELL PANCAKES). 

I was so v v v impressed with The Flat White Café. It's cute, quirky, cool and makes the ideal brunch/coffee date spot. 

Saturday, 25 February 2017

The Unibox

Subscription boxes are definitely all the rage at the moment and I can see why. There's something so exciting about receiving a mystery box of goodies! The Unibox were kind enough to let me try one of their boxes. The Uni Box is basically a subscription care package for uni students, because hey, uni students aren't always the best at looking after themselves!

The box contains a mix of things such as healthy treats and fun and useful items. The one I received was absolutely spot on for me as it contained my favourite Little's chocolate and caramel coffee (soooO yum) and a cute coffee flask. CARPE CAFFEINE GUYS. There was also a vegan oat bar, two marshmallow bars, a multivitamin spray and a hand made grapefruit soap which smells amaaaaazing.

A 6 month subscription costs £22.50 per box (one box per month) which may seem a lot for a subscription service but what's great about this one is that it's actually filled with really cool stuff and not just cheapy things that you'd probably leave on the side and forget about. The actual value of the box I received is £39 - so pretty good going! Oh and they also currently have an offer where you can get 15% off the March Uni Box if you use the code UNIBOX15 at the check out.

For those stuck on what to get your Mum for Mothers day, they also have an adorable Mothers day box coming up... helping students be on time this mothers day! But yeah, overall I think the Unibox is a really fab subscription box as you get such a great mix of things and the things you get are actually all really good! 

Sunday, 19 February 2017

I'm a brand ambassador & social media person! (for Mangobean)

I have a new and exciting announcement. Well probably not mega exciting for you.. but for me, very cool. As the title sums up, I'm going to be running the social media accounts for Mangobean in Darlington as well as being a brand ambassador. 

Happy days.

But really very happy days. Mangobean is definitely one of my absolute favourite places to go for coffee. Not only is the coffee extremely good (we're talking super smooth with no bitterness or weird after taste at all mmmMMMmm) but they also have every coffee syrup you could possibly imagine, they sell WAFFLES (with all different toppings), healthy smoothies, cakes, coffee cocktails and frappé's. Oh and they also stay open until 9pm which is so fab because there's not enough coffee places where you can get your fix in the evening.

I'm really excited to theme the Instagram and immerse myself in all things coffee! It would be much appreciated if you guys would give @mangobeandarlo a follow on Instagram and Twitter, as well as liking the Facebook page - then you guys will get to see all the stuff I'm posting which you really don't want to miss out on ;)

Friday, 17 February 2017

Quilliam Brothers' Teahouse, Newcastle

I went to another coffee place!.. well actually a teahouse. I can't really argue with it being a teahouse when they offer 60 loose-leaf tea varieties. Shockingly I'm really not a big fan of tea at all. EVEN more shockingly, I didn't order a coffee either. I needed something refreshing so I went for a chocolate milkshake. Lowkey wish I have forced myself to have a coffee because the latte art looked ever so majestic. The chocolate milkshake was sooooO chocolatey and great though. My friend ordered a chai latte which in the past I've not been a fan of, but this one was so sweet and delicious and coated in cinnamon. Yum. 

We also both ordered a honey and lemon chicken sandwich (or 'stottie' as they called it -  which I've never come across in my life). The sandwich was delish and It also came with new potatoes!!!!!!!!!!! Any variety of potato or carb for that matter is a yes from me. They have a student discount so it only came to around £8 each. What a bargainous time to be alive. 

I wish I'd got more pictures of the actual teahouse because it is literally so hipster and #edgy. To be honest I'm still a bit shy when it comes to taking photos in public. I am getting there though. Definitely didn't stand on a chair to get the perfect flatlay the other day :). 

Friday, 10 February 2017

b.tempt'd lingerie

So apparently I just blog about pretty underwear these days... 

Can we just talk about how gorgeous this red set from b.tempt'd is though. SUPER GORGEOUS and very in line with the Valentines vibes at the moment. When b.tempt'd said I could choose a set from their collection, it was quite the task. They honestly have the most beautiful range of underwear. However recently I discovered that red is 'my colour' and now I feel like I must have everything in red - so this set that is part of the b.sultry collection was the clear winner. 

The quality is absolute 10/10. I feel like red underwear can sometimes look a bit cheapy and tacky - which this set doesn't at all. Wearing a matching underwear set always makes your life feel that bit more put together, but a matching RED underwear set. Well. It makes my life feel more put together but also makes me feel like a sassy queen (I recommend teaming with heeled black boots (and obviously the rest of your outfit, lol) and power walking down the street. Sassy queen levels will be off the scale)). I need to stop using the phrase sassy queen before I vom a little bit. 

Where's your favourite place to buy pretty underwear?

Monday, 23 January 2017

When Primark start selling the prettiest of underwear

I was just browsing the Primark underwear section the other day when this beyond gorgeous black and red rose bralette set caught my eye (along with many others which I wish I could have bought too but alas I am so poor). 

The set is soooO pretty and to be honest, I haven't seen anything quite as nice in any other shops. Very surprising considering it's Primark and I'm really not normally a fan. Shoutout to Primark for stepping up their underwear game! 

Both pieces came to just £12 which is just fab-u-lous. Although I do miss the days when Primark was shockingly cheap. 

I'll definitely be back soon to buy some of the different styles/colours. 

Sunday, 15 January 2017

A fragrance fit for a Princess (Vera Wang)

I was just having one of my chilled, supposed to be doing uni work but not really doing uni work days when a parcel arrived for me. I hadn't ordered anything so I was like???? As you can probably guess it was the brand new Vera Wang Princess of Hearts fragrance.


Obviously I was so shocked and excited. I think the only thing better than deliveries arriving is when unexpected deliveries arrive. Being the ultimate girly girl myself, I absolutely love the super girly and princess esque vibe of Vera Wang. Every time I'm in a department store, Vera Wang fragrances are always the ones I go to use the testers of (as well as Chanel of course). So this is pretty exciting for me. 

First of all, can we just talk about the bottle. I mean how gorgeous? And I can assure you, the fragrance smells just as pretty as the packaging. Maybe even prettier. What I love about more expensive perfumes is that they're never specifically sweet or fresh - you always get notes of both. I think explaining a fragrance is practically impossible but this is what the scent actually comprises of... 

Top: watermelon, wild strawberry, bergamot
Heart: star jasmine, lily of the valley
Base: musk, vanilla cream, cedarwood

What a delicious blend of smells !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I would describe it as being quite girly but not overly sweet in the slightest.

The fragrance is available to buy nationwide in February (I'm feeling super special that I have a Vera Wang exclusive right now) priced at £50.00. Obviously the fragrance has a very Valentines Day vibe so maybe the perfect thing to hint about to your other half.. or just, you know, TREAT YO SELF. 

Friday, 13 January 2017

Some pretty pictures of doors/buildings in York

If you don't like looking at aesthetically pleasing doors, then this blog post will have no interest to you. 

And to be honest, I don't really think anyone else shares this interest so this post is really just to please my own aesthetically pleasing needs I use the phrase aesthetically pleasing way too much, sorry!! (and also just so I can store these photos somewhere nice and all together lol). 

Door and building pictures look great on insta so feel free to use any of these and tag me @r_achelmarie ;))))))).