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Saturday, November 26, 2016

Hally's Sunshine Café //

Dear Readers,

I wanted to share this little gem with you. Tucked away along New Kings Road is the ever-so-cosy Hally's. A delightful eatery which is ideal for afternoon meetings, a good old catch up or taking the kids for an after school treat. 
 

Both myself and Sophie decided to take our (many) assignments with us and clear our minds with a fresh new setting.

It was lovely to see how busy Hally's was and the large amount of people could be seen through the panelled glass windows, as we were crossing the road to the lime green coffee shop. 

 
 

We were first told that there was likely to be a wait for a seat, but being insistent I asked if we could find somewhere...anywhere to experience the hubbub. We were then sat on the long 'share' table by the front of the shop. Both myself and Sophie sat in between two businessmen catching up on the FTSE results in the Financial Times on our left and two smartly dressed ladies having a meeting on our right. There was such a calm sense of productivity in the room, that made for an enjoyable first impression.








We were then re-seated to a table at the back of the eatery and ordered our food and drink, both opting for a Cappuccino and the Soup of the Day: Roasted Tomato.

The service was attentive and all the staff working there were very polite. 

We were so comfortable at our table that we were able to stay for hours and had a very rewarding afternoon. I highly recommend Hally's if you are looking for a place to get things done. I also really loved the playlist they had playing as it was calming, current music that suited the ambience and aesthetic suitably.




 

I have to say, I will be returning again soon, particularly as I hope to try some of the delicious looking cakes they have on offer.
 























Stay Sweet,


Alice xx
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Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Traditional Pumpkin Pie Recipe //

Dear Readers,

As Thanksgiving is just days away, I wanted to share with you this super easy recipe for making an all-American favourite, Pumpkin Pie.

It is safe to say that the Pumpkin Pie could quite possibly be the most American thing you could make during the autumnal period.

The pumpkin itself has a long history, as it was first cultivated in America back in 5,500 B.C. Through century's of development, the humble pie has later become the dish we know it as today and is the perfect accompaniment to every Thanksgiving feast.

The Recipe:

Ingredients: 

For the Pastry

  • - Store-bought short crust pastry case
  •  
  • or
  •  
  • - 225g Plain Flour
  • - 100g Soft Butter
  • - Pinch Salt

For the Filling:


  • - 1 can pumpkin pureé
  • - 2 large eggs plus 1 yolk
  • - 75g/3oz soft dark brown sugar
  • - 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • - ½ tsp nutmeg
  • - ½ tsp allspice
  • - ½ tsp ground cloves
  • - ½ tsp ground ginger
  • - 275ml/10fl oz double cream

Method:

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 200C/400F/Gas 6.
  2. (If using a shop bought crust pastry case, skip this step) Combine pastry ingredients until it gathers into a dough. I found that my mix was slightly dry so I added a little bit of extra water as I was combining the mixture. Then, roll it out and use it to line a pie plate. I also found that it was easier to roughly roll out the pastry, then using (clean) hands, press the pastry into the pie plate, creating a more rustic look. Bake the pastry case blind for 20 minutes.
  3. Lightly whisk the eggs and extra yolk in a large bowl. 
  4. Place the sugar, spices and the cream in a pan, bring to simmering point, whisking it consistently to avoid it boiling/burning. Then pour in the eggs and whisk it again briefly. Now add the pumpkin pureé, still whisking to combine everything thoroughly. 
  5. Reduce the oven temperature to 180C/350F/Gas 4. Pour the filling into your pastry case (I had too much mixture so over-filled my case) and bake for 35-40 minutes. You want the edges of the pastry to brown up whilst still having a soft centre. 
  6. Once cooked through, remove the pie from the oven. I prefer to serve my pie warm with a dollop of whipped cream. Equally it can be chilled and eaten within the week (if it lasts that long).


    I would love to know if you try out this recipe in time for Thanksgiving. Also, let me know in the comments below what you are thankful for this Thanksgiving.

    Stay Sweet,


    Alice 
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Friday, November 18, 2016

Visiting Peggy Porschen Cakes //

Dear Readers,

I was lucky enough to be able to have one of my recent magazine meetings at the simply splendid Peggy Porschen cake shop.


Opening Times: Monday - Sunday 10am-6pm
Located chicly on the crossroads of Elizabeth Street and Ebury Street in Belgravia, it is the ideal spot to watch the busy people of London carry out their lives whilst you sip from a baby pink teacup. It is something out of a young girl's fairy tale and the pastel hues brought me back to my childhood. It was very reminiscent of Barbie and the Nutcracker

The Peggy Porschen company, which boasts of clients such as Kate Moss, Stella McCartney and Elton John has a team of pastry chefs and sugar artists who manage to create the most decadent cakes, cupcakes and cookies. You can sip on tea or coffee or even a glass of pink rosé too.


Typically places that are highly recommended come with a catch, like a long wait time or lacking quality, but Peggy Porschen Cakes manages to hit the spot every single time. I was also pleasantly surprised by the pricing of the food and drink and found that it was affordable. The large scale cakes however, were on the dearer side. (Scroll down to find the Gingerbread Winter Village).


The staff working there were very polite and welcoming. I appreciated that they were also understanding of the fact that I could not stop taking pictures.


Peggy Porschen also offers an Academy, a programme which has been running since 2011 by Peggy herself, which gives cake lovers from across the world the opportunity to develop their skills and share their passions with like-minded people. You can go for a short one or two day course, or even get a diploma. There is lots to choose from so why not give it a go?




These Christmas inspired cookies are the perfect stocking filler this Christmas - from £6.95

Gingerbread Winter Village - 'With a heavenly scent of sugar and spice, this edible winter wonderland hides three indulgent tiers of rich fruit cake covered with marzipan and royal icing, plus a two tier gingerbread church, perfect for devouring on Christmas Day.' - £650


Left to Right: Blueberry Buttermilk Cupcake, Americano, Raspberry Cake, Green Tea, Gingerbread Cupcake, Festive Cappuccino


My OOTD

I love the embroidery trend this season and opted for these super comfy Mom Jeans to match the aesthetic of Peggy Porschen's

Floral MOM Jeans from Topshop - £58
Shoes - £30
Top - Primark - £6


Gingerbread Cupcake


Notebook: Topshop - £8

Blueberry & Buttermilk Cupcake





Raspberry Cake

Molly tucking into her Raspberry Cake

Georgia enjoying a Green Tea


Georgia's Look - Sequin Cropped Trouser - Thrifted 

Georgia: When your hair matches the aesthetic 


I highly recommend that you take the time to visit Peggy Porschen's Parlour now whilst the windows are still adorned with festive baubles and the cosy interior invites you in even more. It is a place full of so much charm, it would be almost sinful not to take a trip there.

Stay Sweet,

Alice xx 

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Monday, November 14, 2016

7 Reasons Why I Love The Ivy //

Dear Readers,

I am almost certain that to many, this post will not come as a surprise and will indeed appear inevitable. Those of you who follow me on my social media, such as my Instagram, will know that I love to visit The Ivy Chelsea Garden in the busy Kings Road, Chelsea. 


Yes, I admit I did discover it back in 2011, when the posh totty's of SW3 graced our screens for Made In Chelsea and were seen frolicking by the bar.



When I first stepped foot into The Ivy, I was immediately blown away. It was love at first sight and at any given opportunity, I find myself stopping by for a drink or a bite to eat for brunch.

I have come to the conclusion that there are many reasons why I love The Ivy, and I wanted to share them with you.


1. Customer Service:

Each and every time I visit The Ivy I am always welcomed by the polite staff that work there. Attention to the customers needs is integral to a good dining experience and it is clear that every staff member puts effort into greeting customers politely and serving them quickly. 

Also, hats off to the women who go all day wearing their statement floral bodycon dress and heels. To be able to wait on people is hard enough, but to do it so elegantly, as if they were the ones out to dine there, is even more inspiring. 


2. Choice of Food & Drink:

Whether you are going there for a pot of tea or a three course meal and cocktails, there is a wide range to choose from. I have spent most of my visits making my way through the cocktail menu and I must say there are some winning drinks on there. My ultimate favourites are Angel Share and the Salted Caramel Espresso Martini.




3. The Decor:

Now, I am one for interior design that is well-thought out and inspiring to the eye. The Ivy transports me to a time of art-deco furniture and pure decadence. I relish in the warm-toned furnishings and archaic 20's style hardware that features throughout the restaurant and bar. Whether it is warm or chilly outside, I always find myself cosying up to The Ivy, as if it were my home. If you are searching for a place to watch the world go by or sink into your own thoughts, then Thy Ivy is most definitely the place to find yourself in.



 4. The Garden:

The Garden, which is unfortunately only open during the warmer months, is probably the most enchanting place to be during your time there. Outdoor settees and thin, metal framed table and chairs are speckled around the garden besides a multitude of colourful plants and flowers. It is a rather magical place to dine when it is busy, as the hubbub of cutlery clinking and the glugging of Whispering Angel's being poured echo around the confine's of the brick garden walls. It almost feels like a secret club of Chelsea folk, hiding themselves away from the commotion of city life.




5. The Location:
Being in the heart of Kings Road is simply ideal. After a long day milling around the local boutique stores or visiting the Saatchi Gallery, The Ivy is the perfect place to end up.



6. Ambience:


No matter where you are sat, there is always a splendid ambience. Even the bathroom is beautifully symmetrical and has sweet-smelling candles burning. What better place to freshen up.

There are so many nooks to find yourself in, where you can experience a different element of the ambience that goes on inside.

Also, I am usually pretty lucky when I am at The Ivy and often spot a celeb or two which is always a bit of fun. 


7. Value for Money:

Although it may appear on the more expensive side, when comparing to other restaurants, I do believe it is the kind of place that is worth the money. It is one of those locations where you are not just paying for the high quality food, you are also paying for the experience.




I would love to know if you choose to visit The Ivy, so feel free to tag me in any pictures.

Stay Sweet,

Alice xx 












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