Month: October 2014

The Yorke Arms, Ramsgill

Lunch at The Yorke Arms in Ramsgill was my first experience on my Yorkshire Michelin Star journey. The Yorke Arms was featured in The Trip, a 2010 BBC comedy starring Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon as fictionalised versions of themselves doing a restaurant tour of northern England. I was keen to enjoy my trip too! The drive up Nidderdale from Pateley Bridge alongside Gouthwaite Reservoir included some fantastic Yorkshire countryside with stunning views. The Yorke Arms, a former 18th century coaching house and hunting inn sits in a beautiful setting by the green in this delightful village below the moors. We were welcomed by a ‘caring’ host in the flag stoned bar, who then ushered us into the lounge. Here there were old beams, wooden tables and a variety of coloured cosy sofas and chairs plus a welcoming real log fire. Head chef and owner Frances Atkins trained at the Box Tree in Ilkley, set up a catering business in 1984, and bought the Yorke Arms in 1996. She is one of only a handful …

Yorkshire’s Michelin Stars

According to Welcome to Yorkshire, the county boasts the most Michelin starred restaurants than any other county in the UK, outside London. Precisely six being secured in the recent release of the 2015 Michelin Guide. I have set myself a small objective to visit each one of the Michelin Stars in Yorkshire and I will begin my quest to tick them all off the list.  This journey will take place over several months. I hope you will get a flavour and taste of what a delicious journey lies ahead. The Old Vicarage, Sheffield – http://www.theoldvicarage.co.uk The Pipe and Glass Inn, South Dalton near Beverley – http://www.pipeandglass.co.uk The Box Tree, Ilkley – http://www.theboxtree.co.uk The Black Swan, Oldstead near York – http://www.blackswanoldstead.co.uk The Yorke Arms, Ramsgill near Pateley Bridge – http://www.yorke-arms.co.uk The Star Inn, Harome near Helmsley – http://www.thestaratharome.co.uk Furthermore, four restaurants hold a Bib Gourmand – a mark of good cuisine at a reasonable price. Le Langhe, York – http://www.lelanghe.co.uk El Gato Negro, Ripponden – http://www.elgatonegrotapas.com Prashad, Drighlington, Bradford – http://www.prashad.co.uk Vennell’s, Masham – http://www.vennellsrestaurant.co.uk Gary …

Lover of the Lakes’

If you’re a lover of the great outdoors, the Lake District is one corner of England where you want to linger. It has a sweeping panorama of slate-capped fells, craggy hilltops, misty mountain farms and glittering lakes and popular with crowds ever since the Romantics pitched up the early 19th century, and it still remains one of the country’s most popular beauty spots. I grew up here, and only now do I appreciate its beauty and it attracts me back like a magnet. I am a serious 21st-century Romantic, so a stay for a special occasion at The Samling would be a treat. This secluded luxury hotel, on its own 67-acre estate, overlooks the sprawling expanse of Windermere. It was here, when the main house was called Dove’s Nest that Wordsworth trekked to pay his rent on Dove Cottage. http://www.thesamlinghotel.co.uk Here are some of the top things I like to do when I return to visit this gem of an area. Blackwell House Two miles south of Bowness on the B5360, Blackwell House is one …

Laura Mercier Christmas Collection Launch

I was invited to the launch of new Laura Mercier Christmas Collection, ‘Unleash Your Flawless’ with the most delicious range of must-have makeup, skincare and bath & beauty products, perfect for the festive season. Laura Mercier is a world renowned French painter turned makeup artist, known for her trademark ‘Flawless Face’ and her product line which has been developed and guided by this philosophy. I was treated to a 45 minute makeup lesson at the Laura Mercier counter within John Lewis’ new store near York. Jenny, my artist for the evening, gave me tips and tricks using products to ‘unleash my flawless’, flawless skin, smoking eyes and plump lips. My makeover started with an analysis of my skin type, and then my face was cleansed and my flawless skin was treated to flawless colour and voila! One of my choice of products was the new Laura Mercier smoky suede eye collection palette, which creates a smoky finish that gave my eyes a flawlessly air brushed effect when layered and blended. I also had a lesson …

Bloom & Wild

Subscription boxes are becoming more and more popular with anything from food to beauty products being delivered to our doors and desks. And what lady does not like receiving flowers? To make sure I get a gift for myself, I took advantage of a subscription box from Bloom & Wild who are the UK’s first nationwide letterbox florist – flowers by post! They arrive in a specially designed box that literally fits through the letter box. The packaging that encloses the blooms themselves is lovely and little protective socks cover the flower heads so they arrive perfect. I then get to arrange them myself, but there are tips in the box for guidance. This week my arrangement is inspired by the first rays of winter sunshine and comprises Rosano bronze bloom chrysanthemums, cream lisianthus, white stallion, gypsophila painted yellow and rhododendron leaves. Bloom & Wild offer three different collections: The Bright & Wild for £13.95, Chic & Wild for £16.95 and Luxe & Wild from £23.95. I subscribe to the Bright & Wild collection and …

Tuesday is Riverford Day

Living in the country, and working from home limits my ability to nip to the shops at lunchtime. So not long after I moved from the city (Sheffield) I signed up to receive Riverford Organic Farm boxes delivered to my door. Ian Carr, who runs my local Riverford franchise from York, always delivers on Tuesday morning, with a smile, a chat and a hint or two on how best to use my produce this week. The first good thing about the Riverford scheme is you choose how often you receive your boxes as well as which boxes you want or you can make your own. You can have the boxes delivered weekly, fortnightly or monthly. I place my order online before Sunday evening and it is fun to choose my Tuesday ‘box’ from a selection of fruit, veg, dairy products, and meat or tempting essentials from the deli. The fruit and veg are all organic and seasonal, with over 85% coming from local UK farms and orchards. Riverford have linked up with local farmers all …

The Queen o’ t’owd Thatch – best Sunday Lunch according to the Observer

The Queen o’ t’owd Thatch – an unusual name for a pub, but this is now my local in South Milford, and also meeting place for our book club. The ‘Thatch’, as known to the local villagers, was renovated and reopened just over a year ago by ‘a chef, a gardener and a bartender’ who showed a passion for excellent food and drink – and they do that and more! They have achieved so much in their first year by being Highly Commended as Dining Pub of the Year at the Yorkshire Life Food and Drink Awards 2014. And they are now runners up in the Observer Food Monthly Awards 2014 for best Sunday lunch, so I just had to return on Sunday. I was welcomed warmly as usual by Adam, and although it was actually early evening it was filled with other hungry diners. Two courses for £16.50 – I could not resist my first pre-Christmas menu choice of local roast turkey, roast potatoes, stuffing, cranberry sauce, large Yorkshire pudding, and the side dishes …

Lady Who Lunches @ Filmore and Union in Wetherby

I needed a quick lunch today in Wetherby and returned to Filmore and Union just off the market place. As usual it was busy and buzzy, with a nice mix of customers. There were young retireds, ladies who lunch and young couples. They were all there to enjoy a fresh and exciting food and drink concept that focuses on pure, healthy and great tasting ingredients. Filmore and Union have official accreditation from Coeliac UK, so you can have peace of mind that their food is 100% gluten-free. Several chairs at the natural wooden tables had a woolly throw, but I did not have time to linger and wrap myself up for the afternoon. I love their herbal infusion of fresh sage leaves with lemon and honey, which arrived in a neat white pot. Sage is an anti-inflammatory, immune boosting and cooling herb. Note: Not recommended for breastfeeding mothers or pregnant ladies. I had the soup of the day – Carrot, lentil and kale, served with warm brown bread. So healthy! Unfortunately I could not linger for …