Happy Friday!

April 20, 2012

Friday is here.

It has been a busy but really good week, I am back in the game (finally) with the gym and have seen lots of friends. And the best thing?

I have no plans tonight… no plans!

I was up at 6 to gym it, so that is done, I am going to buy something delicious for dinner on my lunch break which means come 5 o clock I can swan straight home, straight into a big hot bubble bath and then straight in to my pjs.

Yes I am excited by that, and yes I may be a loser, but I am a happy loser.

My Husband is out with friends so I can have whatever I want for dinner, usually when I only have myself to worry about I revert to single girl days of a dinner of toast or cheese and crackers.

Tonight though I want to cook myself a feast.

Problem is I have no idea what I want… Ideas please.

I may be spending my day drooling over Spoon Fork Bacon. My new obsession. I like the look of something like this…

Served with a big glass of Shiraz. Yes.

Have a great weekend People.

Photo from Spoon Fork Bacon

Night Market in Hua Hin

April 19, 2012

This is my last post from Hua Hin before we move on to Bangkok, our last stop in Thailand!

I must apologise for a couple of days of silence, with a very busy few days at work and out of work I just haven’t had a chance to post let alone write.

So anyway my last recommendation for Hua Hin is to check out the many night markets, we went very hungry which is more than necessary to the biggest which is near the mall and sells food as well as having more permanent stalls selling clothes, make up, motorbikes (really) and sadly also a pet store which was horrendous, poor dogs in tiny cages made me cry. Avoid!

But the food stalls were amazing we started at the front and walked around once before walking back around and trying little bits from as many stalls as possible.

The only way to eat at a market.

One thing I did refuse was bugs… I am just not into bugs, I definitely don’t feel the need to eat them.

There were so many BBQ stalls, this chicken was pretty amazing, sticky and sweet. One tip bring wet wipes with you.

Dim sum, you gotta get the dim sum. It looks crazy weird and colourful but it great.

And spring rolls, deep-fried. Not much health food available here but oh these were so good, served with sticky chilli sauce. Amazing.

My husband had to get squid, I couldn’t handle it as it came whole. I am a wimp about that stuff.

And our last dish which finished us off was called fried green stuff. Serious. It was okay but definitely not good for you. We didn’t finish it.

I even had a beer. It was actually pretty good, one of those occasions that calls for beer not anything else. I never drink the stuff… I don’t think I could finish it though.

You must visit markets and eat street food in Thailand, if I can do it little Miss squeamish then anyone can find something they want to eat.

Flinty Red

April 16, 2012

This will be the second time I have told you all to go to Flinty Red, but in case you missed my first recommendation here is another one.

I love this place, it’s a lot like my favourite California restaurants, all about small plates and trying lots of little things and sharing with your dinner companions.

It’s very small, so you will need to book but they do have seating at the bar an idea I adore. It’s all very mediterranean.

My first order… you gotta get the anchovy toast, unless of course you hate anchovies… but even then you should try.

It’s a quick dish so ensures you get a nibble as soon as you’ve ordered.

I chose the ravioli as my first dish… the filling was fonduta di castelmagno which is an Italian cheese if I remember rightly.

It was insanely good.

My second pick was baked scallops with chilli, garlic, salt pork and fino.

Amazing. I love scallops, my favourite sea food by far.

We did pick some greens too, this Hispi cabbage was delicious. I am definitely going to try to cook some at home.

My husband picked the Onglet steak, barely cooked it was beautiful melt in the mouth meat.

Then in order to write a full blog post, we had to order desserts. My husband ordered Crème brûlée. A classic and a favourite.

I order the salted caramel mousse, I love salted caramel and salted chocolate right now. I cannot get enough. The mousse was ridiculously light and almost a foam, amazing. The chocolate part was even better, really thick and so rich.

So Bristol people if you haven’t been you really need to, if you have then maybe it’s time to go again!

Visitors this is a great stop if you are spending a day or night in the city, and a great date spot. 

Flinty Red

Hua Hin Vineyard

April 13, 2012

One of the best discovers in Hua Hin was a wine bar in a mall, not anywhere near as bad as it sounds, actually very nice. We drank delicious white wine and ate beautiful snacks.

Then we find out it’s a wine bar attached to a whole vineyard.

That you can go to, and drink more wine. To say I was a happy girl is an understatement.

 You can book a tour through a lots of hotels in the city but we booked it directly through the vineyard. You get picked up from the wine bar and brought back again after 3 hours.

Seeing a vineyard in such a tropical climate is kind of strange, the colours were slightly brighter. It’s an amazing view, all hazy.

You can ride around the vineyard on jeeps, bikes or elephants.

And as well as selling wine from Australia they also make their own.

We order a tasting menu, with the matching wines.

Our first bite was chilled crab meat with walnuts, green apple, tomato, Italian basil, celery, red radish, mint leaf, Thai sweet basil, apple guava vinaigrette.

It was fresh and delicious. And I have to say the wine is good, it’s not the best wine I have ever had (I’ll save that honour for New Zealand and California legs) but it was really nice and considering wine is fairly new to Thailand I was surprised to even find a vineyard.

Apparently there are only 7 in the country.

Then a rose with fresh goat cheese, grapes, peppercorns, vanilla vinaigrette, sweet Thai basil and parsley. My favourite.

Then a really good Shiraz with some duck. Perfect.

It was smoked duck breast on a crispy wonton; smoked duck breast, tamarind sauce, carrot, green mango, lettuce, chilli lime, vinaigrette crispy wonton.

The duck was pretty amazing. I was sorry to share this one.

The view just got hazier as the afternoon went on, it was dreamy.
 

I blame the goats cheese being so good, we had to order the cheese platter as we still had wine to drink. It was okay but the cheddar and the blue were a bit too cold and not very good. The brie was French and delicious though, and we were being greedy. Those grapes are grown on the vineyard. Delicious.

 
This vineyard is very well organised and sell a mountain of products other than wine, form jams and chutneys to by-products of the wine. Great idea, nothing is wasted and every bit of the land is being used to generate more income.

We found out while we were here that the company is owned by the son of the founder of Red Bull, which explains a lot.

The beautiful open restaurant looks out over the vineyard.

I highly recommend a visit to Hua Hin Vineyard, go on the afternoon bus and have some lunch, maybe ride an elephant around too!

Sukiski – Hua Hin

April 12, 2012

Sukiski is an amazing chain across Thailand of Japanese restaurants, they do an amazing sushi and soup all you can eat deal for what worked out to be about £5.

Insane.

I normally hate all you can eat, but for sushi I can get down.

The conveyor belt is for soup adds.

The place was always so packed that the sushi is super fresh, I saw tray afer tray quickly emptied and replaced in the hour we were there.

The soups are fun, you get a big pot of stock on a burner in the middle of your table, picking your flavour then adding bits where you want to.

I added lots of fresh greens…

And beautiful pieces of meat, this beef was amazing.

The pork was also great.

You can serve your soup to each other in little bowls and eat until your full or the soup has gone. I didn’t quite get there though. Too much sushi.

Some of the tofu bits in Thailand looks so strange. I didn’t try these.

There is also all you can drink stations of all kinds of crazy soft drinks and an ice cream freezer where you also help yourself!

Wear comfy clothes and skip lunch!

Sukiski are all over Thailand, we saw branches in Hua Hin, Phuket (Patong) and Bangkok and are on facebook and tripadvisor.

Putahracsa – Hua Hin

April 11, 2012

Our next destination was Hua Hin, and our hotel was Putahrasca one of the best places we stayed in.

The food had a lot to do with this.

This was their beachside restaurant, a lovely cool and breezy place to eat lunch.

I ordered a crab and avocado salad on our first full day, simple and not Thai food but so fresh and perfect.

Another dish sampled was chicken with papaya salad. Again freshness and so well cooked. They make everything fresh to order so the food doesn’t fly out but it was always amazing.


Another recommendation was the stir fried chicken with chilli and basil, made super hot my husband loved this. I also highly recommend the prawn caesar salad eaten on our last day… it was so good there is no photograph. Huge juicy prawns and a light salad with a little of the perfect sauce.

The second restaurant was near our room and in the sheltered pool area and where breakfast was served.
  
One particularly sweltering day I refused to move from the pool side and ordered to my sun lounger.

My husband ordered a Pad Thai, and like I have mentioned measures a place against it. He did say it wasn’t the best he had eaten (or the biggest) but it came with all the right components and was good.

I ordered a club sandwich, fries and a sprite, boy was that a happy 15 minutes if I could transport myself back to that moment right now I would; poolside with french fries and sunshine.

And breakfast… well breakfast ruled. If I ate like this every day I would be living in the gym.

So I am gushing again, but I did love it here. You can eat in the restaurant by the beach even if you are not a guest and it is a great place to spend an evening, drinking cocktails on the huge day beds and then watching the sun go down while you eat… Putahracsa 

Check out my full post here

Back to Thailand we go, after a long weekend, did you have a good one?

This place is one of my fondest memories and the kind of place I love to stumble upon on a trip.

The view from our table could not be beaten, definitely one of the best tables I have eaten at, sand beneath our toes, sun on our face and the waves crashing providing the most relaxing soundtrack ever.

We only stopped for a drink, it was super hot and I was flagging. Then we saw food going to other tables, and smelt the smells. So we joined in.

My husband ordered a squid salad, and asked for it to be hot. This was one of the few times we were not given tourist hot but hot. Maybe not quite Thai hot, but I think they are probably right not to do that.

The squid was so fresh and tender and barely cooked. The chilli was perfect, very hot for me, lips were left tingling.

I ordered fish fillets with garlic, and boy there was garlic. It was amazing.

And once again, the view.

I finished with a banana milkshake, I got addicted to these things.

 You can find Tonson on the beach in Koh Lak, if you enter the beach on the main entrance archway it is the first restaurant you come to on the strip. If you are coming from the other way then it would be the last. It is very near to the large chain hotels.

LOVE it, do seek it out if you visit.