Shoryu Ramen Oxford Exterior - Gudetama X Shoyru Autumn Set Menu October 2018

Gudetama X Shoryu Autumn set menu review

When Shoryu Ramen announced a Gudetama X Shoryu Autumn set menu, it was safe to say, I was pretty excited over it. I love Gudetama. Gudetama is probably the best thing to happen to Sanrio after Hello Kitty herself.

The new Gudetama themed Autumn set menu offers a delicious three course meal, drink and a limited edition Gudetama coaster to take home with you. There is vegetarian, meat and even a vegan main option.

Your drink arrives in a Gudetama cup with a choice between Mango Iced Tea and Calpico. Calpico is a milk based beverage with a sweet taste – which reminded me of Yakult in a lot of ways.

Gudetama menu exterior - Gudetama X Shoyru Autumn Set Menu October 2018Shoryu Ramen Oxford Sake Decor - Gudetama X Shoyru Autumn Set Menu October 2018Gudetama tote bag - Gudetama X Shoyru Autumn Set Menu October 2018

 

So, what did I think of the Gudetama X Shoryu Autumn set menu?

To start, you will devour steamed buns with a choice between BBQ Pork and Pumpkin Croquette. These are plentiful, embellished with lettuce and cucumber, finished with a dash of Japanese mayonnaise and hirata sauce.

I found the pumpkin croquette to be utterly sublime, something I would buy again and again, be it as a lunch or delicious snack. I have to say, I preferred it to my main. The hirata sauce really brought the bun to life, alongside the crispy coating on the pumpkin croquette with its deliciously soft and fragrant interior.

Ramen came along next for the mains, naturally. You could choose between the famed Shoryu Gatsu Tonkotsu with pork or the vegan White Natural (it can be requested with an egg on the side, if desired).

The White Natural broth is made from a combination of soy milk, miso, konbu and shiitake mushrooms. It is then decorated with ramen noodles, atsuage tofu, spring onions, menma bamboo shoots, nori seaweed and kikurage mushrooms.

Gudetama Steamed Buns - Gudetama X Shoyru Autumn Set Menu October 2018Gudetama Ramen Noodle Mains - Gudetama X Shoyru Autumn Set Menu October 2018

The ramen was nice, but without the added kikurage mushrooms (at my request РI am not a fan of mushrooms), it felt a little weak. Saying this, what I did really like, was the condiments available alongside your dishes.

These allowed you to get creative with your ramen. With a sprinkling of sesame seeds, soy and garlic, you can really customise to your taste. It proved a nice touch and made the dishes very flavoursome.

For dessert, a mini mochi icecream in a moody Gudetama paper cup. you can choose between matcha and yuki and both were lovely. Be warned, if you haven’t had mochi before, you may find the texture a little odd. It’s almost like the skin of fruit, with a vibrant ball of flavoured icecream inside.

Gudetama cups - Gudetama X Shoyru Autumn Set Menu October 2018

So, would I recommend the Gudetama X Shoryu Autumn set menu?

Overall, the themed menu was fabulous and oh so fun. Flavour is big at Shoryu Ramen and the selection of condiments really added to the dishes, allowing for a more personal experience. Once your food is devoured, there is even cute Gudetama merchandise to buy instore or online!

The Gudetama X Shoryu Autumn set menu is available exclusively at Shoryu New Oxford Street, Shoryu Manchester and Shoryu Oxford from October 1 Р14, 2018. You can take a bite with Gudetama for £22.

Have you been to Shoryu Ramen before? Would you like to try the new Gudetama X Shoryu set menu?

Stephanie xox

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This post is in collaboration with Shoryu Ramen 

Cocktails, eXchange Food and Drink Lounge, Manchester | The LDN Gal

eXchange Food and Drink Lounge Manchester review

On a busy Saturday night in central Manchester, we headed for a bite to eat at the eXchange Food and Drink Lounge Manchester.

Leaving Chinatown nearby, we swung onto Portland Street. As we entered, we were greeted with smiles and welcomed to a large restaurant with a stunning interior and relaxed ambience.

We set ourselves down within the rustic eXchange Food and Drink Lounge, adorned with dim-lit hanging lights, well-spaced solid wood and industrial legged tables and mismatched chairs embellished with plush cushions.

The retro chic style of¬†eXchange¬†Food and Drink¬†Lounge, gives way to a charming environment with a sleek cocktail bar, sports screens aplenty and a children’s play zone to its far end.

Interior, eXchange Food and Drink Lounge, Manchester | The LDN GalInterior 3, eXchange Food and Drink Lounge, Manchester | The LDN Gal Interior 2, eXchange Food and Drink Lounge, Manchester | The LDN Gal

So, how did I find the food at eXchange Food and Drink Lounge, Manchester?

Cocktails in tow –¬†I personally recommend the Bramble –¬†we scanned over the varied and tasty menu. There’s¬†many a chef’s special to be seen.

To start, we delved into red velvet king prawns (the most Instagram-worthy prawn starter ever to be created) and halloumi fries with salsa, the gooey cheese with its battered crust certainly made an initial dent in our appetites.

For our mains, we welcomed the mixed grill platter for my other half and the cauliflower roulade for myself, a roasted vegetable and bean cassoulet with a flaky crust and sumptuous vegetables in a tangy sauce. It’s safe to say, Ryan devoured his platter, commenting that the meat was cooked to perfection alongside the deliciousness of what he presumed to be triple cooked chips.

Dessert was a push but we indulged ourselves further with specials including chef Chris’s chocolate brownie and Matty B’s bakewell tart.¬†These homemade desserts were spectacular. The brownie was moist and rich, accompanied by tangy raspberry sauce and a chocolate cup filled with vanilla ice cream.¬†The bakewell tart was just as delicious, with a crumbly base alongside a fruity and soft interior.

Mixed Grill and Cauliflower Roulade Mains, eXchange Food and Drink Lounge, Manchester | The LDN Gal Brownie and Bakewell, eXchange Food and Drink Lounge, Manchester | The LDN Gal

So, what did I think of the eXchange Food and Drink Lounge, Manchester?

Overall, I found the food, interior and staff of eXchange Food & Drink Lounge to be exceptional. I have to say, the vegetarian options were sublime, the food was delicious, well-presented and generous.

The evening was quite simply spectacular. You are welcomed to a warm and relaxing environment and the hours seemed to be lost as we chatted away.

With full and happy stomachs, we concluded the evening with a final round of cocktails and headed home for an early night ‚Ästgo wild for the night eh?

The eXchange Food & Drink Lounge is perfect for couples, friends and families, be it a place to stop for dinner, to catch the game or to have a few cocktails among peers. Take a peek at their food menu here and step away from the madness of the city for a few hours.

Have you eaten at the eXchange Food and Drink Lounge? Which item from the menu tempts you? 

Stephanie xox

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This dining experience was exchanged for an honest review 

Degustabox UK review - June 2018 | The LDN Gal

Degustabox UK June 2018 review

The June Degustabox certainly did not fail to impress. Themed on BBQ section, it was packed with delicious flavoursome treats and meal accompaniments just perfect for summertime and these longer evenings.

Here is what I discovered in my latest June 2018 UK Degustabox:

So, what do I think of the June 2018 UK Degustabox?

Capsicana Cook Sauces  

The Capsicana Cook Sauces certainly offer a kick to your cooking. Now, I am not a fan of spice but these sauces are simply bursting with flavour. These Mexican and Latin American inspired sauces, are packed full of authentic ingredients to help brighten up your dinners.

Peckish BBQ Rice Crackers Multi-Pack 

The¬†Peckish BBQ Rice Crackers are simply delicious, not only low in calories but they also taste great. These packs are the perfect healthy treat-meets-snack for on the go. They are baked, not fried, super crunchy and even gluten-free! Let’s face it, no guilt snacks are the best snacks.

Brioche Pasquier Pains au Lait 

These soft¬†Brioche Pasquier Pains au Lait are a must for any household. These super soft and light brioche rolls can be enjoyed round-the-clock. Use them in the morning to make French toast, for a super easy lunch roll or on the BBQ with hot dogs or sausages –¬†they are delicious whether used for sweet or savoury.¬†

Rosie’s Pig Raspberry Roller¬†

Now the Rosie’s Pig Raspberry Roller cider was certainly a treat in our current heatwave! As expected from a fruity cider, it was refreshing and sweet. What did I love about it? The combination of raspberry and cucumber is simply to die for.

Frylight Avocado Oil Cooking Spray 

I love the Frylight sprays, they are super low in calories and great to cook with. Now, this avocado oil spray is no different. I have to admit though, I could not notice the taste of the avocado when cooking.

no&more raspberry and blueberry 

I have to be honest, I really wasn’t a fan of the no&more raspberry and blueberry water. It was very weakly flavoured and I think you’d be better off just placing sliced fruit within a bottle for a fruity pick-me-up.

Mighty Fine Salted Caramel Honeycomb Bar 

If you are looking for a naughty treat, look no further than the Mighty Fine Salted Caramel Honeycomb Bar. This slightly misshapen honeycomb bar tastes like a luxury Crunchie, coated in Belgian milk chocolate.

Orangina 

Orangina reminds me of childhood. Bursting with flavour and always super fizzy. Both the normal and low sugar versions tasted delicious in their own right and it was nice to sample both. Always delicious and always refreshing.

Idahon Gratin Bake 

I am such a big fan of the Idahon range, having sampled their mashed potato packets before. This bake was delicious and simple to prepare with a dash of water and butter. It went well with vegetarian sausages and vegetables.

The Jelly Bean Factory Fairtrade Box 

I have always loved jelly beans, they are my weakness. The Jelly Bean Factory have always been my go to for their assortment of flavours. Each box is filled with 36 delicious flavours, so be sure to eat them one at a time to take advantage. These are also made using fair trade sugar.

Great British Biscotti Co  

I am never a massive fan of Italian biscotti inspired treats but this proved to be an exception. Within this crumbly Great British Biscotti Co biscuit came pistachios, cranberries and white chocolate. All in all, perfection.

I was very pleased with this box and would buy many of these items again –¬†minus the no&more water which was quite frankly a let down.¬†

I am now a big fan of the Idahon range and their products sneak into my shopping basket often. With all these items in mind, I created two wonderful dinners and had snacks for days.

Like the look of this June box? You can order the July Degustabox here.

What do you think of the June Degustabox? What item would be your first pick? 

Stephanie xox

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This Degustabox was exchanged for an honest review

How to enjoy guilt-free icecream this summer | The LDN Gal

Enjoy guilt-free ice cream this summer

With summer just around the corner and the sunny weather making an early appearance this year, I have been craving more of my favourite summer treats.  However, like most people, I don’t like the idea of consuming all those dreaded calories or paying an excessive amount of money to do so either. Which is why I have teamed up with Peak Body to put together a simple recipe for guilt-free ice cream recipe you can enjoy this summer.

Ice cream doesn’t have to be a one-off treat you have once a week, you can make your own protein ice cream for less money and half the time.

In order to get the same creamy texture and tasted of full-fat ice cream, I would recommend using bananas as the main ingredient. It’s as easy as peeling and chopping your banana, before popping them into a freezer bag. It doesn’t really matter what size you chop the bananas just as long as they are even chunks that will blend well when frozen.

Just when you thought this ice cream couldn’t get any better, by adding vanilla protein to the mix this tasty treat is perfect for helping to recover and build muscle when training hard for that bikini bod. As well as being to the full to the rim of nutrients and flavours, this ice cream can also be enjoyed by vegetarians, just use soy protein as a substitute. Here is how to enjoy guilt-free ice cream this summer:

Method

Makes: 8 servings

Ingredients:

  • 500g frozen bananas
  • 4-6 scoops Vanilla Protein Powder (use 3 scoops of soy protein¬†for vegans/vegetarians)
  • 250ml fat-free yoghurt (use dairy-free for vegan)
  • 50ml milk (can use almond to give it more flavour)

Method:

  1. First, blend all ingredients together (once the banana is fully frozen) until they’re just about smooth. Try not to over process the mixture as this may cause overheating and the mixture will begin to liquify. Which is subsequently means you can’t eat the delicious ice cream straight away.
  2. Get yourself an ice cream scoop or spoon and run it under a tap so you can make yourself a bowl up.
  3. Pour the remaining ice cream into a sealable Tupperware container and freeze for more servings.
  4. To keep your protein ice cream creamy you can mix it up every hour for the first 4 hours of freezing. If this seems like to much hassle just leave the mixture and thaw the ice cream out before helping yourself to another serving.
  5. Top with your delicious and nutritious toppings like blueberries, cinnamon, strawberries, dark chocolate flakes or sugar-free syrup.

What do you think of this guilt-free recipe? What are your go-to icecream toppings?

Stephanie xox

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This post is in collaboration with Peak Body

Light wall at Tonight Josephine - The LDN Gal

A Tonight Josephine experience review

If you haven’t been to Tonight Josephine yet, you are in for a treat.¬†Based in Waterloo, this pretty-in-pink hot spot is¬†probably one of the most Instagram-worthy bars in London.

Adorned with a neon light feature wall on entrance and an interior embellished with iridescent streamer lined walls, mirrored ceilings, a floral ‘lady garden’ and mug shot decorated bathroom. This overtly girly bar serves quirky cocktails in an oh so cool environment.

Every corner of the bar proves to be a photo opportunity and most will probably spend just as much time sipping cocktails as they will taking the perfect picture –¬†it is simply a¬†millennial¬†girls dream come true.¬†

Tonight Josephine is certainly a lot of fun with its bright, bold and brilliant interior. The bar itself is quite small but this offers a degree of intimacy and exclusivity to boot I guess.

Cocktails at Tonight Josephine - The LDN Gal Bathrooms at Tonight Josephine - The LDN Gal

So, what did I think of Tonight Josephine?

Obviously, the¬†d√©cor¬†and atmosphere is fabulous – it is marketed to be just so. Though despite the glamour, its nineties and noughties soundtrack and scented interior (yes, I said scented), you cannot help but feel a little cheated when it comes to drinks –¬†no matter how good they taste.

Unfortunately, my cocktail proved to be more ice than alcohol, free-poured swiftly before being garnished and passed across the bar. It certainly didn’t last long.

Despite this, a few hours at Tonight Josephine makes for a lovely evening and is certainly a fabulous place to stop by for drinks and snaps with the girls Рjust be sure to take advantage of the 2-4-1 happy hour! 

You can get a free cocktail when you sign up to the Tonight Josephine mailing list here.

Have you been to Tonight Josephine yet? Which cocktail would be your go to?

Stephanie xox

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Nosebag resturant, Oxford review

The Nosebag resturant Oxford review

Suprisingly, I have never been to the¬†Nosebag resturant in Oxford. Located up a flight of stairs on¬†Saint Michael’s street, this resturant has an incredibly homely feel with wood furnishing, quaint decor and¬†carafes on each table. The environment is welcoming and relaxed. –¬†it has even been around since the 1970s.

With a ton of seating inside, it is perfect for groups and a fab stop for breakfast, lunch and dinner, as well as offering cakes and alcoholic drinks. The Nosebag resturant offers a limited but varied main menu which also caters for vegetarians and vegans.

You order at the till, choosing your dish and salad or sides as you wait for your plate to be made up. If the item needs a little preperation, you pay and leave and sit with a number. I personally really like paying beforehand as it makes the dining process that little bit swifter.

So, what did I think of the Nosebag resturant Oxford?

For my first visit, I devoured a homemade vegetarian quiche with two side salads. The salad bar selection at the The Nosebag is quite simply amazing, with a creative mix of fresh, delicious and vibrant side dishes. I have to be honest, I would come in for salad alone.

The following week, I savoured a jacket potato with cheese and beans –¬†I am a giant child you see.¬†My boyfriend had the burgandy lamb with seasonal vegetables and thought it superb.

Both occasions, these simple and wholesome dishes were great and the fresh salad bar really is such a fabulous addition to the resturant.

I will be returning to this charming little eaterie again. I think I may have just found my new favourite place for lunch within Oxford.

Have you been to the Nosebag resturant, Oxford? Do you like homemade cuisine in resturants? 

Stephanie xox

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