Reviews are sponsored; the articles are unbiased, the opinions my own.

  • 20 May 2019

    Lily O’Brien’s large Personalised Keepsake Photo Box

    Lily O’Brien’s has done it again. They present wonderful gift ideas for every occasion, but they are also perfect for those ‘be good to me’ days. Just in time for Father’s Day they are offering a Personalised Keepsake Photo Box. One can upload one’s chosen snaps and Lily does the rest! This sturdy and well-designed...

  • 17 May 2019

    The Sea Journal: Seafarers’ Sketchbooks

    The Sea Journal: Seafarers’ Sketchbooks is more than just a glimpse into a few nautical logbooks, it is a fascinating study of the discoveries made by some sixty-odd renowned adventurers over the last 600 years. The author, Dr. Huw Lewis-Jones (a much-travelled historian with a special interest in maritime exploration and polar voyages), has brought...

  • 15 May 2019

    Gaasbeek Castle for a Feast of Fools: Bruegel Rediscovered

    Gaasbeek Castle for a Feast of Fools: Bruegel Rediscovered 6 April 2019 – 28 July 2019 Gaasbeek Castle isn’t far from the thronging city of Brussels, but it is a million miles away with its calming ambiance and leafy location. It’s a former stately home of charm and architectural beauty, and serves as a venue...

  • 13 May 2019

    The Turkish Cookbook

    Turkish food has been popular for decades and that love has increased over the past years as more holiday-makers have been heading to those sun-kissed shores. I have heard that those vacations are more popular than ever this year due to the ‘Brexit effect’. Those visitors will likely return with a taste for many dishes...

  • 10 May 2019

    Oliver Cromwell London Dry Gin from ALDI

    Is this getting monotonous? I keep saying ‘ALDI has done it again!’ and ‘Another winner from ALDI’. But they do seem to have the edge when it comes to quality spirits at an attractive price. Here we have Oliver Cromwell London Dry Gin from the ALDI shelves and it doesn’t disappoint. The bottle is flat-sided...

  • 08 May 2019

    The M.V.M. Cappellin Glassworks and the Young Carlo Scarpa

    The M.V.M. Cappellin Glassworks and the Young Carlo Scarpa is a new publication in the series “Le Stanze del Vetro”, a project on Venetian glassmaking in the 20th century, from a successful partnership of the Fondazione Cini and Pentagram Stiftung. This sumptuous book from the renowned Skira publishing company is associated with the autumn exhibition...

  • 06 May 2019

    Madeira Quinta da Casa Branca Dining

    Funchal in Madeira is one of my favourite cities and Quinta da Casa Branca has one of my favourite restaurants. That is surely a recipe for delicious contentment and a very happy reviewer. I have not actually stayed at Quinta da Casa Branca but dream of doing so. It is perhaps one of the most...

  • 03 May 2019

    Tu Casa Mi Casa: Mexican Recipes for the Home Cook

    Tu Casa Mi Casa: Mexican Recipes for the Home Cook is a gorgeous volume of Mexican recipes from the internationally celebrated chef Enrique Olvera. He was featured in the Netflix documentary series, Chef’s Table. This is his first home-cooking book and a very creditable one it is too. Enrique Olvera is a native of Mexico...

  • 01 May 2019

    Aegina – accessible Greek retreat

    Aegina is perhaps the most accessible of Greek island idylls.  It’s the playground of holidaymakers from Athens, but has also long been popular with European tourists who are looking for a quintessentially Greek experience. The island is named after Aegina, one of the 50 daughters of the river god Asopus. It is located only 25...

  • 29 Apr 2019

    The Farm Brewery – Goossens

    Goossens Farm with Malting Brewery Lambic Brewery Heritage Lambic beer is a typical wild yeast beer, brewed in the southwest region of Brussels (Pajottenland).  It forms the basis for geuze (a blend of lambic of 3 different ages) and for kriek lambic, a cherry beer. This farm with malting brewery was one of the many...

  • 26 Apr 2019

    Idols: The Power of Images

    Idols: The Power of Images is yet another sumptuous volume from Skira Editore. They are a paramount publisher of quality books on art and design, and these books are highly collectable. This tome takes the reader on a journey back through the centuries to a time when we find the first sculptural representation of the...

  • 24 Apr 2019

    British Museum- largest exhibition of manga outside Japan

    Manga マンガ -till 26 August 2019 Sainsbury Exhibitions Gallery The British Museum presents the largest exhibition of manga ever held outside of Japan. Manga are Japanese comic books or graphic novels with a twist, serialised in magazines and read by a global audience. A multi-billion-pound business that embraces anime and gaming, manga are a global...

  • 22 Apr 2019

    Bayou Bar Hurricane Cocktail

    Bayou Bar, the first permanent offering from London’s renowned Street Food Union team launched earlier this year is serving up a carefully selected small but perfectly formed range of cocktails in tribute to their New Orleans inspired roots. The drinks menu, created by the team’s mixologist Toby Steinberg, delivers authentic drinks like The Hurricane, The...

  • 19 Apr 2019

    Old Hopking Dark Rum

    Many, in the past, viewed Aldi as something of bargain basement supermarket, but that perception is changing. Yes, they sport attractive price tags on their goods but that, at least in my experience of the spirits department, doesn’t indicate a lowering of standards – just the price. Old Hopking Dark Rum is another Aldi gem....

  • 17 Apr 2019

    Madeira’s Still-living History

    The 15th century saw the dawn of the Age of Discovery, a time when European powers began exploring the world to find new lands and new opportunities. Portugal was in the vanguard of this drive, sailing southwards in their case down the west coast of Africa. So it wasn’t long (1419 to be precise) before...

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