As you have probably gathered from all the blog content and social media activity, the last couple of months have been jam-packed full of events. Not that I’m complaining, I like keeping busy, but earlier in June it started to feel like I couldn’t keep up. Aside from blogging duties, there were also several birthdays, a hen do, an anniversary and a wedding to contend with… it was too much. At the end of May I promised myself I would take a step back from doing too much in June and July, in order to recharge my batteries and look after myself. Fast forward a couple of weeks and I’ve already made plans to go to three events and a festival – I’m my own worst enemy! I’m really excited to have these opportunities though and that I get to share them with you, whether it inspires or motivates you to do something a little bit different. Put the kettle on, as I recap what I’ve been up to lately and what you can look forward to coming up in and around the Cotswolds…
Eating Out in Cheltenham
With so many new restaurants opening up, it’s becoming more and more difficult (or easier, depends on how indecisive you are) to pick somewhere to eat out. We’re truly spoilt for choice in Cheltenham.
If you follow me on Instagram or Facebook, you’ll have read about the incredible meal I had at Pundits last month. I may have had everyone fooled that the real Gordon Ramsey joined us and the Mayor of Cheltenham for dinner (sorry guys!), but the incredible food and service speaks for itself.
It’s been great hearing all the positive feedback from people who have taken up my recommendation and paid a visit themselves. If you haven’t been and fancy trying something new, you can read all about the restaurant here.
A couple of days later, I invited my best friend to join me for an evening at Muse Brasserie, which had just opened up in town, next to the Thai Emerald. I had actually forgotten we were there to test out the menu, so it was a quick phone call home to tell D to make his own dinner… he opted for a takeaway! We devoured a three course meal and enjoyed a few complimentary drinks, in exchange for some feedback for the Modern European restaurant. The French and Indian fusion dishes were delicious, from the beetroot starter to the scrumptious chocolate dessert, the only thing I could fault was that I would have liked a larger portion of the vegetable ratatouille main course – but that’s probably just me being greedy.
It can be tough opening up in a town full of dining spots, not knowing where you ‘fit in’ or ‘stand out’, so I hope they took some helpful feedback from the evening on board. There was also an official launch party at the end of May to celebrate, which was a great excuse for a catch up with friends and to check in to see what changes they had made since it opened. I have to give a big shout out to front of house man Neil, who entertained the guests throughout both evenings. He could also be mistaken for Actor and Film Director Jon Favreau, so if you do pop in, let me know if you agree!
The Brasserie have recently launched a new Vegan menu too, so there’s something for everyone.
May was a real foodie month apparently, as I finally checked out Giggling Squid too! Not an invite this time, just dinner with friends, but I was really impressed. It’s beautifully decorated inside, and although the space feels quite snug, it still feels comfortable.
I’m quite boring and usually opt for a chicken noodle dish, but this time my friend took charge and ordered us the Beef Paneang Curry – it was delicious! I highly recommend a visit if you haven’t been.
I also enjoyed a couple of visits to one of my favourite hang out spots in Cheltenham, 131 The Promenade. It’s not difficult to see why it’s such a popular haunt for locals and visitors from far and wide, it’s gorgeous. From the interior design, to how it brings a little bit of escapism to your daily routine, I love stopping by for drinks. It’s also fun to inject a little bit of luxury into your life now and then, and 131 is the perfect place to do so… especially sat on the terrace with an iced coffee and fries.
And if you love 131, then I’m sure you’ve stopped by Gin & Juice for a drink or two…
Yes, it’s a little pricey BUT it’s a real treat. It’s become one of my favourite drinking holes in town, and perfect for nights out with the girls. I’m sure you have seen its dreamy decor all over Instagram, and the extensive gin menu is very impressive. I think I opted for an Aperol Spritz on my last visit as I was too indecisive…
Talking of Gin…
The Botanist, situated on the corner of Cheltenham’s Brewery Quarter, is celebrating the arrival of Hendrick’s limited-edition Midsummer Solstice Gin this weekend. Inspired by the floral blooms of the Summer Solstice, it sounds like a refreshing take on the Hendrick’s classic – so if you’re a gin lover, this one’s for you.
I’m always looking for cute coffee spots in town, whether it’s to meet friends on the weekend or just somewhere to work for an hour or two. Clementine opened up this Spring and I couldn’t wait to visit, so one rainy Friday during the Cheltenham Jazz Festival, I met up with my bestie for coffee, cake and a catch up – my three favourite C’s! Situated in Montpellier opposite Brasserie Blanc, it’s in a great spot and you can takeaway too. Also, if you like somewhere ‘Instagrammable’, Clementine is the one. They’ve just announced they’ve opened up a new store in Gloucester too!
Coming up – New tapas restaurant, Bar Padron, has recently joined the line up of foodie spots on Regent Street (the place to be, apparently!) I’m excited to be celebrating the launch next week, so make sure you are following me over on Insta and Facebook to find out more.
If you’re a big foodie (like me), then you need a Pershore Patty Foodie Card in your life! Founded by a local food blogger, the Foodie Card brings independent food and drinks businesses with foodies who are on the look out good places to dine out. Offering a variety of exclusive offers and deals in and around Gloucestershire, this card will no doubt make you feel a little less guilty for eating out too. You can find out more about the card and discounts over on the website here. I was kindly gifted one recently and although I wasn’t asked to share it, I think it’s a brilliant idea that some of you may be interested in too.
May kicked off a month of festivals for me. No matter how ‘busy’ I am, I always make time for local festivals and try to support them as much as possible.
Let’s start with my favourite, the Cheltenham Jazz Festival.
Each year I try to see at least one event, but this time I had nothing lined up. Luckily, we were gifted a couple of tickets last minute to see saxophonist Joshua Redman play at the Town Hall on the Saturday. Spontaneous date nights are the best.
He was incredibly talented, and we lucked out with great seats too.
Sticking with Cheltenham Festivals, a couple of weeks ago Dan’s sister and I went to see Matt Haig do a talk at the Science Festival. He discussed issues surrounding anxiety and mental health, which his book ‘Notes On A Nervous Planet’ delves further into. I’m yet to actually read his work but I’m a huge advocate for speaking out about these topics. I’ve previously shared my own struggles with anxiety on the blog, so I’ll leave a link for you here if you think it may help you or a friend.
I’ve recently posted about my weekends at Mello Festival (here) and Wychwood Festival (here), so make sure you check them out if you haven’t already, but I want to tell you about another festival coming up that you may be interested in…
Sunshine Festival. August Bank Holiday Weekend. Upton Upon Severn, Worcestershire.
The line up includes: Scouting For Girls, Peter Andre, Boyzlife, East 17, S Club – and just announced, Busted!
It sounds like a throwback to my childhood, time to start perfecting those dance routines…
Tickets are on sale now – hope to see you there!
Places To Visit
Earlier this month I took a couple of days off for some much needed R&R. I decided to take my Mum out to Cowley Manor for the afternoon, one of my favourite spots in the Cotswolds to escape to.
It was a perfect Summer’s day in June, as we sat in the lounge with our coffees and a large slice of carrot cake to share.
It was bliss.
I always suggest Cowley Manor to anyone looking for a relaxing afternoon out, whether you just want to sit out on the terrace with a drink, play board games in the lounge or fancy a leisurely stroll around it’s gorgeous grounds.
There is also a spa in case you take the R&R thing really seriously.
Another reason why I say it’s a great place to unwind, there is very little phone signal at the manor so you are almost forced to switch off from technology for an hour or two!
It oozes luxury and glamour right in the heart of the beautiful Cotswolds countryside, and less than half an hour’s drive from Cheltenham town centre.
Coming up – This weekend I’m excited to be heading off to the Bleinham Palace Flower Show, which TV favourite George Clarke is kicking off this Friday. The three day event will celebrate the best of gardening, home and lifestyle and will no doubt be packed full of inspiration. The Grand Floral Pavilion will be the centrepiece of the show, so it’s sure to be a beautiful event to attend if you’re free.
And that pretty much sums the last few weeks up in a rather large nutshell!
There are some events I want to tell you more about, so make sure you’re following me on my social channels (linked below) to keep updated. I would also love to know your suggestions on where to go and what to do in and around the Cotswolds – or if you’ve taken any of these recommendations on board.
Until next time. K x