Categories
Dinner England

Tap and Kitchen Oundle

Tap and Kitchen

One of the most adorable towns in England I’ve been to is Oundle. At the request of one of my very best gal pals, I made the journey to Tap and Kitchen in Oundle to say farewell over dinner. I was impressed my very first time so I returned bringing along my family so they could experience a Tap and Kitchen meal. This review is a combination of both experiences which were lovely.
Tap and Kitchen is just on the outskirts of Peterborough. Right as you pull into the town it is on the right hand side and it has it’s own little wharf. Don’t go too fast or you will pass right by. The parking lot is gravel, so on rainy days be sure to have some wellies close by. When you walk inside you are transported to a homey shabby chic place. There are velvet chairs and frilly lampshades hanging from the ceiling. There is also an outside seating area but I don’t suggest outdoor seating during rainy season.
Tap and Kitchen Oundle reminds me of one of my favorite places I like to consider one of the best kept secrets in Tampa – Stein and Vine. The menu changes daily so if you see it and want it get it, because chances are it won’t be there tomorrow. The bar is stocked full of gin and other spirits and flowing from the tap are local beers. Now to the best part…the food.

Starters

I ordered something new as a starter.  Pea Kofta with minted paneer, harissa mayonnaise and pickled onion.  The harissa mayonnaise is the perfect dip for both the pea kofta and the minted paneer.  If you ever see this on the menu, order it.

These scallops were featured on my Instagram account and are quite possibly the best scallops I’ve ever had. These king scallops are served on a bed of peas, chorizo, samphire and potato puff. Not only are the colors visually appealing, the texture of the peas, potato puff and chorizo complement the scallops.

Main Courses and Sides

Ever since I had my first bite of sweet potato gnocci, I’ve been hooked. The first time I tried it was at Boca Brandon.  Anytime I see it on a menu I have to order it and this time was no exception. There is just something about the sweet, savory, melts like butter gnocchi that can not be denied. Pair it with some asparagus for that added crunch and voila you’ve got yourself a star dish. I was so convincing with my order, three of my friends ordered the same thing. I’ll just say none of us were disappointed.

On my second trip I got the pork belly for my main.  The pork belly was placed atop of wholegrain mustard mash, savoy cabbage with pan jus. The top of the pork belly was seared just right.  My husband got the salmon with roasted vegetables. The mains were simply amazing!!

I was initially skeptical when I ordered the zucchini, tomato and chorizo side.  I must say that I was pleasantly surprised.  Somehow it worked.  The zucchini was still firm and the chorizo gave it just enough kick.

Desserts

One of the most common desserts in the UK pubs is sticky toffee pudding.  As you can see from the picture below, it’s a monster of a dessert.  If you haven’t had sticky toffee pudding, visit Tap N’ Kitchen for one of the best around.

Me and my one of my best gal pals as we say see you later.  She is the reason that Tap and Kitchen is forever a part of my life. Thanks Brook!

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Categories
Cambridge England

Sushimania buffet in Cambridge

I love a good sushi place so when my friends mentioned driving to Cambridge for a all you can eat sushi buffet, I was game. Our party was fairly large 4 adults and 4 children so when we walked up we were told there was a wait to get in. I usually take this as a good indication. If there is a wait, it is pretty popular and pretty good.

Sushimania menu

There are two options of ordering. You can order from the menu a la carte or you can order from the buffet menu. It’s a little over £17 for the buffet per adult and you can have up to 6 items on the table at once. Basically if you have 6 adults you can only have one item and once you finish that you can request something else from the menu. Oh and you only have an hour and 45 time limit to eat, can’t sit there all day.
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I would love to say that it was a wonderful experience, unfortunately it was not. I’ll paint the experience picture first, don’t worry I’ll be brief. We were seated upstairs, they accommodated our prams being downstairs which was nice. Once we were seated, we were just kind of left for a bit. I had to make eye contact with someone I assumed was our waitress and ask her how we are supposed to order. She brought over menus but failed to explain how to order. A gentleman who I assume was either the owner or manager came over to retrieve our order cards, but immediately questioned our order. In a very accusatory tone, he explained that children could not share our food and that if we were caught sharing we would be charged half price for them. I understand the underlying principle of the policy to ensure that people aren’t just ordering and sharing plates. However he hadn’t even gone over the order to see what order was for who. My children’s order was from the a la carte menu. Our entire service we were being watch to see who was eating what, uncomfortable is putting it lightly. Ready to see what we ate?
Ordering from the sushimania buffet menu as a group isn’t as convenient as one may think, all of our sushi rolls came on a single plate. We were left to guess whose was who’s because well our waitress didn’t explain. I ordered a duck roll that was duck and cucumber with a duck sauce. It was pretty good. I also ordered a Nigri roll one with eel and one with octopus. The texture of the eel was different than I expected and the octopus was good.
Sushi rolls from sushimania buffet
I also ordered chicken udon noodles, a teriyaki chicken skewer and a spicy tuna roll.  The teriyaki chicken skewer was good and my children enjoyed it.  I did not finish the spicy tuna roll, the fish didn’t taste fresh.
 

Here are a few tips to know incase you decide to give Sushimania a try:
The miso soup does not come with a spoon, you are supposed to drink it.
When you are ready to place an order put your menu up in the air (they will come grab it).
As previously mentioned, children are not allowed to share your plate…tell those scavengers to get their own lol.
 
I have not given a bad review in a very long time.  In fact no dining experience I have ever had has been this abysmal.  Perhaps both the food and the service are better if you order from the main menu.  Perhaps it was just an off day.  Whichever the case I will not be returning.  In a sea full of fish, there is literally other sushi out there.
 
 
 

Categories
Breakfast and Brunch England

Brunch at the River Terrace Cafe

England is full of quaint towns and unless you happen to live in one of them chances are you’ll never have the pleasure of seeing them. The movie Joker just came out and my darling husband got us tickets for a Matinee. Yay for a day date without the kids. Our friends decided to join us and requested to have brunch before hand. This is how I was introduced to the darling review terrace café.

Nestled right up against the River Great Ouse, I drank my hazelnut latte that the barista had just finished brewing. I sat with my friends and husband engaging in small talk occasionally staring at the menu. Brunch decisions are always difficult for me. I am especially partial to Eggs Benedict as I have pretty much made that the standard by which I rate brunches. I ordered a fruit scone with clotted cream and strawberry jam to hold me over. It had been calling my name from the moment I’d walked in. There was little evidence left behind with exception of the remnants of powdered sugar on my fingertips.

Fruit SconeFruit scone with clotted cream and strawberry jam

Clotted cream is a thick cream made from whole milk using a steam bath or steam then cooled slowly in a shallow pan. 

After much back and forth between the Eggs Benedict, Eggs Florentine and Breakfast bowl; I settled on the latter. As if quinoa, tomato pesto, a poached egg, spinach, mushrooms and a blistered tomato weren’t enough; I upgraded it. Salmon and halloumi cheese took that breakfast bowl from an A to an A++. They key to eating th bowl is to cut up the mushroom and tomato, then pop the poached egg. Lastly take the tomato pesto and pour it all over the bowl making sure to cover the quinoa. Not only does it look good but it is well balanced too. It has almost every element of the food pyramid: grains, protein, vegetables, dairy and even some fats/oils.

 

 

 

If you are ever in the area of St. Ives, UK which is roughly 20 minutes from Cambridge stop by. Grab a latte, stay for brunch or if you’d prefer to dine a little later try their lunch.  It’s a favorite amongst the locals and I’m sure it will be a favorite for you too.

Forks Up!