Food & Adventures

Wednesday 31 January 2018

Coffee and Kin. The Bean Emporium

*This post has been written in collaboration with Coffee and Kin

As you may have guessed I'm a little bit addicted to coffee. I'm a bit of a stickler for good coffee, I can't have instant and I always have to have ground coffee (freshly ground if possible). I was recently asked by a new coffee company to try their range of coffee beans so naturally I said yes please!

Coffee and Kin are based in Alnwick, which is just up the road from where I live, I love supporting local businesses. They have a strong emphasis on ethically sourced coffee, which is also important to me. Each of their coffees can been traced at each stage of production to make sure it is socially and environmentally sustainable. The beans are then roasted on Holy Island, I love this as Holy Island is one of my favourite places in Northumberland and it always feels a bit magical whenever we visit.

Anyway onto the Coffee, I was sent 2 bags of beans the first from El Salvador:

"This is a really lively coffee with plenty of sweet juicy fruit flavours and a soft toffee finish."

I like this one as an Americano, it is perfect for a morning coffee. It has great flavour, strong enough to wake you up first thing. Me and Mrs. Cool have had one every morning this week with breakfast, it goes great with a warm croissant.

The next coffee was from Guatamala:

"Delightful floral notes and hints of raspberry and blueberry will dance on your palate. It also has a syrupy body and a delicious lasting sweetness."

This one is my favourite. I have it as an Espresso, you can really taste the Raspberry and Blueberry flavour and it makes it stand out from other coffee beans I've had. If you want something a bit special then this is the coffee for you.

You can buy coffee beans, pods and accessories on the Coffee and Kin website. Also if you're a regular coffee drinker then why not purchase a subscription here and get the coffee of your choice delivered every month AND save 10%. When you buy from Coffee and Kin they put some of the proceeds into the Coffee and Kin Foundation which provides support to people and organisations in the communities where the coffee is grown which I think is a great idea.

Coffee and Kin Giveaway

To celebrate the launch of Coffee and Kin, I'm giving away two bags of speciality coffee beans to one lucky reader. Simply enter using the rafflecopter widget below. Good luck!

Well, that's all for now.



Monday 29 January 2018

Lunch at Bouchon Bistrot, Hexham

Last week Me and Mrs. Cool decided to put off any work we had a few hours when the kids were at school and were able to enjoy a little date day. We decided to head to Hexham to try Bouchon Bistrot, A French restaurant that we have wanted to visit for a few years. Bouchon Bistrot is an award winning restaurant very close to Market Square in Hexham and was named the UK's best local French Restaurant on Gordon Ramsey's The F Word.
Our table was booked for 12pm and when we arrived we were greeted by the owner who was very friendly and showed us to our table. We ordered our drinks and were given a few minutes to look at the menus (you can see the menu on Bouchon Bistrot's webite here). As it was through the day we went for the Lunch menu which is very reasonably priced at £15.95 for 2 courses or £16.95 for 3 courses. Our drinks arrived and we were also given a couple of warm breadbuns with butter and we ordered our food.
For our starters Mrs. Cool went for the Goats Cheese Mousse with Beetroot Salad. I love the combination of goats cheese and beetroot and would normally go for this starter myself however I'm a sucker for Mackerel so when I saw Smoked Mackerel Tartines with Potato and Shallot Salad I knew I had to go for that one.
Goats Cheese Mousse with Beetroot Salad
Smoked Mackerel Tartines with Potato and Shallot Salad
Mackerel can be a bit like Marmite in that some people love it and some people hate it. I really love it, this dish is sooo good and very Mackerelly (is that a word?), the Tartines went really well with the potatoes and shallots. You can't go wrong with the classic combination of Goats Cheese and Beetroot, Mrs. Cool said the goats cheese mousse nicely seasoned with pepper and was the perfect portion size.

Mrs. Cool loves a good steak so for her main she went for Steak Frites. I was a little torn as I love steak too but I think I prefer pork so decided on the Grilled Pork Chop with Pomme Purée and Sauce Charcutière.
Steak Frites
Grilled Pork Chop with Pomme Purée and Sauce Charcutière
The Pomme Purée was perfectly smooth and very well seasoned, The pork was incredible, so tender and succulent. The sauce was amazing too, very meaty with onions and I think chopped Cornichons. Mrs. Cool's Steak Frites also looked good, The steak was served Medium Rare and was melt in the mouth soft (Mrs. Cool said it was the softest steak she has ever had), the frites were thin and crispy and the sauce was very rich and meaty and was perfect for dipping her chips into.

As it was only £1 extra we decided to treat ourselves to a dessert, Mrs. Cool chose the Tarte Fine Aux Pommes with Cinnamon Ice Cream. I was swayed by the thought of Rum and Pineapple so went for the Vanilla and Rum Bavarois with Roasted Pineapple.
Tarte Fine Aux Pommes with Cinnamon Ice Cream
Vanilla and Rum Bavarois with Roasted Pineapple

Although my dessert was delicious, very Creamy and the pineapple was particularly good, I was a little disappointed that the Rum was quite subtle and would have preferred this to be a stronger flavour. Mrs. Cool said the Tarte was beautifully flakey and the Cinnamon Ice Cream was perfect for winter. I had a little try of the Ice Cream and can confirm it is delicious.

We were happy with all of our dishes and I recommend you make the time to visit Bouchon Bistrot. Our bill came to £49.10 including drinks and tip and we were very happy with this price.

Well, that's all for now.


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