The Boatyard is a restaurant which clearly rates itself.
And it does have good reason. It’s situated in probably one of the best spots in Essex, tucked down in Old Leigh, with unrivalled views of the estuary.
On a balmy summer evening, there are few places I would rather be than sat, cocktail in hand, on its long wooden deck out at sea, the sound of piano drifting out.
And, what is more, I have also discovered a new favourite cocktail.
The Boatyard’s Rosè Spritzer is basically summertime in a flute. Macerated strawberries were mixed with Pimms No.1 , Frais de Bois, Elderflower and a dash of sugar syrup, shaken and double-strained into my glass then topped with Rosè Champagne.
The Boatyard’s Rose Spritzer
“There comes a time in every woman’s life when the only thing that helps is a glass of Champagne.”
― Bette Davis
I am surprisingly fussy when it comes to wine glasses. Which, considering I am possibly one of the MOST accident-prone people you will ever meet, is not really a good thing.
When packing up our house for our recent move I realised that, thanks to various good nights (and a couple of, well, average ones) we were down to just seven wine glasses. Four of which were actually Champagne flutes. Two of which we never use because they are Swarovski. And were a wedding present. And absolutely cannot be smashed. So the best way to avoid this is to basically use them about once a year. And even that’s flirting with disaster. (Seriously at a house party of a good friend, I once smashed three glasses. In less than two hours. And it wasn’t even dark.)
Paul Costelloe Living, Palermo Red and White Wine Glass, £5, Dunnes Stores
It is CHUCKING down with rain in Essex at the moment. And though it’s a Friday, bad weather does definitely have an effect on my drinking plans for the evening.
Basically, it means all I want to do is curl up somewhere cosy. Preferably with a hot chocolate, topped with cream and a rather large dash of brandy in it. I don’t care that it’s July. If it’s raining and cold I do NOT feel like going out. Continue reading
So, my mum is once again battling breast cancer. After 13 years in remission (yep, just about long enough to make you believe that it has gone for, actually, ever) the horrid, HORRID thing is back. And mum is having her second round of chemotherapy. Which means she’s got a fairly miserable few months ahead of her.
Consequently, anything I can do to brighten her days I am one hundred, million per cent in favour of. And my favourite discovery so far is the Chemo Cookery Club books.
Chemo Cookery Club’s gin and tonic ice creams
We’ve just moved house. And as far an I’m concerned one of the VERY FIRST things you have to do when moving to a new town is to find yourself a lush local – or two.
So, having finally gotten the keys to our new place and lugged boxes inside for an unseemly amount of time, we admitted defeat and wandered off to find a watering hole.
We didn’t have to go far before we came across the Mariners Court (in Leigh-on-Sea, Essex.) Now, prior to buying our place we hadn’t exactly heard good things about this pub.
A 200ml bottle of fizz? That’ll do for me… (Guinness for the husband, of course)
But for a rather dusty pair of new-to-towners it was exactly what we needed. The sun was shining so the glass doors onto the Broadway were wide open, there were pretty hanging baskets, the barman was friendly and they did a 200ml bottle of fizz.
That’s right. Fizz basically by the glass (though it was in a mini bottle.) This is NOT to be sniffed at. The vast majority of pubs (and, believe me, I’ve been in a few!) only sell fizz by the (proper sized) bottle. Continue reading