FOOD/ #HullFoodie …Francesca’s

My blog makes it look like I’m forever going out to eat this massive meals doesn’t it? True, I do eat out a lot, but not (usually) for anything quite so indulgent…think I’ve solved the weight gain mystery right there! Haha.
Anyway. Mr Alice and I have wanted to try Francesca’s for a while so we popped in for an early dinner one Saturday night and combined it with a cinema trip. It turned out to be a great little date night combo.

Knowing what had been on the restaurant site before (a run down hotel with a slightly questionable looking nightclub) I wasn’t expecting it to look quite as rustic and lovely inside, the grey walled exterior doesn’t give much away. It was really chilled and the staff were pretty attentive (as we were there at 6pm there were only a handful of people in).
Starter – Salad caprese and garlic mushrooms I tried to go for the healthier option with a salad – everything tasted very fresh which is exactly what you want for Italian cuisine. Mr Alice’s mushrooms were as delicious as they looked too, obviously I had to test them to are sure it was ok for him to eat!

Mains – Taglatele con carne Again, had to check Mr Alice’s food was ok like a good wifey, and it most definitely was. For me this dish is a fusion of Italian meets Mexican, pasta meets fajita. Really different and yummy.
Chicken cacciatore Even thought this is a classic I’d never tried it, and it’s definitely a new Italian fave! (Not over pizza or anything, I’m not nuts. Haha.). I thought the combo of mash instead of a ‘firm’ potato accompaniment was unusual but it was really yummy and made the dish feel more comforting for the chilly weather.

Dessert – White chocolate semi fredo We didn’t intend to have dessert, but they sounded really good so in the interests of conducting a fully balanced review of the menu I decided that I should. It. Was. So. GOOD! And the respberry/blueberry garnish totally meant I had one of my 5 a day at least. The only critique we had was that the dessert portions were too small for £5.

Other than that we found it really good value – both of us had 3 courses and a drink and the final bill came to about £55. We definitely enjoyed ourselves and are planning to go back again soon. Even though we went as a date night I think it would be a great place to go with a group of friends or for a celeberation as there’s plenty of room for a little bit of noise not to massively facet anybody having a quiet evening.

Thanks for reading, sorry if I’ve made you  hungry!

Stay Stylish,

J 😘xx

FOOD/ #HullFoodie …The Mad Italian

You can never have too many good places to eat in a city, FACT. Some of my favourite pastimes include eating and chatting, so meals out with friends or Mr Alice feature frequently in my social calendar.

As we’re now firmly in countdown mode for Hull 2017 the #HullBloggers have decided to create a series called #HullFoodie to show off some of best places in town to eat, drink and be merry.

HannahHeather and I kicked this off in style when we were invited to sneak a peak at The Mad Italian menu before its official launch. Based on Newland avenue (one of my fave places) it fits in perfectly with a developing trend of restaurants in the same area that really commit to their food genre through the decor. When you walk in there’s a unmistakeable rustic, quirky Italian feel – lots of wood, colour washing, bare bulbs and a beautiful mural of the town where the owner grew up in old Italy.Moving on to the most important but now…the food. Yay! At the back of the restaurant is a deli-style antipasti station so you can pick exactly what you want to nibble on with a glass of vino. If you’re having a full meal, my advice would be to have this OR a starter so that you don’t feel overstuffed. As you can see in this next shot I’m speaking from experience, we had both and were very full. But, when it’s tasty AND pretty healthy that’s ok! Although we had this delicious haul as a starter it would also be a great lunch or something to pick at over a bottle of wine with the girls on a sunny bank holiday afternoon.This food is soooo insta-worthy!My main course, lobster ravioli, didn’t disappoint. Beautifully presented and garnished with yummy olives and tomatoes. There’s a lot of lobster meat in the ravioli as well as shelled bit on top so amazing value for money, and the creamy sauce was perfect with it. This dish behind is Hannah’s Pollo a la crema which was a beautiful rich sauce that I know Mr Alice would adore.Dessert. Oooooohhhhhh myyyyyy. Being the undececsive person that I am, it was super helpful that the owner put together some suggestions of dishes with (home made) ice cream accompaniments he thought we’d like. We did an ‘eat a bit and pass it left’ thing so we got to try errrrrthang…

Almond/marzipan biscuit with Madagascan vanilla ice cream (NB: the owner used to make 200 of these a day for Harrod’s back in the day). Gooey, cookie-like texture of the biscuit and really rich flavours from both.lemon sponge and chocolate mousse flan with chocolate, orange and chilli ice cream. The milk chocolate offset the darker chocolate in the ice cream, and the chilli came in as an unexpected warmness at the end.meringue, cream and profiterole tower (I can’t remember it’s actual name!) with fresh strawberry ice cream. The meringue was chewy and exactly as I like it, pairing it with something fruity (there were strawberry pieces in it too) gave it a kind of Eton mess feel which is one of all time faves.We didn’t have room for after dinner coffee or tipples this time; frankly I’m completely stuffed again just looking at the pictures! We were happy girlies when we rolled ourselves home for sure.

The final thing I’ll mention is cost. Based on the menus we saw everything is really reasonable and appropriate for the area, and portions sizes are good (great for people like me with a big appetite). Plus, there’s a set menu in the works that promises to offer the students and bargain hunters an amazing deal! You can keep up to date with menu options and opening deets on Twitter and Instagram.

And now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to find me a snack…hehe.

Stay stylish (not hungry)

J😘 xx

FASHION / That’s soooo Dolce

Happy Monday all, #Christmas is on its ways….NEXT WEEK. Eek!! One of THE most classic and timeless labels in the fashion world, all hail D&G! I was set a little challenge by my designer faves Farfetch to put together a collection of items that I feel are typical of their asthaetic. And this is what I chose! 

I put together more of an outfit than a wish list because it helps me imagine it more- my inspiration was VB rocking some off duty chic except the the drawing print top – that’s very much for me as its a little quirky against the more classic ‘keep in your wardrobe forever’ pieces)

Dolce & Gabbanna at Farfetch- Single Breasted coatDrawings Print topDistressed jeansSicily toteEmbellished heel boots

What pieces would you have picked to sum up the quintessential D&G vibe?

Stay Stylish

J 😘xx