Quintessentially Flowers*

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Quintessentially is one of those brands which is basically a genie. No matter how extravagant your wish, they can grant it, so, when a holiday like Valentines comes up, you can imagine how beautiful their flowers are!

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Packaged in the chicest of silver grey gift bags, Quintessentially Flowers can be delivered anywhere in the UK from their London headquarters, and despite being sent to me up in Edinburgh, mine arrived perfectly fresh and fragrant. They were the perfect way to brighten up a dull Friday!

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A mix of some of my favourite blooms; roses and hydrangeas, along with a selection of other little beauties were arranged into a huge pom pom of flowers.It was such a fun and unusual way to see to display flowers, and once I got home, I popped them straight into a large crystal fishbowl vase which I’ve just been dying to use!

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The bouquet is absolutely perfect for a Valentines treat! It makes me smile every time I look at them, and they’ve easy lasted five days since delivery, and they’re still going strong!

Thank you so much to Quintessentially Flowers. Bouquets start at £60.00 and are available here

Charbonnel et Walker Fine Milk & Dark Chocolate Red Heart*

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A box of chocolate for Valentine’s Day is something of a no-brainer, but I think it’s safe to say that Charbonnel et Walker have completely blown  typical chocolates out of the window with their stunning new Fine Milk & Dark Chocolate Heart which has been released just in time for Valentines.

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Coming wrapped in a beautiful ivory satin ribbon, the box of chocolates is an absolute treat to unwrap, and it has to be the prettiest choice I’ve come across!

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Underneath the mounds of ribbon is the most glorious of illustrations by Queen’s Scholar Kerry Lemon. Her specially-commissioned peacock sweeps over the top of the box, referencing Victorian courting traditions, whilst it’s little crown is a subtle reference to Charbonnel’s Royal Warrant.

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Like all good boxes of chocolates, tucked inside the lid is a little menu of the goodies inside. Charbonnel’s is a stunning gold and ivory confection which is the loveliest way to ponder over which chocolates to select!

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Inside is every chocolate lover’s dream! Tucked snugly into little compartments is a rather decadent selection of the brand’s truffles.

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There are flavours to suit everyone – from gloriously rich and boozy to light and fruity, one of the truffles is the perfect accompaniment to a cup of coffee, or a sweet way to end a meal.

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Inside there’s a great balance of milk and dark chocolate,and getting to select them from such a stunning box is such a wonderful way to celebrate Valentines Day!

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The special edition peacock-adorned boxes are available in a selection of Charbonnel et Walker’s chocolates, so if you would prefer to feast only on Champagne or Salted Caramel truffles, they’ve got you covered!

Charbonnel et Walker’s Peacock Fine Milk and Dark Red Heart is priced at £30 and is available here

 

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Byron Edinburgh North Bridge*

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Byron is one of those restaurants that everyone seems to rave about – a true American style joint that produces a quick and hearty meal that you’ll be dreaming about for days to come. So, when an email popped into my inbox inviting me to grab a friend and head over to their newest location on Edinburgh’s North Bridge, I couldn’t wait!

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Ducking out of Storm Henry’s wind and rain, we were greeted by the loveliest of hostesses  who, even though we were rather early for our reservation, sat us down and explained all about Byron, their hamburgers and the new location.

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Situated in what used to be a bank, and before that a school stationers, the North Bridge Byron is an absolute stunner of a restaurant. Bare bricks, leather banquet seating and filament bulbs all work together to give the restaurant a feel of cozy comfort.

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The dining areas are split over two levels, encompassing a bar and exposed kitchen, meaning that even when the restaurant is packed, which will, most likely, be every night, it will never feel too cramped or crowded.

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As we pondered over which of Byron’s ‘proper’ hamburgers to try, we ordered some drinks and enjoyed our surroundings. Since I wasn’t driving home, I opted for one of the rather tempting sounding ‘Hard Shakes.’ It’s a genius idea – you choose your ice-cream flavour from a choice of oreo, vanilla, chocolate or strawberry then add a shot of bourbon, spiced rum or Bailey’s.

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Served in a frosty shaker, I opted for chocolate with a shot of spiced rum. The liquor comes on the side, so you can control how boozy you want the shake to be.

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Since it had been a rather blustery Monday, I popped the whole shot in. Then, we got on with ordering our meals. To be honest, every single one of the options sounded delicious, but since there were two of us, we thought we should go half and half.

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We opted to split the signature Byron Burger as well as the Smoky. Both burgers come with a generous wedge of pickle, and for sides we pulped for our mutual favourites – onion rings and french fries.

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After ordering, we were served surprisingly quickly. With all food coming out of the open kitchen, the food is the definition of fast and fresh. Every morning the restaurant receives all their burgers freshly made, and the beef is responsibly sourced and British. to make the most of the quality ingredients, the burgers come cooked to pink and juicy perfection.

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With a wide choice of cheeses, extra toppings and side dishes, I’m pretty much sure you can’t go wrong with Byron. Both of our burgers were sheer perfection – from the soft, sweet bun, to the fresh vegetables and juicy patties, we couldn’t get enough of them. They tasted like the best American burger you could imagine. The Byron was a perfect classic choice, with a hit of the restaurant’s signature sauce, whilst the Smoky was a heavenly mix of salty bacon, melted cheese and BBQ sauce.

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The sides were as heavenly as the burgers – the onion rings were seasoned to perfection, crisp and flavourful. They were also huge. The french fries were hot and crisp and incredibly moreish. We just about finished everything, as the portions were huge. We absolutely loved everything though, and we’re already planning a return trip!

Thank you so much Byron North Bridge Edinburgh for inviting us for such a delicious supper!

Winter Feasts at Harvey Nichols

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I always feel like January can be a bit of a flat month. Everyone is in full-on resolutions mode, so it can feel tricky to treat yourself. Harvey Nichols is making it all-too-easy though, with their new Winter Feasts menu. From now until February 11th, you can enjoy a three course meal, plus cocktail for just £20 in their gorgeous Brasserie.

Harvey Nichols Forth Floor has to have one of the best views in Edinburgh, so getting to enjoy a rather delightful menu accompanied with some impressive vistas sounds like my idea of a rather pleasant evening! Highlights from the menu include Treacle cured salmon, pickled fennel, lemon grass and beetroot salad, orange and anise dressing, Borders chicken breast spiced with paprika and rosemary, wild mushrooms, kale, green beans and pancetta and Rhubarb and custard crumble sundae, but all the options sound absolutely delicious!

Charbonnel et Walker Christmas Baubles*

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If you can’t indulge over Christmas, real when can you? I love an unexpected treat, and when these Charbonnel et Walker beauties were delivered I absolutely fell in love!

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Considering Charbonnel et Walker have to be my favourite chocolatier, and I’ve loved their Pink Marc de Champagne truffles for years, the pink bauble was a seriously welcome addition to the Christmas tree! Containing eight of the delicious little treats, I think it’s the most adorable little stocking stuffer. If you’ve never tried the truffles, you really must! The smooth outer shell of the truffles is a delicate pink shade, holding a creamy ganache centre. The truffles have a surprisingly punchy champagne scent, which give them a wonderfully grownup flavour.

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My new discovery is the bauble containing Milk Sea Salt Caramel Truffles. The blue bauble is just as beautiful as it’s pink cousin, the the chocolates inside are really incredible. The exterior of the truffles is a crisp milk chocolate shell, which melts into the gooey salted caramel centre. In a word, it’s heavenly. The centre’s saltiness is perfectly balanced with the creamy sweetness of the chocolate, and they are far too easy to sit and enjoy!

Charbonnel et Walker’s Chocolate Truffle Baubles are priced at £12.00 each and are available here

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