Box Park Croydon + MEATLiquor

Who’s got those midweek blues?

I know I do. I had an amazing weekend and I’m looking forward to this one coming. Not that I did anything spectacular, but it was super chilled – I actually had a well overdue lie in on Saturday – and even ventured out to my hometown, Croydon.

Whenever I mention Croydon to people, they’re never really sure what it has to offer, except the very drab, Whitgift centre *yawn*

Very recently though, it is undergoing a facelift and last week opened its very Box Park.

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Now this is a BIG thing, almost revolutionary for drab ole Croydon. If you didn’t know, the only other place in London to have a Box Park is Shoreditch.

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I really didn’t know what to expect and I may be a little biased, but it is 100x better than the original Box Park. There’s way more eateries, cool coffee places, my favourite donut place called DUMDUM’s and a huge seating area for everyone to come and eat drink and chat together – overall it just seems like a great chill spot… and it’s right on my doorstep.

During my visit with my dad and sister, we decided to grab a bite to eat. We wanted to explore somewhere new and came across MEATliquor and as it was brimming with people, it was an immediate yes.

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With a 30 minute waiting time to be seated, we headed to the bar and ordered some cocktails.

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I didn’t know much about the restaurant but I must admit, their cocktails were really good, for just a burger joint. They had a good variety to choose from, but what I didn’t like is that they were all named with a dark twist  – how does Fallen Angelita sound to you 😖 lol #notfeelingit

And after looking around it all made sense. To me the restaurant decor was meant to resemble something between purgatory and a butchers. There were skulls and bones painted on the walls, red spotlights and those plastic hanging flaps to replace doors (have no idea what they’re called). So, if you’re not into this kinda thing, it’s defo not for you (and I don’t blame ya).

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30 minutes seemed to whizz by because before we knew it we were seated and our food was in front of us. Served on a big yet organised platter it was time to chow down!

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As you can see we actually went in with the food and while it wasn’t the most succulent burger, we chose a mixture of what they had to offer.

The mixtures of flavours and foods was a great twist on popular greasy American food with a soul food flavourful spin.

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I went for a bacon cheese burger, hippie chips (sautéed onions and melted cheesy sauce on chips) and Onion rings. We also had another side of chips with blue cheese 😷, deep fried mac and cheese (the treadmill is calling me lol).

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To be honest the food did hit the spot, but I wouldn’t say its the best there is to offer.

It was genuinely a nice day out with the family, but I personally wouldn’t go back to MEATliquor as it’s just not my scene. I will, however, be going back to Box Park this Friday!

Have you tried MEATliquor? What’s your verdict?

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Sunday Brunching: Côte Brasserie

This weekend my sister celebrated her 16th birthday (I’m actually getting old 😖 😫). After a busy week for both of us – with her going to her leavers prom and me getting wasted on Friday after a LONG week at work, we decided to be ladies who brunch.

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I’ve always headed to Battersea Rise when I’m on the lookout for cool eateries, no matter if i’m feeling in the mood for American style pancakes, a tasty fry up or want to try something new, I know it’s a foodies safe – haven.

This time we decided on brunch at Côte Brasserie, a cute understated restaurant situated on the corner of Webbs Road.

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Inspired by the brasseries of Paris, Côte Brasserie offers all-day dining, serving authentic French classics as well as British faves made from great quality and fresh ingredients.

With an empty stomach and breakfast on our minds, we arrived just before last orders were taken – 1pm on weekends and 12pm on weekdays.

The interior was very minimalistic and sophisticated, complemented by rich burgundy and grey hues for a light yet moody atmosphere, perfect if you want to escape the outside world for a few hours, and if you’ve got a tender headache and need a calm atmosphere to co-operate lol.

The staff were all very friendly and accommodating, so we got the drinks in…tea! Am I the only one to think that tea always tastes better in a tea pot? I can just never get it right at home.

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The breakfast menu had quite a small selection but covered all the bases, but after scanning the menu I ended up getting an Full English Breakfast – very adventurous, I know – but after such a busy weekend I just needed ALL the food!

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What I loved is that I got to pick what type of eggs I wanted, normally cafes give you the choice between fried and scrambled, but this time I went for poached…ooh lala! My order also came with the option to choose what bread I wanted to be toasted.

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My sister ended up going for the more brunchy and picturesque option of Eggs Royale -which looked amazing. After about a 20 minute wait, our food was served.

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The portions were just right, but, of course we couldn’t go to a brasserie without trying something even remotely french, so we ordered a pain au chocolate and a croissant which were served warm, making them melt in the mouth. No one likes a hard pastry.

Côte Brasserie was the ideal choice for Sunday brunch, especially if you don’t feel like queuing up for The Breakfast Club, which is a more popular choice a few doors away but had a waiting time of 2 hours 😐.

The staff’s attention to detail and overall customer care was 💯 , and the food was not only delicious but also very affordable with our bill coming in at under £30, they also offer a gluten free menu, great if you want to brunch with friends who have different eating requirements.

For me this restaurant was definitely one of the best I’ve been to for breakfast/brunch and an overall great experience, so I would rate it a solid 9/10!

Looking for somewhere to brunch? Try Côte Brasserie.

N.B. – To avoid disappointment, I would advise to book a table in advance as it got quite busy, while we were eating.

See you on my next post x

16

Tarte Amazonian Butter Lipstick Review

I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but I’ve been obsessed with lip products lately, just check out some of my latest posts.

To be totally honest with you all, being this obsessed with tracking down the ‘right’ colour is a blessing and a curse – a blessing because I’m trying so many new lip products, many good, many terrible and a curse because purse is looking hunger!

I’ve been on the hunt… and I really do mean HUNT for the perfect nude/pink lipsticks ideal for women of colour. I have had so many lipstick fails over the months – I have to say I am so done with matte lippies for the minute! And after failing to bag a Kylie Lip Kit again I thought it was time to give up on that dream and try something different!

After writing my High End Beauty Wishlist, I continued with my research into different brands and I was re-introduced to Tarte.

I initially heard of Tarte when I worked at QVC, but never really gave the brand anytime, but, after seeing a few bloggers talk about their Tarte products and them wanting to try their glorious new range, I peeped their dreamy new collection, Rainforest of the Sea, I decided to take the plunge and go after some of their lip ‘saviours’.

I really didn’t know what kind of products to pick, as I was buying online – it’s so difficult to find shades that are true to their real life appearance… but I confidently went for their High Performance Naturals – a quad set of Amazonian Lip Butters.

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So you may be wondering why I did this to myself… AGAIN but the description for these lipsticks were on point, here’s what it said:

“Inspired by the whimsical colors of the Amazon and infused with naturally-derived ingredients from its lush vegetation, these Amazonian butter lipsticks add a splash of rich color and creamy shine for a perfect pout.”

…I mean how could I not?!

Plus, all of their products are made without: Parabens, mineral oil, Phthalates, Triclosan, Sodium Lauryl Sulphate and Gluten and dermatologist tested!

But, what really drew me to this set was the names of the lipsticks, they’re named after exotic gemstones; Garenet, Ruby, Quartz and Topaz… I was sold and if you’re wondering why, I work in the jewellery industry and I love each of the gems for different reasons.

When I received my goodies (insert Ciara song) the packaging was lovely, so golden and shimmery and when I opened the small box package it was like looking into a garden (without sounding too cheesy).

The packaging of each lipstick is made out of cardboard, deepening the meaning of the lipsticks Amazonian blend, and each of the packaging is adorned with a pretty floral/filigree design.

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I jumped right in and swatched every colour and I was really happy with how they looked against my skin, although, I have to admit my fave is Garnet, it’s the perfect pink nude with just enough sheen.

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Colours in order: Garnet, Topaz, Quartz and Ruby

Each lipstick is true to the title – holding a very buttery blend that glides onto your lip and really moistrises. They  also don’t really have a strong scent but they do have a vague refreshing minty smell, which is not overpowering or off putting, but a nice addition since it’s these lipsticks have taken out ‘bad’ ingredients and instead used natural ones.

You might have noticed that these lipsticks are not bolds but exactly as their name hints -Natural. They give a lovely sheer colour to your lip without being too ‘in your face’. These lipsticks also have great staying power and I can go all day without having to re-apply! It’s all you ever really want in a lipstick to be fair!

For £26 this set of 4 lipsticks has been a steal! Especially when I think of Mac selling one lippie for £15! They are perfectly coloured for darker girls who want to try a nude or a pink, and they are perfectly sized as I will probably use the colours before I get bored of the shades.

I have been wearing the Garnet shade non stop this week as I feel it is the standout shade in the collection, however, the amazing quality of these lipsticks have made me excited to try out some more.

With that being said will you be trying this spring forward quad? Have you tried any Tarte cosmetics, how did you find them? If you want to see what these lippies actually look like on my lips head over to my Instagram for some cheeky snaps!

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See you on my next post x