Harbourmaster Hotel, Aberaeron, Wales

We visited Aberaeron in South Wales on a very grey and windy Friday in August. It seemed to be impossibly bad weather for the summer season in this charming seaside town so it was a great relief to arrive at the wonderfully bright and cheery lilac Harbourmaster Hotel.

Harbourmaster Hotel, Wales

The hotel reception is found within the lively bar and restaurant area. When we arrived late in the afternoon, the bar area was already buzzing with locals and those visiting the town for the weekend. There were delicious smells circulating and I could see generous plates of fresh fish and chips and hearty burgers.

Harbourmaster Hotel, WalesHarbourmaster Hotel, Wales

There are 13 rooms to choose from at Harbourmaster, ranging in price from £145 to £265. Some have a seaview whilst others overlook the town. We were staying in the Gambia Room, a spacious and light room on the first floor. The room was decorated simply with splashes of colour. Next to the bed was a vintage-style Roberts radio and there was a large TV/DVD player for bedtime watching. It was a wonderfully peaceful place to rest our heads and I slept blissfully through the night.

Harbourmaster Hotel, WalesHarbourmaster Hotel, Wales

This spacious warehouse room had all the necessary facilities including premium tea and coffee, deluxe gowns and slippers. The bathroom (arranged for disabled access) had a large walk in shower and Molton Brown toiletries. Though simple, every detail looked new and fresh.

HarbourmasterHarbourmaster Hotel, Wales

A breakfast buffet is served downstairs in the main restaurant dining area, but we chose to have a continental breakfast in the room. A tray arrived complete with French press coffee, fresh orange juice, flaky pastries and fruit salad. It was the perfect wake up call.

I felt so cosy and content at the Harbourmaster Hotel, a lovely little place to stay in the idyllic town of Aberaeron, an area of Wales which is beautiful come rain or shine.

More information and book a room at Harbourmaster Hotel here.

Miele Dialog Oven Launch, Berlin

I was excited to be invited to the Miele ‘Revolutionary Excellence’ event, but had no idea what to expect. We were told we would be flying to Berlin for the day to experience a new culinary innovation, but all the other details were a mystery. As we all bundled on the plane at 7am, everyone was busy making friends and considering what the big Miele news could be…

Miele

30 minutes after stepping off the flight we found ourselves at a wonderful old building on the outskirts of Berlin. Once a dairy processing factory (and now a cinema), it felt like a fitting venue for a Miele event (a brand who’s first products were a cream separator and a butter churn in 1899). Champagne was offered and indulgent snacks were enjoyed, Mr Miele (the great grandson of the original owner) welcomed us all.

Before long we were following Mr Miele through a tunnel of lights to a spectacular dining room, set up with six tables and six chefs stations, each equipped with a new Miele Dialog Oven! Our chef for the day was Sophia Neuendorf, other chefs included Kevin Von Holt, Franz Schned, Tobias Wulfmeyer, Andrea Schirmaier-Huber and Hanna Massow.

Miele Dialog OvenMiele Dialog OvenMiele Dialog Oven

In simple terms, the Dialog Oven is a cross between a conventional oven and a microwave (a combination of waves and heat). Unlike any other technology created before, this new oven creates a dialogue between the food (molecules) and the oven ensuring every ingredient is cooked to perfection. The oven reacts to changes in the food which naturally occur during the cooking process. Depending on your preference the oven can be set to certain options, which is particularly helpful for meat dishes. The Miele team also illustrated how this oven can be used to quickly defrost tricky food products like a cream cake and how it can be used to cook delicate ingredients like a fillet of fish in a block of ice – the ice stays in tact but the food is cooked perfectly.

After a few brilliantly interactive demonstrations it was time to eat. We were served a variety of unique courses, each cooked in the new oven. Cod cooked in ice, coconut lime gel, fried Thai basil & Japanese mayo, cooked & uncooked salmon with a vibrant marinade & avocado and veal cooked in a beeswax casing. Each dish was elegant and exquisite, carefully showcasing the best produce with the most immaculate cooking.

Miele Dialog OvenMiele Dialog Oven

The afternoon concluded with perfectly risen (of course) raspberry souffles, an energetic dance and light performance and cocktails & coffee round an ice sculpture!

I may have already forgotten the exact technology behind the new Miele Dialog Oven, but I’ll definitely remember the staggering results of this special new cooker for a long time to come.

More information on Miele products here.

This is a sponsored post in collaboration with Miele.

Minnow, Clapham

Thanks to The Dairy restaurant The Pavement at Clapham Common is now one of the best little culinary corners of London, with the utterly brilliant Counter Culture and now Minnow. This quaint little eatery opened just a few months ago and already the locals are gleefully boasting about their new neighbourhood spot. Well I’m jealous, because Minnow ticks all the right boxes, and is just the kind of place I’d like to have a few minutes walk from my flat.

Minnow

Before even entering I was instantly enamoured by the pale sage green colour of the restaurant and the bistro style tables perched outside. Inside the restaurant has a charming and friendly feel, for more intimate dinners there is a more cosy downstairs area (I recommend asking for the table with the stain-glass window).

Minnow is owned by a foodie couple, Chris Frichot and Saba Tsegaye, who met at university and went on to work in some of London’s most successful restaurants, think Hawksmoor and Caravan. They run the front of house while experienced chef Jake Boyce takes care of the kitchen.

Minnow

A few minutes after sitting down a plate of happiness arrived at our table. Caramelised onion puree with crispy kale and nutty crumbs was addictively tasty, sweet velvety puree with a salty crispy topping. Crispy chicken skin with aioli is another snack worth ordering.

MinnowMinnow

The menu changes regularly dependent on the freshest seasonal produce. To start we enjoyed summery Rainbow tomatoes with curd & nasturtiums, a simple but fresh taste of the garden. Squid with lemongrass, lime & ginger seemed a little off topic amongst the best of British menu, but tasted nice nonetheless.

Minnow

For main course Pork loin with Arabica coffee and artichokes was a buttery decadent dish sprinkled with raspberry, which shouldn’t have worked but it did. The charred lamb rump with chickpeas & harissa yoghurt was cooked perfectly, particularly nice paired with a side dish of Roast cauliflower.

Minnow

The desserts were refreshing and unusual. Caramelised watermelon with blood orange & Campari sorbet was the ideal hot weather palate cleanser, though I preferred the Peaches with dill and almond ice-cream, a lovely combination of subtle flavours.

Minnow is a great restaurant for any occasion, any time of day, snack or slap-up feast.

More information and book a table at Minnow here.