Town, Kaimuki

One of my favourite meals I had when I was last in Hawaii was at Town, in Kaimuki.

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“Local first, organic where possible, and with aloha always” – their menu focuses on local ingredients and flavours with Italian influences.

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Six of us split everything family-style, and I’d definitely recommend going that route, cause you’ll want to try a bit of everything.

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The pate was one of my favourites, and like everything I tried at Town was simple, but crafted perfectly. You really can’t go wrong with fresh ingredients, and there is clearly a lot of thought behind each ingredient and dish.

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The chicken leg with aioli, freekeh, fennel and tatsoi was another favourite – I loved the combination of flavours and cuisines, which is quite Hawaiian in itself.

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I don’t usually have a sweet tooth, but I couldn’t resist the apple banana cream pie. I absolutely love apple bananas, and this was so creamy, but not too overpowering as I can find banoffee pie to be sometimes – it had a cleaner flavour, and was seriously incredible.

The neighbourhood is also further out from the bustling tourist area of Waikiki, so there weren’t as many tourists there which made for a really nice meal out.

Have you been to Town? Be sure to comment below, or let me know on TwitterFacebook, or Instagram!

Town, Kaimuki, 3435 Waialae Ave # 104, Honolulu, HI 96816, USA.

Town Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

A Mexican Street Feast with Jamie Oliver

I absolutely love Mexican food, and I make a mean guacamole, but other than the basics I hadn’t really experimented or tried making Mexican food myself. Which is surprising, because it’s definitely up there as one of my favourite cuisines – I tend to crave tacos a lot.

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So when I was invited along to the Jamie Oliver Cookery School in Shepherd’s Bush, I knew immediately which class I wanted to get stuck into. Based in the Jamie’s Italian at Westfield’s, the cookery school has a really wide variety of cooking classes, from Japanese to Indian, everything from gyoza to fresh pasta.

The class I was there for was the Mexican Street Food Feast – and it was one of the most enjoyable afternoons I’ve had in a long time!

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I’m a firm believer in the fact that nothing bad ever starts with a glass of prosecco handed to you at the door – I feel like that’s a pretty safe bet, right?

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Prosecco in hand, we were introduced to Gabby, our lovely instructor for the day, who talked us through the structure of the afternoon.

Jamie Oliver Mexican Street Food Cookery SchoolJamie Oliver Mexican Street Food Cookery SchoolJamie Oliver Mexican Street Food Cookery School

The thing I love about Jamie’s food is that it it’s delicious, but it’s so simple – fresh flavours that are quick and relatively easy. The afternoon had such a chilled, fun, and relaxing vibe, and even though you’re in a room with a bunch of strangers, it was a lovely setting for a date.

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So what did we make? Well… Everything, really. We made three types of salsa – roasted corn, tomato, and guacamole.

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We made our own corn tortillas, which I hadn’t done before, but were so simple and delicious to make that I’d definitely be doing again (and buying myself a tortilla press as a housewarming gift!)

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We topped our mini corn tortillas with chipotle chicken and a feta and spinach filling, and it was all unbelievably delicious and fresh tasting.

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Each class costs around £45 to attend, which I think is great value given the fact that you get a delicious meal out of it, and learn some great skills, too!

To find out more, you can check out their Facebook page, and be sure to follow them on Twitter, too!

Have you ever been to the Jamie Oliver Cookery School? Be sure to comment below, or let me know on TwitterFacebook, or Instagram!

Aman da Bravo at Frescobaldi

I love a good pop-up. After my last incredible experience at Frescobaldi’s Winemakers Dinner, I was really excited to head over there again – but this time, to try some Turkish fare.

Aman da Bravo at Frescobaldi

I fell in love with the story behind Aman da Bravo, a ‘bistronomique’ from Istanbul started by two friends – Inanc Baykar and Melis Korkud. Having established a successful catering company, the two women were offered several spaces to host a restaurant, including hotels, but nothing felt quite right. They then decided to pop a table in the kitchen of their catering business, which is in a largely residential area of Istanbul – only open for lunch, and seating only twenty, the two entrepreneurs managed to turn it into a success via word of mouth.

In Turkish, the name ‘Aman da Bravo’ is apparently play on words (‘what a great idea’) – which apparently one of them had suggested sarcastically.

Their menu is seasonal, and developed out of what is available at their local farmer’s market – and until the 17th of September, they have brought their dishes to London, at the fabulous Frescobaldi.

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I love Turkish food, but I’ve never had it like this. We were lucky enough to sample everything on the menu, and started off with spinach roots and pears, which were baked in olive oil with fennel and tangerine zest.

Aman da Bravo at FrescobaldiAman da Bravo at Frescobaldi

We also got to sample the delicious calves liver with tabbouleh – marinated in molasses with celeriac. While delicious, my absolute favourite starter (and the must-have dish of the lot) was the manti – Turkish dumplings filled with lamb, sage butter, and pine nuts. Served with a little shaved parmesan, these were almost like tortellini, and were so moreish – I could’ve done with a few plates of the stuff.

Aman da Bravo at FrescobaldiAman da Bravo at Frescobaldi

Then we were onto the mains – the standout dish for me being the octopus. It was cooked to perfection (no rubbery flesh here) – it had been poached in red wine, and was served with grilled Romaine lettuce and a sun-dried tomato salsa.

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I also adored the cauliflower, ground meat and egg dish – roasted with turmeric, it was smoky, but the runniness of the egg gave it a creaminess to the dish, too.

Just when I felt I was fit to burst, the desserts arrived. Not being one for desserts particularly, the Sütlaç (rice pudding) was not one for me, as it was rather sweet, but the curd cheese, figs and honey were a perfect way to round off the meal.

Aman da Bravo at FrescobaldiAman da Bravo at FrescobaldiAman da Bravo at Frescobaldi

An evening of lovely food, and of course, being Frescobaldi, fantastic wine – in such a lovely venue, too! It’s also got me hankering after a trip to Istanbul, to visit the actual premises, but make sure you get over to FrescoBravo before the 17th! You won’t regret it.

Have you ever tried manti? Be sure to comment below, or let me know on TwitterFacebook, or Instagram!

Summer Beauty Favourites

I think I’m pretty resigned to the fact that these beauty posts will be going live on a more quarterly basis than I had originally planned. The problem comes from doing pretty much the same makeup since I was 15. I’ve worn a uniform of black winged eyeliner almost everyday for ten years, meaning that all my selfies pretty much look the same.

Beauty

Over the past few months there have been several products I’ve been enjoying, so I thought I’d put together a little round-up of what I’ve been liking recently!

Clockwise, from left to right

Nars Blush in Orgasm.

I keep coming back to this blush – it’s just so highly pigmented, and I love the flecks of shimmer in that peachy-pink hue. It’s still a favourite, and is so summery.

W7 Prime Magic Camera Ready.

I think I bought this just before payday a couple of months ago – it’s cheap as chips, and does the job. I really like the purple hue as it counteracts any discolouration in my skin, and keeps my makeup on for so much longer.

Anastasia Beverly Hills Dipbrow in Chocolate.

I’ve had this for about a year now, and I am still raving about it. No other brow product compares to this, for me, and it lasts ages – I’ve barely scratched the surface. I wholeheartedly recommend this.

Nars Illuminator in Copacabana.

A thinner formula than other liquid highlighters I’ve tried, which makes this highlighter so great for the warm weather. I do miss the brush that comes with Benefit’s High Beam, but this just glides on, and looks pretty and subtle across your cheekbones.

SunPlay Sunscreen SPF50.

I wear factor 50 year round, and I swear by Japanese sunscreens – they’ve just got the formula down. It feels so lightweight, it doesn’t feel cloying or greasy under makeup while giving proper sun protection, and a bottle lasts for ages.

Mac Eyeshadow x9 Palette.

I fancied a palette of neutral colours that weren’t too shimmery, and this MAC palette was perfect – it’s very subtle, and barely there, but adds a bit more definition to the eyes.

BareMinerals Ready Foundation in R210.

In the summer I want to feel like I’m not wearing anything on my face, so I find myself turning more to mineral powders. BareMinerals is so long-lasting – I’m always so shocked when I find foundation on my micellar water pads at the end of the day! I also like that it’s safe to wear even in your sleep – not that I do it often!

Daiso Eyelashes from Japan.

Daiso is like the Japanese equivalent of Poundland, except all the stuff in there is actually brilliant. I always stock up on false eyelashes when I’m over there, because they are such great quality for the price! Over the past few months I’ve had a couple of eyelash extensions done (another 20 mins in bed everyday? Yes please!) but on the few weeks in between appointments I love these ones for a night out.

Medik8

Medik8 Glow Oil*.

I’ve really gotten into using serums just before I moisturise, and I’ve been really enjoying this oil from Medik8. I use it just before I go to bed, and it contains Vitamin C, Omega 3 and 6 as well as 12 essential oils, and the effect has been amazing. My skin looks brighter, and the product smells amazing, too.

MoYou London NailsMoYou London Nails

If you follow me on Instagram, you might know I kind of have a thing for nails.

New water bottle. It’s the little things 😍

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New post! @celialager at @thisissmiths #linkinbio

A photo posted by Erin Longhurst (@erinniimi) on

Caught up with my latest post? Link in bio

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After realising I had four separate boxes dedicated to polishes, jewels and tools that were purely nail-related, I caved and bought one of those metal makeup trunks.

Essie Nails

It’s chock full of my favourite polish brand, which has to be Essie. Yes, they are a little pricey, but the colours and quality are great – and you can always find some good deals on them at T.K. Maxx!

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They’ve been a great way to use my latest obsession – nail stamps. I’ve been loving the ones from MoYou – their nail stamps are so easy to use, and nail art has never been easier (or prettier)!

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I’ve been making my nail art last a little longer with my new Leighton Denny Top That gel kit, which makes any nail polish into a gel polish. It’s not quiet as good as getting shellac done, but it makes my manicures a good week longer then they usually do, which works for me!

Leighton Denny Nails

Next up – hair.

I blow-dry my hair around twice a week – it’s so thick that it takes a while to dry, and I tend to use a lot of heat on it.

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I’ve been doing a few coconut oil masks recently, around once a week, and it’s made it so much shiner and softer. I’ve been using the Vita Coco* one, which has been great – I find it a lot smoother and easier to use than other brands I’ve tried.

I also don’t usually use a whole load of other products in my hair – I’ve never dyed it, so when I got sent over a box of the Colour Excellence Hair Detox* I was intrigued.

You add a vitamin powder to a bottle of hair product, and apply it to wet hair, rinsing out after ten minutes or so, to boost colour. First off – this product smells absolutely incredible, like I’d just been to a hair salon. I found my hair a lot more manageable, and it made my hair shiny – I would definitely recommend this, even for uncoloured hair!

Hair

Hair

Last, but not least, is this lipstick from Sleek – such an underrated brand, especially for how affordable it is! I don’t usually go for a statement lip, but I couldn’t resist this Sleek True Colour Lipstick in Vamp – a really lovely shade and a great formula, if a little drying.

Hair

Have you tried any of these products? What are your favourites? Be sure to comment belowor let me know on TwitterFacebook, or Instagram!

Flat Iron, Henrietta Street

Flat Iron is one of those places that practically every meat-eating human in the London area is banging on about.

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The cheap steak offered just seemed a little too good to be true, and I’d heard about long queues to get in, so I’d put it off for a while. We finally decided to take the plunge a couple of weeks ago – and it came abundantly clear what the fuss is all about.

Flat Iron, Henrietta Street

We went to the Covent Garden location, and sure enough, there was a little bit of a queue outside. Flat Iron doesn’t take any reservations, so you do have to wait – but they have a fantastic system in place. It’s actually quite brilliant – we popped in, gave our name and number, and were told that we would get a text in the next 25 minutes, or whenever the next table became free. It was great, because instead of putting the other diners off their meal by staring at them, we pressed our noses up against the glass at Laduree, messed around with a few Apple Watches, and wandered around the Covent Garden piazza until they were ready for us.

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The decor inside is fairly minimal, but with modern accents, and was perfect for a date – especially combined with the menu, as the sides are definitely worth sharing! You get given a cup of popcorn to tide you through the menu, which is simple, but groan-inducingly good.

The steaks are unbelievably reasonable (a tenner!) and are sourced from the UK (Thirsk). We both like our steaks quite rare, and between us got a dripping cooked chips each, along with Sophie’s Salad (blue cheese, candied pecans, lemon dressing) and roast aubergine with tomato, basil and parmesan. All the sides are £3.50 at most, which is incredibly reasonable for the quality of food you get.

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Sauces come at a quid each, and I had ordered the horseradish sauce while my boyfriend had ordered Fred’s Sauce, which was pretty similar to a bloody mary.  Fred’s Sauce was absolutely delicious, and we got through three pots of it – I definitely recommend it over the horseradish cream any day.

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The steaks were cooked to perfection, and absolutely melted in your mouth – it was divine. The only regret I had was ordering a cocktail with the meal – I’d ordered a sloe & strawberry bellini, which was delicious, but really didn’t go with the food at all! I’ll be sticking with a red wine next time.

There’s no dessert menu, but if you get a main course at Flat Iron you get a free ice cream each with your receipt – you just take it up to the front as you leave. We were given a delicious salted caramel ice cream with chocolate shavings, and it was really tasty.

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All in all, I thought that Flat Iron was definitely worth all the hype – I absolutely loved it!

Have you been to Flat Iron? What did you think of it? Be sure to comment below, or  let me know on TwitterFacebook, or Instagram!

Flat Iron Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato