All posts filed under: travel

Dinner at The Slaughters Manor House, The Cotswolds

You may have read that in January we stayed at the stunning ‘The Slaughters Manor House’ in the Cotswolds for Tim’s birthday. While we were there, we had dinner in the hotel’s restaurant, headed up by Chef Nik Chappel, originally from Yorkshire (woohoo!) and who started out as an artist. Nik’s menus have a focus on fresh local produce epitomising the best seasonal dining, but as you’ll soon see, they’re also beautiful to look at, with some really unusual flavour combinations. We started our evening with a drink in the lounge upstairs, with one of the best barmen we’ve ever encountered – we told him we both love gin and what sort of botanicals and flavours we like, and he created bespoke cocktails for us! The drinks menu opened with “the icy tinkle chimed, ‘gin o’clock’ the room murmured.” This was my kind of place!! We were really torn between the two different tasting menus, the 6 course and 8 course. From our experience these menus don’t usually differ very much – the latter usually just …

Tim’s Birthday at The Slaughters Manor House, The Cotswolds

In January we decided to get away to The Cotswolds for a night for Tim’s birthday. Ever since we got the car last year, it has been so nice to just hop in and escape from London for a night or two at the weekends, and we thought we’d treat ourselves with a stay at The Slaughters Manor House. It was a fairly easy two hour drive from South London and the perfect wintery day – crisp blue skies with a chill in the air. And I just fell in love with the place from the moment we pulled up the driveway. It’s exactly what you’d expect from the Cotswolds, with beautiful sandstone architecture and projecting gables. The Slaughters Manor House is in Lower Slaughter, a quaint little village four miles south west of Stow-on-the-Wold, built on both banks of the River Eye, lined with picture-perfect cottages. As soon as we arrived, we went for a stroll… At the west end of the village there is a 19th-century water mill, surrounded by sheep and ducks, housing a …

Exploring Luss, Loch Lomond

You might have read my previous post about our visit to the beautiful Cameron House on Loch Lomond. During our stay, we thought we’d hire some bikes and cycle to the nearest place to the hotel, Luss. Google Maps had said it was about half an hour, but when we hired the bikes from Lomond Shores, we were told it was more like double that. Thanks Google Maps! At which point Tim asked if I could actually ride a bike! Cheeky git! And when my mum called to say ‘Happy Birthday’, she nearly choked with laughter when I told her our plans for the day. There’s a theme here…To be fair I hadn’t been on a bike since I was about 11 years old in Yorkshire when my friends and I used to practically live on them. But after nearly 20 years (blimey) I was pleased to say I could ride it, although it took some getting used to (and I had an extremely sore bum at the end of it, I clearly hadn’t got …

Lunch at Le Camerelle, Capri

You may have read my last post about exploring Capri – if not, you can check it out here. While we were there, we wanted to go somewhere nice for lunch (obviously, this is Got To Be Gourmet after all!) but we were going for a fancy (and rather expensive!) dinner that evening back in Sorrento, so we didn’t want to go too overboard. It seems to be quite tricky to find places around both Sorrento and Capri that are reasonably priced but aren’t very touristy. I’m all for basic hearty Italian food, but I want to know that it’s actually genuine. We stumbled across a restaurant called Le Camerelle in Capri old town which was just what we wanted – a lovely setting with fresh Italian pasta and seafood. We were seated outside in our own quaint little two-seater shaded booth with a gorgeous view – there were around 10 of these which lined the street – otherwise you could dine in the main restaurant. Now the Italians have a course in their meals which …

A Birthday Break at Cameron House Hotel, Loch Lomond

Tim and I wanted to go for a relaxing long weekend away for my birthday at the end of October. We’ve been abroad for lots of weddings over the summer, and we’re planning a long-haul holiday for early next year, so we wanted to go somewhere a bit closer to home. We visited Edinburgh earlier this year for our first wedding anniversary and just fell in love with it, so we thought we’d explore a bit more of Scotland, this time in Loch Lomond. The only obstacle was that we wouldn’t have a car – Tim passed his driving test just under a year ago, which meant he didn’t have a year’s worth of driving on his license to rent a car, and I still can’t drive (that’s a long story for another time!!) So we wanted to find somewhere that we could just relax for the weekend and explore the local area on foot/public transport. We weren’t expecting too much of the weather either, with it being the end of October, so somewhere with …

Fine Dining at Two Michelin-Starred Don Alfonso 1890, Sorrento

There are some restaurants you visit that you just know you’re going to remember every little detail of forever, as it really blows you away. That happened in September at Don Alfonso 1890 in Sorrento. Tim and I were in Italy for my friend Kelly’s absolutely stunning wedding, and we had a day to ourselves afterwards before heading back to Blighty. We thought we’d treat ourselves to a luxurious date night, at Don Alfonso 1890 which is around a 20 minute drive from the centre of Sorrento. It’s a family-run business for over 40 years, and upon arrival we were introduced to Livia Iaccarino, pictured bottom-right. She was wearing some very cool sparkly multi-coloured trainers under a long skirt, and was one of the most charming and polite people I’ve had the pleasure of meeting in a restaurant environment. We would soon learn that those shoes were an analogy for the whole dining experience. Don Alfonso 1890 was modern yet old-school. The decor was clean and fresh with bright tones of pinks and purples, adorned …