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Today started with a BODYBALANCE class followed by a BODYPUMP class – I was clearly feeling energetic and am now most definitely paying for it! When we got back from BODYPUMP I made us both a brunch – smashed avocado, bacon and poached eggs on bagels for him, and yoghurt fruit and paleo granola for me – what I wanted at the time when I started making it but by the time I’d finished cooking, I was definitely the jealous one!
After brunch we decided to head into Soho to see what Gay Pride was all about. I’ve never been and I’m not sure what I expected but I definitely didn’t expect it to be as huge as it was. I thought a couple of streets in Soho would be closed to cars and have street parties, but I didn’t realise the whole of central London would be shut off to cars to make way for a parade and a huge concert that took over the whole of Trafalgar Square!
The sun was shining so we wandered around for a bit and the atmosphere was great, really buzzy and everyone having a great time. There were some fantastic outfits and the small amount of rain that hit later in the afternoon, definitely wasn’t dampening anyone’s spirits!
I loved the little touches, like changing the pedestrian crossing signs for the little green man to images like these…
As it got later we decided to head towards Marylebone for dinner as tonight was Dan’s Date Night. Every other month we take it in turns to take each other out on a date night and this month was my turn to take him out. He wanted to got to the Tapa Room at The Providores in Marylebone High Street, which is actually the restaurant he took me to for our second date a couple of years ago!
It’s one of those restaurants where you can’t book, but luckily it wasn’t that busy and we walked straight in and got a table. We ordered a couple of cocktails to start while we looked at the menu. There were quite a few dishes that I could eat (or make edible by leaving the bread/potatoes etc) so we had lots of options to choose from.
His and hers cocktails
They had a special deal on the menu, for June, which was their Antipasti Plate with two glasses of Fino Sherry for £15 so we decided to share that to start with. It came with grilled chorizo, guindilla chillies, marinated olives, grilled artichoke, babaganoush, fig-orange preserves and Après Soleil cheese. Everything was delicious, I loved the babaganoush, but this and out was the chorizo – it tasted amazing and had that delicious chargrilled smoky touch too.
We ordered a bottle of red to have with our main course and went for the 2013 Craggy Range, Te Kahu, Gimblett Gravels, Hawke’s Bay which sounded interesting as it was a blend of Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon and Malbec. It was a bold and spicy wine with lots of dark fruit flavours and a bit of cherry and vanilla – perfect to match up to the punchy food that we ordered.
For the mains we had decided to share three dishes, well, 2 to share and one mostly for Dan, as he was desperate to try the Lamb Shoulder Spring Rolls with lime yoghurt and pomegranate which I couldn’t eat, but I did have a taste of the lamb shoulder filling which was delicious, slow-cooked and flavoured with Indian Spices it was really really good and Dan enjoyed every bite.
Next up was the Turkish eggs – two poached eggs, whipped yoghurt, hot chilli butter and sourdough or seeded granary toast. This was amazing and so rich, yet light and fresh at the same time. The chilli butter was so flavourful and the whipped yoghurt cooled everything down. The creativity of the flavours blew me away, definitely not something I would ever have come up with myself.
Lastly we had the Beef Pesto – marinated beef fillet with warm chard, courgette and beetroot salad, garlic dressing, pesto and kalamata olives. I’m not sure where they got their beef fillet from or how they marinated it but I can honestly say it was the tastiest beef I’ve ever eaten and cooked absolutely perfectly. And serving it with pesto is very new-to-me, but it definitely worked. It was the stand-out dish of the evening by far.
Too full for dessert, we decided to head round the corner to PURL cocktail bar for a nightcap – a Negroni for me, and an Old Fashioned for Dan. I love this bar, it’s all underground in arches under the street and it’s dimly lit and very romantic but also quirky. The cocktails that they serve (if you don’t go for the standard ones like we did) usually come with a twist, we saw people being served marshmallows with their cocktail, which was then set fire too and they were encouraged to cook the marshmallows on it, or cocktails served with lollipops etc so it’s a really fun place to go to if you want to try something different and inventive and a lovely way to round off our evening.