Here are just a few wonderful things on our radar that we’d like to sample or immerse ourselves in this month – some are new, some are long overdue, some are just gorgeous:
1. Dinner at 21212, Paul Kitching’s lauded new restaurant in Edinburgh
We’ll wait until the Festival crowds have died down, however. Kitching, described as “on more than nodding terms with genius” by the delightfully eloquent Jay Rayner, cooked up a storm at his highly-acclaimed restaurant Juniper in Manchester. We’re expecting a playful menu: the 21212 moniker refers to the menu’s two starters, one soup, two main courses, one cheese and two puds – you can choose between two and five courses, with five courses at dinner costing £60. Dishes include baked seabass, walnuts, artichokes, apricots, lightly curried bisque, beansprouts and Tender best end of lamb with smoked flavours, dried cherries, wild rice and parsnips. We’ve dribbled a little onto our keyboard. And if you’ve over-indulged – as we’re planning to – you can retire upstairs to one of the property’s four luxuriously appointed rooms.
3 Royal Terrace, Edinburgh
Tel: 0845 22 21212
2. Helping ourselves to a bag-full of retro sweeties at Hope and Greenwood
When deadlines loom, apart from the obvious G&T to hand, we’re inclined to boost our creative juices with a sugar kick. The best spot in London to get a taste of days gone by is scrumptious, gloriously retro sweetshop Hope & Greenwood, run by Mrs Hope and Mr Greenwood. Wonderfully kitsch, it stocks everything from Sherbert Fountains and Rainbow Dust, to candy bananas (our favourites – the fake banana flavour is horribly more-ish) and Sweet Peanuts. We’re very much looking forward to their toothsome new cookery book, due out this autumn.
1 Russell Street, Covent Garden, London
Tel: +44 207 240 3314
3. A table at Skylon for the Thames Firework Festival
Food by chef Helena Puolakka and fireworks combined sounds like a good night out to us. Puolakka’s spring lamb with spiced couscous, baby vegetables, Swiss chard and lemon infused lamb jus is something that we crave when we’re in the capital – as is the Skylon burger with naughty onion rings and Bloody Mary ketchup, when a hangover has crept up on us. The Firework Festival takes place on Sunday 13th September, and we can think of no better spot to ‘ooh’ and ‘ahh’ than from behind Skylon’s floor-to-ceiling windows.
Southbank Centre, Belvedere Road, London, SE1 8XX
Tel: +44 207 654 7800
4. A month of jetting around the U S of A
Don’t tell the boss, we’re off on a, erm, sabbatical. JetBlue’s enticing autumnal offer is one of the best excuses we’ve seen to take a month off. Of the budget options available in the US, JetBlue is by far our favourite airline – sleek interiors, comfy seating, decent inflight entertainment and friendly staff, which tend to be hard-to-find on American carriers. Between 8 September and 8 October, for $599 all in, you can fly an unlimited amount of times to its 56 destinations across the States. From San Fran and LA on the West Coast, to the far north-east coast, and even down to Jamaica, St Lucia or Bogotá Colombia. And that includes all taxes and fees on domestic flights. The sale ends in just a few hours. Get your flight now. And then book a five-star hotel in every port.
5. Delicious products, courtesy of Green & Spring
If we’re completely honest, our decision to buy a product is based on two things: how it looks and whether we’ve been recommended it by a trusted friend or, indeed, a sophisticated publication like ours. As you can imagine, it’s the aesthetics of these beautiful products that first caught our eye; when we found out that they’d been developed by the company behind one of our favourite Cotswold hotels, Cowley Manor, then we knew we had to try them. Natural and handmade, the range is inspired by the British countryside and uses native herbs and plants, and even spring water sourced from the Cowley Estate. Available in three formulas – Relaxing, Indulging and Revitalising – the combination of essential oils determines how you use each product. The products are available exclusively from Liberty.