Ali’s Kitchen in da houseeee

Last weekend I was down in cork, lots going on with words by water literary festival in Kinsale and my dads book signing in Waterstones as part of the “books are my bag” day.

Digressing a bit there, sorry, back to FOOD! So as I said I would go up and help dad out at the book signing, I arranged to meet a friend for brunch beforehand who I hadn’t seen in ages so a good catch up session was required (obvs). I had a quick look online to see if anything new I hadn’t seen before and saw Ali’s Kitchen pop up as one of the “best brunch spots in cork” so that was a decision made.

We made our way over and that’s when I saw the queue waiting outside (ding ding, always a good sign). I went in and enquired about a table which was going to be about 45 mins which was fine because there was a market nearby so we strolled over that way first and headed into a few shops to pass the time. When we got back, our table was ready and I for one, soaked up the atmosphere.

They had a specials board and so we both went for items from the specials including:

Corn and Jalepeno fritters with mozarella, poached eggs, pickled veggies and harissa (€13)

French toast with a caramel pear, spiced maple mascarpone and pecan crumble (€10) As a coffee fan, I also got myself a skinny cappuccino. Lately when I’m out I got for the skinny cappuccino, my usual is the Americano with skimmed hot milk, but sure I’m fancying myself a bit more these days.

Overall, good vibes from this place, even though the place was hopping, the staff were friendly and efficient and the food was great. Definitely recommend for anyone passing through Cork, or for any locals who haven’t tried this out yet.

~EarlieGirl

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Bean and Hop

This had opened before I moved back to Ireland over 2 years ago, however I didn’t have the chance to try it before I left. However my friend had been telling me it was her new favourite place to go in Earlsfield and so when I went over for the weekend Bean and Hop was on the agenda.

So talk about living my best foodie life, we went here on Saturday morning for ‘breakfast’ which ended up being brunch with another brunch booked an hour later 😂

Unfortunately I didn’t capture photos really of these as they went straight onto my Instagram stories! However first impressions were amazing, staff were super friendly, coffee was delish and eggs with roasted tomatoes and feta were nommy!!

OH AND CHEESE ALERT, THEY HAVE HALLOUMI FRIES ON THE MENU 🤤

So obviously day 2 in Earlsfield, we had to go back for breakfast, basically I had to leave early enough to catch my lunchtime flight back to Dublin but wanted to get “some grub” before hitting the road (plus was feeling a little of the tender side from the night before)

  • Something which I LOVED, was the fact that when we sat down, the guy serving us immediately said “welcome back” – he had recognised us from the previous day, and you know what, that makes all the difference.

Anyway, coming back to the food, I opted for the breakfast Quesadilla which had your basic quesadilla ingredients along with egg and bacon, very delicious, and exactly what I was in need for to keep me going for the airport run.

Definitely would recommend this, great spot to catch up, coffee is really good and a variety on the menu, plus the staff are all lovely.

In addition they also do craft beer and pizza so what more could you want for a midweek treat. I’ve heard the pizza is good too, definitely on the to do list for my next visit.

Also just want to point out, how cute is the logo for bean and hop, a DOG! Which by the way means that this place is dog friendly too. Win win!

~EarlieGirl

Brick & Liquor

  • I was back in London for the weekend and decided to check out some of the locals of around I used to live. So on the Friday myself and a couple of friends headed down to brick and liquor in Tooting Broadway (about a 2 min walk from the tube station). There is also another B&L in Clapham!
  • Walking in, I liked the vibes of the decor.. (picture you see is not my own, but just so you can get an idea)
  • See it’s cool isn’t it? So when writing posts/ Instagram photos I don’t like posting negative therefore don’t publish things where I haven’t really enjoyed however for brick and liquor the food and drinks were top notch, but it was kind of dampened (not ruined) by what I can only imagine was a new member of waiting staff because he was god damn awful, very scatty and not the most approachable! So, if that can be rectified then all good..
  • Cocktails were unique and fun with an almost famous glitter cocktail (Wow)
  • Plenty of those consumed along with the salted caramel expresso martini
  • As there was a group of us we just decided we would get some sharing bits so we went for the arancini and a large sharing board which combined of focaccia, pork belly bites, chicken tenders, chicken skewers, ribs and some nicey nice sauces.
  • Chorizo & Mozzarella Arancini (£11) – Hand crumbed risotto croquettes stuffed with mozzarella and chorizo served with white truffle mayo
  • Spinach & Ricotta Arancini (£11) – Hand crumbed risotto croquettes stuffed with mozzarella, ricotta and spinach served with white truffle mayo
  • The sharing platter is NOT FOR VEGANS, unless you are ok with focaccia 🤣☺️😉 however they do also have a veggie platter on the menu so fear not!
  • The carnivore platter (large is £38)
  • Teriyaki steak skewers, chicken skewers, pork belly bites, bbq ribs, and roasted focaccia served with brick and liquor dips!
  • So verdict is, great cocktails, and great food which between 5 of us came to £35 per head which included the service tip (although I didn’t think tip was deserved). Cocktails are around £9 each. Will definitely go back again though, and I see there’s a brunch menu on offer so would be cool to see how that goes.
  • ~EarlieGirl
  • Pantri, Dingle

    I spent this weekend in dingle checking out the folk festival and amongst the traditional pubs, there are lots of lovely cafes, restaurants and eateries to try so as recommended by a local we went to the pantri located on Main Street for a spot of brunch

    You’d need to be looking out for it as it’s situated out the back onto which you are greeted with a small cozy cafe! Thank god people were just about to leave, as we were all starvin Marvin so Stodge was a necessity! Their menu consists of breakfast and lunch/ brunch items, a lot of choice too and variety so everyone was able to find something that tickled their fancy. Here’s what we ordered:

    Jack McCarthy Black Pudding (€9)

    Annascaul black pudding👌🏻 served with free range fried eggs and sourdough toast. This was my order and it was perfection! Just what the doctor ordered after a few too many whiskey’s the night before.

    Bacon Benny (€10)

    Smoked Gubbeen rashers, two poached free range eggs on sourdough toast and hollandaise (this order removed the hollandaise sauce and added on the annascaul black pudding 👌🏻 )

     

    Breakfast Special (€10) Spinach, tomatoes, black pudding, potatoes, poached eggs with hollandaise served with sourdough bread

    Pantri Veggie Melt (€10)

    The veggie melt was served with roasted courgette and peppers served on a sourdough bread with spicy brinjal hummus and melted cheddar cheese.

    There were a few teas, coffee’s and juices ordered along with a share of mixed berry crumble and a chocolate and pear gateaux, but as you can imagine the camera was just not quick enough to snap before they were devoured. prices match a tourist town setting but the portion sizes were good and we were all satisfactory full leaving.

    On the Sunday, we went back to the Pantri, we were going to try the Goat Street Social on Goat Street, just off main street, however breakfast stopped serving at 12pm and some of the party wanted eggs so off back down to Pantri we went, sure we knew it would be good. A combination of eggs ordered from most, however this time I went for the Pastrami Sandwich..

    Pastrami Sandwich (€12)

    Gubbeen pastrami served on a sourdough bread, with mustard mayo and pickles. This was delicious and exactly what I needed before setting off for the long trek back to Dublin.

    If you are ever taking a trip down to dingle and want to try something different for lunch and breakfast then this would be a good spot to go to, I would also say that Goat Street Social would be another to try, just unfortunate we didn’t get a chance this time round.

    Verdit: Earlie-Good

    Earlie~Girl

    x

    Fade Street Social

    You know when it’s getting to mid-week point and you are starting to “fade” well to be a bit more “social” I decided to do a mid week dinner to mark a friends belated birthday and so went to my faithful “eateries to do list in Dublin” and made an executive decision of a Fade Street Social booking.

    Something new, something different and something central.

    Fade Street Social by Dylan McGrath offers the Gastro Bar, the Restaurant and the Tapas Bar (which is a very smart move… why? because you have to go back and try the other two right?).

    My first impression was “WOW, This is MASSIVE” and rightly so, finding out afterwards it setting is in a 8,000 sq. ft. space.  This time round, we booked into The Restaurant (yes, I will be going back) and was pleasantly surprised at how busy it was for a Wednesday evening.. (I must have got the memo this week) but can’t complain because it’s always a good sign.

    No messing about, just a quick dinner .. you know yourself.. WINTER IS COMING.. it’s all about the cups of tea, pjs and hot water bottles so the order matched our hearty winter appetites of lamb, rabbit and a sirloin steak.

    Wicklow Lamb (€27)

    The Wicklow lamb came rump style and was basted in barley and thyme. Ordered a side of “spuds” (€5) (creamy mashed potatoes) to soak up the jus

    Da Rabbit (€24)

    The rabbit leg was braised with a white wine sauce served with smoked bacon tarragon and onion, this dish came with the spuds, delish!

    Wexford Sirloin (€32)

    The steak was cooked medium/rare and came with hazelnut beurre noisette and chervil .. of course what do you get with a steak, big fat chunky chips (€6) (OBVS)

    The Restaurant was full of “natter, natter, natter” which I love when dining out, it reminds me of NYC feels. At one point, I couldn’t help but nearly involve myself at another table because I spotted pizza type dishes, and they looked delicious. I wouldn’t be surprised if I was drooling on the spot, at that exact moment. (Again, I reiterate, I will be going back!)

    The staff were really friendly and came up enough times not to be annoying, the right amount of service-balance. When I made the booking I had mentioned it was for a birthday and without any hint, hint, nudge, nudge… sure didn’t they organize a little “Happy Birthday” dessert for my friend which really topped the icing on the cake, and sure he was only delighted with life, haha!

    The only thing which I noticed, and this is me being very picky now, was on our drinks order. From the time we ordered, to when we received, it was about 20-25mins (at, which point I had forgotten I had ordered a drink) so that’s the only thing, but it won’t be stopping me from going back.

    Great food, great staff, great vibes

    Verdict: Earlie-IMPRESSED

    Now, I am craving more winter foods!!!

    Earlie-Girl

    x

    Brick and Liquor

    Opening just over a year ago, Brick and Liquor is building up its following with a new venue now in Clapham as well as Tooting, the NYC inspired brick and liquor is expanding its brand and definitely pushing the “sip, chill and relax” vibe!

    Opting for a quiet one on a Monday evening, the cocktail of choice was the salted caramel expresso martini for all you sweet tooth lovers out there (£9). Flavours consisted of vanilla, salted caramel, orange, and of course the expresso, coffee liquor and vodka!

    Of course you need some nibbles to accompany the cocktails, it would be rude not too right? ….and so the humming and hawing ensued on what to get … opting for the small plates at (£6) each, the top pick dishes for the evening were or as they call them at Brick and Liquor.. Social Eats were:

    Chorizo and Mozzarella Arancini

    Pork Belly Bites

    FAVOURITE DISH: MUST HAVE!

    Rum and Coke Ribs

    Teriyaki Steak Skewers

    Overall a lovely experience for a Monday night and definitely recommended to try … the fact that it stays open until 2am at the weekends would make it a great date spot!

    Overall Verdict: Earlie-Impressed

    Details: Brick And Liquor Tooting

    Address: 82 Mitcham Road, Tooting Broadway, London, SW17 9NG

    Low lie the FIELDS of Rookery Road

    So today I made it my mission to finally go up to Clapham Common and try out fields(it wasn’t a mission only a bus ride but hey let’s be dramatic 😝) 

    Located on Rookery Road next to the skating park this little beaut was not what I expected especially from being at the sister cafe Milk! It’s totally random and if I have to admit “shoreditch” but wow everyone wanted to be here and the atmosphere was pretty down to earth and relaxed- no snobs allowed, well you’re allowed but you better behave and chill out! #justsaying  

    The front of house guy (*insert name here*) was super friendly and in my case accommodating seeing as I was a party of one. The place was hopping and everyone was putting their names on the 45 minute waiting list (always a good sign)

    The good thing was that you could order a coffee and sit on the sidelines while you are waiting, always look on the bright side lads!      

     I got myself a coffee, a flat white to be exact (£2.40) which was so good , I definitely haven’t had a good coffee like that in awhile!  

     Quickly chatting to the front of house guy he said this place has been open for just over 18months now and said at this time (springtime) when the weather is getting good is always a tricky time when it comes to staffing and table accommodation! Hence the massive queues and #waitinglistbants – he said as it comes into the summer months the staffing numbers increase and the outside area is doubled in size with tables! So enough about that lets get down to business and showcase the food!

    Eggs on Brixton sourdough (£5.50) with on the side, smoked salmon (£4.00) and smashed avo (£3.50)   

       The smashed avocado was literally the best I have ever tasted and I was informed that it was the right blend of lemon and salt which makes its a winning dish! Yummy yummy! Even got me some holy water 😝 – humour is everything!  I would 100% recommend this place the food is out of this world, the staff are really friendly and it’s just something different to try! 

    Just remember though it’s only open Friday through to Sunday (9am-5pm) and they don’t take reservations (first come first serve policy)

    ~EarlieGirl

    Muriel’s Kitchen (Soho)

    Received a whatsapp message from a friend saying “you have to put this on your eateries list, you’d love it”

    Reference: Muriel’s Kitchen

    SOLD! 

    This recommendation was based on the South Kensington location which is the closest to me and have passed it while on route to other eating sessions however I planned to meet another friend who lives more central and so we made a date for the Soho location! 

    As usual I arrived a little early which I have a habit of doing and so ordered a coffee while I waited and had a few sneaky reads of my book!   

        
     

    My friend was like, “I need a Bloody Mary or something” and so our server said “hey why not try the DIY Bloody Mary!” Hell ya that sounds cool, even a couple of ladies sitting next us had to ask what the hell is that when it arrived! Great call Muriel! 

    We both ordered the champions breakfast because after all we are champions (hehe) and I got mine with smoked salmon on the sidelines! (Extra) 

    A choice of poached or fried! I went for fried, for a change as I always get poached poached poached! 

    It was all so scrumptious and I savoured every single bite!

    Would 100% recommend! The bill came to £34 for 2 people! 

    ~EarlieGirl

    Shake It!! 

    Closest station is Tooting Bec but it’s also a nice walk up from Tooting Broadway if you are in the area! A friend told me about this new joint a couple of months back and I said I had to try it for the taste test. I’m not even much of a burger fan usually but seems to be a bit of a craving at the moment! 

    Meat and Shake

    I literally just popped in for a plain Jane burger and a strawberry milkshake (typical American diner order there for you like)  

        
     it was a nice burger but nothing really to write home about. There is a place across the road from where I live which does a nicer one so wouldn’t be making the trip especially! (Sorry) 

    I’m glad I tried it out though as it was on my eateries list to tick off! And as always my motto is you gotta try it for yourself to make your own mind up! 

    ~EarlieGirl