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The Mango Tree Restaurant London

About a month ago I was forced in to watching Sunday Brunch – I say forced because typically I avoid programs about food, they just make me too hungry! But on this particular episode the chef from a Thai restaurant called the Mango Tree featured and he cooked up a Thai feast.

Now I was informed that the presenters on the show eat a lot of good food and so their astounded reactions to the quality of this Thai food means it must be very good indeed. My mouth watered at the red curry that had been cooked and I spent the rest of the day with food envy – the exact reason I don’t watch programs like that!

However, how pleasantly surprised was I when a few weeks later I received an email – a booking for two at the Mango Tree! I couldn’t wait to visit and see if the food was as good as it had looked.

Located not far from Victoria station, the Mango Tree is beautifully presented and smells absolutely intoxicating. The staff were friendly and polite, showing us to our table and presenting us with the menu.

I am not a fussy eater so when presented with a menu where every single dish sounded absolutely delicious I was both in my element and at a loss as to what I actually wanted to eat! However we finally settled on a main dish each and a selection of starters to share.

Mango Tree Restaurant

Mango Tree Restaurant

Mango Tree Restaurant

To start we had the:

Mango Tree Satay (chicken, beef and mixed seafood)

Goong Hom Pa (thai style spring rolls with prawn)

Tom Yum Goong (hot and sour spicy soup)

Every dish was absolutely amazing, I cannot even tell you. The peanut sauce with the satay was the most delicious I have ever tasted; it was buttery and amazing. I could eat that every single day! The satay meat was all tender and cooked beautifully too.

Following this we had our main course, although if I have to admit we were pretty full from our starters!

Mango Tree Restaurant

Mango Tree Restaurant

For main we had:

Moo Nam Pueng (crispy pork belly)

Gaeng Phed Ped (Thai red curry with duck)

Jasmine Rice

Now the red curry was the dish that I seen on TV and immediately wanted to try – and I was not disappointed. I have tried red curries before that were spicy and slightly offensive in their heat, served with meat that was not tender. But this curry from the Mango Tree was the complete opposite. The sauce was creamy, not too hot and delicious; and the duck that was hidden within the pineapple was tender and cooked to perfection.

The pork belly was something that caught my eye when looking on the menu – and thankfully it was decided we could share that too. The outside was crispy and tasty, but the meat itself melted like butter on your tongue – I have never tasted better pork belly and wish I could eat this all the time.

I honestly have never tasted a better Thai, and this restaurant is definitely now one of my favorites generally too!

I cannot wait to come back and would definitely recommend it if you are in London looking to try a new restaurant.

 

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Maybelline Lash Sensational Review

When it comes to mascara I must admit that I’m usually an avid Bene-babe. Such a fan, I can put my hands up to often making a naughty purchase or two whenever Head Benefit Makeup Artist Lisa Potter-Coyne is on QVC.

I get completely drawn in by the offers and Lisa’s warm, fun personality as she showcases the latest makeup trends. – Can you tell I have a slight girl crush!

Not only do I love their general makeup ethos, their fabulously pretty packaging and the obvious results, make it a firm favourite in my beauty bag. In fact, I’d say 90% of my makeup is Benefit. Oops.

But when my ‘They’re Real’ ran dry on a recent trip away, panic took over as the only brands stocked in the drug store were the usual suspects, so grabbing what I could, I prayed to the beauty gods to give me a break and make it a worthy purchase.

Well my prayers must have been answered, because despite my reluctance, the Maybelline Lash Sensational mascara turned out to be quite the hidden gem.

Like most mascaras on first use it was a little wet and messy, but once I had cleaned off the excess product and given it a good wiggle along my eye line, it soon started to transform my short fluffy lashes into an array of fluttery spider legs.

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The first coat leaves much to be desired, but be patient as three coats later it gives an incredible look that could be classed as false lashes.

Like my old faithful ‘They’re Real’ is does draw similarities on removal, as it just doesn’t seem to want to come off. I would definitely recommend having some makeup remover to hand or even my personal favourite Cleanse & Polish by Liz Earle.

I never thought I would reconsider my love for Benefit, but now I’ve seen just how good the drug store brands are becoming it’s obvious that Benefit has stiff competition.

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If you want the ‘They’re Real’ effect without the premium price tag, I would definitely recommend giving the Lash Sensational a go, as unlike many brands, it does what it says.

Sensational lashes are now all mine, but for a fraction of the price.

A guest post from Lizzie @ www.lizaboo.co.uk

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Sopwell House, St Albans

A few weeks ago I was utterly spoilt and taken for a weekend break to Sopwell House in St Albans.

Located out of the hussle and bustle of the City and nearby towns, this spa and hotel is set back in beautiful grounds. As you can imagine the whole place is peaceful and quiet, just what you need when escaping for the weekend.

The original part of the building is grand and old fashioned, but the interior and additional buildings are modern and sleek. A really lovely juxtaposition that just works.

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On arrival you are greeted with non-alcoholic punch, which is a nice touch, and after a quick check in we were off to our room.

The rooms echo the general styling of the interior, with modern sleek fittings and luxury bedding. I really could have slept there forever!

Sopwell House St Albans

Sopwell House St Albans

Sopwell House St Albans

Alas with a spa just two flights of stairs down I was eager to relax and enjoy some downtime, not sleep. We each had a full body massage in the spa, the therapists were helpful and despite a mix-up with bookings they managed to accommodate us both.

Prior to your massage at Sopwell House you are offered a choice of massage oils. With options from relaxing to energising you really can be put in any mood that you want! But with an early afternoon appointment and dinner that evening I didn’t want to be left too sleepy, so opted for the energising oil which smelt amazing and seemed to have a light minty edge to it.

After our treatments we visited the spa area; equipped with loungers, a pool, jacuzzi, steam room and sauna we truly felt relaxed and de-stressed after a few hours of use!

Sopwell House Spa

That night we were booked in to the restaurant and so we returned to the room to get changed.

The food within the restaurant itself was delicious. With canapés to start and champagne sorbet between courses it was hard not to be left feeling satisfied!

Sopwell House Restaurant

Sopwell House Restaurant

Sopwell House Restaurant

Sopwell House Restaurant

After dinner we spent the rest of the evening in the cocktail bar, resulting in us being one of the last few left awake! No doubt all that relaxing made early bedtime a necessity for many.

I had such an enjoyable stay at Sopwell House and would highly recommend it to anybody looking for a UK break away. You can find more information here.