13 April 2016

Turtle Bay Leeds

I need to start this post by saying that I love food and I know I won't be alone in saying this but it's very true.
It's actually always been a bit of a running joke in my family that I'm a bit of a big eater especially when there's a family party, I'm always the first one up when the DJ declares the buffet as open.
And by first I literally do mean first.

And as far as food goes I've never been someone who just loves one type of food, I'm good with everything really...apart from nuts, those I don't like - I'm not allergic or anything I just don't like them.
I remember back in the day when I used to go out to the pub with the now wife, way back when before we had kids, I used to buy a packet of dry roasted peanuts if I became a bit peckish but would just suck all of the flavour off and then put the nuts in the ashtray.

Yeah that's how long ago it was when I had a social life - the pubs had ashtrays inside them.

But anyway, like I said above before I started waffling on, I've never just liked one sort of food and can't say that I have a favourite meal.

I just like food in general.

But this has all changed...I now have a favourite food, and it's Caribbean style and the place that changed everything for me was the fantastic Turtle Bay.

My love affair with Turtle Bay started late on last year when I was invited to take part in the Jerk Master Class at the then unopened Huddersfield restaurant.
It was a pre-opening event and was brilliant and you can check out what I got up to in my post here.

Then a few days later I actually attended the opening night event and had even more food...it was nice but I can't tell you in too much detail what I actually ate because I spent the nigt focusing more on the rum based cocktails.
I remember strongly protesting to my wife that I wasn't drunk when I got home, but I really think I was.

But what I can tell you about, in detail, is my third - yes third - visit to Turtle Bay.
Luckily for me I was invited along to the new Turtle Bay Venue in Leeds which hadn't been open for all that long, and this time I was going to review the menu and I was definitely spoilt for choice.

This time I was a good husband and actually invited my wife along and we brought my son who is ten and is as much a foodie as I am.
Willow came with us too but at three months she had her milk and slept through our visit.

So let me dive straight in and tell you what we all ordered.

First up - drinks and every time I have been to Turtle Bay I have to order a Red Stripe, it would feel totally rude not to now.

Starters - I ordered the jerk chicken wings, my son ordered the garlic and herb flat bread and the wife ordered a pulled pork salad.

My wings were amazing and were packed with flavour and heat.
The chicken was nice and tender - I'm not the biggest fan of meat off the bone but I don't think I left a single bit of chicken on these.
And although jerk seasoning is quite hot on these wings it didn't stop me being able to eat them at all.
It was really moreish really - a little bit like an addiction, I ate it, complained it was hot and then had a drink to cool down before diving straight back into the chicken again only to repeat the scenario until my plate was clear.

I shared my son's flat bread with him due to it being quite large, and definitely very filling but
I didn't try any of my wife's pulled pork salad - she said it was quite awesome though and you can check out her views of the day from her post here.

Mains - my son ordered curried goat with rice and peas, I chose the jerk belly pork and between us we had a side of sweet potato fries, well no meal is complete without them, and my wife opted for the quarter jerk chicken from the lighter meal option section on the menu.

My son really enjoyed the goat and said it was quite spicy but not too hot that he couldn't eat it.  He loved the chunks of sweet potato it had in it and he said that the meat was nice and soft.
He was not a fan of the sweet onions though but that's because he hates onions in everything.

My little ten year old sat there, large pan of curry in front of him and he very nearly devoured the lot, and there was a great deal to be eating.
He even managed the side of dumplings which came with the main.

My belly pork was truly wonderful, although I have to say I dodn't think the portion of pork was enough but the amazing taste certainly made up for that.

The meat was slow braised for 24 hours, marinated in jerk which totally brought out all of the flavours which were jumping around in my mouth with every bite.
The crispy pork crackling, dipped in the sweet onion chutney and fresh green seasoning, added an extra dimension to the dish.
And once again the rices and peas were cooked to perfection and the 'slaw really helped to cool my mouth off from the heat of the jerk seasoning when it all got a bit too much.

Just like my jerk wings, my wife's chicken was cooked to perfection.
I can actually still picture the succulent chicken pulling away from the bone as I am writing this and it's making me want more.

The rice and peas was nicely seasoned too and they complemented the jerk chicken no end.

My wife also told me that her slaw was amazing and was seasoned just right.

And after eating all of that food, surly there was no room for pudding right?


The Baker family always orders puddings.


Well me and Charlie do, Simone normally just tastes ours and then talks to herself, moaning at how she wished she had ordered her own.

Pudding - I ordered the BBQ pineapple.


The grilled, sugared pineapple tasted as good as it sounds and it was sat in a bath of rum caramel sauce and coconut ice ice-cream.

I can only describe it as pure happiness, with each mouthful you were hit with a mixture of sublime flavours... if you do ever go to Turtle Bay this pudding is a must.

I think my son only orders one type of pudding and it has to be a chocolate brownie or a chocolate fudge cake of some sort, so this time he chose the dark chocolate brownie which was served warm with a nice scoop of vanilla ice-cream on the side.

As you can imagine he ate the lot and even asked if we would order one for him to take home.

I really hope you have emjoyed this post.

Make sure you go visit Turtle Bay yourself and let me know what you chose.


I was invited to Turtle Bay to review the menu, all photos and opinions are mine and my family's 


11 April 2016

Great Gatsby Themed Poker Night

It seems as though I'm suited and booted more than I'm actually in my casual clothes these days, which is really strange for me because I do love my casual clothes.
And recently I got myself all dressed to impress for something even more further away from my norm.

I pulled on my amazing suit from Moss Bros - which I featured in a post recently - but it fit in perfectly with the theme of the event I was attending and it certainly got me a lot of nice compliments, as did my amazing, striking black and white brogues.

So what was I getting up to I hear you ask?
Well, it was a few week ago now, but let me tell you what was going on.

Just picture the scene, I was in this dark room with dimmed, atmospheric red lighting.
Alcohol was flowing - well it was for others, I was driving so it was only juice for me - and the room was crammed with an array of finely dressed men and women - all bloggers and all dressed up to fit in perfectly with the Gatsby themed evening.
It was clear to see everyone had gone that extra mile to make sure their outfit stood out.

But we weren't just there to look good (although we all did do that very well) we had been invited along to play Texas Hold em Poker to try win some cash for the charity of our choice.

The event was put on by the people at Ladbrokes Poker and all of the poker tables used throughout the evening were supplied by Casino Hire UK.

The event was held at the Double Tree by Hilton and we were in the stunning sky lounge bar which I must say was very nice indeed.

I'd actually never played poker before this event so I didn't think there would be any chance at all that I would win but I do know I have an amazing poker face so I was hoping I could bluff my way to winning.

During the first round of the betting of the night we were treated to some lovely canap├ęs and they definitely helped take my mind of just how rubbish I was at poker.

And as it turns out I could have done with a whole load more of them to take my mind off of it because I got knocked out I'm the first round.
But all was not lost, I did learn how to play the game so all wasn't lost.

After the first games were over there was a little break and we were treated to some really mind blowing trick from Pete James who is a amazing magician - my mind is still confused with what he did and I'd love to know how he did his tricks.

The people who had all managed to win some chips went on to play again but the stakes got higher and this is where things got serious.

Luckily for the rubbish poker plays like me there were a whole host of games of Black Jack set up for us and I found this a lot easier of a game to play and it suited me perfectly - well I can count to 21 so I had fun playing.

I suggested we play a few games of Snap but that idea was shot down...but I think people were just scared I would take all of their money.

Then, after a few games of this we were all invited back over to the main poker table to watch the final remaining two players,  The Yorkshire Dad and Bryony who were going head to head, both looking quite smug with the amount of chips they had on the table.

It was all looking a bit tense and then they both decided to go totally crazy and go all in, but I think it may have been a different story if they were playing with there own money, but Bryony came out on top and then won a whopping £500 for her charity of choice.

I had such a great night, everyone involved was so friendly and I was really nice seeing some familiar
bloggers face's and also having the opportunity to meet some new ones.


All photos were taken by search labs.

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