Fun at The Pantry…

If you’ve not been to The Pantry in Stockbridge for a while or indeed ever, you should check it out. Especially if you have a playdate to organise  – it’s only gone and got an incredible play space with toys-a-plenty.

Ah, the things that make you happy when you’re busy being mum.

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Little Miss M and I were catching up with a friend and her wee one. And, I’m not going to lie, we were all super-excited to find this new addition. It’s been well designed and thought out. The gated play area is located at the side of the main eating space. This means it gives those without babes the privacy and distance they need to enjoy their food / drinks. There’s also two tables with plenty of chairs right beside the area and enough space for two buggies.

We were coffee and caking. They have a fab selection of sweet treats at the counter so we opted for a sharey-selection of lovely macaroons and a (wow) salted caramel millionaire’s shortbread. Really flippin’ good.

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The kids had a ball in the play space and there are plenty of highchairs so, they were able to join us for post-fun refreshments.

It’s a farm shop too. And the daily menu is really appealing with things like the Breakfast Burrito and the Pulled Pork Sub. They also have ‘Toastie Tuesdays’, which basically means the kitchen has a day off and the staff serve up toasties all day.

I love toasties. And I’m lovin’ The Pantry…

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They actually run some classes too. Things like baking and pizza making classes for wee ones and cooking courses for adults. These appear to be at various locations though….

If you haven’t been lately then definitely go for food or, a coffee and cake stop. And don’t be put off by the new kid area, if you’re looking for some peace, as it’s hidden enough.

All in all, the best of both worlds.

Any more coffee catch-up / playdate recommendations?

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Christmas at the Bon Vivant

Have you been for many Christmas lunches? I haven’t enjoyed as many as usual this year (they’ve been replaced with Christmas kiddy parties) but I’ve still managed to squeeze in a few.

Most memorable has been the Bon Vivant . I had a Christmas get together with a group of old work friends the other week and, after much debate over our meeting destination, we decided to go to Bon V…again (we always end up there).

Now, this (the Thistle Street location) is actually my favourite place to hang out with friends in Edinburgh. It’s such a cool wee place with great drinks on offer and pretty amazing food. There’s just such a lovely ambience too. If you haven’t been yet or are planning a trip to the city, I highly recommend it for drinks…or food…or both!

It was a treat to sample its Christmas menu – you got three courses for £17 and each dish was a WOW. Bon V is famous for offering its starters and sweets as ‘bite’ servings, as well as normal size – ‘allowing you to pick and choose tapas style’. It’s so you can try out all of its menu if you wish. I LOVE this foody concept and Friday night’s with the girls here always involves loads of these tasty bites washed down with a perfect white and, great chat (of course).

So, it was very exciting to be served up a ‘bite’ platter for our starter – check this out. They were all sooo good but if I had to pick the pork belly was my fave.

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I had the cod for my main along with a couple of the girls and, two had the pheasant. I’d love to be able to share these dishes too but, erm…they were so good, we got carried away and forgot to capture the moment. Apols. Here are two of the amazing desserts though.

IMAG1538Chocolate Tarte with Yummy Honeycomb Stuff

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It certainly beat turkey and all the trimmings! The Picpoult de Pinet was the ideal wine match and, the catch up was lovely too. We even agreed it would become a time honored tradition – same time, same place, every year. So that’s nice isn’t it?!

Thanks to Susie for organising. And, we missed your wee face VMB!

Do you have any Christmas traditions with friends? Do you keep in touch with old work pals?