Leon Restaurants Manchester Piccadilly Review

Leon Restaurants Manchester Piccadilly Review: January 2018

The three musketeers, Henry Dimbleby, John Vincent and chef Allegra McEvedy, aka the founders of Leon Restaurants, have combined their wealth of knowledge and skills to take the world by storm with their fab fresh fast food philosophy and started their own foodie revolution.

In 2008 Allegra was awarded with an MBE for services to the hospitality industry.  He was described as “a caterer with a conscience” by the Independent, has over 20 years’ experience and has worked as a broadcaster appearing on Channel 4, The Good Food Channel, BBC and has published 6 cook books.

Henry’s expansive background includes being a commis chef with Michelin-starred chef Bruno Loubet, a gossip columnist for The Daily Telegraph, appears as a regular panellist on BBC R4’s Kitchen Cabinet, has written for the Telegraph, the Guardian, the Times and the Sun and worked at Bain & Company where he met John.

John did business trouble-shooting at Bain & Company, has created dance events with innocent drinks founder Richard Reed and has led the turnaround of various brands.  If it can be improved John is your man.  Leon was named after John’s Dad, inspired by his mum’s positivity and the “Sunshine that radiates from every LEON team member”

In 2013 Henry and John produced the School Food Plan, where school menus were given their biggest healthy overhaul in generations and due to their combined successes both Henry and John were awarded an MBE in 2015 for services to school food.

Henry, John and Allegra shared the same ethos “why can’t fast food be good food”.  Inspired by this 2004 saw the opening of their very first Leon restaurant in London’s Carnaby Street and has continued to see steady growth ever since with over 45 stores nationwide and plans to open more worldwide.  With cosy and comfy interiors, subdue lighting, family pictures Leon really is a home away from home, so kick back and enjoy their Mediterranean natural, flavoursome, fresh, fuss -free and fabulous cooking which can be seen throughout Leon’s food Menu.

Brilliant breakfast items included the lovely Ruby Red Porridge, which teamed up well with wholemeal toast and a fresh cup of mint tea.  The gorgeous Greek yogurt topped with blueberries, pomegranate and lashings of honey work well with the blueberry & elderflower kefir and a cheeky bar of Leon’s lovely choccy.

The brilliant breakfast box is with a sizzling sausage, bacon slice, 2 eggs, mushrooms, beans and avocado, add on some toast and wash it down with a fresh ginger tea.

The vegan box was bursting with colour and included their sensational sweet potato falafel, yummy pomegranate-studded hummus, a mix of peppers, cauliflower, salad and olives.  Packed in a sesame seed topped bun is the chargrilled butterflied chicken burger is served up with fresh tomato, rocket, pickles, and some of their scrummy olive oil herb mayonnaise. Served in a sesame seed topped bun.

All the staff on both my visits were brilliant, friendly and really cared about the customer experience!

Eat fresh, feel fab with Leon.

Thank you for reading 😊

Melanie xx




Hoogly Tea and Lykke Happiness Book Review

Hoogly Tea and Lykke Happiness Book Review: January 2018

Tina Gloggengieser, from Aarhus in Denmark, now living in Brighton, is a keen tea enthusiast and creator of the sensational Hoogly tea range.  Hoogly is the pronunciation of ‘hyggelig’.  ‘Hygge’ is all about the Danish way of life and having a feeling of well-being and warmth the whole year round.

All their teas are ethically sourced, fair traded, made and packed in the UK using a range of luxury, healthy and natural ingredients.  This sensational small wooden luxury box with 20 individual tea wraps and this amazing Hoogly branded canvas bag filled with 40 tea wraps in flavours such as; Rhubarb and Vanilla, Sparkling White, Chill Out Mint, English Breakfast, Classic Green, Cosy Chamomile, Earl Grey and Apple Strudel, is a way to gift New Year well-being to a loved one or a well-deserved treat and boost from you to you.

Now, you many have already heard about “Hygge” but what about “Lykke”.  Lykke pronounced Luu-kah is the noun for happiness.  With free higher education, trains that run on time and equal parental leave for men & women, it is not hard to see why Denmark has been voted one of the happiest nations.

The lovely Little Book of Lykke, wrote by Meik Wiking CEO of the Happiness Research Institute in Copenhagen and author of the brilliant best seller The Little Book of Hygge, believes that the key principles to happiness can be sought all around the world.  This beautifully illustrated book both entertains and provides an informative read on how we can find Lykke within our lives.

Grab a cuppa, enjoy the lovely Lykke book and sip your way to happiness.

Have a Happy 2018 and Thank you for reading 😊

Melanie xx



Mood Booster Journal Happiness Review

Mood Booster Journal Happiness Review: January 2018

Camilla Woolgar, followed her dream and inspirations to help people feel better about themselves.  The idea around the journal is, that it can be used as a tool, when anxiety, low mood, stress and low confidence strikes, to motivate and bring back a little happiness into your life.

Speaking from experience, Camilla has previously suffered from both anxiety and depression during which time she found that writing notes which recall positive memories helped her throughout.  However, in a time or turmoil, without aids or prompts, digging deep into the memory for positive memories can be an uphill struggle.  This is where the Mood Booster Journal was born and along with her graphic design skills and influence from her native Denmark Camilla created a minimalist yet creative Journal with a simplistic but functional purpose.

Relax, Reflect and refocus your energies with this motivational and inspiring mood booster journal.  Use to keep organised and document, then as a reflection tool to seek clarity about your life, goals, aspirations or simply to remember and celebrate key achievements.

There is a Happiness Diary with The Mood Booster Journal where you can record happy memories and easily recall later, if you experience a “down day”.  Using a combination of inner strength and focus allows you to use The Mood Booster Diary, as a tool of empowerment and self-love, to get your life back on track, keep your life on track, and importantly aid you to flourish and be happy from within.

Let’s live, capture and flourish.

Have a Happy 2018 and Thank you for reading 😊

Melanie xx



Hodmedods Big Vegan Box Review Veganuary 2018  

Hodmedods Big Vegan Box Review Veganuary 2018: January 2018

The award winning Hodmedods brand base in East Anglia, founded by Nick, Josiah and William in 2012, was due to partaking in the successful Great British Beans trial project.  For the purposes of the trial, a tonne of British-grown split fava beans was bought, home packed and distributed throughout the community with a postcard included for feedback.

Working with British farmers to source less well-known ingredients such as the fava beans, which date back to the Iron Age, the brand have stayed true to their historical roots which even inspired and influenced their brand name.  Hodmedod is an East Anglian dialect word which according to an old Suffolk boy hodmedod means simply something curled up like beans, peas and hedgehogs do.  Hence, the choice of logo and core products all rolled up into one synonymous name – Hodmedods.

January marks the month of Veganuary which challenges people to go vegan for one month and aims to inspire and educate people, as to why going vegan helps animals, the environment, can improve health and how to cook up a range of nutritious and tasty recipes.  The Big Vegan Hamper is ideal for Veganuary, as it includes a range of beans, peas and quinoa, sent from the lovely Hodmedod’s team.

Included in brilliant big box was one of each of the following tasty cans; Vaal Dhal, Baked British Beans and Cooked Fava Beans in Water.  Also, four fabulous 300g snack packs including Roasted Fava Beans lightly sea salted, sea salt and cider vinegar and Roasted peas lightly sea salted and horseradish.  All easy to use when life gets a bit hectic.

Brilliant bake items, all in 500g packs, included the “Black Badger” Carlin Peas, the wonderful White Quinoa, grown by Peter Fairs in Essex with their unique Yellow Pea Flour which is also included.  Beans included are the scrummy Split Fava and Whole Fava.  Finally, the “Kabuki” Marrowfat peas.

With the mouth-watering mega box, I created some super simple quick lunchies or snack choices.  The Fava Beans were used to create the most amazing hummus which made a perfectly delightful crudité dip.  Some things are meant to be kept simple and the British bakes beans when from can to plate to create the classic comfort cuisine of good old beans on toast.  The sensational quinoa along with seasoning and some red peppers served up in gem lettuce dishes, makes a tasty presentation plate which is super-duper easy to make.

Have a Happy Veganuary 2018 and Thank you for reading 😊

Melanie xx



Sweet Victory Sugar Free Hamper Review

Sweet Victory Sugar Free Hamper Review: January 2018

Founded in 2016, Sweet Victory Products is an online family company that provides sugar free products without a premium price tag.  With their own family members who are diabetic or have autism, it is through their own personal experiences of struggling to find suitable sugar free products why Sweet Victory Products was born.  Hence the brand is close to their heart and customer focus and satisfaction is firmly at the top of their priorities.

Increasingly, we hear about the alleged effects of high sugar in our diets and the impact upon our health such as diabetes, obesity and teeth erosion to name a few, so what better time to make the switch to sugar free, but without the sacrifice, as Sweet Victory Products have searched high and low for a wide range of sugar free or no added sugar products, so you can enjoy all things sweet, but without the nasties and guilt.

Make your new year free from the dreaded sugar spikes and adopt a healthier lifestyle.  Introduce yourself to a sweeter lifestyle with this sensational Sugar Free Hamper.  A sparkling pretty purple package arrived at blogging HQ packed with all things sweet, scrummy, but without the sugar guilt!

Included in the Sugar Free Hamper is a gorgeous golden box, that is a gift within a gift, filled with all things sweet, I opted for a gummy selection which included colourful strawberries, cherries, gummy bears, wine gums and cola bottles, but they also offer a selection of hard sweets too.  Also, included was a cute cube of chocolates with a colour coated shell.

More super sweet products included the super sensational Simpkins sugar and gluten free mixed fruits travel sweet tine, the sweet switch sugar-free fruit bonbons and the De Bron sugar-free fruit juice toffees.

Time for tea…yes please!  Tea time is still sweet and made easy with daytime delights such as the tasty Twinings Earl Grey 50 pack teabags, pure sweet 100% natural Erythritol sugar substitute, the brilliant B-San chocolate biscuits, that are super yummy, and I could not put down, the wonderful white chocolate bar and the Cavalier no added sugar made with stevia chocolate bar.

Everyday essentials include the Colac no added sugar tomato ketchup, the St Dalfour no added sugar strawberry Jam made with 100% fruit and the Diablo no added sugar hazelnut chocolate spread.

The hamper was amazing, and I did not feel that I was missing out in fact I preferred these products to comparable products packed with sugar.  Hop on over to their website and see what changes you can make to your daily diet, but without having to make a sweet sacrifice.

Thank you for reading 😊

Melanie xx



Nutri-Bombz Light Product Review

Nutri-Bombz Light Product Review: January 2018

Big balls of Brilliance – aka the Nutri-Bombz brand was founded by the current Director.  His own personal journey of exploration, identified a gap in the market, highlighting the difficulty of finding true healthy snacks that delivered in terms of quality, texture, flavour and nutritional content.

These lovely little light Nutri-Bombz superfoods snacks provide a boost to your daily routine and are an ideal pre-work out hit.  Included in the light selection are classic flavour combinations such as coconut, salted caramel, mint choccy and choccy orange to make your healthy snacking super lip-smacking!

Have a Happy 2018 and Thank you for reading 😊

Melanie xx



Hamper.com Fruit Detox Hamper Review

Hamper.com Fruit Detox Hamper Review: December 2017

Established in Oxfordshire in 1979, the privately-owned Clearwater Hampers gift company, has seen continued growth, with the e-commerce branch of the brand, Hamper.com going live in 1996.  Impressively they have been sending hampers and gifts worldwide for over 35 years! Customer focus is at the heart of the brand, their modern office and warehouse, with state of the art refrigeration units, secure racking and with each hamper being carefully hand packed ensures that the customer receives a perfect presentation and at blogging HQ I received just that with the lovely fruit detox hamper.

Christmas is about food and drink indulgence, but you can still strike a healthy balance.  Gifting a fruit detox hamper is a wonderful way to give the balance, but with a boost of brilliance and an abundance of vitamins.  This luxury hamper comes with a fabulous fresh fruity selection including, mango, avocado, passion fruit, citrus fruits and a lovely lush refreshing raspberry lemonade.  All perfectly presented in this wonderful wooden gorgeous gift basket that makes a lovely addition to any home.

Continue reading