Tag Archives: carrot cake

The Savoy – London

1 Jun

The Place

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My good wife and I were lucky enough to head to stay at the Savoy over the weekend.  There is no way I would every consider paying £500+ a night for a hotel of any description but this was free so I had no problem saying yes to it.

I have to say I don’t think it is a huge step above some of the nicer, if far more reasonably priced hotels I’ve stayed in across the UK.  The attention to detail from staff was exceptional but beyond that the room and the food in general etc was all of a very high quality but not of the standard that I would think would make me stump up that sort of cash.

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There is a cake and patisserie shop at the Savoy called Melba and we stopped in for some carrot cake.

The Carrot Cake

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I had a carrot cake cupcake on this visit.  The decoration was great with a very authentic looking marzipan carrot topper.  There was a huge amount of cream cheese icing, perhaps a bit too much if anything.  This was extremely fresh and enjoyable.  The texture of the cake was excellent, very moist and bitty, but for my pallet not spicy enough for a carrot cake.

Overall it was very good but not quite great.

The Drink

Not hot chocolate was consumed on this trip sadly.

The Rest

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Not being such a fan of carrot cake Lauren opted for a salted caramel eclair.  I’m really sorry to say that this looked and sounded that bit better than it actually tasted.  Although the texture was nice it lacked the strong flavor to back it up, which was a shame.

 

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The Next Generation

14 Aug

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My little Llew cub eating a carrot cake bar for babies. The future of the carrot cake diaries is in good hands

You, Me, Coffee and Cake Boutique

31 Mar

The Place

This little coffee shop was tucked away in a side alley just off the main area of Bath town centre.  The outside appearance looked lovely and unique. Inside there was some nice quaint decor but also it appeared a little tired.

The cafe was utterly boiling inside. I’m sad to say the staff were not the sharpest on the ball. We were left waiting at the counter for some time, which I wouldn’t mind but for the fact there was no apology and from the somewhat zoned out waitress when we eventually were acknowledged. Service was also very slow after making the order. The cafe was relatively busy but not so much to justify the wait on food, especially when the majority of what was ordered simply needed to be sliced rather than cooked.

The Hot Chocolate

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There was no hot chocolate on this occasion.  Instead I matched the cake with a flavoured latte. I’m considering changing this section to hot chocolate or lattes in future as I’m opting more and more for a coffee these days. In terms of lattes there was a wide array of syrups available. I went steady with caramel.

The Carrot Cake

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Overall this was a slight miss for me.  The frosting was overly creamy with a texture that just wasn’t firm enough. The cake itself was not spicy enough and lacked that punch of proper cinnamon and ginger coming through. On the positive it was incredibly moist which made up for some of the other short comings

The Rest

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Satay chicken, crispy beef, spicy spring rolls and beef ribs for taps starters

I was in Bath for a birthday weekend and in the evening visited Koh Thai Tapas. This was an epic experience. As authentic as any Thai food I’ve had since I was there. Generous portions and unbelievably tasty. Well worth checking out if for the ribs alone which were sensational.

Rosie’s Vintage Tea Shop – Leamington Spa

17 Dec

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The Place

Rosie’s Vintage Tea Shop is a little boutique cafe off the main street in Leamington Spa.  A welcoming little venue that made for a pleasant break after the just under 3 hour drive to get there.

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The decor is lovely, and particularly appealing to my good wife’s taste.  In fact much of the wallpapers and decorations could have come direct from our living room.  Indeed, given the shop also sells little ornaments many of them will now, sadly, be filling even more shelves in the Hathway residence.

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The staff were very attentive and interested and a credit to the place.  There were a lot of staff on the day so no delays and while I don’t know if it was or not, it did feel like a family run business.

The Hot Chocolate

This was an absolutely delicious hot chocolate.  The flavour of the drink was a strong and bitter dark chocolate which really hit the spot.  However, it was the cream that was the star of the show.  Velvety and smooth and sprinkled with tasty coco.  A top-notch hot chocolate.

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The Carrot Cake

I’ve been on a bit of a health kick in recent weeks.  I’ve given up alcohol (or at least I had for 4 months until a weekend ago) and I’ve eaten a lot healthier.  Overall I’ve lost about 16lbs and in the process I’ve eaten no carrot cakes.  I’m pleased to say then that the first one back was well worth it.  Not just an ordinary carrot cake but a triple layered caramel carrot cake.

The frosting was creamy with caramel drizzled throughout giving it an indulgent lift.  The cake itself was full of flavour and moist with excellent texture.  A real contender.

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I also liked the little touch of providing specific cake eating folks.  Delicate little utensils that stopped me from gobbling this cake in quite as speedy fashion as I otherwise would have done!

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The Rest

I was in Leamington for a uni reunion.  I went to Aberystwyth uni but we all met there as one of my former university friends who lives in Leamington organised it.  Fair play we all scrubbed up well, even if our nights out are far more timid these days.  Middle age has got the best of us I fear.

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Something in the air

3 Dec

So my good wife has taken the carrot cake appreciation to whole new levels with this air freshener!

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The best baby present

15 Sep

I haven’t blogged for a while due to the birth of my second son, Llew Rhys Hathway.  We were fortunate to have loads of lovely gifts from friends but a batch of these carrot cake cupcakes may very well have been the best!

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I will hopefully be posting a few education pieces up over the coming week to get back into the swing of things.

Norwegian Church – Cardiff Bay

15 Jul

The Place

I was down Cardiff Bay with a group of friends and our children to enjoy the International food festival.

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It was a spectacular day.  The sun was shining and it was boiling hot.  On a day like that Cardiff, and Cardiff Bay in particular, can measure itself favourably against any capital in Europe in my opinion.

The Norwegian Church is a really beautiful looking building just off the main area of the Bay.

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The setting is ideal for a cake stop.  There is an outside seating area, which is where we based ourselves.  Inside there is a nice space.  I’ve been there for a few conferences and presentations in the past and it does lend itself to that environment as well as the more relaxed setting like we enjoyed on Sunday.

Due to the food festival being on during this visit it was all a tad manic and overcrowded.  Perhaps it wouldn’t be a fair reflection of an ordinary day but I have to say as a result service was incredibly slow when we were there.

The Carrot Cake

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I bumped into a friend and former work colleague Rhuanedd who had just had the carrot cake and recommended it to me.  I couldn’t really say no after that.  Me, my good wife and the Gryffalo shared one piece between the three of us (at this stage we’d already had a fair helping of what the food festival had to offer).

It was well decorated with little icing carrots.  The thickness of the icing was impressive and it carried a lot of flavour.  The frosting inside the cake was delicious. Fresh and creamy. The cake itself was moist and full of flavour with great texture.  All round it was a really good carrot cake and certainly well worth a visit.

The Hot Chocolate

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To look at the hot chocolate I was expecting big things but sadly I was disappointed.  The cream was a bit fluffy but without any real quality. The drink was watery and lacked any proper chocolate flavour. It was a shame as it really didn’t measure up to the cake.

The Rest

As with any visit to Cardiff Bay the Gryffalo forced me to ride the carousel with him.  I have no idea why he enjoys it so much as he never goes on the horses but would rather sit on the chariot.  Dull.  Still, he clearly has the time of his life so I can’t begrudge him.

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Father’s Day Carrot Cake

16 Jun

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I didn’t have any carrot cake for Father’s Day. We were going to go for afternoon tea and have some but with it being such a lovely hot day we went for food and a long walk instead. I did however have carrot cake in the form of this home made card from the Gryffalo. Marvellous

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The boy makes me very proud. I doubt he’ll be quite as proud of me mind when he grows up and realises we seem to have made his clothes from the leftover wallpaper we had

Birthday Afternoon Tea: Pettigrew Tea-rooms – Cardiff

25 Mar

The Place

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I’ve been meaning to pop into Pettigrew Tea-rooms for a while and always comment on it when passing. Fortunately my good wife must have been paying attention as she arranged for us to go there for afternoon tea to celebrate my 31st.

The place is lovely inside with a vintage look and situated in Sophia Gardens it is an ideal location where the Gryffalo could then run around in the fresh air after we ate.

The Hot Chocolate

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One of the reasons I have avoided going for afternoon tea is that I don’t drink tea or coffee. Thankfully the staff at Pettigrew were kind enough to substitute in hot chocolate.

The drink itself was very nice although maybe could have had a tad more of a chocolate kick. The cream was delicious. Very silky and smooth and did really lift the drink from your average hot chocolate.

The Gryffalo however is far more content with a cup of tea.

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The Carrot Cake

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(My good wife was thoughtful enough to bring a birthday candle with her)

The cake was beautifully moist with a fantastic flavor. The right levels of spice with perfect frosting. Overall I can’t say enough how much I enjoyed this carrot cake. Whisper it….it may very well be the best cake I’ve had yet. Highly recommended.

The Rest

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As part of the afternoon tea we also had finger sandwiches (Ham & Mustard; Beef & Horseradish and Brie & Chutney) and two huge scones with clotted cream and a selection of jams.

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All of these were very tasty and along with the accommodating staff made the day very special. Thanks to my good wife for organising.

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Wicked Carrot Cake – Bar One WMC Cardiff

24 Mar

The Place

I have previously blogged about Bar One at the Millennium Center. I’m a big fan of the place.

The Hot Chocolate

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The last time I blogged on the hot chocolate from the WMC it was a very nice drink. On this occasion I did find it a tad bland in flavor. It wasn’t necessarily bad but just average which was a shame as usually Bar One hot chocolates are very good.

The Carrot Cake

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This was the first carrot cake I’d had for a long while so I;m pleased to be able to report that it was good. The cake itself was not quite as spicy as I like but the texture was moist.

The frosting was delicious, creamy yet firm, and really made up for any shortcomings with the flavor of the cake.

The Rest

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I was at the WMC with my good wife, equally passionate about her hot chocolates although very often far less critical than me.

We were at the center to watch Wicked, which was excellent, and we also enjoyed a caramel slice.

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I’m a big fan of Bar One’s caramel slices. This one was very good but a bit too much of a biscuit base.