Wednesday, 26 November 2014

CHRISTMAS GIFT GUIDE 2014: YOU Loves:


We love this super cute 'best friend ever' bangle from Kate Spade New York.

Hand-crafted from shiny 12k gold and inscribed with the idiom:  "birds of a feather, two of a kind, perfect pair, partners in crime, peas in a pod, sidekicks." It's truly the sweetest gift to give your besty this Christmas.

Struggling with gift ideas for your MumDadBrother or Sister? Don't fret, we've got it covered. Follow us on instagram or twitter (we're @YOUMAGSOCIAL) to be the first to know when our daily gift posts go live.

Sarah-Rose Harrison

Tuesday, 25 November 2014

Christmas Gift Guide 2014: Gifts for Globe Trotters


Struggling with what to get the jet-setting globe trotter in your life?

Look no further. Our edit of the best presents for travellers will ensure your loved one has a smile on their face on Christmas day, wherever they are!

1, Sign Post Scarf, £105, Kate Spade New York, 2,Bus Blind Cushion, £45, Bouf.com, 3, Oak Leather Holdall, £1,150, Mulberry, 4GoPro Hero 3 Full HD Camera, £189, Argos.co.uk, 5Mini London Printed Purse, £14, Cath Kidston, 6, Vintage World Map Jounal, £20, Notonthehighstreet.com, 7, Surf Travel Set, £18, Bumble & Bumble at Boots, 8Brighton Map, £45, Notonthehighstreet.com, 9Manicure Set, £14.95, Happy Jackson at John Lewis, 10Textured Leather Travel Set, £185, Smythson - exclusive to Net-a-Porter, 11, Lucas' Paw Paw Ointment, £19.90, at PawPawShop.co.uk, 12, Luggage Scale, £50, Tumi, 13Caribou Leather and Rubber Boots, £240, Sorel, 14Set of two travel guides: The New York Times 36 Hours In Latin America & The Caribbean and Asia & Oceania, £40, Taschen at Net-a-Porter, 15, Scratch Globe, £24.95, Stanfords.co.uk, 16, Classic Oxford Watch, £129, Daniel Wellington.

Sarah-Rose Harrison


Thursday, 20 November 2014

The Gü Masterclass

Team YOU have been known to enjoy their puddings. So we practically skipped down to the Gü kitchens after being invited to a pudding masterclass with Gü Head Chef Fred Ponnavoy, to check out the new addition to their incredibly successful dessert line; the Maple & Pecan Pie.

After a tour of Gü HQ (there are some very exciting things coming your way this Christmas, all is revealed below) and the command centre i.e. kitchen, we got to work – in a very flattering, exceedingly sexy Gü labcoat no less.

We started by mixing together butter, Demerara sugar, chopped pecans and a caramelised biscuit crumb and popping it into ramekins before flattening down the layer.




We then furiously beat a bowl of cream cheese until it had lost its stiffness and was rather more liquid. Fred says that this is the key to a good baked cheesecake, as it breaks down the bonds in the proteins for a much smoother finish. To this we added whipping cream, maple syrup, a pinch of salt and a jot of single-malt whisky, and once Fred had convinced me not to guzzle that down as it was, we poured the mixture into each ramekin using the rather handy piston funnel gadget (watch in action above!). After a quick sprinkling of base mix on the tops, we baked our cheesecakes. Then all we had to do was contain ourselves during the agonising wait for our puds to cool.


Adding the finishing touches to our fresh Maple & Pecan Pies


Creamy and sweet enough to satisfy without being sickly, with a delicious crunchy base and a subtle depth to the cheesecake base, this creations is sure to be another winner.

Fresh from the oven


As for Gü’s Christmas creations, you’ll have a chance to discover them this weekend. This year Fred has been secretly crafting a Limited Edition Luxury Bauble collection, consisting of six hand-crafted chocolate baubles – each with delicious melt-in-your-mouth chocolate of a different flavour hidden within. Not only are these beautiful baubles using the finest ingredients but Fred’s flavour combinations are utterly gorgeous. There are two dark 70% cocoa Tanzanian chocolate baubles filled with dark chocolate and raspberry ganaches, two green white chocolate baubles filled with lime and ginger pâte de fruit alongside almond paste chocolates, and two red caramelised blonde chocolate baubles with crushed lemon and bergamot ganaches inside. 


The Limited Edition Gu Luxury Bauble Collection


To get your hands on these Christmas delights (as well as seeing Gü Head Chef Fred in action and trying a masterclass for yourself), you can head down to Taste of London Winter at East London’s Tobacco Dock this Friday, Saturday and Sunday and visit the Gü Garden of Temptation, where the Gü Tree will be sitting pride of place – weighed down with seasonal indulgences.

Maple & Pecan Pie available nationwide in supermarkets.
gupuds.com
@Gu_Puds
@gubyfred

Taste of London Winter tickets from £19, www.london.tastefestivals.com/
Gü Luxury Bauble Collection, £85 including P&P, www.gupuds.com/christmas/

Alice Robertson

Tuesday, 18 November 2014

Christmas Gift Guide 2014: Ideas for Mum's:


Having trouble finding the perfect Christmas gift for your Mum? Don't fret, we've got it covered. 

Let our edit of the best gifts help you find the perfect present for the special lady in your life!




Sarah-Rose Harrison

The Oitavos Hotel, Lisbon

The view from my balcony over the golf course and coast
Lisbon often gets overlooked when it comes to mini break destinations but we hold a soft spot in our hearts for the Portuguese capital where you can city and beach hop in a day, experience a hefty dose of history and some of the best seafood in Europe.

So it was with glee that we set off for a weekend sojourn at the family owned five star Oitavos Hotel on Portugal’s Atlantic Coast, about twenty minutes outside of the capital. You’ll spot the Oitavos long before you arrive such is its imposingly modern, sleek blue structure set within the Sintra-Caiscais National Park and right on the Atlantic coast. The Oitavos’ 142 guest rooms each have an ocean view and the hotel offers the world’s 65th best golf course.


The Oitavos' exterior deck at sunset 

Aromatherapy Associates goodies

To Stay
The hotel was designed by Portuguese architect Jose Amaral Anahory and his uncompromisingly modern, open plan structure sees all of the hotel’s fixtures and fittings on wheels, so they can be reconfigured at a moment’s notice. The calming blue hues work particularly well in the (huge) bedrooms where our highlights were the breath-taking view, the dreamy pillows (if we hadn’t had Easyjet’s luggage restrictions to contend with we’d have bought some to take home) and our favourite Aromatherapy Associates products.



To Eat
Amazing Pastel de Nata
The Hotel’s Ipsylon restaurant offers a huge range of seafood, sushi, French and Italian dishes and (somewhat unusually) each cuisine is done very very well – we recommend the prawn salad starter, fish rice (a huge, unctuous Paella style dish) and pain perdu (French toast with caramelised bananas - the stuff dreams are made of). Breakfast is a very generous offering of the traditional (pastel de nata, cheeses and meats) to the not so traditional (eggs Florentine and Benedict). When it comes to wine, you have to try the hotel’s own delicious vintage.






To Relax
Visit the Oitavos’ spacious basement spa for a Voya massage, a steam or a dip in the sea water pool. Treatment rooms overlook the sand dunes which was an extra, super relaxing touch.


Sauna with a view

To See
Should golf not be your thing, the hotel is a five minute drive from the stylish seaside town of Cascais and 20 minutes west of Lisbon. Also worth a visit is Sintra, a hilltop town forty minutes’ drive away where you can explore the retreats, castles and residences of Lisbon’s historic elite.
Sintra
The retreats and castles of Lisbon's historic elite in Sintra

The Nitty Gritty
Rooms cost from £133 per room per night B&B, fly to Lisbon with TAP or British Airways 



Eelbrook Restaurant, Fulham

The day before we were due to go to Eelbrook, the restaurant featured as a location on Made in Chelsea, our number one guilty pleasure. The idea of spotting Proudlock or Spencer Matthews over glasses of Sauvignon Blanc filled us with unparalleled joy (tragic, we know) and we wished the hours away until dinner.

Eelbrook's exterior (on a much sunnier day!)

Eelbrook is essentially a large glass box set on the edge of Eelbrook common filled with pared back modern furniture. The bringing the outside inside thing that Eelbrook’s architects were no doubt trying to achieve with this design would probably work magnificently on a summer’s day and we fully intend to head back for a spring brunch once the weather warms up. Unfortunately the evening we were there would be best described as miserable. When we arrived we were chilly and damp so the kindly proffered champagne cocktails were very welcome and greedily devoured while we took in the menu. 

The light filled dining room looking out on to the common
The bar is a perfect spot for brunch or cocktails

Eelbrook’s head chef, Brett Barnes comes with quite a pedigree having worked in the kitchens of Fäviken (the 19th best restaurant in the world) Ducksoup, Arbutus, and HIX. The menu is confident and seasonal, heavily drawing on British produce and celebrating rather than mucking about with ingredients.

Unsure what to have among the array of starters, we left it up to our waiter to pick a selection. Among the deliciousness which was swiftly delivered to our table, the pan fried squid, smoked eel and goat’s cheese and fig salad were the highlights. For mains we opted for partridge, lamb and cod – covering our meat, fish and game bases. Unlike some ‘foodie’ locations, portions at Eelbrook are generous and thank goodness they are as we almost licked our plates clean, swapping and tasting one another’s dishes. The partridge with sweetcorn was declared the unanimous winner; we confess to being scardey cats when it comes to game, but I’ll be remembering that subtle, sweet meatiness for some time to come. The lipsmackingly creamy parsnip puree which accompanied the pink lamb was another must-try. Full though we were, we find there’s always room for pudding so we shared salted caramel chocolate fondant and frangipane pear tart, both of which were unctuous and warming and perfect 
with our end of the night espressos.

Lincolnshire smoked eel starter

Should you find yourself in Fulham, Eelbrook is definitely worth a visit. Both for the culinary delectableness on offer and, more importantly, the possibility of that all important Made in Chelsea spot. 

Selin Kiazim - One (for all foodies...) To Watch in 2015!

Selin Kiazim, courtesy of Jonathan Gregson


Selin Kiazim is a culinary wonder. At 28, she's already one of London's hottest young chefs (until recently, she was head chef at Kopapa), and next year her plan is to launch her own restaurant in the capital.

Selin in Carousel's kitchen

In the meantime, she's delighting diners at a pop-up kitchen in Marylebone - serving dishes inspired by her Turkish-Cypriot heritage and (as she puts it herself) 'pushing traditional boundaries to pull Turkish food out of the kebab shop and onto the London restaurant scene'. The pop-up at Carousel is all communal tables and an open kitchen, and (appropriately enough) Selin's focus is on sharing plates as well as the delicious smokey taste of food cooked over a charcoal grill.

Plating up the delicious bread with date butter

We had high hopes for her tasting menu - and we certainly weren't disappointed. We started with house-baked bread smothered with the most divine sweet date Medjool date butter (we agree that bread-and-butter Selin-style could be a delicious meal in itself). Other highlights included the refreshing hand-chopped venison, bulgur wheat and Urfa chilli tartare plus the perfectly-cooked whole lemon sole with charred shallot, parsley and pomegranate dressing.

Courgette, feta and mint fritter alongside venison, bulgur wheat and chilli tartare

We loved how the food contained familiar ingredients (such as coriander, mint and pomegranate) but made them taste totally fresh and new (not to mention, gorgeously summery - what could be nicer at this time of year?) The dishes on the menu complemented each other perfectly, though as our dining companion joked, 'the only downside to sharing plates is you have to share them!'

Perfectly-cooked lemon sole...

Luckily, there was no bickering over our individual dessert plates - a gorgeous pistachio sponge with caramelised white chocolate and barbeque quince, all flavoured with the wonderfully earthy Mediterranean tones of honey and thyme....

Gorgeous dessert-for-one

You can catch Selin's fabulous cooking at Carousel until Saturday night, and you can buy tickets here http://www.tickettailor.com/checkout/view-event/id/18523/chk/d979/ref/website_widget


Rosalind Lowe


Monday, 17 November 2014

Eva Green is the 2015 Campari Calendar heroine

Last week Campari – the iconic Italian spirit – unveiled their 2015 calendar. Hotly anticipated every year, just 9,999 are printed – and they don’t go on sale! Instead these luxe collectors’ items are gifted to friends of Campari around the world, making it one of the most exclusive calendars around.




This year, for their Mythology Mixology-themed calendar, Campari have chosen the beautiful Eva Green to star as their heroine. Over 12 months the calendar relives Campari’s greatest cocktails. As photographer extraordinaire Julia Fullerton Batten noted, the glamorous images succeed in “digging into the history of Campari but doing it in a contemporary way”. Skipping seamlessly from 1920s flapper girl to an incredibly chic, futuristic astronaut (a particularly favourite of Eva’s), each image narrates Campari’s rich history as stylishly as you’d expect from such a classic brand.

Below is the cocktail recipe found on January's page - the Negroni. Salute!

February - Campari & Seltz
March - Mi-To

JANUARY - SEVEN DROPS THAT COUNT


Florence, 1919. It is said that, on his return from England, Count Camillo Negroni asked his favourite bar to prepare his usual Americano with seven drops of gin instead of soda. 
A legend was born and still continues strong today.

NEGRONI:

- 1 part (1 oz) Campari
- 1 part (1 oz) Bulldog Gin
- 1 part (1 oz) Cinzano Rosso
- 1 slice of orange

Pour all ingredients directly into a rock glass filled with ice. Garnish with a slice of orange. 


December - Shaken Campari
July - Sputnik










Alice Robertson

Christmas Gift Guide 2014: Ideas for Dad's:


If you're struggling with gift ideas for your family, friends and colleagues this season ensure you check our blog each day from now through to Christmas eve! We'll be posting daily gift ideas to help you put a smile on the faces of your nearest and dearest this year.

This week we're covering gifts for your family, starting with a collection of classic gifts for hard-working fathers with not a tie in sight!



Sarah-Rose Harrison

Fashion: Child of nature

Embrace autumn’s woodland tones and earthy textures 
Wool jacket, £1,290, Etro.
Wool jacket, £1,290, Etro.
Wool dress, £1,085, Alberta Ferretti. Cotton Shirt, £283, Mother Denim, from Donna Ida. Leather Boots, £130, Hilfiger Denim.
Wool dress, £1,085, Alberta Ferretti. Cotton Shirt, £283, Mother Denim, from Donna Ida. Leather Boots, £130, Hilfiger Denim.
Wool sweater, £480, Belstaff. Shearling jacket, £1,195, Christopher Raeburn. wool trousers, £600, Marni. vintage Belt, £12, Beyond Retro.
Wool sweater, £480, Belstaff. Shearling jacket, £1,195, Christopher Raeburn. wool trousers, £600, Marni. vintage Belt, £12, Beyond Retro.
ALPACA HAND-KNIT SWEATER COAT, £940, and ALPACA HAND-KNIT SCARF, £360, both Michael Kors.Boots, £299, Penelope Chilvers. Wool socks, £36, Falke.
ALPACA HAND-KNIT SWEATER COAT, £940, and ALPACA HAND-KNIT SCARF, £360, both Michael Kors.Boots, £299, Penelope Chilvers. Wool socks, £36, Falke.
Leather dress,£2,975, Belstaff. Wool and cashmere blanket cape,£895, Burberry. Leather Boots, £130, Hilfiger Denim
Leather dress,£2,975, Belstaff. Wool and cashmere blanket cape,£895, Burberry. Leather Boots, £130, Hilfiger Denim
Fashion Editor Hannah Hughes
Photographs Thomas James
Fashion assistant Emily Dawes
Hair Jamie McCormick
at Frank Agency using Kérastase
Make-up Bunny Hazel Clarke using Chanel Sublimage L’Essence and Christmas 2014
Model Marie Sander at Union Models
Producer Lucy Coghlan


Stockists
Alberta Ferretti, 020 7235 2349
Belstaff, belstaff.co.uk
Beyond Retro, 020 7613 3636
Burberry, uk.burberry.com
Christopher Raeburn, christopherraeburn.co.uk
donna ida, donnaida.com
Etro, etro.com
Falke, falke.com
Hilfiger Denim, tommy.com
Marni, 020 7245 9520
MICHAEL KORS, michaelkors.com
Penelope Chilvers, penelopechilvers.com

Friday, 14 November 2014

Some ducks have all the fun - with Crocs!


It may have been bucketing it down but we don't care, because we have the perfect excuse to splash through puddles in our fantastic - and fabulously named! - Allcast Luxe Duck Boot from Crocs!

Offering water resistance as well as a wonderfully fluffy warm lining (because, let's face it, the British weather can change from soggy to icy overnight...), the boots are light enough to run around town in (dodging puddles - or not!)

For your chance to win a pair of Women's Allcast Luxe Duck boots,
worth £129.99, all you need to do is enter via the YOUMagSocial Facebook page this weekend.  Terms and conditions apply.


Five perfect flavours at Belgravia's Mango Tree

Welcoming bar area inside the Mango Tree

Thai is one of our favourite cuisines, and Sticky Rice with Mango is definitely our favourite-ever dessert - so we knew we were in for a treat when we met a friend for dinner at Mango Tree in Belgravia.

Delicious non-alcoholic cocktails - much more exciting than orange juice!


At 7pm, the place was already buzzing with a pre-theatre crowd, but assistant manager Sine Kliangsin was happy to take the time to talk us through the a la carte menu. Which was just as well -since there were so many tempting choices that we would undoubtedly have taken all night to decide otherwise!

Like most people, we love Thai food for its delicious combination of fresh flavours (as Sine pointed out, the only really similar cuisine on offer in London is Vietnamese.) Plus all the dishes are designed for sharing, so that diners can experience the combination of five key flavours (sweet, sour, spicy, bitter and salty) during their meal - all-important from a taste POV and a really sociable way to eat into the bargain!

Meung kum - the perfect starter to share... 

We couldn’t resist ordering our favourite Thai dishes (Pad Thai and Green Curry with Beef - both delicious) but what made our meal especially memorable were the dishes that Sine recommended combining with these (all the staff we spoke to were keen to share their favourites - whether at the spicy end of the spectrum or not! - and were really knowledgeable about the menu).

Gai Yang - a top tip from assistant manage Sine!

We enjoyed trying the Meung kum starter  - a traditional Thai snack (as popular as Tom yum soup in Thailand) where you wrap (bitter) betel leaves and fill them with delicious condiments such as peanuts, lime, toasted coconut, dried shrimp and sweet tamarind sauce. And we are still talking about the amazing Gai Yang - roasted poussin  cooked in a fantastic marinade of coconut milk, lemongrass, galangal, turmeric and lime leaves, served with a refreshing papaya salad and a spicy sauce.

For dessert, we ordered the honey mango sticky rice (of course) - recommended for its sweet, palate-cleansing properties after the spiciness of our main dishes. Plus, quite frankly, the stuff dreams are made of!   

http://www.mangotree.org.uk/ Mango Tree offers a special bespoke celebratory Xmas menu for £42.95 (up to 24th Dec) and a special three-course New Year’s menu for £59-68 including a Champagne cocktail.


Thursday, 13 November 2014

For all you dog lovers



We can't wait to hang these adorable doggie baubles on our tree this year, and may have to get the whole range of other breeds, including a bulldog, daschund and beagle to name just a few.  
Retailing at £8.99 from www.PetsPyjamas.com they are sure to be a talking point this Christmas, not just with your relatives, but with your four legged friend as well.