25 May 2015

How to Make the Perfect Mojito

The mojito - a classic in any cocktail line-up,yet one that is so commonly thrown together, or at least taken advantage of with recipe subs. I've never crafted a cocktail until now, bar a failed attempt at sangria at an open bar, we'll leave that with the Spaniards. But, with a title of mojito master dropped in front of me, it seemed like a logical next step. 

Havana Club are touring Britain to 'certify' bars with their brand. The bars that are trusted to stick to the traditional and historic recipe of the original Cuban mojito, using the Cuban aged Havana Club 3 white rum.

Maven Bar in Leeds - which you'd be forgiven for missing on a Call Lane night, as it sticks with its prohibition theme and forgoes any external signage - is one of the few bars to earn the Havana Club Certification, thanks to owner Nino sharing the same passion for the recipe & Cuba.

We were invited to try our hand at the mastery of mojitos, with direction from the Havana Club global brand ambassador herself (and ex-Cuban resident) Meimi Sanchez. The recipe and technique are simple, but sampling hundreds herself, Meimi has tasted her fair share of bad mojitos.

To begin - two spoonfuls of sugar, dissolved (thoroughly to avoid a gritty ending to your cocktail) and the juice of half a lime.
Then - the iconic garnish of a mojito, the mint. Tapped against the back of your hand to release the flavour, fold this into the glass (or tin...) and muddle carefully.
For the star of the show - add cubed ice (to crush the flavours, not to dilute) and rum. Four caps of the iconic Havana Club, equal to a 45ml (ish) measure.
Top up with sparkling water, avoid using soda water to make sure it all comes together right. And Cuban.

Garnish with fresh mint (after a sharp tap) and add a straw for easy drinking. That, the mastery, easy to translate but not so to master - but I'll still be attempting to certify myself to a Cuban standard regardless.

A night full of great company - it always amazes me the seemingly endless new faces of Leeds bloggers that crop up at events - and great cocktails (even if they weren't mine). And a whole load of rum was had - with hangovers to prove it.
The mojito was already a firm favourite of mine, but now knowing that correct method - straight to the top of my cocktail list!


A video posted by Phoebe (@phibster_) on

8 May 2015

Leeds Indie Food Festival - 7-24th May

The food scene in Leeds is seemingly going from strength to strength. In just over a year, I feel like I've added a restaurant a week, if not more, to a 'to-try' list. From Mexican street food, menus enitrely with a cocoa bean base or being consumed by witty décor, my taste buds have been treated since moving into the city.

Whether you're working your way through your own list or just a food lover, this next month is your ideal in terms of events. Leeds Indie Food Festival runs for just over two weeks through May, with 100 events to take advantage of. City wide, covering all taste preferences, a plethora of budgets and hopefully giving you the opportunity to discover some new favourite eateries around Leeds.

The launch event alone showed just how passionate the people of Leeds are about their food and about this project. You too can get just as passionate, passionate in finding something new, or heading to one of your favourite places that's involved in #LIF15 - try it out.

And live up to the tagline, No city eats like our city.

All the events (and the full story) is at www.leedsindiefood.co.uk - get involved! 

5 May 2015

Living Space

Cushion - Matalan || Throw - Faribault Mill
Coasters - South Austin Gallery || Lantern - Wilko
Frame - Vintage || Print - Craig Ward

It's the little touches that seem to have added up to making a house a home. It may be a relatively small rented space, but my first flat (aside from the Uni live outs) is finally together, although always a work in process. 

I share the place with my boyfriend, but we've managed to compromise on décor styles pretty idyllically. The monograms, initials and humans in frames are my contributions, just the touches needed to make everything a little less 'rented'. 

Copper Letters - Oliver Bonas || Atlas box, gift || Frame - Vintage

I've tried not to dominate with too much feminine, although this shot from my best friend's wedding fit perfectly in a long lost ornate frame. 

Despite all the above open to change - along with any other added extras I fall in love with - I'm happy with the little touches dotted around so thought it was about time to share my space online. 
If anything, I was spurred on by today's addition (and the gentleman's favourite), an impressive liquor stand to conceal a pretty offensive CRT TV, all part of the rental experience. 

Despite the current 'completed' feel, I'm sure another post isn't too far away sharing what little I know in the way of a rented interior. Plus, a peek into my bedroom,which is a little more 'me'.