Dinner at The Ivy Clifton Brasserie

There are certain restaurants that everyone seems to have heard of, regarding of whether or not you ever have any intention of going there. For me, The Ivy is one of those places. I’ve never been to the famous London restaurant and yet the name evokes images of classic glamour, sophistication and very expensive food. What I hadn’t realised was that The Ivy Collection brings The Ivy experience to a selection of brasseries and cafes around the UK – or I hadn’t until I went to The Ivy Clifton Brasserie. Initially I was put off going by assumptions I made about the price and atmosphere but having been once I have no doubt I will return, either to the Clifton Brasserie or to one of the others in the collection.

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York Cocoa House

Some places just feel like returning home, and for me I think York will always be one of those places. As the city where I spent my student days, and some time afterwards, I got to know it very well and have some fantastic memories of my time there. Even though I feel completely comfortable in York, it still felt slightly odd returning after a little while and seeing the things that had changed. Whilst I had limited time to spend in the actual city (I was primarily there for a dance competition) I still managed to fit in some of my old haunts.

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A Weekend in Birmingham

Birmingham is not somewhere I had ever really imagined going for a weekend away. Admittedly my only experience had really been changing trains at New Street Station, but it seemed large, overcrowded, noisy and the sort of place that I would usually try to avoid. However, it is a useful midway point between the north and south of the country, so a weekend in Birmingham was on the cards. A trip to Cadbury World was top of my list of things to do, but I hadn’t realised the abundance of other things that could easily fill a weekend.

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Brew Haus, Bradford

Every so often when exploring a new place you will walk into somewhere and, despite having never been there before, will feel completely at home. This happened to me and James when we went for a long weekend in Bradford. On the first night we popped into Brew Haus for a drink thinking that it looked quiet and quite nicely decorated, and we ended up returning the next night. We could have quite easily stopped by again on our final night but decided we ought to try somewhere else whilst we were there.

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Top Ten Bars in York

With the York Food and Drink Festival now in full swing, and having already shared my top ten places for food in York, I thought it was now time to share my top places to go for a drink. York has an incredible number of bars and pubs and in recent years it has become very popular with hen and stag parties for that reason. Consequently, on weekends and race days you will have to expect places to be busy and loud. However, due to the range of establishments you are likely to find somewhere a little quieter and it means there is plenty of choice depending on what you like to drink!

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