Shaken, Stirred and ready for a night in.

Blogging had to be put on the back burner this week as I haven’t had a night in since last Tuesday. The week consisted of having my Bridesmaid Dress fitting, much needed catch ups with friends and my brother’s 18th Birthday – I’ve never been so sociable!

My brother isn’t much a clubber, (and neither are his two sisters) it may be because he dabbled in it before he turned the grand old age of 18. Slightly illegal I know – in defence of the clubs, he could easily pass for someone 20+ years old. So for his birthday we spread it over two evenings, the first involving a trip to the cinema to see the new James Bond film, Skyfall.

For the exception of my other half, we all really enjoyed it – definitely different to any of the other Bond films. I wasn’t that impressed with Daniel Craig’s previous interpretations of the ladies man but finally fell for his charm in the recent instalment. There is a good amount of British humour throughout, not too much of what I find cringe-worthy loving making scenes and the right amount of action and explosions that keep it ultimately Bond. The films antagonist Silva played by Javier Bardem is almost loveable too. Definitely a must see!

The following day the family and I went on a shopping trip to Cribbs Causeway, another of Bristol’s shopping centres. It has nothing on Cabots Circus (Bristol’s other shopping Centre) but offers a large John Lewis store. Mum can take advantage of a generous discount with my brother being a partner at our local Waitrose store.

Once we returned home it wasn’t long before we had to spruce ourselves up for more birthday celebrations.

Mum had booked a table at Hotel Du Vin in Cheltenham – there are others dotted around the country, which you can find here.

Last time we came, I didn’t even notice the chandelier was made from wine glasses.

The hotel has a lovely atmosphere, it is decorated with wine bottles everywhere and what looks like grape vines you would find in a vineyard. We had all been before for my sister’s 18th a few years ago so knew we were in for a treat. We ordered various cocktails, wines and local beers to get started before we delved into the menu.

Mine was a vanilla and strawberry mojito – lovely!

They offer a substantial sized menu giving you plenty of choice, keeping everyone happy.

I had the crab as a starter, as did a couple of others.

Before the mains arrived, Rob was presented a couple more gifts for his birthday – ones to to mark the milestone including a fossil leather wallet and a leather bracelet.

Anyway, back to the food.

I had Monkfish for mains which was gorgeous. It had a creamy sauce with small mushrooms and these tiny picked onions layered on a potato pattie – which all worked strangely well together. Alan had the Bistro Burger, which was pretty mammouth that had a lovely barbecued flavour to it.

I was done by the end of my main but others enjoyed lacquer coffees and desserts.

Overall I really enjoyed the food, some of it was slightly over seasoned, for example the chips were generously doused in salt and the carrots were a bit too sweet – others may like that but we all felt it overpowered some of the other flavours of the dishes. The hotel has a lovely atmosphere and most of us really liked the food – I would just suggest they watch the salt content.

On the Sunday we went for a walk up Cleeve Hill to walk off all the food, then later Alan and I went bowling with some friends. I actually managed to win a game! Complete shocker for me and probably everyone else.

Hope you had a nice weekend. I am quite looking forward to my night in tonight.

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