24 May 2017

Restaurant review: TRATRA, The Boundary Hotel

Tratra, 2-4 Boundary Street, E2 7DD (020 7729 1051). Starters are £6 - £16 and main courses for 1 or 2 people to share range from £15 - £22. Opened May 2017.

Tratra is a meat and charcuterie focused restaurant in Shoreditch’s Boundary Hotel.

French butchery master and chef Stéphane Reynaud has taken over the basement of The Boundary Hotel transforming it into a delightful restaurant, wine bar and dining room area. The interior evokes stylish glamour with red velvet chairs alongside warm and inviting lighting. The fact that the kitchen can be seen through a large glass window is something I love seeing in restaurants. 

There is one dish on the menu at Tratra, a new French cuisine restaurant in East London’s Shoreditch which reflects Reynaud’s childhood. It’s the Cochon de Lait costing £19, which consists of suckling pig crepinette, dates, tarragon and creamy mash. It is full bodied and robust in flavour melting in your mouth alongside the delicious mash. 

 Suckling pig crepinette, dates, tarragon, creamy mash
Photograph: Natalia Jane for Fleur de Londres

Although this is Stéphane's Raynauds third restaurant, this is his first restaurant outside of Paris. His casual cuisine is largely inspired by recipes from the Ardeche region in France, where he spent his childhood. Having grown up in a family of pig farmers and butchers, Stéphane naturally places a huge emphasis on meat and charcuterie. 

Spring vegetables with tomato, sweet chilli, apple and pistachio sauce.
Photograph: Natalia Jane for Fleur de Londres

Organic hen eggs, herb mayonnaise, toasted sesame, crispy shallots.
Photograph: Natalia Jane for Fleur de Londres

Hanger steak, herb and snail butter, panisse, shallots
Photograph: Natalia Jane for Fleur de Londres

Alongside the meat dishes there is a lovely variety of fish dishes such as sardines £8
with sea lettuce butter, rock oysters at £2.5 each or £22 for 12, razor clams for £16, with seaweed and sugar snap peas and monkfish, celeriac purée with squid ink sauce for £22, alongside many more.

I didn't get to enjoy the wines here, which are designed to match any of the dishes on the menu because I'm currently pregnant, however, I did have a superbly delicious non-alcoholic elderflower cooler, which was delightfully refreshing.

The dessert was an absolute treat. It was the special of the day and consisted of a perfectly baked pavlova full of delicious berries.


5 May 2017

How to Style a Trench Coat

Coats go in and out of fashion but one style that stays strong year after year and throughout every season is the trench coat. It has stood strong for over 100 years and has not changed much in style. 
The trench coat is a staple wardrobe accessory this season. Its chic and sensual look is easily attained with limitless ways to wear it and seasonal updates of new fabrics and fresh colours keep things interesting. The main colours of a woman’s trench coat are the classic honey-beige, black and navy.  

The trench coat can be worn every season as it’s super versatile and comes in a wide variety of styles. There are so many ways to style a trench coat. It can be easily transitioned by wearing lighter clothing such as a plain white tee tucked into high-waisted denim underneath the trench, with plimsolls or heels. For a more Parisian look go with a crisp white shirt with skinny trousers and pair with fashionable accessories. 

The three main trench styles are The Classic, which contains all the essential elements a trench is stylishly worshipped for. This style is my favourite because you can dress it up or throw it over jeans and trainers. The Swing coat shape was popular in the 1950s, it is super feminine and looks great in pastel colours such as pale powder blue. If you prefer shorter jackets the crop style works beautifully. The cropped silhouette is perfect for wearing in the summer months when the weather is warmer. It also compliments shorter people as it gives the illusion of elongated legs and body. As it has a modern look it is teamed better with more casual wardrobe pieces. Whether it’s jeans and cropped tees, leggings and sportswear, or a summer playsuit, this is a classic style you can have fun with.


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