Food and more food!

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Increasingly, we’re both a little bit more conscious of what and how much we eat in e days – so today was going to be a challenge! Not so much quaLITY but quanTITY. Potentially, there was a big chance we could easily over-eat – and no doubt, pay the price the following day! πŸ€”

Hide the tape-measure!

First stop

First stop today was The Lord Nelson in Oakham for a swift appetite-whetting half-pint (honest!). A first visit for us and a very pleasant one with all the feel of a ‘good old English country Pub’. The weather was so good, we sat outside. Oakham itself was buzzing – including some obligatory Morris Dancers! 😯😯

Second stop

Now for the main event… Lunch! – at Hitchen’s Barn in Oakham. Just a three-minute walk away. We were soon seated and browsing the very extensive and innovative menu. Under normal circumstances, I’d jump straight in, meaning it would have been Starters, a Main and Dessert for me, but today I was attempting to exercise a bit of restraint…

…but I failed miserably! πŸ™. It all looked SO good!

The food was excellent and so was the service. Great to see the waiting staff properly trained and bursting with knowledge about the products on offer. We all agreed that the overall experience was even better than The George Hotel in nearby Stamford (where we’ve all eaten many times in the past – and our benchmark). Hey! I think we’ve just found our new favourite restaurant in these parts!

Oh, go on then!

What an experience! πŸ‘πŸ˜. We slowly wandered back to the car just after 3pm, making the most of the ever-improving weather. It was now 23℃, one of the best days we’d had in a while. We said goodbye to Nick and Celina and headed home with enough time to digest our food before the final push… 😁😁. Yes, I know, it’s a tough life!!!

Final stop

Our final food-fest venue today began next door with neighbour’s Paul and Karen with friends Dave and Rosi for a few pre-dinner drinks. Then we headed off to nearby Burton Latimer and the new(ish) restaurant called Passionie. It’s an Italian tucked around the back of the high street. There have been at least THREE other Italian restaurants on this site, and it’s fair to say that not a single one here has EVER enjoyed a long life (well, apart from the legendary Palmichael just up the road that’s been in situ since the early 80s). I’m not sure why because whatever the name has been above the door, we’ve always enjoyed good meals there. So, maybe it’s just that old adage: location, location, location and NOT being on the High Street with all the other eateries means they lose out???

EDIT: September 4th, 2022 – Just read that it’s closing down!

The celebration tonight was a belated Birthday meal for Karen. Things didn’t begin well with the taxi service pinging us to say he’d be 5 minutes late. Fifteen-minutes later he turned up but after a bone-shaker of a journey, we were soon at our destination.

Boy! Was it noisy! And then they put the music on! 🎢🎢🎢🎢🎢🎢. Still, it didn’t matter much as we had chance for a good long natter (even if we did have to raise our voices).

If people are supposedly tightening their belts because of the economic climate, no-one had told those already seated! It was close to capacity, and we were the last group to be squeezed-in. We all commented that we were hungry and that was understandable, as most had existed on light rations today;

I had no excuse! Weird!!! How could I STILL be hungry??

Being determined to eat light tonight was Ann and my grand plan – and we’d set our sights on a simple Pizza. So, it was a real shame that their Pizza Oven was broken! ☹️☹️. Still, at least the wine flowed liberally!

Ann demonstrated superb willpower by opting for fish, whilst I let the side down by having a Starter, followed by Mains and then a Dessert.

Yep! A complete absence of will-power tonight I’m ashamed to say! 😢😢. Still, when they announced they were ‘out of mince’ and offered to cook me an off-menu, one-off ‘pasta & sausage with a special spicy sauce’, I couldn’t resist! The evening’s conversation, yummy food and excellent service though, made me feel slightly less guilty about my accumulated food intake today!

The taxi service redeemed themselves by being on time, and we were home just before 11.30. In earlier years, we would have continued the celebrations with generous portions of some ‘grape-based nightcap’, probably back at Paul & Karen’s, but actually, I think we were all too knackered!

All-in-all, it had been a fantastic night in every respect! Happy Birthday, Karen! ❀️

Last job before hitting the pillow was to hide the scales in the bathroom! Good-night ‘Porker Palmers’!

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