You're on a 7 hour road trip from Joburg to Durban. It's approaching hour 6, almost a whole day on the road. You're grumpy. You're tired. You're HUNGRY. Just like an oasis in the desert you pull off the N3 onto Nottingham Road and see The Midlands Kitchen, a foodie heaven in the Midlands!

With a tagline like “Born ‘n bread in KZN” you know it’s going to be good. It’s time for BB Bakeries second annual Some Bunny To Love food truck to hit the streets of Durban, South Africa. 



What is it?



The BB Bakeries food truck will be stationed at different places in Durban serving delicious food and supporting local artists and businesses. You can have a quick lunch or dinner at the truck and, on specific days, enjoy the live entertainment too


Why?




BB Bakeries is all about supporting what’s local and loved in KZN. Combining BB Bakeries unsliced white bread with traditional Durban curries, you get to have an authentic Natal experience


BB Bakeries is local to KZN and prioritise the use of quality ingredients and manufacturing. They are a true homegrown brand – and as such give back to the local community.



Food menu




This year they’ve definitely upped their game with the menu. The Some Bunny To Love food truck menu:

  • BB Bunny Chow Classics: A KZN favourite served with the best-loved local loaf and a side of Cheesy Bread Sticks. With the option of three popular curries, Chicken, Mutton or Bean

  • BB Squares ‘Rising Stars’: A curry filled deep fried BB square delight With the option of a chicken, mutton or bean filling

  • BB Squares Encore: A dessert filled deep fried BB square treat served with whipped cream and butterscotch sauce With the option of a raisin and cinnamon or baked apple and cinnamon filling.


The experience




My #SomeBunnyToLove experience was close to my heart – you don’t get anymore Durban than this. I went to the BB Bakeries Bunny Chow Love food truck on Friday, 3 July on Florida exchange (Behind Starbucks). The vibe was eccentric with Darren Mule of East Coast radio providing entertainment and good vibes. Soon after, Easy Freak, treated the audience to a performance and the night was filled with laughter, beautiful music and the smell of authentic Durban curries.

Don’t take my word for it – see for yourself! Here is the schedule for the duration that the BB Bakeries food truck is in town:



Florida Road: 2nd –14th July (Closed on Mondays)

Live performances

3rd July: -Jonty Hartwig (5pm-6pm) -Easy Freak (7pm -8pm)

5th July: Robin 3rd Floor (6pm –7pm)

12th July: Holly Rey (6pm –7pm)

Chatsworth Centre: 16th – 27th July (Closed on Mondays)

Live Performances and Talent Competition

20th July:  - Celestial Mic (12pm –1pm) -Talent Competition (1pm-3pm) people can come and perform for spot prizes (JBL Wireless headphones, speakers and BB Food Vouchers) - Deshan Styler(3pm-4pm)

Suncoast: 28th July Sunday Beats



When people think of KwaZulu-Natal they don't usually think of a holiday in the countryside. This often means they miss out on one of the best destinations in the province - the Midlands Meander. Nestled among the green, lush rolling hills of the Midlands is where you'll find Brahman Hills.

Us millennials don't just think of food as a way to satisfy our hunger - food is a whole experience. For that very reason you expect the restaurant to be a whole vibe and 14 on Chartwell lives up to that expectation.

This classy restaurant located in Umhlanga, Durban makes the perfect destination for drinks with the girls, a date night or a special occasion like a birthday party. Notoriously usually fully packed especially on the weekend (With a reservation pretty much always necessary to get a table fyi), you can tell that it's incredibly vibey.



Known as the city where east meets west, the only city in the world in two continents - Europe and Asia - is none other than incredible Istanbul. Awe-inspiring architecture, rich history and immersive culture, Istanbul is a true gem and a must see city.

Sunsets over the Bhosphurus with the stunning silhouette of grand mosques - that's the image in my head when I think of the city.




Saturday night is curry night at Vasco's restaurant in the Hilton Hotel Durban with their Curry Cup buffet. Is there any other food you'd want to dig into on a Saturday in a city known for its rich Indian cuisine? I think not ;)




"Tiger’s Milk is the best destination for ‘dude food’, made good. Epitomising handcrafted goodness with a menu that takes pizza, grills and burgers to the next level, pair these with our locally made Tiger’s Milk Lager and you’re sure to leave satisfied"
Tigers Milk, a restaurant that falls under the Life & Brand Portfolio of restaurants, recently opened a long awaited branch in Durban (Finally!). What's even better is that Suncoast Casino and Entertainment World is home to the new Tigers Milk restaurant - adding the benefit of an awesome location that's centrally located and has a ton to do just a few minutes away (Not to mention beach views for days!)



While just having launched in September, it's already a favourite with so many people I follow raving about it on social media. Positioning themselves as the new happening place to be in Durban, you can expect good music, instagramable spots, live performances on some nights (The launch party on 12 October saw Micasa party up a storm) and even quiz nights (Like a Harry Potter one).

And we haven't even got to the food. If you're thinking they're the kind of place that prioritises a good vibe and alcohol so much that the food is sidelined, think again. In fact, all other things not considered, Tiger's Milk brings something new to the table with their dishes and turns pizza, grill and pizza classics into delicacies with a twist.

I've already visited the restaurant twice (And plan to again soon) so I'll give you a look at lots of different options on the menu, what I liked, what I want to try and what's just downright unique to Tiger's Milk.



Location


Tiger's Milk Suncoast is located in Suncoast Casino and Entertainment World in Durban. Suncoast has lots to do right on the premises with shopping, restaurants, a hotel, casino, games and other entertainment, so you can make a whole afternoon of it if you like. 

Tiger's Milk also has other stores in the following places throughout the country:

JOHANNESBURG
Bryanston
Melrose Arch
Cedar Square

PRETORIA Lynnwood Bridge

CAPE TOWN
Century City
Claremont
Kloof Street
Long Street
Muizenberg
Stellies
Camps Bay

DURBAN Suncoast


Port Elizabeth







Food



Starters



The starters menu has a lot of interesting choices and some unique ones like the Party Parcels, Mac 'N Cheese Bacon Balls, Amazeballs as well as their Mexican Tacos and Nachos options. I asked what the popular choices were and settled on the Sticky BBQ Chicken Wings and the Amazeballs.
















The Amazeballs were just that - they were amazing! Picture a warm, super cheesy centre covered in a crunchy pastry and that's what you can expect from the Amazeballs. If you love cheese (And who doesn't) this will end up being the most simple yet incredibly satisfying choice for you!

On the other hand if you're looking for something meaty and want to dig in, get the Sticky BBQ Chicken Wings. I looooove me some chicken wings but the wings I had at Tiger's Milk were a whole other level and no doubt THE BEST CHICKEN WINGS this foodie has had EVER. I can honestly say this is the starter I'm going to order every single time I go to Tigers Milk.




Mains



The options of mains are between salads, pizzas, burgers, grills and steaksLuckily I can tell you a bit about all of them. 






I've been trying to prioritise that #summerbody and eat healthy lately so I wanted to see if Tiger's Milk would cater for that. Finding places that serve healthier options and especially tasty, healthy options can be a whole mission.

I tried the Crouching Tiger salad - and it was definitely the best and most satisfying salad ever. It was absolutely delicious and had so many wholesome yet tasty ingredients. The salad had seared tuna, edamame beans, cashew nuts, cucumber, cabbage, pineapple, avocado, sesame seeds and a creamy wasabi dressing. Far from the bland salads I've gotten used to at other restaurants - Tiger's Milk clearly doesn't do bland or ordinary. 



But here's the thing, it's not just the salad that's amazing. On a previous occasion I had the F.A.B.ULOUS pizza which definitely lived up to its name. I don't usually like thin base pizza's but with it being made in a wood fire oven, it was perfectly crispy and had a hint of a flame cooked taste which just ties it all together. This particular pizza has avocado, feta and bacon. 

Twice lucky maybe? Well my plus one (AKA my mama) ordered the sirloin steak with mushroom sauce and salad which also ended up being delicious. Next time I'd love to try the steak as well! And I'll let you know what I think ;) Another option that a friend of mine loved was the Rockstar burger. It has cheese, bacon and guacamole. 




Dessert


Wanna fall in love? 4 words. BREAD AND BUTTER PUDDING. I kid you not, if happiness was a dessert, that's what it would be. It completely blew me away (And that's saying a lot, because I've tasted some damn amazing desserts in my lifetime). It's not the typical style of warm pudding, and is a dessert baked in cinnamon-vanilla custard with raisins and apricot jam, toasted almost flakes with vanilla bean ice-cream on the side. If you haven't had vanilla bean ice-cream before, I highly recommend you try it. The texture it's absolutely melt in your mouth. Don't know what vanilla bean ice cream is? Basically it's the "real" ice cream - actual vanilla beans are used and you can actually see the minuscule black grains. 



Every place I go to I tend to try out the cheesecake and as such I just had to. The cheese cake at Tiger's Milk is more of a deconstructed cheese cake topped with berry coulis and vanilla bean ice cream on the side. The crust is also not on the bottom layer of the cheese cake but rather can be found separate with the ice cream. Personally I found the cheese cake on it's own to not be sour enough (I like me some sour cheese cake) although when you have it together with the berries it gives it more of a tang. The texture was also a bit too smooth considering there wasn't any crust base. 





Drinks


Unfortunately on this particular day I was driving so no alcohol for me (*sob*) so I tried the Sherbet Smack virgin cocktail. If you aren't drinking alcohol and don't mind a sweet drink, I would definitely recommend it! I also tried the Virgin Mojito, but I found it a bit too bitter.






Overall


Overall it really does make the perfect place for a weekend lunch or casual dinner and drinks with friends. The food is delicious but you'll also love the overall ambiance. Be sure to check out their specials - on Monday Tiger's Milk has a 2 for 1 burger special and everyday you can enjoy happy hour from 4pm to 6pm. I'd love to check out their events and quiz nights sometime so maybe I'll see you there ;)


On a cold 10 degree Monday night I went to Lanser's on Main for dinner. Greeted by Lanser himself and served by him and his friendly staff, my night just got better and better.

Lanser's on Main is a Bistro located in Johannesburg, Gauteng. They specialize in home styled Italian and French food. I recently enjoyed a dinner at their restaurant and here is an overview of my experience.





LOCATION


Lanser's on Main is located in Bryanston in the Sandton region in Johannesburg. It's just off the main road. The restaurant is in an easy to find complex and has secure parking outside.


AMBIANCE 


The ambiance is old school French and Italian. The decor is warm and inviting and has lots of cute elements like the empty frames on the walls. The music is calm and just softly in the background allowing you to engage in conversation. While it makes the perfect date night restaurant, unlike many others it's warm and inviting making you feel right at home.


FOOD


A unique element to Lanser's on Main is that their menu isn't "set in stone". They often have specials and options that aren't on the menu. Their menu is also very diverse with lots of different options for any craving.

Starter: Clam Chowder


This is an option that wasn't on the menu and was part of the night's specials. Clam chowder is a chowder soup containing clams and broth, and a few other vegetables. It was also my first time having clam chowder. The soup was filled with such rich tastes and flavors and the clams were delicious. However, I didn't particularly enjoy the diced potato (and there was a lot of it). Would I have it again? Yes, I would just ask them to hold back on the potato.


Main: Pork Belly


Again, I was being adventurous and having something I wouldn't usually. I don't eat pork often at all but Lanser himself recommended it so I have it a try. It consisted of a crisp pork belly, roasted potatoes, vegetables and a pineapple honey glazed sauce. Personally I don't think I'm much of a pork person (The texture is a bit weird for me) BUT however it is something I'd like to have once in a while and especially in the style it was served at Lanser's on Main. The honey glazed sauce blew me away, it added so much flavor to the meal.


Main: Steak


My partner had steak, medium to rare, and enjoyed it thoroughly. Again, the flavors were rich and complemented the steak perfectly. It was also a large portion that included veggies and french fries.


Dessert: Lemon Meringue 


I ordered the lemon meringue for dessert (My usual is either cheesecake and lemon meringue). The portion size was huge - so much so we had to share it and still didn't finish it! It tasted fresh and delicious. It was however a bit sweeter than I would have wanted it to be.


OVERALL


Overall, Lanser's on Main is perfect for a date night. The ambiance puts you at ease and the attention to detail is memorable. The food was lovely and they have so many different options to suit any preference.

RATING


These are my personal ratings based on the above experience. It is of course subjective.

LOCATION: 8
AMBIANCE: 10
FOOD: 8







Accomodation in Istanbul, Turkey

Where to stay in Istanbul?


Choosing where to stay was possibly the most time consuming decision I had to make when planning the trip. I took about 2 hours to plan the itinerary and yet I spent weeks deciding where to stay! There are lots of options for accommodation and many are similar however choosing an area to stay in can be difficult.

So basically it comes down to 2 options Sultanahmet (the old city) and Beyoglu (modern Istanbul). EminönĂ¼ and Fatih fall under the old city while Beyoglu consists of Taksim, Sisli, Besiktas etc. The two areas are actually neighboring, divided only by the Golden Horn body of water and Galata bridge.


When it comes to steak houses I can be as picky as the next person. You want your steak to be extra juicy and just the right texture, right? I was recently invited to experience a meal at Hussar Grill - regarded as one of the premium grill rooms in South Africa - a restaurant I've had my eye on for a while, and decided to give their steak a try. They have branches throughout the country and I tried out the Hussar Grill in Gateway, Durban.


Location


The restaurant is located at Gateway Theatre of Shopping in Umhlanga, Durban. Being located in Gateway Boulevard with so many restaurants around, it takes a special restaurant to stand out and Hussar Grill does just that. 


Here is a list of all the branches: 


Western Cape:
Camps Bay, Durbanville, Franschhoek, George, GrandWest, Mouille Point, Paarl, Rondebosch, Somerset West, Steenberg, Stellenbosch, Willowbridge, Worcester


Gauteng: Midrand - Waterfall, Montecasino, Morningside, The Grove

KZN: Gateway, Kloof

Eastern Cape: Walmer

Zambia: Lusaka

Saudi Arabia: Khobar




Ambiance


Walls of books from a time passed, line the restaurant - I spotted everything from volumes of the World Book, all kinds of Encyclopedia's as well as Popular Mechanics books that could easily be over 50 years old. In sections, you'll find bottles of wine and wine glasses on the shelves, overall giving it a very cosy feel. 

On the other hand, the entrance leads you straight to the bar - where I clearly felt right at home ;)






Food


Deciding on what to eat was so difficult because for any meat lover, the options are incredibly appertising. They also do a lot of house specialties, a few of which are on my list to try out the next time I visit.




Starters


I ended up having 3 starters so I can share on a few different options.  


Starter: Hussar Beef Biltong


To nibble
while I properly looked through the menu, I chose the biltong. It made me wonder, why don't more restaurants have biltong on the menu?? I love that they had the option! And biltong as a pre-starter is so satisfying.






Starter: Prawn and Fresh Avo Cocktail


This option consists of sweet queen prawn meat covered in their Marie Rose sauce on a bed of greens (Yes, with avo). As a cold option, it's a good summer starter however, in winter I prefer something warm to start off. 



Starter: Hollandse Bitterballen


Now this was my favourite part of the whole meal - and literally what I've been craving ever since! It consists of double cream Bechamel studded with beef jus and beef bits, then crumbed and deep fried with Dijon mustard on the side. Holy cow (no pun intended) this was DELICIOUS on another level! The texture is crispy on the outside and soft and creamy on the inside. And it made my taste buds so happy.





Mains


Choosing a main from 3 pages of meat options, most of which sound unique in some way and many of which are specialties is such a difficult task. I walked in knowing I want a simple Sirloin steak and while questioning all the scrumptious sounding options, ended up going with my gut feeling.





Main: Sirloin Steak


I chose a simple sirloin steak (medium) with a mushroom sauce and mash. Should I have chosen one of their specialty dishes? Probably, especially given most of them sounded amazing. It was a good steak, but not the best I've had. The texture and sauce were perfect but the flavour lacked a bit. On the other hand my choice of potato mash on the side complimented it nicely. I usually order wine with my steak but because I was driving opted not to but I've heard such good things about their house wines that I definitely will try next time.






Main: Hussar Carpetbagger 


My partner ordered the Hussar Carpetbagger, one of their house specialties. It consists of a fillet mignon stuffed with a combination of smoked oysters, cheddar cheese and topped off with a brandy and wholegrain mustard sauce. The fillet steak was tender and succulent and together with the sauce, very flavour-rich. However, whether the combination of oysters and steak compliment each other will probably depend on your personal taste - it's a bit of an aquired taste combination.




Dessert


I always end up having cheese cake or lemon meringue for dessert so I'm quite the expert at comparing different restaurants offering of the 2. There's also the option of a Chocolate Vodka Martini as a Signature Dessert on the menu, which I want to try next time. While I didn't get to taste it, my partner had the Creme Brulee and thoroughly enjoyed it.







Dessert: Baked Cheese Cake


Described as "Velvety smooth cheesecake atop a traditional buttery biscuit crust and baked to perfection" - don't these words just make your mouth water! You know that aunty in your family that loves to bake and makes the best dessert for family occassions and functions? This cheesecake tastes like my aunty made it. It's absolutely velvety and buttery melt-in-your-mouth cheesecake. It also isn't too rich or sweet and served in a huge slice, that's perfect for 2 or even 3 people.





Overall


The food was delicious with clearly a lot of heart being put into its preparation. The staff were phenomenal! I also have to mention the food was ready so quickly - the main came just 10 minutes after ordering, so it's a great option if you're in a bit of a hurry.


Fun fact: On the day prior to my visit, there was a petty theft with some of the table clothes having been stolen (As they were delivered outside the restaurant). The funny thing is, I hadn't even noticed it. But the manager made a point of apologising for it immediately - I thought it was part of the aesthetic since the lovely green tables matched the seats anyway!



Rating


These are my personal ratings based on the above experience. It is of course subjective.


Location: 10


Ambiance: 8


Food: 8 


Service: 9







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