Tag Archives: boscombe

Reef Encounter, Boscombe

Scott was away for a few days last week, so in celebration of his return to sunny Bournemouth and, of course, for me not climbing a single mountain this weekend, we decided to kick things off in style, starting with breakfast at my favourite cafe.

Boscombe is a haven for surfers. Since the installation of the Surf Reef a few years ago, this little Bournemouth suburb has transformed into England’s answer to California. A fine selection of bars and cafes followed the surfers suit and before we knew it, you needn’t look any further than Boscombe for a laid back bar and a quick surf on the pristine beach.

Reef Encounter is perched on the hill a few minutes walk from the pier. Laid back and chic, you can enjoy some of Dorset’s finest produce for Brunch, lunch, dinner or a simple coffee and cake.

In an attempt to combat the crazy humidity we were graced with this weekend, I wore a little River Island jumpsuit which I picked up last year and generally only wear when I’m abroad. Oh how times have changed!

The breakfast menu ranges from a traditional full English to pancakes so there really is something for everyone. We ordered my all time favourite, Eggs Benedict.

Perfectly poached eggs, crispy english muffins and a generous portion of ham topped with the best hollandaise sauce.

There’s a real seaside, beachy feel to Reef Encounter. Sit outside, and the crowds of people excitedly heading to the seaside grace you with their eagerness. Sit inside and you can enjoy the soft, relaxed atmosphere while listening to Jack Johnson’s smooth sounds.

The view isn’t too shabby either.

Reef Encounter is the perfect location for casual California-eqsue dining. Their specials board is always full of local delights (the crab cakes are out of this world!). You can check out their website here, but always book to avoid disappointment, this place gets busy!

getting life back on track

I’m back!

It feels like I literally fell off the face of the earth these last 4 weeks, so if that’s what you’ve been thinking then we’ll roll with it. There’s been no casual browsing through the news in the evenings or hours spent ready my favourite blogs, my normal day to day life was pretty non-existent. It has been the craziest yet strangely rewarding month of my life, and hopefully I can reveal my little project to you very soon.

Anyway, back to business… the sun is shining! Well are we not being spoilt in the UK right now? Day after day of uninterrupted sunshine and warmth, with the added bonus of these gloriously long summer days. Whoa, Mr Weather Man, you’re spoiling us.

Day One of project “getting life back on track” started with the obvious. A beach BBQ. Yesterday evening we packed up all the goodies we’d need and headed down the road to the beach.

Fortunately this routine is second nature to us. After work, Scott will stop off at the supermarket to pick up food supplies, while I race home to pack the all important condiments. Almost in unity, we have the BBQ and picnic backpack out of the cupboard and the cool-box filled with goodies within 30 minutes of finishing work. Even luckier, we’re a few minutes walk to the beach.

When we arrive, we mark our territory with our trusty (and very grubby) picnic blanket and Scott fires up the BBQ. I organise the drinks and then all that’s left to do kick back and relax.

One of the best investments we’ve ever made was to buy a Cobb BBQ. You’ve probably established by now that we’re pretty outdoorsy people and this my friends, we could not live without. Forget about the upfront cost, if you’re anything like us, a year down the line you’ll be thinking “why did I not have one of these sooner!”.

The Cobb is a BBQ like no other. Whether you want to roast a leg of lamb, smoke a chicken or grill a pork chop, the Cobb will do it all. The idea is that it’s portable, so even when alight you can just pick it up and move it without scalding your fingers (ideal for the beach and you realise as the sun’s going down that you’re in the shade!). The “moat” allows you to keep typically dry BBQ meat moist and delicious as well as steam vegetables. We put cider in ours and it works a treat every time. As well as being very low maintenance (we generally clean ours when we’re still on the beach!), its cost effective meaning you’ll use less coals and still have ample cooking time. If you think we’re a little bit in love with our BBQ, you’d be right. We love it.

Is there anything better than laying on a beach with a glass of cider watching the world go by? (Ok, it helped a little bit that the local touch rugby team had chosen to practice on the beach!)

We split our BBQ food into what we like to call BBQ tapas. By cooking our food in segments it means it’s always cooked to perfection and, even more importantly,  you don’t fill up too quickly. I guess it helps when you have a boyfriend from New Zealand who learnt to BBQ before he could walk.

With little time for faffing with food before we leave, everything gets transferred into airtight containers, the chicken is marinated with Peri Peri sauce and the steaks rubbed with seasoning just before we leave.

Lamb kebabs, Peri Peri chicken, spicy sausages and a perfectly cooked steak later, the sun had disappeared behind the trees and the rugby team had packed up and left, so we dragged our full bellies back up the hill and spent the rest of the evening like couched potato on the sofa.

I’m starting to feel like “me” again, and it feels so good!

meet ceba

Bank holiday weekends usually mean one thing. Dissapointment. Those plans to go camping with friends turn into a wet and miserable struggle to pitch a tent, and that BBQ you’d planned is rained off and switched for a takeout infront of Britains Got Talent.

Oh how times have changed!

The sun has got his hat on, hip hip hip hooray! I want to introduce you to a new family member…

Meet Ceba.

My cousins beautiful Lhasa Apso. He is 8 months old and this was his second trip to the seaside.

He’s learnt the tricks of the trade with the girls. A total ladies man.

He also brought some friends too. My gorgeous second cousin Oriel and my cousin Adam also ventured out of boring-stoke for a day on the beach.

Boscombe beach was bustling with holiday makers, families and 9 to 5ers making the most of a boozy weekend with no work on Monday! I’ll drink to that!

No trip to the beach is complete without a scoop or two of Purbeck ice-cream. I cannot resist Honeycombe Hash! After wading through the tourists in Boscombe, and discovering Ceba couldn’t have his first dip in the sea as the “no dogs on the beach” had just been introduced, we went back to my home town.

Ceba met Bella. It was love at first sight.

Patryk gave Ceba a dunk in the sea and to everyone’s amazement, the dog can swim!

I wouldn’t say he’s won over by the sea…

Me and Oriel spent the rest of the afternoon playing sharks in the paddling pool. I’ve been playing in this very pool since I was 7 years old, but it’s a whole lot shallower that I remember!

I hope you had a nice bank holiday weekend. How’s that sunburn?