Rick and Morty fans rejoice, with new release of Szechuan sauce

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So it turns out that the long-heralded McDonalds Szechuan sauce, the sauce which caused a million Rick and Morty fans to go into Meltdown is finally re-released. The sauce craze got saw  bidding wars, riots, and petitions to help bring back the sauce.

On Monday, McDonald locations across the USA began serving them again, however this time the fast-food chain didn’t take any risks, distributing 20 million sauce packs across the USA in order to make sure there wouldn’t be the scenes of riots with Rick and Morty fans fighting each other to get their hands on it.

It’s fair to say that the hype surrounding the sauce was astronomical and to live up to it would be tough, especially considering police had been called previously to stop the fighting along with ludicrously high prices paid at auctions for the sauce- it was reported that the DJ, deadmau5 spent around $15,000 on a jug of Szechuan sauce.  

Along came Mondays launch date and finally the verdict on the taste test was out: It’s good, but not great- think a classic Chinese restaurant-style sweet and sour sauce with some soy and sesame and you get the idea.

So, sadly for the Rick and Morty fans who spent time going crazy over the sauce, it turns out that hyped up sauce is really, “meh”.

For more on the Szechuan sauce check out this article from BI

 

Top 14 things to see & do in Seoul, South Korea

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The capital of South Korea, Seoul, has a fantastic mix of old and new, with great food and amazing sights across the city. The capital has a great many things to do, and today we take a look 14 great places to visit and see in Seoul.

1) Korea Furniture Museum: a bit of an unusual attraction to start, but this museum has over 2000 pieces of traditional furniture, which help you get a real sense of a traditional Korean lifestyle and culture. It’s a great way to spend some time looking at the Korea of old.

2) Insadong: This is a great insight into South Korean culture. The district is home to lots of shops, teahouses and market style booths. Along with this, is many great art galleries and restaurants, a place perfect to eat and drink to your hearts content, and pick up a few souvenirs along the way.

3) Bongeunsa: The temple of Gangnam is a calm place, right in the heart of the city; offering a beautiful and contrasting view between the traditional houses and the modern skyscrapers.

4) Gyeongbokgung Palace (GP): GP is the largest grand palace in Seoul and a must see. It’s a huge complex, and it’s a great idea to leave a few hours to explore the palace properly. Picturesque gardens surround the palace, intricate designs adorn it, and if you wear traditional Korean clothing, you get free entry.

5) Eating in the city: Korean food has seen a recent rise, so in typical fashion, eating in the city is a must do. The best thing to do is to wing it, that means walk around town and eat at wherever takes your fancy. The more locals you see at the restaurant, the better!

6) Jogyesa Temple: Amongst the skyscrapers in the city is this little Buddhist temple. Filled with artwork, statues and figurines, the temple is a spot of quiet amidst the hustle and bustle of the city.

7) Myeongdong: This is known as one of the best streets for shopping in Seoul. It’s a great spot for souvenir shopping and it’s a fantastic place to wonder with an open mind and wallet!

8) N Seoul Tower: If you want an aerial view of the city, then the N Seoul tower is where you want to go. Watching the city transform from the day into night is an amazing view, and one we definitely recommend. Book your spot before sunset to capture the transformation of the city!

9) Bukchon Hanok Village: BH Village is a traditional Korean village, and the perfect way to step back in time to a Korea centuries ago. You can look in the houses and pop into tea houses for traditional rice tea. There’s also a lot of cool shops in the area, and taking the time to weave in and out of the stores and houses is the perfect way to spend an afternoon in the city.

10) Changdeokgung Palace: The palace is a real must see in Seoul due to its history and heritage; so much so, that it’s been declared a UNESCO world heritage site, with elements dating back from the three kingdoms period (57BC to 668AD). When visiting, be sure to check out Huwon, the secret garden. This can only be seen via a tour that is pre-booked, but do leave plenty of time to explore the beautiful secret gardens after you visit the palace.

11) Hangang Park: Located by the banks of the Hangang River, the park has open pathways for visitors to bike along or simply stroll through. If you want a change of pace, or a spot to relax, Hangang Park is the place to head to.

12) Deoksugung Palace: Here is another one of the five grand palaces, and this was home to the Korean royal family until the colonisation of the country by the Japanese Empire. While a smaller palace than the others, Deoksugung Palace is open later than other palaces, and is worth an evening visit.

13) Hangang River: The River is lovely from its banks, and the best way to experience the river is via a boat cruise.

14) Everland: This is the largest theme park in Korea, it’s also one of the most visited in the world. However, don’t let the crowds deter you as Everland is a great way to spend a day in Seoul.

As you can see, Seoul offers so much to do and yet our list only scratches the surface of this modern, yet ancient city. The capital is a diverse place to visit, where a clash of old and new come together to create a uniquely Korean city, where skyscrapers neighbour Hanoks, and business suits mingle with traditional Hanboks.

To read more on what to do in Seoul, click here!

Unexpected gastronomical city break in Saskatoon, Canada

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Canada isn’t always thought of as a destination for gastronomical pleasures. The country, also called ‘America Jr’ is best known for polite people, beavers and the exporter of Jim Carey. However, pull back the curtain, and it offers an amazing destination for city break style holidays. One of our top recommendations is Saskatoon. It’s a picturesque riverside city, with a ton to offer.

These ‘prairie provinces’ tend to get a bad rap, however there are little gems inside of Canada, with a vast array of activities to participate in, and these little provinces offer a unique Canadian experience.

Starting off this journey in the Delta Bessborough is probably the best way to start your trip, a hotel that is known as the ‘castle by the river’ and is surrounded by 5 acres of gardens. A central location to downtown Saskatoon, makes all the more appealing, and convenient.

Heading into the city you can find a huge array of innovative restaurants that rivals some of London’s best offerings. Local chefs, brewers and restaurants owners who are passionate about the food they put on the plate, so much so that it’s hard to choose where to eat.

But we here at Ellyot have put together a list of 16 ‘must try’ places to get you started on your Canadian trip of gastronomy.

  1.       Stick & Stones, is a modern Asian inspired restaurant which opened just last year. It offers Korean and Japanese style cuisine and offers an extensive sake list.
  2.      Poached Breakfast Bistro is a great little breakfast joint that offers an array of classic breakfast-brunch dishes to start your day the right way.
  3.       Calories is a chic bakery located in the city, offering a menu that respects the seasons and the environment.
  4.       Odd Couple, another Asian restaurant offers Chinese cuisine, in which the traditional and modern combine.
  5.       Little Grouse on the Prairie, is an authentic Italian restaurant offering prairie based ingredients in a casual and relaxed setting.
  6.       Drift Sidewalk Café – here is a café that offers all types of fare, from a crepe filled with eggs, feta and jalapeno avocado crème fraiche to sandwiches and teas.
  7.       Leyda’s is a whole food and gluten, nut free café with home cooked meals.
  8.       9 Mile Legacy Brewing is a microbrewery combining high quality and unique ingredients to produce an original drinking experience.
  9.       The Hollows offers contemporary food focused on the seasons, with local ingredients which are all sustainable. It’s a ‘quirky’ and ‘comfortable’ restaurant  and a must try.
  10.   Baba’s Homestyle Perogies is the best place to try authentic Ukrainian food. (Perogies are a type of dumpling made with unleavened dough).
  11.   Ayden Kitchen & Bar is the perfect place to try globally inspired food with amazing hand-crafted cocktails in a relaxed setting. It’s the perfect mix of comfort and warmth with every experience.
  12.   Park Café & Diner is a local greasy spoon, with home cooked comfort foods like French toast, hash browns and bacon and other diner classics, served in a retro 1950’s setting.
  13.   The Night Oven Bakery is the local bakery that crafts all their bread by hand. With a mill and brick oven, this place offers some of the best breads, pastries, scones and cakes in the city.
  14.   The Local Kitchen is a collaborative kitchen that brings participants together to cooks and create dishes. It provides the perfect place to learn some lessons from some of the top chefs in Saskatoon.
  15.   Lucky Bastard creates traditional spirits, with a large mix of artistic spirits, liqueurs and bitters.
  16.   Primal aims to provide Italian food and handmade pastas using local ingredients to create an innovative menu with dishes like fried bread, elk carpaccio with pickled walnuts and a popular dish of marrow bone luge.

Saskatoon is a city for real foodies, as you can see, but this list is just a fraction of the amazing eateries and artisan venues that the Canadian prairie has to offer!


For more tips on must have dishes at the restaurants, click on the link: https://www.lavenderandlovage.com/2017/08/savour-city-break-saskatoon-canada.html

10 ways to help Aleppo, Syria

Wright-Syria3Nearly every day we have seen the horrific pictures that come out of Aleppo, the besieged second city of war-torn Syria. Life has been tough for the inhabitants of the city, with the threat of shelling and atrocities committed by all sides of the civil war.


Below are 10 different charities, who are all doing amazing work to help alleviate some of the suffering that the people of Aleppo have been suffering. They all help to provide clothing, medicine food and shelter to the displaced in the city.


1)    British Red Cross: Teams are providing medical care and emergency services to help transport emergency cases to specialised facilities to get treatment.


2)    The White Helmets: This is a civil defence force that are known due to their distinctive white hats. They are a volunteer group who rescue people from destroyed buildings. Money donated to them will help pay for medical care for injured volunteers as well as supporting families of members who were KIA.


3)    Medecins sans Frontiers: MSF are helping to support 8 hospitals in the city, and are supporting more than 150 health centres across Syria, many in active war zone areas. While MSF can no longer access Aleppo they are still helping to support people.


4)    Preemptive Love Coalition: This a non-profit that tries to address the needs of displaced people, by giving them medical share, food and shelter etc. They’re already helping to feed more than 20,000 people just outside of Aleppo.


5)    Syria Relief: Here is another charity that is providing medical aid and mental health care to treat people who have been living in the war zone and have seen both physical and mental trauma.


6)    International Rescue Committee: IRC has been providing emergency relief and aid to the people of Aleppo since 2012. They support mobile clinics and give children education, amongst other things.


7)    Hand in Hand for Syria: This charity rakes aid to the people living under threat, and they also provide food, clothing along with medical aid too.


8)    Karam Foundation: This is a non-profit organisation that runs development projects and distributes aid within the city. They are currently providing emergency relief for schools inside Syria and supporting refugees who leave.


9)    Islamic Relief: IF has been working on the ground since the conflict began, and have helped more than 3 million people. They provide winter kits which help families survive the cold months.


10)    The Syrian American Med
ical Society: SAMS has already treated over 2.5 million people and are providing medical treatments for people in Syria and refugees in surrounding countries.


For more on how you can help and links to any of these great organisation, click here.

The Golden Trio: Potatoes, Bacon and Cheese

tartifletteIt’s cold, cloudy and raining (it is London after all), and out of the oven comes a tartiflette, golden on top and cheesy in the middle… A perfect dish to beat away those winter blues. A traditional tartiflette, made with a combination of reblochon cheese, bacon lardons, potatoes and onions. Originally hailing from the French region of Savoy, close to the Alps, it’s a hearty dish first seen in 1705.

The basic combination of cheese, potatoes and bacon makes it a timeless classic and a dish that not only offers a wow factor, but hits the spot in these cold days. You can customise whichever way you want (from vegetarian to even using sweet potatoes), it’s a dish to try.

While you may not be able to take a quick flight down to Savoy, you can bring a taste of the Alpine region home. Try the recipe today 😉

Creative, Vibrant and Colourful Ice Cream

haagen_thumb3Cookies and Cream, Strawberry cheesecake, Belgian Chocolate, all classic flavours from Hagen-Dazs, probably our favourite ice cream company (sorry Ben and Jerry’s!). But over recent years, we got the feeling that the old burgundy colour and branding made it feel old and dull, definitely not what you taste though!

Well, recently Haagen-Dazs had a splash of colour added and vibrant makeover, to help make that transition from the 60’s to now. Letting go of that stuffy, boring design, Haagen-Dazs has now opted for a bright fluid and modern feel, one that resonates with a millennial audience. Now each of the flavours sports its own bespoke and tailored package, each one telling a story of the flavours inside the ice cream.

At Ellyot we think branding is important, take a look at our astronaut who defies gravity, the same way the workers of today aren’t constrained by their offices; this is why we love this new rebranding by Haagen-Dazs. A modern and bright colour aesthetic, which really draws the eye, freshens the brand and resonates with its audience.

You can read more about this re-branding here

Choose Green for the New Year. 80 different ways to include healthy food in your life

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We make the choice of being healthier everyday, here are 80 fast, easy recipes from breakfast to meals including smoothies that will make your mouth water, and they don’t take much time! Read more here