Wednesday, 19 December 2012

Steak+ Restaurant

How I discovered it: My business partner Ali and I were looking for somewhere to have an early supper this week – and everywhere was chock-a-block with office Christmas parties! I suggested we head to my old ‘hood, and we ended up at Grays Inn Road and spied this restaurant – which was empty!

What they say: “Steak+ is a new eatery bar and restaurant in Holborn. Even [though] we are a Steak house, our menu is various and colourful, everyone can find something on it. We serve delicious Scottish steaks, Fish, Lamb, even vegetarian options we have on our menu.” 

What I Say: The sign outside was very modern, but the restaurant itself is more old-fashioned and continental. Reminded me of restaurants I've seen in eastern Europe (it's perhaps not surprising that co-owner Peter Ilic hails from Yugoslavia). They have a short menu featuring primarily steak and burgers. We couldn’t believe the prices – filet steak for £14.95!!! Very cheap for central London. And the wine list was also incredibly reasonable - champagne started at £18 a bottle. As it was Christmas, we decided to treat ourselves to both of those things.

When the steaks came they were HUGE, delicious and perfectly cooked, accompanied by wonderful fat chips, grilled Portobello mushroom and green vegetables cooked al dente. Perfect! Very nice champagne too (we went for the mid-list one at £28). The waiter told us they made the desserts on the premises, so – even though we were stuffed - we had to try them. I had the walnut cake and Ali had the banoffee pie. Both delicious. 

So if you’re looking for excellent, astonishingly well-priced food, a central location, attentive staff and an atmosphere conducive to conversation (no blaring music – at least the night we were there) – try it! We are definitely going back. Many, many times.

The verdict: Lorelei loves it!

Monday, 2 April 2012

Purse Angels Tipsyfeet foldable shoes

How I discovered them: I had an awards ceremony to go to recently (the Annie Awards in Los Angeles, if you must know), and I remembered the last time I’d worn pretty party shoes – my feet were killing me by the end of the evening! I didn't want that to happen again and, having heard rumours of foldable flats you could slip into your bag, I did an online search and came across Purse Angels.

What they say: “Ease the pain of those great nights out in your killer high heels by slipping into your Tipsyfeet after-party pumps. Discreetly carried in a small pouch, which folds out to become a useful shoulder bag for carrying your heels and other bits and bobs for the journey home.”

What I say: What a godsend! At the end of a loooong awards ceremony and several hours spent mingling while trying to manage oyster shooters and polenta-on-a-stick, my dogs were barking. We didn’t quite have to walk all the way back to our hotel, but our ‘ride’ was in a parking garage about half a mile away. A joy to slip out of the heels and into these stylish, comfy flatties. Their cunningly-designed carrying pouch opens up into a bag just the right size for toting one’s now-discarded shoes. Heaven. Added to that, they come in loads of colours – you’re sure to find something you like. 

Tip: The shoes do run a little bit small, in my opinion; if you’re at the top of a size range (S, M, L and XL), consider ordering a size up. Having read that advice on some review websites, I did – and was glad I had.

What could be improved: Even folded in their pouch they don’t fit easily into an evening bag. But that’s physics. The pouch has a wrist strap, so I just carried mine as though it were a small camera.

The verdict: Lorelei loves it!

Friday, 20 January 2012

Clinique RInse-Off Eye Makeup Solvent

How I discovered it: I received a small bottle of this a thousand years ago in a ‘gift with purchase’. ‘Gift with purchase’ is a fantastic idea and very clever on the part of the retailer – like a drug dealer, they get you hooked on new products with a ‘free sample’. 

What they say: “Fast, water-rinsable eye makeup dissolver. For quick makeup changes and repairs. Cleans up eyes easily without disturbing other makeup. No rubbing. No smudging. No oil.

What I say: Once I started using this, there was no turning back! It looks pretty unimpressive – like a small blue plastic bottle of water. But wowzer! It really works. I wear contact lenses, and don’t like anything greasy around my eyes and this is perfect. Also, as an actress, I often have to wear tons of eye makeup – this seems to cut through anything! Over the years in the theatre, this is the product my dressing-room mates borrowed more than any other – and they’ve all loved it. As one actress said (after helping herself), ‘Oooh, my eyes feel like they’ve had a treatment.’

It’s also great for ‘quick fix’ clean up, using a cotton bud or tissue. Although it says ‘rinse off’, I often don’t. Its water-like consistency doesn’t seem to leave any residue.
At around £14/$17 for a 125 ml bottle, it’s a great buy. It lasts for absolutely ages. I rarely have to replenish supplies.

What could be improved: Nothing. Excellent product, lasts forever. 

The verdict: Lorelei loves it!