Camile Thai – Brunch Review

Last weekend, myself and two of my besties were lucky enough to be invited to the launch of Camile Thai’s new brunch menu, at their first “sit-in” restaurant in Phibsborough, Dublin. Those of you who are familiar with the Camile brand will know that they are famed for their Thai takeaway restaurant chain, so I was a little surprised when I heard that they were launching a brunch menu and I have to say that I really questioned what on earth “brunch with a Thai twist” would consist of.

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It turns out that “brunch with a Thai twist” is delicious and it’s EXACTLY what one needs to recover after a night out on the town. The brunch menu at Camile offers a wide range of options from classic breakfast dishes like “Eggs Benedict” to more substantial dishes like their “Katsu Chicken Fillets”.  The restaurant doesn’t offer a large selection of brunch cocktails yet but, the girls and I started our afternoon with a “Kir Camile” which is a lovely fruity combination of Prosecco and Creme de Cassis. It should be noted that they serve a really good quality glass of Prosecco that’s fairly light but has gorgeous almond, pear and apple flavours – for me, this is really important because I’m so sick of the “muck” that’s often served at some of the “bottomless brunches” that have become a fad in recent times.

 

 

Moving on to the food. First up, let’s talk about the “Eggs Benedict”. My friend had this dish, so I’m giving you the low-down from her point of view. This is probably the best time to mention that the three of us could be classified as “food snobs”. We have all worked in the hospitality/food industry, so our standards are pretty high. A brunch menu is not complete without the addition of an “Eggs Benedict” dish and Camile’s version consists of two poached eggs, rashers and chilli hollandaise sauce – all served on a toasted muffin. The presentation of this dish was brilliant and as you can see from the photo, it looked really appetising. There’s nothing particularly Thai about “Eggs Benedict” but, my friend really enjoyed the kick that the chilli hollandaise sauce gave to the dish. It’s a small but effective twist that transformed a dish that can be quite bland, to a flavoursome option – if you’re popping in for a quick breakfast, this is a great choice.

Next up, we have my dish of choice, the “Katsu Chicken Fillets”. This is the PERFECT option for anyone who is feeling hungover and needs a spicy pick-me-up. The crisp chicken fillets were accompanied by green curry sauce and fried potatoes that were seasoned with garlic, chilli and salt. This dish is ultimately a high-end version of the “spice bag” which just happens to be my takeaway of choice if I’ve had a few too many cocktails the night before. The chicken was cooked to perfection – the coating was perfectly crisp but the meat itself was juicy and full of flavour. The potatoes were the kind of “roasties” that melt in your mouth – they were fluffy on the inside and crisp on the outside. I detest under-cooked or soggy fried potatoes but these were some of the best that I’ve tasted and the seasoning was great too – spicy but not too salty. The only minor issue that I have was that I would have liked more green curry sauce to be served with the dish but this is just a small hiccup and is easily resolved by simply asking for more sauce.

 

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The final dish that we sampled was the “Salmon Fish Cake Slider” which was served with a toasted muffin, roccola, siracha mayonnaise and fried potatoes. Now, I’m not a big fan of salmon but the lady who ordered it is. She described it as zesty with a kick of spice and loved the siracha mayo which added flavour to the fish. Again, the spiced fried potatoes were great. I have to admit that this dish looks divine!

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Calories don’t count on Sunday so all three of us opted to try the “Warm Death By Chocolate” dessert. I’m a “dessert person” and would usually choose sweet over savoury but I’m afraid that for me, this dessert fell a little short of the mark. It was light and tasty but it wasn’t exactly “death by chocolate” which, in my opinion, translates to calorific and smothered with rich chocolate sauce and/or caramel. Again, the presentation was great and this might be a good option for those who don’t enjoy heavy desserts but I would like to see a more luscious dessert option on the menu. The dessert didn’t take away from the enjoyment of the brunch experience, it’s just a little constructive criticism for the restaurant.

We had a brilliant afternoon at Camile – it was a fabulous place to recover after a night out/ The decor is really nice and relaxed, the staff were absolutely lovely and the customer service was flawless. Again, having worked in hospitality, we see this as something that either makes or breaks a restaurant. All three of us have agreed that we will definitely return at some stage – maybe next time we’ll opt for an evening meal with some of that delicious Prosecco.

Thai Brunch at Camile, Phibsborough is available every Saturday and Sunday from 12pm to 4pm and all the dishes are priced between €5.95 and €13.95 – it’s well worth a trip!

Rouge x

Graduation Day – What I Wore.

We do not need magic to change the world, we carry all the power we need inside ourselves already: we have the power to imagine better. – JK Rowling.

Friday 11th of September 2015 marked the end of the ‘University’ era of my life – graduation day at NUI Maynooth. The entire day was one dedicated to reminiscing on the past four years. There were ups and there were downs, but what I will remember above all else is the life-long friends who took the journey with me.

I was determined to look my best on the day because knowing my Mam, the photographs will take permanent residence on the walls of our house. Many of you have asked me to share the details of my outfit so here goes:

My dress was ‘Self Portrait’ and I purchased it in BT2. This brand has caught the interest of well known personalities ranging from Pippa O’Connor to Jenna Dewan-Tatum and now, I know why. The design is quirky and fun but the quality of this dress is AMAZING! It’s a statement piece so although expensive, I imagine that it will last a lifetime! You can check out ‘Self Portrait’s’ AW15 range at BT2 here.

 

Check out these gorgeous babies! My shoes were by ‘Lipsy’, purchased from Debenhams AW15 collection. I’ve been looking for some sassy, yet sophisticated black heels for ages and I think these are perfect. Some of you will already know that ‘Kurt Geiger’ produce ‘Lipsy’ footwear which means that they’re great quality at a fraction of the price of the ‘Kurt Geiger London’ range. You can find these ones here.

And finally, let’s talk about accessories. Because the dress had a lot of pattern and detail, I kept it simple and chic. This beautiful ring was sent to me by ‘Lucky Eyes London’ and is available for purchase here. It is advertised as ‘stackable’ but I love wearing it alone for a dainty, girly effect. If you would like to view the products before purchase, pieces from ‘Lucky Eyes London’ are now available at House of Fraser – I’m obsessed with their ‘Evil Eye’ bracelets too.

So, what do you think of the final look? Let me know in the comments, I love to hear your style advice!

Rouge x

Ladies Day at the Dublin Horse Show 2015 – Hair Fascinators by Michelle Foley.

I enjoy hats. And when one has filthy hair, that is a good accessory. -Julia Roberts.

Many of you will already know that I attended ‘Ladies Day’ at the Dublin Horse Show this year and thoroughly enjoyed the event. As a first time attendee, I didn’t know what to expect from the show but I was majorly impressed by the fantastic atmosphere. A day filled with fun, food and fashion? What more could a girl ask for? A few of you have asked that I share my outfit details and as ever, I aim to please.

  
One of my favourite shops at the moment is Ollie and Mac, a boutique based in Co. Meath. They have an excellent selection of elegant party-wear and from there I picked an irresistable tulle skirt in a lavender shade. I paired it with a simple cream, halterneck top from Topshop – similar can be found here.

  

However, the stand out piece of my outfit on the day was definitely the hat. Lots of you have been complimenting the design all week, and I’m delighted that you loved it as much as I did. The hat was a bespoke piece from Hair Fascinators, created by my favourite milliner of the moment, Michelle Foley. Taking the time to discuss ideas with me, Michelle focused on creating a hat which would accentuate my outfit. I highly recommend contacting Hair Fascinators if you need a hat for any occasion – I know that the A/W ‘wedding season’ is fast approaching!

  

Above are some more hats designed by Michelle, aren’t they exquisite?

Let me know what you think of the look, I would love your feedback!

Rouge x

Flormar Fabulous!

Ok, so anyone who is following me on Instagram or Twitter will know that I’ve become obsessed with Flormar, a brand who have just recently introduced themselves in Ireland. I’ve been posting little snippets of my favourites for weeks now, so today I’m going to share a full post reviewing my must-haves.

Bronzer

With contouring remaining a huge trend on the make-up scene, a good bronzer is an essential tool in any kit. Check out Flormar’s ‘Bronzing Powder Face and Body’. Those of us who don’t tan will know that finding the correct shade of bronzer is a tough task, unless you favour the oompa loompa look. However, this Flormar powder is available in a perfectly subtle shade for fair skinned folk – result! The RRP of the bronzer is €9.95 and because it is positively huge in size, the value for money is insane. I’ve been using the product by applying it to the hollows of my cheeks with an angled contouring brush.

Flormar Lip gloss
Next up, I am madly in love with the ‘Long Wearing Lip Gloss’ in the shade ‘Backstage’. When I first received this colour in a goodie bag, I was majorly apprehensive of the super bright shade. However, I quickly learned that the formula can be layered for desired colour intensity. At €5.95, I couldn’t walk past one of these glosses in a pharmacy without picking it up.
Flormar Primer
Finally, we have my favourite Flormar product. This ‘Illuminating Primer Make-Up Base’ is liquid gold. I’ve tested it for both day-time and night-time wear and love the results. The formula creates a smooth base for make-up application. It is super hydrating and evens out dry patches while retaining a mattifying effect on skin. The best part is that the primer ensures that make-up remains on the skin for an extended period of time, eliminating the need for foundation touch ups. At €9.95, this product will be replacing more high-end versions in my make-up kit.

Here’s a look at the three products discussed upon application:


Flormar products are available in selected pharmacies nationwide and online at Simplyfoxy.com. What do you think? Will you be purchasing?

Rouge x

The Body Shop ‘Virgin Mojito’ Range.

If you follow me on any form of social media, you will know that I am a huge fan of cocktails. In fact, I have been known to drag unsuspecting friends out for brunch simply for some fruity refreshments. My favourite, you ask? Well, James Bond can keep his Martini – make mine a Mojito. The zesty lime and tingling mint flavours make a Mojito and experience for the senses. They not only taste great, but also smell delicious so when I heard that The Body Shop were releasing a ‘Virgin Mojito’ range, I expected to be a huge fan.

  

I was sent the ‘Virgin Mojito Body Scrub’, ‘Virgin Mojito Body Sorbet’ and ‘Virgin Mojito Body Splash’ and have been using them in that sequence for the past two weeks. Initially, I’ll admit that I was a bit apprehensive. I mean, I love the smell of Mojitos, but what would the people at work think? I didn’t want anyone under the illusion that I’d undertaken a new diet involving cocktails for breakfast!

I needn’t have worried, The Body Shop have created this range based on the Caribbean scents associated with Mojitos, rather than the alcoholic ones. Each product unleashes a burst of fruity fragrance upon application so steer clear if you’re not a fan of sweet scents but, I for one am OBSESSED!
  
First up, we have the ‘Virgin Mojito Body Scrub’. This is my favourite product of the range. I’ve been applying it to dry or slightly damp skin and massaging before rinsing it off in the shower. It’s a very gentle scrub so if you’re looking to remove lashings of false tan, you may need something more heavy-duty but this is perfect for regular, everyday exfoliation. My skin has become significantly more healthy looking after just two weeks of use.

  
Next, I’ve been using ‘Virgin Mojito Body Sorbet’. I wasn’t a huge fan of the texture of this lotion when I began using it because it is a gel consistency rather than a cream one. I love my rich, luxe body butters but after using the  ‘sorbet’ formula for a few weeks, I have grown used to it. Due to the fact that it is a light moisturiser, this product would be perfect for those with oily skin.

  
Finally, I have been drowning myself in the gorgeous ‘Virgin Mojito Body Splash’ after every shower. I just cannot get enough of this scent. The fragrance is zesty and sweet, ideal for the summer season. It also clings to skin for hours after application so it is great value for money. I’ve actually been reaching for it in the place of expensive perfumes lately.

Overall, this range is well worth a look if you enjoy a fresh, fruity fragrance. If you want more information you can visit The Body Shop’s website.

What’s your favourite skincare range at the moment?

Rouge x

Get The Festival Look. 

As a few of you will already know, I made a trip to Longitude festival in Marlay Park at the weekend. Hozier, you were fantastic – I have no objection if you would like to serenade me in the near future. 

Many of you have been asking about my festival look via Twitter so I’m here to share the details. Unable to pull off any sort of hipster chic, I opted for a casual jeans look. I’m madly in love with my Salsa Denim jeans which I purchased in Brown Thomas. They’re designed to slim and define the thigh and bum area, perfect for anyone who is a little body concious. You can explore similar styles here. I paired my jeans with a simple top, a chic sun hat and some Hunter Boots which are admittedly very expensive but extremely comfortable! 

  
Many of you will have noticed that I love my neutral eyeshadow / red lipstick combo but this weekend, I decided to try something a little different. Sleek sent me some gorgeous palettes to play with and I couldn’t resist a pop of colour! 

  
 
How pretty are these babies? I used a combination of ‘Arabian Nights’ and ‘Del Mar Volume II’ to create the perfect festival look. 

I began my look using the ‘Del Mar’ palette. I used the neutral, yet shimmery shades of ‘Loco’ and ‘Pearl’ as base shadow. Then, I applied a dusting of the lilac purple shade ‘Puro’ to the inner corner of the lids. Next, I opened up the treasure trove that is ‘Arabian Nights’, using the electric blue shade ‘Simbad’s Seas’ and ‘Aladdin’s Lamp’ to add definition in the crease and outer corner of the eye. I also used the rusted bronze of ‘Aladdin’s Lamp’ to line my lower lashes. 
  
I loved these shadows. They’re really highly pigmented and easy to blend. The best part? They’re a steal at just €10.49 each. The only problem is that both palettes are limited edition, so I suggest visiting your local stockist before they sell out! 

  

I completed my look with a little gel liner, a splash of neutral lipstick and some generic diamanté jewels. 

What do you think? As always, keep me updated if you try any of the products!

Rouge x 

Avenue by Nick Munier – Foodie Review.

Nick Munier is a top class chef, best known for appearing on TV shows such as Hell’s Kitchen and MasterChef Ireland so when I heard that he had launched a new eatery, I couldn’t wait to visit. Last week, I took a trip to Dublin’s newest hotspot ‘Avenue by Nick Munier’. Located in Temple Bar, the property contains two restaurants – “Eclair de Luxe” which is a casual all-day dining area and “Munier at Avenue” which provides a more high-end, opulent experience. My mother and I chose to treat ourselves and dined in “Munier at Avenue”.

While speaking about the interior design of the restaurant, Nick described how he desired to create an atmosphere of relaxed luxury, similar to that experienced on a yacht. I can vouch for the fact that the establishment is far removed from the hustle and bustle of Temple Bar. With an element of Parisian chic, we were transported to another world filled with culinary delights. Skipping the starters, we relaxed in the ‘marine’ themed space, with delicious cocktails in hand.

So, what did we think of the food? As a main course, I sampled the ‘Grilled Lobster’ which was served with garlic and herb butter, saffron aioli and fries. The lobster was one of the best I have tried in Dublin. Sweet and succulent, it retained a ‘melt in mouth’ consistency- I will definitely be back for this dish. The ‘skinny’ fries weren’t anything out of the ordinary but, they provided the perfect light accompaniment to the lobster meat.

  

My mother opted to try the ‘Seared Hake Fillet’ accompanied by cauliflower, shrimp, asparagus and Sauternes sauce. She was delighted with the dish, explaining it to be flavorsome and juicy with the sauce complimenting it perfectly. One of the best cooks I know, she is a very tough food critic to please so congratulations to Nick and the team.

  

As many of you will know, I do have an eternal sweet tooth so I couldn’t wait to try the dessert named ‘Another Fine Mess’ which has been trending all over social media. A delightful combination of raspberry jelly, ice-cream and meringue, this dish is a feast for the senses. It looks great and tastes even better. This dessert provides perfect contrast between the sweetness of the meringue and the sharp flavor of raspberry – heavenly. I suspect that those fond of pavlova and Eton mess will return to ‘Avenue’ for this dish time and time again.

  

For more information on ‘Avenue by Nick Munier’ and a sneak peek at the menus, have a look here. If you visit on my recommendation, let me know – I would love to hear about your experience.

Rouge x