Le Bistrot Pierre in Leicester

Pierre

Pierre

After a long day of visiting our “old times” places and shoving our son our memories, we needed a nice wine and dine restaurant to relax, write my memories and relax again. While walking around the streets of Leicester lazily, we passed by this restaurant of Pierre Le Bistro and thought of “maybe we can go for dinner”. Even though we lived in Leicester for a year, our most luxury restaurant to go was Pizza Hut-you know student days. So we did not have much idea about any wine and dine points here.

Wine of the day

Wine of the day, Pinot Noir from Australia

Well, we did not make any reservation and decided to give it a try at 19:00 pm. Sure it would be nice if we did make a reservation, because we just could have a table to sit for only 1 hour.

The good thing is, the staff were very friendly and the food were delicious. There was a children’s menu, plus if you asked for a half portion of any meal, it was possible to do so. This was a bonus I think, because I always tend to order lot’s of varieties and have many leftover.

Soup

Soup

Chef's salad

Chef’s salad

Sea bass was a good choice

Sea bass was a good choice

However, it did not take long for our 1 hour to end soon, so we had to drink our nice wine in fast food format. It wasn’t even dark yet when we were back on the streets of Leicester.

Welcoming atmosphere

Welcoming atmosphere

Rich menu

Rich menu

Until we’ve been to Cardiff a few days later, we did not know that Le Bistrot Pierre was a chain restaurant in UK. So you can try this place in about 15 locations throughout the country.

 

Hilton Head Island

Hilton Head Island beach

Hilton Head Island beach

Hilton head island is an island at the very South part of South Carolina, connected to mainland by a nice road. People who have been to Mediterranean  for some sun and sea holidays, would not dare to come here for such a holiday, but in US, it seemed like it is a very popular island for family fun and golf lovers. For us, it was just the right place for our final night of mini road trip.

Bistro 17

Bistro 17

At the very center of the island, there is a very calm marina, with nice cafes and some shops. So our first stop was there at Bistro 17, to have lunch and to use Wi fi for a hotel. Yes we did have a nice lunch, but no there were no wi fi so we still did not have a place to stay.

Bistro 17 menu

Bistro 17 menu

Nice coctails

Nice cocktails

Inside of Bistro 17

Inside of Bistro 17

The slow motion of the staff reminded me the Greek islands. I suppose, islanders were the same all over the world. So we finished our lunch a bit late and looked for a welcome center, but no, there were no welcome center around here. Just than we saw the Tourism center and popped in. Unfortunately, they were not doing any reservations, but luckily they allowed us to use their wi fi, so that thanks to once again to booking.com, we made our reservation at Hilton Head Marriott Resort, a classical chain hotel, nothing special but comfortable.

It was already almost 5 o’clock, when we finally took our seats on the beach with our books. However, a staff came by just a few minutes later and told us that the chairs to be collected at 5 o’clock. For me the best time of the day to have sunbath is after 5. What a pity. Well, so we did a small walk on the beach and decided to relax ourselves by the pool, where I found a lovely hammock to finally read my book.

A walk by the beach

A walk by the beach

Another nice thing of the hotel was the nice lady at the concierge. She found us a lovely restaurant by the sea at the other side of the island and made reservation from a lovely table, just across the sunset.

Old Fort Pub

Old Fort Pub

Old Fort Pub is an island tradition since 1973. Very nice service and lovely food.

Boosted Beet Salad

Boosted Beet Salad

Grouper

Grouper

Once more my favorite, yes mussels and crabs

Once more my favorite, yes mussels and crabs

An wine of the evening

And wine of the evening, Pinot Noir from Santa Lucia, Hahn Estates.

When we got back to the hotel, we decided to take walk again by the beach and we were so surprised to see so many people doing shell hunting at the low tides of the sea, with lights in their hands. Such a lovely view it was, like dozens of fireflies around. So we took our time, sitting on the sand and watching children cheering, when they find something interesting.

Next day, we did have a long way to drive back to Athens, more than 4 hours. So we just did a quick tour of the island next morning to some beach area and some beach shops.

Nice and calm, beach shopping

Nice and calm, beach shopping

 

Nice to watch the kids

Nice to watch the kids

We very much love to come back here for a longer time not for the sea but for golf. Who knows, maybe one day.

So this is the end of our 2 weeks US tour in and around Athens, Georgia. Our son loved to take the course at University of Georgia, so maybe one day there is possibility that he may want to come back here for the University. Of course I would prefer him to choose a more fancy city, but let’s do not think about it now, as we still have another 6 years to go.

Next: Don’t know, I remember, I did not finish my Japan trip, maybe I can go on with it, as once more it is time to make plans for Sakura (Cherry Blossom) season. What do you think?

 

 

Legal Sea Foods in Atlanta

Nice place

Good choice around Centennial Park

Getting quite bored at Georgia Aquarium and going out quicker than we expected, we did want to have some afternoon drinks and relax away from the crowd. Looking around, we saw this place and gave it a chance.

Good alternatives for children

Good alternatives for children

The menu did have good alternatives for all of us. So a good size of burger for children (yes plural, cause a friend of our son was together with us) and a nice assortment of shrimps with wine.

Relax time away from crowd of tourists

Relax time away from crowd of tourists

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The bonus of the day was the football match from the World Cup. What on earth would 3 men ask for more.

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What would 3 men ask for more

A calm bar, helpful staff and nice food, even on Saturday afternoon.

A calm bar, helpful staff and nice food, even on Saturday afternoon.

 

 

Georgia on my mind with children

One of the finest restaurants in Athens

One of the finest restaurants in Athens

I know most of my followers are from Europe and quite a lot from Brasil. Well, here is a destination where a normal European tourist would not dare to go. We wouldn’t! Unless our son did attend a summer course in Athens. I mean Athens, Georgia. I mean Athens, Georgia in USA. I studied many travel magazines beforehand, and almost nothing touristic is written in them about Georgia. Maybe some about Atlanta, which I will write about in the following weeks. But a road trip from Atlanta to East Coast-Savannah is a nice and fun trip with a stopover in Athens. And when you stop in Athens, 5&10 is one of the finest restaurants, where you can enjoy a dinner with children. Just make sure to make a reservation.

Wine and dine

Wine and dine

Wine of the day is a Pinor Noir of Lange

Wine of the day is a Pinor Noir of Lange

This is a nice restaurant, on a nice green road, beautifully restored historic house with private parking. Opened in 2000 by Hugh Acheson and has a very Southern Menu with seafood, chicken, lamb, pork and nice fresh vegetables. The decoration is simple, with some touch of 19th century furniture.

Mixed Greens

Mixed Greens

Frogmore Stew

Frogmore Stew

Local Vegetable Plate

Local Vegetable Plate

More to come in the coming weeks about Athens and further East.

But I also want to write about a summer in the UK. Let’s follow and see.

A sushi experience in Japan

Sushi monster is happy

Sushi monster is happy

On our second evening in Japan, it was more than enough to be eating in not-worth-to tell restaurants and our son -as a sushi monster- was getting angry with the food. So we were lucky to come across a sushi bar/restaurant, before checking in to our hotel in Hiroshima.

Not so easy. In many (almost all) restaurants in Japan, there is always a waiting time to be seated. The good thing is you spend this time, comfortably sitting on the chairs provided by the restaurant. The bad thing is this waiting time can be frustratedly long, sometimes. But before to be able to be seated to these nice chairs, there is always a little exam to pass. By the end of our trip, we were experienced in answering these questions, but in the first experience of sushi restaurant;

First exam

First exam

So, we went in (as normal), asked to be seated for three (as normal) and the waiter asked us something that we did not understand one single word. So we asked “Do you speak English?” (as normal), and she said “Yes” (as normal), but we understood that the only English she speaks is the word “yes”. She showed us the exam questionnaire similar to the one above and expected to understand it. With the struggle of about 10 minutes with still waiting to be seated, an English speaking gentleman among the customers helped us at last. In short, actually the questions were very simple: Name, how many people and where do you want to be seated (Can be inside/outside or smoking/non smoking, or bar/table or a combination)

Waiting our place to be ready

Waiting our place to be ready

And so we were accepted to sit inside at comfortable chairs, in order to wait for our table and after about a 10 minutes waiting time, there we were, sitting on bar stools and started to choose and eat from the sushi plates on trails passing in front of us.

Just grab and eat

Just grab and eat

However, when we tried to grab a fake sushi from the bar to eat, all staff made fun of us, as some of the plates did have a fake sushi on them and they were made to order, which we did not know as you may guess. We understood that, higher priced sushi, were not done in advance and either a picture or a plastic (believe me looks like real) of it was moving on the trail, for customers to order.

The pricing is another exam of these restaurants, which we did not consider much because, all were very cheap compared to the sushi we eat in our hometown. But if you need to calculate what you eat in advance, there is usually such a wall:

Menu on wall

Menu on wall

On this wall you try to understand the colors of the plates that are 130 yen. The plates other than these are more expensive.

Some interesting plates on the trail

Some interesting plates on the trail

Next: Hiroshima and around

Capo San Martino Lugano – Switzerland

Restaurant with a nice view of Lugano lake

Restaurant with a nice view of Lugano lake

Let’s talk about Italy. I know, I know, the headline looks like a Lugano trip. However, this trip we re-did a couple of years ago was a part of an Italy tour of “Lago Maggiore”, “Lago Como” and “Lago Lugano”. Inevitably, our car took us to Switzerland on a rainy day of end-April.

Remember we did a a long weekend in Lugano when our son was just 5 years old. It was the good old days of last trip with a pushchair, where we could enjoy walking, while he could enjoy to sit and relax. 5 years later, with a more crowded group of a cousin, aunt, grandma and grandpa, our son wanted to show his 3-year-old cousin the Mini Swiss. Once more in a spring day, once more on a rainy day.

Mini Swiss

5 years before

5 years after

5 years after

After a long drive from our hotel Villa Borghi, in Italy and a tiring visit to mini Swiss with some on and off rains, we headed to Lugano with the hope of coming across a nice restaurant with a nice view.

Well, be careful what you wish for. Capo San Martino, was just the exact restaurant we would wish to have lunch, with the nice view and the nice fish.

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Nice fish

Served gently

Served gently

Just a few minutes drive from Mini Swiss towards Lugano, settled on a high cliff of Lake Lugano, overlooking the Lugano city and sail boats on the lake.

Next: We are now very excited about our next trip to UK. Yes, we will not be able to rent a car as they drive from the wrong side. However, we are sure UK has lots of things to offer to travelers with children. Our stops are: Leicester, Cardiff and London.

Pony Dining: Fine Dine in Brisbane, Australia

Little shopping tour

Little shopping tour

Our final stop of great Australia tour was Brisbane. An evening walk from our Hotel, Novotel Brisbane, to Eagle Street Pier is a relaxing and nice highlight of the city. Although there was just one nice street down from our hotel to Eagle Street Pier, we preferred to turn rights and lefts, to explore Queen Street Mall and the little streets around for some final shopping opportunities.

Colorful shops

Colorful shops

Very colorful shops, lots of happy looking people, on street music performances and “happy hour” fans overflowing from the on street cafes and bars. So nice to walk around and enjoy.

An interesting cross walk

An interesting cross walk

Another highlight of the area is a very little park: Anzac Square. This park consists of many monuments to remember Anzac’s who have been to various wars around the world. If you ever go to Dardalles in Turkey, visit the memorial parks and learn the stories of Anzac’s came from such a far country died at a meaningless war, this little park means a lot to you. I recommend you to read the novel The Long White Cloud-Gallipoli of Buket Uzuner. A novel about a young New-Zealander woman coming to Gallipoli to find the lost grave of her great-grandfather who died in the Battle of Gallipoli, and the stunning eighty-five year old secret of a Turkish granny strolling in the Gallipoli National Park with her cane. (www.buketuzuner.com).

Lightened up buildings

Lightened up buildings

After a couple of hours, there we were finally at Pony Dining; a heaven for meat lovers like us, on Eagle Street Pier.

Wine of the evening, with menu

Wine of the evening, with menu

The wine of the evening is from Voyager Estates Girt by Sea, Cabarnet Merlot, a perfect match with well cooked steak and fried brains.

Fried brains after 30 years

Fried brains after 30 years

The last time I ate pan fried brains was when I was 10-years-old or so. My mom was not a vegetarian than, brain was in her “very healthy” list and fried food were not added to “black list” of our diets. So she quite often cooked it, pan fried or boiled which I loved both. So it was a nice surprise to find it in the menu. Actually, there is a good steakhouse in the city where we live and we go there quite often. We advised the chef to add this to the menu a couple of times, but  unfortunately he still did not do so.

A great combination of tastes

A great combination of tastes

All other plates we ordered were inventively combined tastes of sweet and bitters. The atmosphere was also very nice, lots of wood with black and red.

Buttered breads

Buttered breads

This probably will be my final post about Australia. I hope you enjoyed our adventures and my posts. Let me know if you need any other advice or if any of my posts help you in planning your trips.

Next: I think it is time to write about Japan now, what do you think?

Suits very much to me

Suits very much to me