Mrs Mulled Wine

A UK Christmas Blog | Seasonal Recipes | Christmas Crafts | Festive Days Out | Gift Ideas

Sunday, 26 November 2017

Afternoon Tea with Santa in Newcastle - Wyevale Garden Centre Gosforth Review

Credit - Newcastle Family Life
Lindsay from Newcastle Family Life enjoyed Afternoon Tea with Santa at Wyevale Garden Centre with her two little ones recently and it sounds like they had a wonderful time. I have to say it sounds like a bit of a bargain with tickets for little ones priced at £10 including afternoon tea, story time with Santa, biscuit decorating and a lovely gift too. You can read Lindsay's full review and book online here. 
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Thursday, 23 November 2017

Mrs Mulled Wine's Top Black Friday Deals

*Post contains affiliate links


I've scoured the internet and put together some of the best Black Friday deals I've stumbled upon. Let me know if you spot any bargains too!


Amazon

Echo Dot - was £49.99 now £34.99 - shop here
Fire TV Stick - was £39.99 now £24.99 - shop here
Fire HD8 Kids Tablet - was £129.99 now £89.99 - shop here
PS4 Bundle with Fifa & Call of Duty - £299 - shop here


Wilko

Oral B Pro Electric Toothbrush - was £50 now £17.50  - buy here
Hot Wheels Light and Sound Extreme Action - was £15 now £10 - buy here
Wilko Blox Car Transporter Set - was £60 now £35 - buy here
20% Off Fragrance - buy here
Remington Ionic Hairdryer - was £35 now £15 - buy here



Asda

50% off baby essentials including car seats, pushchairs, prams and cots - shop here
Lego City Fire Boat - was £54.97 - now £33.97 - shop here
Hornby Freight Hauler Train - was £60 - now £40 - shop here
My Little Pony Canterlot & Seaquestria Castle - was £100 - now £70 - shop here
Barbie Dream Campervan - was £99.99 - now £67 - shop here
Mamas and Papas Giovani Dolls Pram - was £50 - now £25 - shop here



House of Fraser

Ted Baker Tote Bay - was £40 now £28 - shop here
Le Creuset Starter Set  - was £214 now £99 - shop here
Clinique Merry & Bright Gift Set - was £60 now £30 - shop here
Joules Coat - was £189 now £151.20 - shop here
Michael Kors Signature Tote Bag - was £175 now £140 - shop here




Tesco Gift Experiences

2 for 1 Bannatyne Spa Day with Afternoon Tea - shop here
Afternoon Tea for Two at Patisserie Valerie plus cake gift - was £35 now £26.25 - shop here
Three-course meal for 2 at Prezzo with wine - was £30 now £22.50 - shop here
The view from the Shard with three course Michelin dining and bubbles for two - was £99 now £74.25 - shop here



Boots

Liz Earle Smoothly Does It - Was £70 now £42 - shop here
Bare Minerals Beauty Resolution Kit - was £42 now £22 - shop here
Paco Rabanne Lady Million - was £58.50 now £34.50 - shop here
Oral B Genius Toothbrush set - was £280 now £89.99 - shop here



Currys

Save up to £1800 on 4K ultra HD TVs - shop here
Google Home Mini - was £49.99 now £35 - shop here
BOSE Noise Cancelling Headphones - was £299 now £159 - shop here
JVC Bluetooth Soundbar - was £99 now £40 - buy here
Save £200 on Mac - shop here
Save £300 on Laptops - shop here



The Perfume Shop 

Jimmy Choo Flash - was £46 now £19.99 - shop here
Diesel - Only the Brave - was £49.99 now £24.99 - shop here



Let me know over on the Mrs Mulled Wine Facebook page if you spot any deals


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Tuesday, 14 November 2017

A Hassle-free Christmas with Riverford Organic plus Giveaway worth £45

Riverford Organic believe in good food, good farming and good business. Everything they grow and make is 100% organic. This Christmas they will be offering a range of organic turkeys, spiced beef, puddings & nut roasts for the main feast as well as organic beers, wine and champagne. They can also deliver our organic Christmas hampers as gifts across our UK network. Find out more and order online here. Here are my top picks for Christmas from their site:





1 - Small Christmas Dinner Box with Turkey and Trimmings

This box contains everything you need for a special festive feast. I love the idea of ordering a box like this and knowing it's all organic and everything is taken care of - avoiding the crowds in the supermarket is very appealing and this box allows you to do just that. With vegetables, a stuffed organic turkey, pigs in blankets, cranberry sauce, mince pies, Christmas pudding and even cheese, your whole Christmas lunch is taken care of with this box. Order online here.


2 - Large British Cheese Box

This cheese box will serve 8+ people and is a bit of a bargain at just £28.75. Featuring seven types of Organic British Cheese, it's available to order now for deliveries from 3 December. Find out more here. 


3 - Boxing Day Box

I feel like the Boxing Day buffet is almost as big a deal as the main event. Featuring a 1.5kg ham, home cooked pork pie, a truckle of cheddar and more, I'm very tempted to order this myself! Find out more and buy online here. 


4 - Organic Goose

We once cooked Goose alongside our turkey for Christmas and keep saying we'll do it again but we never seem to get around to it. I love that you can order a range of Organic meats and nut roasts from Riverford and don't need to worry about sourcing a good supplier. Find out more here.


5 - The Main Event

We often buy a turkey direct from a farm and I really do think you can taste the difference. If you can't push the boat out at Christmas, when can you? Riverford offer a range of Organic turkeys to suit all budgets and sizes and will deliver direct to your door. Find out more here.

I think the key benefits for me with Riverford are that they only use the best Organic products direct from their farm and they deliver everything you need for Christmas direct to your door. It's a hassle-free service that will provide a delicious Christmas feast. 


Win Christmas Treats from Riverford Organic worth £45

I've teamed up with Riverford Organic to provide one lucky reader with a selection of Organic Christmas Treats worth £45. Contents are likely to include award winning mince pies, chocolates, cranberry sauce, Christmas pudding and more festive surprises. To enter, simply use the Rafflecopter below. You can enter daily via Twitter.



  • Prize is a box of Christmas treats from Riverford Organic worth £45. Exact contents subject to availability and to be selected by Riverford Organic
  • Delivery is available to any UK mainland address
  • Giveaway is not open to Riverford Organic or Mrs Mulled Wine employees
  • No cash alternative or refunds are available
  • Winner will be selected at random from all valid entries and contacted via email within 7 days of the giveaway closing. The winner MUST reply to the email within 7 days in order to organise delivery before Christmas
  • Giveaway ends at midnight on Sunday 3 December 2017


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Monday, 13 November 2017

Where do you buy your Christmas Food?

I am not brand loyal at all when it comes to shopping for Christmas food and I also can't think of anything worse than walking around the supermarket with a packed trolley and spending £300 a few days before Christmas! I've tried a few different methods over the year and thought it would make a good topic for a blog post. I'd love to hear what you do in the comments......



Asda Online Shop

When we lived in Wallsend, Asda Benton was not far from us at all and it was probably the place I did most of my shopping. I have a bit of a horror story from Christmas time though that actually put my off Asda Delivery for life! It was December 2010 and it was a year that we suffered from fairly bad snow. I was heavily pregnant with Jack (who was born on 22 Dec), on crutches and in serious pain due to SPD and also in charge of a one-year-old and four-year-old. I ordered my Steve was working 12 hour shifts in the run up to Christmas so I ordered my online Christmas food shopping and lots of supplies through Asda for 19 December. There was no way I'd manage to make it to the shops in my condition and supervise two little ones so this seemed like the most sensible option. Only it wasn't. My order did not turn up due to bad weather. They didn't bother to phone me either. When I eventually got through to store they assured me it would get here but they didn't know when and to just sit and wait. So I did....past midnight and it never turned up. I phoned the store again the following day and they said they couldn't make it due to bad weather. I asked for a refund (my order was around £200) and they said this would take 5-7 working days so would probably happen after Christmas. What on earth was I supposed to do with no money and no more delivery slots available? Thankfully friends and family helped out but I will never, ever order an Asda delivery again because of this.

Waitrose Online Shop


People have a perception that Waitrose is expensive but in my opinion, it's really not. They often give you freebies and upgrade your meat to organic and do have pretty good offers on too. For the past few years I've generally always ordered a Waitrose delivery in the run up to Christmas and it feels like a real treat. This year I missed the online delivery slots for Christmas though (booooo) so I've reserved a delivery slot for 20 December - I'm going to order a lot of our non-perishables in this shop eg chocolates, nuts & frozen party food and will buy a few bottles of wine from here too. There are still a few delivery slots available around 20 December - if you'd like one, get in quick! You need to spend £60 to check out so I normally add a couple of bottles of Champagne to my trolley and then amend nearer the time. I think because Waitrose are renowned for their customer service they'd never let us down like Asda has in the past and we've never had any items out of stock.

Aldi


I've never in my life braved an actual supermarket a few days before Christmas and I'm a little scared at the prospect! I love the look of a lot of Aldi's Christmas food this year so have decided I'm going to set my alarm and get there for the shop opening on 21 December. I'm going to buy our vegetables, fruit and a few of their Christmas treats too. Oh and also wine and spirits! Wish me luck.

M&S

You can't beat an M&S Christmas food order. We cooked lunch for my mam a few years ago and ordered the entire dinner from M&S. We collected the produce on Christmas Eve only to find there had been an error with delivery and everything had not been refrigerated so they couldn't sell us our products. I was devastated! Where could I find a whole Christmas dinner on Christmas Eve??? The shop was bedlam as customers were really kicking off. All credit to M&S though - they practically gave us full reign of the shop and said we could have anything from the shelves as a replacement and they gave us a full refund too. So we actually ended up with a better Christmas dinner and it was free! This year we've ordered a turkey crown, glazed ham and buffet food from M&S and we'll be collecting our order on 22 December ready to take to our Christmas cottage.

Farm shops and shopping local

I realise I'm a bit of a hypocrite as I'm buying a lot of my Christmas food from big brands this year but sometimes this does work out to be the best option. We do usually buy a turkey from our local farm but this year we only need something small so went with M&S instead. We'll be supporting local by buying our cheese and Spanish hams from The Grainger Market and various markets we visit in December and I always try to buy local chutneys and jams from Christmas markets too.

Home baking

Christmas isn't Christmas without a spot of home-baking and this year we'll be making several batches of mince pies, a Christmas cake and some stollen too.

I know it's only one day and we don't need to go overboard with food - I'll try not to buy too much and I'll also make sure I add some extra food to our local food bank too.

Where do you buy your Christmas food? I love hearing about what others do.......
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Wednesday, 8 November 2017

Paddington Bear themed Christmas Present Ideas

*Post contains affiliate links

Paddington fever has certainly swept the nation and even more so in the North East. We have our very own Paddington themed window at Fenwick and a pop-up Paddington Bear themed cafe too. We're off to see the new movie on Sunday and I know my kids would love to receive a Paddington themed gift on Christmas day this year. Actually, I'd like to as well! Here are my top suggestions for the best Paddington Bear themed Christmas Present Ideas. 


Paddington Baby Booties - buy here


Paddington & The Christmas Visitor Story - buy here

Paddington Book Ends - buy here


Paddington PJs - buy here

Paddington Bear Music Box - buy here


Paddington's Big Suitcase - buy here

Paddington Bear Trunki - buy here

Paddington Onesie - buy here

Paddington Bear Sightseeing Adventure Game - buy here

Paddington Bear My Name Is Paddington - buy here

Paddington Wheeled Bag - buy here

Paddington Duffle Coat - buy here

Paddington Skittles - buy here

Paddington Slippers - buy here

Paddington Dominoes - buy here


Paddington Plate - buy here

Paddington Umbrella - buy here


Paddington Bowl - buy here

Paddington Bear PJs - buy here

Paddington Bedding Set - buy here

Paddington Coin Purse - buy here

Paddington Tumbler - buy here

Paddington Back Pack - buy here

Paddington Comforter - buy here

Paddington DVD - buy here

Paddington Outfit - buy here

Has anything caught your eye? 


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Tuesday, 7 November 2017

Why the 21 Taste Tour is a Perfect Gift for Foodies this Christmas

*This is a collaborative post


Have you heard of the 21 Taste Tour? The experience is available to purchase as a gift voucher and is such a unique way to sample some of the best food Newcastle has to offer. Basically, you spend the evening hopping between three restaurants (The Broad Chare, Caffe Vivo and 21 Newcastle) and sample one course in each. I tried out the tour last week with my friend Nyomi and have to say it's one of the best foodie experiences I've ever experienced in Newcastle. If you buy this voucher for a loved one, you're not only giving them the gift of food, but also the gift of time. You spend one hour at each restaurant and the change of scene means there's always something new to talk about. I don't remember the last time I spent 3 hours in a restaurant talking with my friends and the Taste Tour provides you with the opportunity to do just that and enjoy some real quality time together. 


Our evening kicked off at The Broad Chare. This pub is one of our favourites (check out my Sunday lunch review here) and was super busy which is always a good sign. We popped upstairs to the restaurant and were shown to our reserved table where we were informed we could select 2 bar snacks and a drink each. Nyomi went for her favourite beer and I opted for a nice glass of Merlot. There was some deliberation over which snacks to order but in the end we selected the Pork Crackling, Monkfish Cheeks, Cheese Croquettes and Cauliflower fritters. I will be honest when I say I don't even like Cauliflower but just went with them as Nyomi wanted to give them a try and oh my word I am so pleased I did - served with curried mayonnaise, I have been banging on about these fritters to poor Steve ever since. We'll definitely return during my birthday night out next month to order more. I think this is part of the beauty of the Taste Tour - as it's all pre-paid it's kind of like being given a license to try something new. Our bar snacks were a bit of a carb fest if I'm honest but we were in our element indulging in these treats and chatted away as we cleared our plates and finished our drinks. Before we knew it though, an hour had passed and as the clock struck 8:15pm, it was time for a change of scene with Caffe Vivo next door.....





Nyomi had never visited Caffe Vivo on the Quayside and was really excited to try somewhere new. Vivo is one of my favourite restaurants in Newcastle, it's always busy, you are guaranteed to receive a warm welcome, the food is always spot on and service is attentive and friendly. I've literally never encountered a single fault during any of my numerous visits over the years. Caffe Vivo is where you'll enjoy a main course and glass of wine. Our server informed us we could order anything from any menu. Browsing the a la carte, set menu and specials, we were spoilt for choice. I nearly always order Chicken Milanese at Vivo and was nearly tempted to stick with my favourite, however my eyes were drawn to the steak which was available at no supplement so I decided to go with this in order to get the best value out of the tour. My steak was perfectly seasoned and served with the best rosemary potatoes - absolutely perfect.  I decided to stick with another glass of red and must say I felt like I was in foodie heaven! Nyomi opted for a salmon dish from Vivo's set menu and thoroughly enjoyed this dish too. Nyomi mentioned that Caffe Vivo had really impressed her and I know she'll definitely be back soon. I think this is another good reason to buy a Taste Tour voucher - it allows you to try new places you may not have otherwise discovered.





The only negative I would say about the Taste Tour is that you're always watching the clock. I was conscious that we needed to be at 21 for desserts at 9:15pm. I don't think it would really matter too much if you were delayed and I have to say service was all swift and perfectly timed so it's not a huge issue but if you're someone who hates to be late like I do, you do feel as if you need to keep one eye on the clock. 

21 Newcastle is just around the corner from Caffe Vivo and The Broad Chare and we arrived just in time for our final reservation. I will say that the Taste Tour is so well organised - every single member of staff knew we were there for the tour and were able to explain exactly what was included at every step (it's easy to forget a few glasses of wine in). 21 is where you'll be treated to dessert and coffee. As one of the more expensive restaurants in Newcastle and only somewhere I've visited once before (and even then it was during restaurant week), dining here really did feel like a big treat for us both and was a lovely way to end the evening. Again, we could order anything from the dessert menu and despite feeling rather full from our previous courses, I could have easily ordered every single dish. It's all super tempting! I finally settled on the Chocolate and Boozy Cherry Marquise. It was boozy, indulgent and beautifully presented too. Definitely one of the best desserts I've eaten in a long while. Nyomi was delighted to find that cheese was included as an alternative to something sweet and was in her element picking out a perfect selection to end her meal. 





I honestly can't recommend the 21 Taste Tour enough. So many people have messaged me saying they'd never heard of it before and that it's such a good idea and I absolutely have to agree. In fact one of my friends has already booked and I enjoyed it so much that I've asked for another Taste Tour voucher from my parents this Christmas (fingers crossed!). 

The 21 Group Taste Tour is probably the most unique dining experience in Newcastle. For £45 you can enjoy:

7:15pm - 2 bar snacks and a pint/glass of wine at The Broad Chare
8:15pm - a main course and glass of wine at Caffe Vivo
9:15pm - dessert/cheese and coffee at 21 Newcastle

In the name of research, here's how much I would have spent without the voucher:

The Broad Chare (2 bar snacks and a large glass of wine) - £13.75
Caffe Vivo (steak and a glass of wine) - £28
21 Newcastle (dessert and coffee) - £13
Total = £54.75

So I actually saved nearly £10 using the voucher too. 

You can buy a voucher for the 21 Taste Tour online here. I think it makes the perfect gift for couples who appreciate good food and are always looking for something new to try. If the Taste Tour doesn't tickle your fancy, the 21 group sell a range of gift vouchers for all occasions and budgets

Would you like to try the 21 Taste Tour or do you know someone who'd appreciate receiving this gift for Christmas?


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Tuesday, 31 October 2017

24 Christmas movies to watch in December

*Post contains affiliate links


I probably watch the highest concentration of movies EVER in December. I would say I pretty much watch one a day! There's something so nostalgic about watching old 80s movies with the kids or heartwarming romcoms whilst wrapping gifts with a glass of sherry! My all-time favourite Christmas movies are Love Actually (always the first one I watch - I cry every time), The Holiday, Miracle on 34th Street, Santa Claus the Movie and Elf. As a family we're fans of Home Alone, Arthur Christmas and Nativity. Steve will usually go on and on about Die Hard being the best Christmas movie. I'm not so sure about that but I've included it anyway. 

24 Christmas movies to watch in December


If you're after Christmas movie recommendations, here are a few to get you started.......



Let me know which Christmas movie you'll be watching first.


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