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Porto: Pastel de nata, port and a pink house

11th August 2019
Photo of Porto.

There’s floodwater outside my window, a grey curtain has come down over Edinburgh and I’m thoroughly enjoying a pastel de nata as I write for what feels like the first time in forever. At last, I’m back with a story about port, custard tarts and a pink house in Portugal.   Porto is steep with lots of Hollywood-style signs glowing on the Gaia hillsides, marking…

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St Abbs and the Scottish Borders

24th April 2019
Photo of St Abbs in the sunshine.

It might be foggy and grey now, but just last week the sun was blazing and perfect for a road trip down Scotland’s southeastern coast. Josh came along, and by some strange coincidence both of our phone batteries drained almost instantly as we headed south (I blame the spooky cellars of Dirleton Castle, our first stop out of Edinburgh). This meant using old-fashioned road signs…

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Making pancakes in the rain

5th March 2019
Photo of a savoury crepe wrapped in a napkin.

This is my last week working in the city centre and I’m so glad I was here for pancake day. One of my favourite bakeries in Edinburgh is just a few steps from my office, and I had an inkling they’d have something totally unexpected and unusual on their cake counter this morning. They are the bakers behind West Port’s famous Sconefest after all. As…

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Review: Wildfire on Rose Street

21st February 2019

One year together! That’s what brought us to this intimate Scottish bistro on Rose Street, an anniversary celebration that we wanted to be as low-key as possible. It felt as if we had stepped into a tasteful inn somewhere in the Highlands or Islands, but somehow we were just on Rose Street. Wildfire is friendly and unostentatious with good wine and delicious steak. What I…

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Hibernation

20th February 2019

Well hello there mid-February, daffodils and ever-so-slightly extended daylight! I was packing up boxes and leaving my pretty flat, mice and single-glazed windows behind the last time I wrote. It was just before Christmas and I was stressed, overworked, temporarily homeless and coming down with a pretty nasty cold. It was time for hibernation. No writing, but lots of reading. Less social media, but lots…

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Before and after: Dalmeny Street

16th December 2018

When I first stepped inside this old tenement on Dalmeny Street, it wasn’t the flat I imagined it to be. To begin with, it wasn’t even the property advertised by the letting agency – they’d uploaded pictures of an entirely different flat. Then there was the filth that coated every surface, from the corduroy sofa to the greasy kitchen: it was wholly unloved. The others…

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