Winter restaurant special altert: Pigalle in Cape Town’s seafood platter for two is just R495

If you’re a regular reader, you’ll know I’ve been honoured with the role of being an ambassador for Pigalle, the iconic ‘dinner and dance’ restaurant in Green Point. Personally, I don’t think Pigalle needs an ambassador – everyone knows their food is amazing, the service is top notch and the venue’s a total gem – but I’ll never tell them that ‘cos we all know the Rules to a Happy Life and one of them is to never look a gift seafood platter in the mouth.

Pretty, pretty!

Fancy!

Pigalle’s enormous lemon-butter drench platter for two is currently on special for just R495 and that’s crazy good value considering it was almost too much for my date Tatum and I. You’re looking at two enormous Natal lobsters, prawns, fresh line fish, mussels in a creamy, almost garlic & cheesy-tasting sauce that, for me, totally stole the show, and buttersoft calamari.

Pigalle1

Huge, right? But oh boy did we manage to find the space and them some…

Also, no trip to Pigalle is complete without a little trinchado on the table. Once you’ve eaten, you’re ruined for life in that whenever you eat trinchado anywhere else it kind of tastes like rubber. Or ash. Or maybe crushed glass. Pigalle’s, you see, might as well be soft, fluffy fillet that you can cut with a butter knife; floating on a sea of spicy, creamy sauce that sees you lose all dignity and scoop it up into your mouth with your fingers (when nobody else is looking, of course.)

Cue Sade's Nothing Compares to Youuuuu....

Cue Sade’s ‘Cos noooothing compares to youuuuu….

Eventually, it was dessert time and Tatum and I knew their was no way we’d be able to eat one more drop. We’d be like that cartoon doing the rounds on the net. You know. Of the guy who’s super duper full but simply has to put the last pea in his mouth and then BOOM, he explodes like a grenade. Have you seen that? Well we where like that so it made sense to order just one dessert to share and not actually eat it.

‘Please bring us something that’ll look incredible in a photograph’, we said. ‘We can’t actually eat it though’.

Our lovely waitress smiled and brought us the chocolate fondant. ‘It comes with pistachio ice cream and warm, runny chocolate oozes out of it when you cut it open’, she said. ‘You’re definitely going to it eat’.

This is what you want your mom to be eating come Mother's Day.

If I could slap a triple stack of my phone’s ‘praise hands’ emoji here I totally would.

And she was right. About everything. And then there was nothing left to say or do but roll home in a happy Public Holiday afternoon haze, being careful to avoid ingesting any potential life-ending peas that crossed our paths.

So! If you’re a seafood fan like me and want to indulge in the Pigalle’s incredible platter for two (and you will – it’s the hot stone massage of the seafood platter world), know that it’s a winter special that costs just R495 and runs until the end of August. Available Monday to Thursdays for dinner and Tuesdays to Fridays for lunch.

Thanks for having me!

These tables fill up fast so call (021) 421 4848 to book.

Thank you Pigalle for yet another incredible meal. Even the peri peri sauce you serve with your warm, crusty bread is perfection.

Love, love

Leigh

The Body Shop’s Vitamin E line features limited edition Union Jack packaging for Mother’s Day

Mother’s Day is coming up this weekend (I’m not sure if it’s the Saturday or the Sunday) and, to celebrate, The Body Shop’s serving up a Mother’s Day collection that’s essentially their lovely Vitamin E line repackaged with a cute Union Jack and crown combo to tie in with their whole ‘treat your mum like a queen’ angle.

The Body Shop Vitamin E Overnight Serum-In-Oil (R155) and Aqua Boost Sorbet (R135).

The Body Shop Vitamin E Overnight Serum-In-Oil (R155) and Aqua Boost Sorbet (R135).

Now in a bid for full disclosure, the Union Jack vibe does nothing for me as I’m not a Brit. But I do know my mom, or most people really, would happily accept The Body Shop products as opposed to a horrid broderie anglaise slipper and tea pot combo. Still, Mother’s Day angle aside I wanted to chat about their Vitamin E Overnight Serum-In-Oil (R155).

How much do we love that big ole' vein pulsing in my hand?

This boy’s packed with wheatgerm oil – the highest source of vitamin E in nature.

I was aware of this product but hadn’t really picked it up before. Also, something about it made me think it would contain a bunch of silicones which I’m not a big fan of as I’m oily-skinned and they tend to aggravate that or, in the worst case, cause me to break out. Merrily, however, it’s actually silicone-free. In fact, what you’re really looking at is a nicely priced mix of antioxidant-rich hydrating oils like wheatgerm, sweet almond and jojoba.

While The Body Shop reckons you should apply a few drops at night to wake up with skin that feels replenished you can do pretty much whatever you like with it, the same way you would something like Bio-Oil. I’ve been rubbing it into my cuticles, wearing it like a ‘mask’ if I’m home working and could merrily add a drop to any face cream if I wanted to bump up it’s hydration aspect. Essentially that’s what you’re getting here. A fab hydrator that isn’t promising to turn back time – simply moisturise.

So! Let’s wrap things up. Mom or not, if you’ve got dry skin in need of a simple moisture bath and enjoy luxurious oil textures, know that this is a lovely product.

Love, love

Leigh

Want to win 4 delicious ready-to-cook meals from Daily Dish?

Last week I had the pleasure of test driving the Daily Dish, a meal delivery service that gives you all the ingredients you need, as well as the recipes, to whip up four delicious, easy-to-make meals at home. They have three different meal plans for you to choose from, Classic, Low carb and Vegetarian and while all the options looked good I went the low carb route ‘cos I generally try to ensure there’s a bit of protein in everything I eat. Also, the week I was doing it, the low carb menu had bacon-wrapped haloumi fingers on it. Yum!

I placed my order online the week before for the Low Carb menu for two: Four meals for two people for R700 which equals R88 a meal. (Each menu has it’s own price point with the price per meal decreasing if you order for four people as opposed to two).

The following Monday my ingredients and recipes arrived bright and early in a big brown box. Everything was fresh-looking and carefully packaged, the recipes were beautifully printed and including piccies and the ‘intro card’ even listed a suggested order in which to eat everything to ensure optimal yumminess. So far, so very impressive.

A bit of what was in my box.

A bit of what was in my box.

Meal-wise, I was looking at mustard-flavoured chicken breasts on wilted spinach, bacon-wrapped haloumi with garlic buttery green beans, sweet potato and lamb sliders (burgers) and sirloin strips in an Asian-flavoured broth.

Being a single person, I planned to share the meals with my cousin Pete who lives in the same block as me but he’s a busy DJ who spends half his life at Caprice so, as it turned out, he only got to eat one, the chicken. I’ve never really had a way with chicken so I don’t really like to eat it at home but Daily Dish’s heavenly garlic, wine, cream, mustard, lemon and herb-infsued recipe ensured, what I thought, was a restaurant-quality meal that I’ll definitely be making again.

Chicken

Mustard Chicken and Greens: Can you tell I accidentally tossed in half an onion instead of a quarter?

Pete liked it too, declaring it ‘very nice’ and, considering he’s the lovechild of Simon Cowell and Gregory House MD, please know that’s the equivalent of ‘unicorns danced across my palate’.

As for me, I thought I’d like the haloumi or steak the best (I’m a slut for cheese as well as Asian flavors) but – surprise, surprise – the lamb burgers rocked my world. (Click on the links for the recipes.)

Lamb

Sweet Potato (with lots of oregano and garlic powder) and Lamb Sliders.

Something about the delicate garlicky flavour of the non-fatty-tasting patties mixed with the sweetness of the potato and the piquantness of the horseradish sauce just did it for me. This is another dish I’ll definitely make once more, especially since I still have four more lamb burger patties sitting in my freezer. That’s another nice thing about ordering Daily Dish’s 2-person menu as a singleton – you can eat one portion for supper and the other for lunch or simply freeze it for another day. This is why I kind of saw it as an eight portion plan as opposed to a 4 portion one.

Anyway, I’m currently saving like a mofo for both a bond and an impending overseas holiday so I’m in the ‘poor house’ for a while. But if I had money to spare I’d happily use Daily Dish again. I loved learning how to make new meals, I adored that everything was easy to make but looked incredibly impressive once cooked (they’d even send you various leaves etc to act just as mooi garnish, sommer). Most of all I loved that each and every dish was seriously delicious – not a single dud in the bunch.

Daily Dish3

That’s Bacon Haloumi Rolls with Sage Green Beans and Toasted Almonds, not scrambled egg and asparagus. Promise!

I’ve had many people chat to me about the service after spotting it on my Instagram and one of them said something like ‘It’s not really sustainable, is it? Once you learn the recipes you can stop using the service, right?’ I don’t agree with that, however. To me, Daily Dish isn’t about learning how to cook. It’s about wanting to, but not having the time to carefully plan meals and buy all the ingredients in a way that there’s isn’t wastage. This is my downfall. I often buy a whack of groceries and then end up watching more than half of it rot in my fridge as I might’ve needed just a dash of cream and then sit with a full tub and nothing to do with it, especially since I have avos that require eating ASAP and must now run off to get the ingredients for guacamole while the Cos lettuce I’d already bought to make Caesar salad are starting to wilt. You get the idea, right? And you can guess who’s now eating gauc-filled cos-lettuce cups for lunch and cream-based pasta for the next two days, can’t you?

Asian steak

Chinese Five Spice Broth with Sirloin Strips – so good!

Anyway, if you’ve been considering giving Daily Dish a bash yourself and have been sitting on the fence, know that I give the service a very happy two thumbs up.

Win! Win! Win!

Want to win a Daily Dish box from any menu for 2 0r 4 people valued between R600 and R1000 (depending on which box you choose)? There are three ways to enter but you can only enter each way once.

*Follow Daily Dish on twitter and drop me a tweet saying ‘Hey @lipglossgirl! I’d love to win a ready-to-cook meal box with @dailydishforyou’ and include the link to this post.

*Follow myself and Daily Dish on Instagram, share a pic of your, ahem, ‘uninspired’ meal and say ‘Hey @lipglossgirlxoxo! I’d  much rather win and eat with @dailydishforyou.’ (It’s sad I can’t enter myself as I’d totally win in that today’s lunch was chakalaka-flavoured baked beans eaten from the tin. Clearly my Daily Dish glory days are long gone.)

*Like Daily Dish on Facebook and post a comment below telling me what ‘saddo’ meal you have lined up this week and why you’d much rather be eating Daily Dish.

Daily Dish operates in select suburbs in Cape Town, Jozi and Pretoria. Check their site to see if yours is one of them. If you win but aren’t in one of those areas, know you’re going to have to transfer your prize to a friend who is. This competition closes on Tuesday COB.

Good luck!

Love, love

Leigh

Review: Clarins Everlasting foundation SPF 15

Clarins’ latest foundation promises to serve up 15 hours of coverage while helping to mattify your skin in a way that doesn’t look ‘flat’. Does it live up to it’s claims? Hells yes! In short, this stuff is awesome.

Clarins Everlasting foundation SPF 15, R415.

Clarins Everlasting foundation SPF 15, R415.

Thanks to mattifying bamboo powder, the foundation managed to control mild ‘oilies’. I still had to reach for my MAC Blot powder, but hardly as often as usual. It’s not drying in the least, however, and actually aims to hydrate your skin using organic quinoa extract and a moisturising plant micropatch. (Nope, I have no idea what a plant micropatch is, but hey. I’m not too concerned to investigate ‘cos we’re talking about a foundation here and it works like a bomb, not an expensive serum with a dubious anti-ageing claim.)

This shade is called Wheat. Swatched on the left and blended on the right.

This shade is called Wheat. Swatched on the left and blended on the right.

What I really liked about this foundation is it’s ability to offer a medium level of coverage but in a formula that feels incrediibly lightweight. It sits on your face like a sheer-feeling second skin but you’re getting the full Monty in a way that’s comparable to Lauder’s Double Wear or Revlon’s ColorStay. It also manages to look ‘real’ and reflect light in a very natural way, something many heavier foundations struggle with.

Super natural-looking, right?

Super natural-looking, right? Just ignore how drowsy I look on the right. It’s been the longest ‘short week’ ever.

In short, if you’re looking for a lovely longwearing foundation chances are you’ll really like Clarins Everlasting. And the fact that it’s available in seventeen shades, from Ivory all the way to Chocolate, means you’re likely to meet a good match.

Love, love

Leigh

P.S. For those of you who’ll ask, the rest of my face is made up using the following: Catrice Camouflage Cream concealer (holy grail), The Body Shop Baked To Last Blush in Petal (obsessed), Elizabeth Arden brow pencil in Brownette (the best!), Urban Decay eye shadow (Suspect on the entire lid and Lost in the crease all applied with a MAC 217 AKA the best shadow brush in the world), a shitty mascara that I won’t use again (hence me not naming it) and Estee Lauder Pure Colour lip gloss is Liquid Petal (a fab nude that’s got enough colour in it not to wash me out).

 

Review: Sally Hansen Miracle Gel nail polish

Sally Hansen have created a new polish system called Miracle Gel. They say it’s the only true 2-step gel manicure with no light needed and I just have to take issue with that. I mean, the very characteristic that defines a ‘gel’ polish from a regular one is the fact that it doesn’t dry on it’s own. You need a light to cure it. Sally’s polish, however, doesn’t need curing. It just dries, mos like I every other polish on the block so I don’t know where they get away with their whole gel spiel. But ja, that aside, I was given the top coat and a shade called Red Eye and, for the most part, really liked both of them.

Sally's Miracle duo

Sally’s Miracle duo

Red Eye is a very ‘primary red’ shade that comes on a bit a sheer. After two coats, I can still distinguish the white tips of my nails. Three coats, however, and you’re good to go. I liked that it dried fast and set to a shiny finish even without the top coat, but obviously you want to apply that if you’re to keep your mani for longer than a day.

IMAG4274

Sally Hansen Miracle Gel polish in Red Eye.

Another plush? Sally’s Miracle Gel polish uses the same brush her other nail colours do in that it’s thick and slightly curved at the tip to make applying the polish a total breeze.

IMAG4272-001

You can’t really see it here but the brush fits into your cuticle’s curve like a dream.

As for the top coat, many of the same points stand – it dries fast, looks super shiny and the brush is a dream. In saying that though, it’s still no match for the brand’s penultimate gem, Sally Hansen Insta-Dri top coat. Have you ever tried that boy? Errrmigod, it’s incredible! I used to be a huuuuge Seche Vite fan until my nail’s obsessed friend Alize was like ‘Bitch please, Insta-Dri whoops SV’s ass’. I was a total indignant ho bag but then, when I compared the two, I totally had to eat humble pie. I now can’t believe I spent so much of my PayPal balance rukking Seche Vite off eBay when I had the miracle that is Insta-Dri on my door step all along. Argh! Now, the big question? Did Miracle Gel deliver the ‘up to 14 days of colour and shine’ as promised Hells no! I got two days of wear before one nail chipped and by day three it was time to take it off. But in saying that, that’s the average as to how long most colours last on me even when teamed with a good top coat. I’m super duper hard on my hands, you guys! Washing dishes sans gloves, ripping open boxes and boxes of products, typing like a mofo… Maybe if I was in a coma I’d get up to two weeks of wear. I do know that nail colour seems to last forever on my toes and that’s probably ‘cos I’ve yet to master cracking open a can of Coke Zero with my feet. Anyway, in short, I reckon Sally’s ‘just like gel’ claim is utter rubbish, but when you remove that from the equation you’re looking at yet more shades to love of her top quality nail colour with a brush I deem one of the best. Love, love Leigh

Review: SkinCeuticals Resveratrol B E

If you’re a regular reader you’ll know that I feel antioxidants are an important part of a good skin care routine if your focus is to attempt to turn back time. Along with retinol and AHAs, antioxidants are your skin’s best friends. So, I was keen to try out SkinCeutical’s new Resveratrol B E antioxidant night concentrate, a serum that promises to help improve your skin’s radiance, firmness, elasticity and density.

product_76

I’m in the process of finding out the exact price but expect it to be around R1 800 in selected salons.

The big players in the mix? 1% Resveratrol, 1% alpha tocopherol (a form of vitamin E) and 0,5% baicalin (a botanical extract derived from skullcap root.)

Interestingly, the serum also contains a helluva lot of niacinimide, more of it than any of the other ingredients, but the brand’s not shouting that upfront. Niacinimide (also known as vitamin B3) is a tried and trusted pigmentation-blitzing ingredient and obviously the active they’re relying on to bring the ‘radiance’ bit to the party.

Anyway, let’s get back to the headliners shall we? Resveratrol is a potent antioxidant extracted from grapes and early studies are showing it can do a good job of protecting our skin’s collagen and elastin while serving as a good anti-inflammatory. If left unchecked, inflammation, no matter how subtle, can wreck havoc on your skin over time while speeding up the ageing process. Most antioxidants have anti-inflammatory benefits which is just another reason as to why you want them in your skin’s ‘diet’. All this is something I actually discussed at length the other day in my Beaute Pacifique Corpus Paradoxe body oil review so if you want more info on resveratrol pop on over here.

Next up, we’ve got vitamin E, another fab antioxidant that can also help stimulate collagen production. As for baicalin, I don’t really know too much about it, other than the fact that SkinCeuticals reckon it’s a good inflammation reducing antioxidant. I also found a study that showed it can protect your skin from UV damage caused by the sun but that’s not especially exciting as vitamin C and E can do the same thing.

So, what’s it like to use? As the serum contains a fair amount of silicone, it kind of glides over your skin and leaves it with a nice, velvety texture. I’ve been using it at night on nights when I don’t use my retinol serum (which is super strong so I don’t use it every single day or it would cause irritation and redness) and have found it’s yet to cause a break out. (Whenever I use most silicone-based serums I always seem to end up with blind pimple.) Obviously, I haven’t noticed my skin looking visibly brighter or firmer as I’d have to use it for a while for results like that to come to the fore, but I’m not too worried as SkinCeutical’s tech is is sound, especially on the brightening front. I’d still want to keep on using a retinol serum as my primary weapon in thickening up my skin from the inside out.

In all, if you’re looking for a good antioxidant serum this is a very nice one, but only if you can afford it. If not, know that there are other ones on the market that cost a snippet of what SkinCeutical’s are asking. They probably won’t contain resveratrol, but it’s not the penultimate ‘potent antioxidant’ your money can buy, merely a good one. Want an example? Paula’s Choice has a great range of antioxidant serums at around the R500 mark. Also, if it’s the brightening niacinimide bit that caught your eye you should check out Olay’s Regenerist Micro-Sculpting serum or POND’S Flawless Radiance Anti-Spot Intensive Even Tone serum. Both products are niacinimide bombs and as cheap as chips.

Love, love

Leigh

Essie’s gorgeous autumn collection, Dressed to Kilt, is ready for your lovin’

‘Live dangerously. Dress Flawlessly’. That’s the anthem of Essie’s autumn collection, Dressed to Kilt, a zexy little line up inspired by ‘espionage and the thrill of the chase’.

Sooo much of the pretty!

Sooo much of the pretty!

For me, ‘cos I pretty much live and die in red polish when the chilly season sets in, Dress to Kilt is the hero of the bunch.

IMAG4169-001

Dressed to Kilt

I pretty much live and die in red polish when the chilly season sets in so, for me, Dress to Kilt is the clear hero of the bunch. It’s this gorgeous, super shiny maraschino cherry red that only needs two coats to hit full impact.

Another winner is this boy…

The Perfect Cover Up

The Perfect Cover Up

This is a hard colour to describe – kind of like a teal mixed up with grey – but I really, really like it. Again, it’s nicely pigmented and super shiny, but the real pull factor here is that it’s just so ‘different’ and chic-looking. My mom thought so too which is why it’s now living in her room in Port Elizabeth.

I couldn’t wear Fall in Line (too camo) or Take it Outside (it washed me out)  but quite liked these two darker hues…

IMAG3831-001

Partner in Crime

..and…

Style Cartel

Style Cartel

The only downer here is that they’re hard work. You really need a steady hand ‘cos every mistake becomes super visible. Also, if you get Style Cartel on any skin, zipping it off with a q-tip isn’t especially easy as it’s a bit stainalicious. For those reasons, I’m going to be slicking on Dress to Kilt until I hit the bottle’s end. I’d then happily buy more of it (the biggest compliment a blogger who gets too many things for free can give) but will then move on to Essie’s winter collection that just so happens to contain not one but two reds. Ooh la la, darlings!

Keep an eye on the blog as I’ll be sure to cover that too when they launch in July. In the meantime, if you’ve spotted a gem in the autumn collection that’s calling your name best you get on down to Dis-Chem, Clicks or Foschini as well as selected beauty salons. Each shade’s going for R125 a pop.

Love, love

Leigh