Wednesday, 22 March 2017

#DerbyBloggersBrunch at Oliver's, Derby - March 2017.

Last year, I took it upon myself to organise a get together for local bloggers and the #DerbyBloggersBrunch was born.
After getting requests to organise another event similar, I found myself looking for potential venues. Oliver's got in touch with me to see whether they could be of any assistance as they'd been looking to host an event for bloggers themselves so seemed perfect to kill two birds with one stone. 

Oliver's is a small cafe on Derby's Friar Gate, somewhere I never venture too often personally. They originally opened as a takeaway back in 2015 but due to popular demand, opened up a cosy, quirky dining area just next door where you can enjoy brunch, light lunches and some of the most delicious looking cakes I've ever laid my eyes on.

Our brunch began at 11:30 - a time specifically chosen so that those travelling had plenty of time and didn't have to worry about early starts or public transport failing. 
Once we'd all arrived, owner Lisa welcomed us and took us through our itinerary (below).

Starting It Properly. Johnathan from Derby based 'The Rested Cocktail Co' started the morning off with a kick. The Rested Cocktail Co. produce alcoholic cocktails which are pre-bottled and ready to go, eliminating the need for the drinker to mix and create the beverage themselves. Their cocktails are aged for 30 days in steel barrels where they are left to rest to make sure those flavours really come out. Simply pour over ice and you're done. I've never come across this concept before and thought it was an amazing idea. 

The Food Bit. Now, you can't have a bloggers brunch without food - obviously. Oliver's wanted to trial some new ideas that they'd had for a new brunch menu and us lucky lot got to try them. So, I guess you could say we were the Guinea Pigs of the experiment. 
First up was a 'PBJ' a Peanut Butter Jelly smoothie. I really don't like Peanut Butter but when it's an ingredient in something such as this, we get along quite well. It was a really lovely drink. It's mixed with banana though which is quite pungent and defeats the PBJ name but nethertheless I'd give it a thumbs up. I wouldn't be able to have loads of it though, but this shot glass full was plenty for me.

Smoked Salmon, Horseradish Sour Cream & Chives.

Coconut Pancake with Run Roasted Pineapple.

Black Pudding with Roast Potatoes & Apple Sauce.

Brioche French Toast with Maple Roasted Apples & Mascarpone. 

From reading through the options, I was so sure that the Brioche French Toast was going to be my favourite but surprisingly, it was the Coconut Pancake. I hate Coconut so would never have given this a second glance on a menu. I am so so grateful for being able to try this though as it was possibly the best brunch dish I've ever had. The Coconut flavour was there but ever so subtle. The pancake was sort of American style - thick and fluffy. Those Rum Roasted Pineapple pieces were divine. As you may know, I don't drink and avoid anything with alcohol even if it's used as an ingredient (I'm fully aware that it get's burnt off) but these were so sweet and caramelised. When you get a mouthful containing Pancake, Pineapple and Ice cream, it was honestly like eating heaven.

The Activity was a chance for us to report back to Oliver's our thoughts on the dishes we were served. As these were completely anonymously, we could be as honest as possible without the fear of upsetting anyone. 

A Happy Ending. To finish of our brunch we got to enjoy miniature cakes and hot drinks. By this point I was well and truly stuffed so could only manage a nibble of each kind. 

A few hours later and it was time to head our separate ways. It was lovely to see the bloggers who turned up, I even got to meet a few new ones too. 
I couldn't think of a better place for our brunch to be hosted. The Oliver's staff were so welcoming, the cafe is a gorgeous little find and the food served was all top notch and tasty.
If you're in the area you must must must pop by and experience it for yourself.

You can visit Oliver's website here for more info.

Huge thanks to Lisa and the team - you were fantastic hosts. I'll see you again soon.



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