and once again, Shimla Pinks – Birmingham Did not dissapoint

 Shimla Pinks Indian Restaurant, Birmingham One again , up  we all went from work  to the NEC for the energy Event. What a busy show, what a great  exhibition. What a long day, talking about  ” Watts”  no pun intended……

The day was made a whole lot easier  when we were told we were doing  for dinner at Shimla Pinks 

All i can say about  this place is WOW  for the food,

Amazing  service, and this time i asked for the gents name ” it translates appareShimla Pinks Birminghamntly to mike ”

Gorgeous desert, and an overall  excellent end to a very long and tiring day

I cant comment  on value as i wasn’t paying, but we all went for choice of the presidents banquet  which was lovely , and Just right for me

I know there are a lot of similar places in Birmingham , however  if you want a recommendation for a great  meal in a lovely clean  restaurant  at a relaxed pace

 

 

 

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Strange concept, but what a great find …James Guest House – Coleshill

Once again, up to the NEC for business this week , and had to find a place for the night, My boss found this place, what can i say about it.

Here goes

Apart from the bad traffic which wasn’t down to the accommodation, the place was clean, comfy, well equipped and had all i needed for a Night away

I was in the room ” Janice ” and there was beds for 3. this is a www based pic , but it is exactly as my room was James Guest House

A clean en suite shower room with a decent shower

Off road parking not a problem .

And the idea of ” self service ” for breakfast, and indeed anything you needed was brilliant

what a great place to stay and if you want, there are more pictures 

For Any geeky dads out there, the kings of the BBQ, the Hunter gatherer..

I know i am a little biased on this item as its sold by the people i work for , But i just thought i would share it with you ,

Summer Holidays  just around the corner, lots of Stay-cations, because the summerGrill Right Bluetooth BBQ Thermometer is going to be so hot you wont need to go away, garden parties, BBQ’s  and lots of gatherings for friends…..Grill Right Bluetooth BBQ Thermometer

 

And Now , a  geeky talking point  for BBQ. Could start lots of arguments, should stop a lot of them. Brand new, boxed up and easy to wrap, why  take  a bottle of plonk to a party, this could be the perfect talking point.

 

Full details  etc can be found at the companies website  Tempcon Instrumentation

The  Grill Right Bluetooth BBQ Thermometer is as described below ,

  • If you decide you want one, all i ask is that you tell them where you saw this Blog , Thanks

 

This Bluetooth BBQ thermometer is a must, featuring a handy, high-techprobe (An additional probe is available) cooking convenience and app connectivity . Just tell the unit or the smart phone app what meat you’re preparing via the user-friendly interface, and the colour-changing display and your smart device will alert you when the meat is perfectly cooked.

You can even share cooking hints and recipe ideas on social media such as Facebook or Twitter via the corresponding mobile app.

Display unit features
  • Data viewable from main unit or smart device via Bluetooth® Smart connectivity
  • Supports dual probe*
  • Color changing display & sound alert on main unit
  • Measure meat & air temperature
  • 3 Modes: meat type / countdown timer / target temperature
  • Water splash resistant
  • Touch key
  • * Package comes with one temperature probe only
Apps features
  • Instant temperature
  • Cook progress
  • Sound & vibration alert
  • Cooking modes setting
  • Cook history
  • Social media sharing
  • Meat photo with overlay cooking information
Benefits:
Forget staring at the stove 
Precise data regarding meat’s temperature and cooking status is easily visible from your smart device app via Bluetooth® Smart Technology.
Satisfy your appetite in three modes
Customizable cooking modes including meat profile, target temperature & countdown timer make preparing your favorite recipes easy. The corresponding app also lets you easily access your preferred modes of cooking according to your previous cooking history.
Convenient color-coded cooking status indicator 
You can ensure your friends are not being neglected during cooking time with our 3-colour cooking status indications from the unit as well as sound and vibration alerts from your smart device.
Cook different meats simultaneously
When supplementing the standard single probe with an optional second probe, the two-slot unit enables the simultaneous preparation of two different meats with separate cooking requirements.
Stylish touch key design
The elegant touch key design means no grease or food particles can get inside and damage or destroy its inner workings.
Share cooking hints via social media
Share handy hints, recipe ideas and even text-integrating photos of dishes with friends on Facebook or Twitter with the corresponding mobile app.

When you find somewhere that’s Good, tell as many people as you can

so when its this good, tell everyone about it……………

That’s a big claim, based on personal experience, NOT a sponsored blog, I wasn’t given a freebie for this.

To me , service is important, i don’t mind paying a fair price for decent service, and today i did exactly that , a new business opened in January of 2014, i hope they are here for a long time to come, 

For the last few years i have had a lady  that came to the house  and “did us all at once “

I decided  to go look for a proper barbers , found the ” new salon” in town, part of an international  Chain…. thought i had a good cut, but then today when i came out of  the new place i found, i remembered  that feeling of ” sharp” when you have a decent cut

 

Thanks to the boys  at Bilsham Barbers for a great Job, I will be back

if you want, decent service, a sharp cut, and a good ” old skool ” feeling, pay them a visit.

What a great place for a hair cut ( revised blog )

So here is my update after visiting Cellys, here i am   only 3-4 weeks later and  my ” old Barnet ” needed a trim  and a hack again, so this time  i went into a local independent that just opened up  …. they don’t have a www site, i hope they don’t need one,

Only a facebook page , and with service like i had tonight, they will be a success, i showed them the same picture  i showed cellys and  WOW  What a hair cut

Excellent service,  great price ( cheaper than cellys) although i would have paid more.

 

 

Original Blog, as below

www.cellys.co.uk/bognorregis_profile.html

and now that I have been,…………

This one is a bit of a strange blog, I seem to start  a lot with that , maybe that’s me. In fact this time im sure it was. so I went in, didn’t have to wait very long which is nice as I hadn’t booked.  I was  ” called for ” by my hairdresser. she was friendly. so no issues there  at all .

I told her what  I wanted, I even showed her a picture which after a little laugh about me and the person looking like brothers if I lost 5 Kg, we agreed could be done.

My hair was washed, I always have enjoyed that . then I was taken to the chair.

It wasn’t just a clipper cut I wanted. and  when the lady ( sorry I didn’t take the name ) was finished. I wasn’t too sure about the results. However I paid  and at the promise of the manager if I wasn’t OK they would re-do it, I left. Grumbling a little  as  my hair was gone, and  I couldn’t get used to it . this is the surprise  that i dont like with customer service  these days ( doesnt that make me sound old )  surely it should be ” right first time” ….and in my opinion  the hair cut looks nothing like the picture I showed.

 

2 good things happened today

So following on from my Horrible day yesterday £40.00 to travel 100 miles on public transport in horrible cramped conditions, I was out there again today in the big wide world, ironically about the same mileage, but under my own steam. I actually got 48 MPG from the car and that was mostly Town  driving , so in direct cost £13.00 of fuel covered it . and I could talk  to people ( hands free of course , as it came as standard )  without the fear of someone in the carriage listening to me  so the Difference was I enjoyed every single mile , which put me in a better frame of mind for each meeting….. this must be what they term ” advancement through technology

My car, My radio , and one of my favourites of ALL time played. enjoyed it so much, had to come home, you tube it and find 9.00 minutes plus of sheer indulgence

all in all , I had a great day so if there is ” karma” I Hope you have had a great day too

Enjoy the tune,

Dont they make enough money any way ….

So  there was Mrs Oldmanleslie  & I  out for the afternoon  ” sans ” children, it doesn’t happen very often, but the opportunity presented itself , so we grabbed it.  Nice sunny  Sussex afternoon. Like  a lot of people , off to the local retail park for a bit of  retail therapy.

Popped into the local KFC  for a spot of late lunch,  and although un necessary as it was, it was very nice. But this isn’t me telling the world how Nice KFC is, you can formulate your own opinions on that ,

It’s a comment on ” big brand ”  customer service . The issue is this , I paid Cash for my  bits, and as they didn’t have the ” coins in the till” they asked me if it was Ok to Short  change me ….. ( only 2P )  so it’s not the amount i was worried about , it’s the principal.. so whilst  chatting to Mrs Oldmanleslie  over our chicken i was thinking…..2P per person, 100 people an hour ,24 hours a day  from one branch in a small town……….. and of course  it doesn’t  take long to get to a significant ” extra profit ”

So I pushed the matter  when I had finished  and asked for the  change  to be given back to me , the lady had to check 3 tills to get  the money,  she looked at me with such disbelief  that I was actually asking for it,  but in the end she did  give it to me , so I  put it ( and some more change from my pocket in the charity pot )

So again, I ask….. Why should the big international brand always expect the customer to take the hit when they  don’t get it right, im sure there are many reasons NOT to have  a bag of pennies in a store….

And  just for the record, I do Enjoy KFC, and YES, they did exactly the same to the person that came in after me

Stabilo ” SmartBall2.0″

Stabilo ” SmartBall2.0″ , Its a pen, and a touch screen stylus all in one, So you wouldnt imagine that there was a lot to say about a pen, in a review.

Well, thats what i thought, so when the people at BWP Primal asked me to review it it was to be a challenge…..

Not at all, the device is really tactile, the ball is smooth, its ” formed ” to be easy to write with , and it made my writing almost legible.

No having to scribble  to get it started, it worked straight out of the pack

The ” touch screen ” pointer at the other end worked fine with my Phone, and was more accurate than my fingers

The Pen point retracts fully and doesnt operate the  touch screen so you can ” use the wrong end ” 

The Pen comes  securely packed and  would be easy to post, it came through the letter box so no having to go and collect it from the post office ,  It is available  direct from the manufacturer 

Where they claim

“The best of both worlds.

  • STABILO combines smartphone operation with ergonomic writing comfort. The SMARTball 2.0 features an entirely conductive, optimised shaft design which makes it even smarter!”

I would say that is well deserved  and that this device is all that it claims to be, I Was sent this to evaluate  and review. But it really is as we have described ( in my opinion )

Binky’s Cake House …… what a great find, and even nicer cakes

So there i was earlier in the year looking for a Unique  thing to get ” Mrs oldmanleslie” for her Birthday.  we have been together a little while now  so  sometimes its hard to come up with a special idea. This year , it was easy, I was told about “Binky’s Cake House “ by a friend of Mine .

I was told they made special Birthday cakes and cakes for special occasions. so i had a chat with ” binky “( not her real name ), told the lady  what i wanted and pretty much left her to it . The result was a truly scrumptious cake that tasted gorgeous, made to my wife’s choice , and that looked even better, The picture doesn’t do it Justice, it was ” proper 3D ”

Now I know there are a lot of mums out there that make cakes for people , and im not saying  anything about their standards, all i can say is that the cake i paid for from Binkys was excellent value and for sheer delight for the look on my wife’s face it was worth every penny

Binkys are also a bit special as they can accommodate  Most dietary requirements, They Are a start-up business and they are so keen to do a good job. for you  

They have a www presence, and aren’t Just on Face Book and you can see some of their handy work here  This is NOT a sponsored  blog, i paid for the Cake and am so glad i found them, If its something that little bit special you need , Binkys is the way

So this one has to be a bit special….and it really is

To those that follow my blog, thank you . you will know i haven’t been doing this for very long. You may also appreciate that im not the best at blogging yet. but i am at a significant milestone for “oldmanlesliesblog” so i thought I would use this as an opportunity for something that brings all the areas i mention  together .

I drum,I skate , I let you know if something is good, i support UK manufacturing ‘cos i work for one   , and i love gadgets. So when i went skating  last week  and i saw all the people who were using Lights on their Skates I was impressed.

My first thought  was ” wow that would look great  on my drum ( and yes, i know that’s really sad, but i cant skate as well as the boys & girls that were wearing the lights )

It was weird  because lots of people had them, some  were  quite bright, and were static colours, Some were changing colours automatically  and seemed to me to be a lot brighter…. I did  some digging around and confirmed that in fact these were made by one of the guys at our skate club. so having seen them in action.  I thought I would get me a pair for my drum . I guess these lights can be used just about any where and that is testament to a good product in that it has more than 1 use . There is a www site  for these  which is http://www.skatelight.co.uk/  where you can find out more.

I know its unusual to blog about a product before you receive it  but having seen these working, i am so looking forward to receiving mine ( which i have paid for , this  is not a sponsored blog )

It simply unites all the key areas of my blog  and i hope you like it

its local to west Sussex with global potential  , built and designed by a Uk Manufacturer ,  a great gadget , Quality product,  & therefore , it’s all about sharing, when something is this good

 

and if there are other Skate parts you need  

 

What a great Thing for someone who has been driving for 20+ Years

Earlier this year whilst looking around the WWW, I came across an offer on HUKD for a spot of Driver ” training “. like most of the prematurely Silver surfers out there that find these sorts of things and think its brilliant, I clicked to investigate it.

I drive as part of my Job, Not millions of Miles a year, but enough for me and more than some would want, I’m lucky that i have a Great car. At Christmas, i don’t always mind being the Duty driver

Any way, back to the training, i set up the account, and waited to hear back, it only Took about 2-3 days then I met Wendy , the driving instructor you can Contact her via mirror

This lady was amazing, i thought i was obviously the best driver on the road, and that i drove perfectly,car Turns out there is room for improvement and on a 2 hour session Wendy managed to Point out so many little Things i was doing that could be improved, it really spurred me on. This year i will be asking Santa for an IAM membership and i will keep you posted  on how that goes I can only imagine that if you were 17 and looking for a Great teacher to show you How to drive , as opposed to just getting you through your test, Wendy would be one of the best.car2

And once again, this place did Not Disappoint, Has to be one of the best hotels in Wigan

I refer back at the start of this review to my earlier one  when i went to  this hotel as a “ lucky find ” and was pleased with the results.

This time , i based my days  business around this area. 

So How could  http://www.ashfieldhousehotel.co.uk/index.html  get any better

This time  the  hotel  gave me what they called a better room, there had been nothing wrong at all with 406, this time i Got  403. Only issue with the room, It was almost TOO bigImageImage for  just me . The rate i got was excellent and included a continental breakfast that was lovely.

As per my previous Blog, there was  no chef on site this particular night so, i had contented myself to a few beers  and a crisp based evening meal, Well all i can say is that the  hotel excelled its self by providing Menus for me . ironically they had a take away  menu for  the place i had used last time  and enjoyed     so  this really was a no Brainer,  I had to pay upfront, but  i kind of knew that what i had ordered would be good, i wasn’t disappointed. Especially when the hotel went and got it for me

so very briefly , The hotel was  excellent , the staff were very helpful, the  staff for breakfast were brilliant, and the grounds that the hotel is in is lovely

The restaurant lamamas is an absolute gem of a place, their service in the restaurant was brilliant, and the food  on take away wasn’t too  shabby either

I would recommend both of these places to any one and look forward to going back to the   Ashfield house some time soon

Update , this place is so nice, they even took the time to respond , How nice is that , I will definitely be back

Hi Chris,

Thank you for your email. I have just read through your reviews, its very nice to hear when guests have enjoyed their stay with us being in Standish. We always appreciate feedback both positive and negative so thank you for taking the time to do this. We had plenty people turn up for the wedding open evening so hopefully they liked the look of the venue and what we have to offer. Im glad to hear you’ve enjoyed La Mamas too, hopefully if you return we will have some food available for you to potentially try our menu.

If we don’t see you before, have a great Christmas and hope to see you in the new year.

Kind Regards

What a great Idea for a Budding Chef For Christmas,

A Sous Vide Bath

Not Sure about who is going to think  of this as a good Blog, I get asked  on  a regular basis  about Sous Vide  as a means of cooking  and preparing food, and i have to say that whilst i can get the information together for people, I am Not the expert.

However, I came across this  Sous vide  Bath  and I thought it was worth a  look at,

SVP12 Sous Vide Bath

Its the SVP 12 Bath and its now available  from Tempcon

The spec is as below

Sous Vide  baths are an excellent asset to any kitchen. There are many benefits of owning a sous vide:

Ideal for long term cooking, Stationary baths, Temperature stability of ±1°C to enable precision cooking, Energy efficient as the tanks are insulated, They’re robust and durable due to the stainless steel inner case and outer tank.

Features:

  • Tank Capacity – 12 Litre
  • Temp Range – ambient plus 5 to 95°C
  • Display – 3 Digit LED 0.5°C resolution
  • Working Volume – 325x300x140mm
  • Overall Dimensions – 380x325x275mm
  • Fixed over temperature cut-out

There is a Promotion on the WWW at present for  Free UK delivery

I need to add apparently that i do work for tempcon, however this is not a sponsored Blog

Just Get this one out far and wide

Just think, if everyone that saw this, told everyone they knew , and re blogged it  to everyone they knew, and they all donated  even a £1.00     How many Million users are there on this  site…

PLEASE RE BLOG it . you can even donate via paypal

https://paypal.dec.org.uk/philippines_typhoon_appeal

I seem to have a knack for finding cardboard Burgers

Yesterday I was fortunate enough to be exhibiting  at Plymouth University. lots of good conversations and a really positive day for business (  maybe we are over the worst of the recession )  as a result , at the end of the day we had booked to have a  meal out at what we thought was  Gary Rhodes Restaurant

University of Plymouth Arts Block

 

We were a large group of people ( 10+ ) , we had to pre book the food we wanted before we arrived. the Starter was OK, i had the buffalo salad . could have done with maybe a little more to it, and fresher tomatoes, but i guess it was ok , The My ” Classic Burger ” came out …. i think it had about 12 chips with it, the bun in my opinion wasn’t fresh, and as i hadn’t been asked how it was to be cooked, i didn’t enjoy getting a very well done , almost charred offering . But no one came to ask what we thought.

I will give credit for a lovely desert which was all i hoped it would be and more. So OK starter, Great Desert, But Not good main course. and other people commented similar about their other mains..
Brilliant location, and friendly front of house staff

Gary Rhodes - Rhodes at the Dome Wedding Venue Plymouth Devon

I spoke to the land lady of the hotel we were staying in and as a local she told me that the place is in fact a franchise and  In my opinion they are trading badly on his Name…..Best to look for another restaurant if its important, or be VERY specific what you ask for

a bedroom should be a place you can sleep in …..

All I can say about this hotel is that the Shower Pod / Room was basic, clean but Basic, The room was Small, with 2 single beds( not connected ) this was ok for me as I was on my own. The Cooling fan / AC didn’t work so the room was so hot at night ( room 501 ) I had to open the window…Not a good move as very noisy and still hot , so not a lot of sleep … Breakfast was Ok however it looked like it had been “under the lights” a long time .

 

I raised the issue of the AC not working with the lady at the desk the following morning; she said she would let me know once she had spoken to her manager. This never happened. All I can assume is that in the country she originates from this is classed as customer service as I have used ibis before and they have been much better at service

 

Hotel Ibis , Emblem, in Deutschland

 

Good Quality always works …..

Anyone who knows me will know I’m not the slimmest person in the world. Don’t get me wrong, I’m still on the main hangers in the stores, just a way towards the back of the rack and usually with an X somewhere in there. Sometimes because of this it’s not always easy to buy clothes on-line. That was until I was fortunate enough to run into a company called Boden.  I didn’t know of them, but for some reason I thought I would give them ago. I am so pleased with the items I bought. 3 shirts that I have worn such a lot over the summer, washed many times, colours are still good, size hasn’t changed at all, and they still feel as good as they did the first time I put them on.Image

I can’t comment on the ladies clothes other than my wife bought a skirt from them as well and seems to like it. I will be the first to admit that Boden  aren’t the cheapest on the www, but then again Quality is more important to me. I did have an issue with a shirt where I had to call customer service. There wasn’t any “press 4 for this, press 27 for that “I got to talk to a person, and the issue was sorted out Very quickly.

Anyway, just thought I would share this with you all, and for the record, this is NOT a sponsored blog