Summer menu - Pizza Express. #glutenfree too!

One of the things I greatly missed when I became a coeliac was pizza. More specific in fact is Pizza Express where I would save up when a student to grace their restaurants once a month or more when I worked. In fact I had my first date with my husband at a particular beautiful one (have you ever noticed A LOT of them are well designed inside grade 2 buildings?) However recently and rather wonderfully they now will cover most of their menu with a gluten free option, from risotto to pizza to brownies all of their options are gluten-free accredited NGCI, the Coeliac UK society having worked with them for years. I can now head out to town with options for dinner. I love the fact that the menu clearly states alongside all their starters and other mains and desserts which are GF and that 90% of their pizzas can be made GF!
They very kindly asked if I would like to review their latest menu – the summer range and obviously I jumped at the chance!

Their summer menu is set to delight you from mouth-watering cocktails to incredibly sumptuous salads – chicken, goats cheese, blueberries & mint are a huge part through to delicious pizzas of course and boy the desserts!!!

I dragged one of my friends along to the rather gorgeous pizza express at Arundel which if you take your children is incredibly children friendly – check out Pizza Express kids menu here – wonderful place to pop into over the hols. We decide to brave the “Hugo” cocktail which is Prosecco with elderflower and mint and is by far my favourite drink now for summer. I even headed straight to the supermarkets afterwards to make up my own!

Since if you haven’t noticed we’re having a mini heatwave I started off with a perfect mozzarella, tomato and basil pesto salad followed by I think the best gluten free pizza base I’ve had. I have needless to say tried a lot of these and the friend I took with me doesn’t eat GF and couldn’t taste the difference.  Melt in the mouth perfection, Pizza express I must say!

Of course I couldn’t possibly leave without dessert and I dove straight into their Strawberry & Cream Glory. It left me speechless and reminded me of desserts my Nan use to give me – Ice cream coated in cream with frozen chunks of cream at the bottom, OH MY GOODNESS HEAVEN!!! And being completely into the research I ensure my friend had a different dessert of the chocolate brownie! Divine as well.

Overall it was a wonderful experience, the food was as I always remembered diverse toppings and offerings, wonderful flavours & combinations, and cooked to perfection (I’m incredibly fussy!) The staff, as with all Pizza Express restaurants, were fun, courteous and polite, and nothing was too much trouble.  All in all a perfect 10 out of 10 for food, atmosphere, service & hygiene. Back to being one of my favourite places to dine. Thank you – now if you could start putting the gluten free pizzas in to the shops I’d be grateful!! 

Does a pet make a house a home?

In the last week on BBC Surrey & Sussex there have been the results of a survey on loneliness. Not just in old age but among us and our contemporaries. It was rather shocking in fact and really made me think about later on in life. It was rather depressing to think I’ll probably outlive my husband and the children will have left home. One lady informed them that she didn’t have any contact with anyone apart from once a week when she walked to shops.  Loneliness is often associated with some dreadful states – depressions, anxiety, alcoholism and many more. 
What therefore can you do to counter this? Yes there is the case for joining clubs left right and centre, tennis, golf, bridge – whatever interests you! But do you know what was the leading cause of getting rid of all of these symptoms? You’ve got it! A pet! I have my own gorgeous dog and yes she hears a lot more of my rants and questions than many others and is endlessly loyal back. I personally feel a dog makes a house a home and I don’t think I would ever want to be without one. On the long evenings when my husband’s away with work she curls up on my lap and we can enjoy a chat and biscuit over coffee and a good book.  My husband feels the same way about cats and I have a wonderful friend who feels the same way about her guinea pigs! So what happens when you reach a lovely old age but cannot cope with a new puppy etc? Well it appears that if you head to Sunrise Senior Living you might be in good hands. They have a resident cat or dog at every community!  What do you do to combat loneliness? And do you find your pet makes you feel better?