Sunday, 15 April 2012

Meal at Giraffe & The Hunger Games

Evening! Good weekend? I had an amazing day out with my Mum at Exeter Food Festival today - such a fantastic day that I look forward to all year...bring on 2013!! I sampled lots of food, took lots of photos and brought home lots of much so that I don't have the time (or energy!) to bring it all together into a blog post tonight. I don't want to rush the post as I really enjoy writing about the food that is tomorrow's project.

Tonight you get a post that I've been meaning to write for over a week - ever since we went a week ago last Thursday in fact. What with Easter weekend and the school holidays, time has run away from me! I started to include it in my catch up post on Friday, but I decided it deserved a post of its own so here it is...

Last Thursday (5th) Liam and I went out for the evening - a very rare occasion for us! Because we go out so rarely, we tend to go a bit overboard when we do, so not content with either going out for dinner or to the cinema, we did both! First dinner - at Giraffe. Because we went before a film, we ended up going for dinner much earlier than usual, which meant we hit the cocktail happy hour...ok with me! I started with a mango and lime daquiri...

This was delicious - thick and fruity! Liam had a Mississippi Punch, but he preferred mine...of course! ;)

For my main course I'd already decided to have a falafel burger...upgraded to include sweet potato fries - my favourite. For some reason I'd expected this to be burger shaped, but it was actually individual falafels in a burger bun...

Still delicious - I love falafel - just a bit more difficult to eat! I was actually more interested in the toppings anyway - "grilled pepper, hummus, beetroot, rocket, halloumi AND tzatziki"...say yum!! :) Luckily the harissa was on the side - Liam tried a tiny taste of it, and his reaction was enough to put me off having any myself - I dipped my (amazing!) sweet potato fries in a mix of ketchup and mayonnaise instead...much better!

During the meal I had one more cocktail - an apple and elderflower martini...

This was actually my favourite cocktail of all of them - it had a wonderful zingy flavour which was perfect to cut through the heaviness of the burger.

And then, despite already being quite full, we decided to have dessert at Giraffe rather than ice cream at the cinema. Liam had the Rocky Road Sundae...

and I had the toffee apple crumble...

Really good, although it did leave me a little more full than I'd usually like to be for sitting in the cinema!

Luckily I was really looking forward to going to the cinema (that was the main reason for going out, but then when we realised we'd got confused about the times and had asked Liam's Mum to babysit earlier than we needed her, we decided to squeeze in dinner as well!). We went to see The Hunger Games. I wont give away the story line in case some of you are wanting to see it, but I loved it!

I don't usually like films that are based on books - I never find the films to be anywhere near as good as the books they are based on - and I'd only read the Hunger Games books a few weeks ago (reading all 3 books in less than 48 hours!) so I was worried that I would be too critical of any bits that the film missed out. I was pleasantly surprised though - I think this is the best book-film I've seen! Of course a few bits are missed out because of the nature of it being a film (I especially noticed that Gale had less of a prominent role, but I suppose that is because in the book a lot of the mentions of him are Katniss' thoughts) but overall I found the film to be pretty true to the book. I really enjoyed it and can't wait for the next film!

Liam also loved it and, amazingly for him, it has inspired him to start reading! He didn't read the first book, but the day after we saw the film he started reading the second book on my Kindle. He doesn't love reading like I do, so has only read 3 chapters so far, but I'm amazed that he wanted to read it at all - another sign of how good the film was!

Have any of you seen The Hunger Games film and/or read the book? What did you think? And have you been to Giraffe before? Maria mentioned a couple of days ago that she loves the sweet potato fries at Giraffe, and I definitely agree - best ones I've found! One of my friends, despite living quite close to several branches, hadn't actually heard of Giraffe, but I've now educated her on its' delights (I also love their farmers market vegetable burrito) and she's planning to go to one soon! :) I tend to forget that not everyone thinks about food as much as I do!!


  1. Yes I saw the film when it first came out and LOVED it! I was actually going to ask if you'd seen it and whether its a good representation of the book as I know you have read the novel. I thought it was fab and wanted to see it again and definitely inspired to read the books now!

    I have been to Giraffe a couple of times - but having just had a peek online I think they've changed their menu quite a lot. I've had the vegetarian all day breakfast once before which was OK with some kind of smoothie which was really nice. But my FAVOurite thing which I've never forgotten was a gorgeous flat bread pizza - with spinach, rocket, goats cheese, pine nuts, and all sort of other things I can't remember - I think there may have been some roasted aubergine somewhere in there! I'm gutted to see it's no longer on their menu! I like the atmosphere of Giraffe restaurants too, not too pretentious and quite good variety (well on the old menu at least!) for a chain.

  2. I love Giraffe :) I have had the falafel burger the last couple of times (so that I can have it with sweet potato fries)- and I do like it but I never taste the hummus in it. And I didn't know what harissa was but I did try the stuff in the pot and found it way too spicy- you have explained it :) I said to Andy next time to remind me to try the bean burrito as I liked the sound of that too- glad it now comes recommended!

  3. I have never been to Giraffe although I have walked past it many times in Exeter and it has been packed! I am definitely going to go soon as the sweet potato fries look very tasty! I can't wait to do a grown up evening with the husband soon!

  4. I like giraffe, they do a really good vegan salad, and those sweet potato fries look yum! Also those cocktails look amazing, I am a massive cocktails fan, and that mango one would definitely be one I would pick! I liked the hunger games, although I haven't read the book, so I can't really compare the two.

  5. I would love to try giraffe, but unfortunately I live in South West Cornwall so Exeter is about 2 hours away! Would love to try it thought if I do a shopping day up there. I have read all 3 of the hunger games as my daughter studied them in literacy at school, I thought the first 2 were better than the third. I haven't been to see it yet, but she has twice and love it!

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