Ice @ The Palace and Joe's Southern Kitchen

Monday, 23 December 2013

Outdoor ice-skating was always a bit of a romantic dream of mine and is fast becoming a winter tradition! Last year we went to the rink at the Tower of London and it was all lit up beautifully in the dark, but this year I fancied going in the day time, so booked tickets to the outdoor ice-skating rink at Hampton Court Palace, one time home of Henry VIII. It is not too far from my old university stomping ground, Kingston upon Thames, so being back in the quaint little Surrey town was nice.

I didn't get to take too many pictures on the ice because you're not actually allowed, but managed to sneak one cos you know, I'm a rebel. We did get the official photographer to take some photos of us though, so we have some better posed photos on the ice as a memento and the ice marshalls were so friendly and helpful. The Palace itself actually looked so grand and the architecture ornate and beautiful. I want to go back and get lost in the maze! Maybe when the weather is a little warmer...

The rink itself was super busy with lots of families and children, so although once we gained some confidence we were able to skate around quite, I'd recommend going later in the evening or on a week day before the schools break up because I kept seeing falling kids everywhere and was terrified one was going to drag me down...All in all a lot of fun but we had worked up quite an appetite so headed up to Central London to Joe's Southern Kitchen and Bar which is a converted warehouse spread over two floors and a basement bar in Covent Garden.

This picture is a little blurry because we were still in a daze after the popcorn shrimp with chilli lime salsa that didn't even get a picture because we were so hungry...and it tasted sooo good, spicy yet sweet, just the right size. We almost ordered more but good job we didn't. We fully went in with our meal.

Blackened catfish fillet with cajun mustard and collard greens for me.

8 hour slow roast beef short ribs with Joe's BBQ rub and slaw and fries with chicken salt for him.

Cornbread and mac'n'cheese for us both.
I can't express how good the food was, but if I say I had to pop open my jeans button that might give you an idea? Every mouthful was so flavourful, even if the catfish was a little spicy. Nothing let the team down, everything tasted so good, hence the reason why I didn't stop eating when I should have. We easily could have done without the sides as our mains alone were so filling, but I'm glad we ate them anyway.

There is a happy hour selection for £4. Happy hour is all day Sunday. The Lychee (muddled fresh lychees, creme de peche, pineapple juice and Beefeater gin) is the TRUTH. I could have drank so many more than the two I had. I mean, I didn't even have a French Martini which is also on the happy hour menu, that's how good it is!

Pecan pie with Jim Beam honey cream and an alcoholic milkshake to finish off. The ice-cream was lovely but to be honest I should just have had another Lychee.

Because I had no idea where we were going and had never heard of the restaurant at first I thought it was just a traditional burger joint, so was blown away by the Deep South cooking although the Southern hospitality was a little lacking. I was totally stuffed afterwards but I would 100% recommend. The service was a little brisk but the food more than compensated for it. 


  1. Love this!
    Made me feel hungry tho haha xx
    Check out my blog :)

    Shai xx

  2. Love your blog, love your header (LakerNation), beautiful photos!! ♥

    -Chymere Anais