1. Drawn by Light: The Royal Photographic Society Collection at the Science Museum is something I’ll be checking out this weekend. And if you’re interested in photography, you’ll probably want to go along too.

You’ll discover 200 “extraordinary highlights from the collection of the world’s oldest surviving photographic society, by some of the greatest names in photography.” I just can’t wait to be in a room surrounded by so many stunning images.

2. Catch up on the Best Picture Oscar nominated films for this year. They include American Sniper, which is on general release in the UK from Friday 16th January 2015.

Boyhood, which is available on DVD from 19th January 2015. So you can pre-order now.

The Grand Budapest Hotel, which is available to watch on DVD now.
The Imitation Game, which is still on at some cinemas to watch.

Selma, which is on general release from 6th February 2015. But you can watch a preview of the film on Monday 19th January 2015 at a special Cineworld screening. So it’ll probably be worth booking a ticket now.

The Theory of Everything is now on in cinemas to watch.
Whiplash is also on in cinemas to watch.

3. Pop into The Cadogan Arms and enjoy their January Blues offer of 2 courses for £15 and 3 courses for £19 with selected dishes on their à la carte menu that are highlighted in blue. Here’s one of my reviews on dining at The Cadogan Arms. The food’s good!

4. Make the most of the January Sales. There are still up to 50% – 70% off sales in stores along the King’s Road and on Duke of York Square. I’ve already picked up a few pieces and I think I may go back for a few more.

5. And finally if you’re looking to feel like a new you for the new year, I recommend trying the Synaesthesia treatment at the Lush Spa on King’s Road. Here’s a review I wrote a while ago and I still remember how good the massage made me feel. It’s amazing. You’ve got to try it!

LUSH Spa King's RoadChelsea Girl

Over the weekend, the OH and I popped into The Cadogan Arms to try their new seasonal menu by their new head chef, Sam Hawkins (who came from the Bull & Last in Highgate, which I hear is very good). Intrigued to discover the pub’s new offerings, we hadn’t anticipated their new cocktail menu too.

Yes, that’s right, cocktails! I’ve always liked the espresso martinis at The Cadogan Arms but have never ventured past this reliable cocktail … until now.

On Saturday, I started with the Aperol Shrub Spritz which included aperol, kaffir lime infused Chase vodka, strawberry plum shrub, lemon and Prosecco. If you were wondering about the latest trend in bars to use vinegar in cocktails, well that’s the shrub part of this cocktail. It’s a process that involves getting the most out of the fruits and it completely works. There was no way I could detect a sense of vinegar in the complex flavours of this cocktail, which I really enjoyed.

The Cadogan ArmsSo on to the food. For my starter, I had queen scallops, chorizo with sea spinach and hazelnut powder …

The Cadogan Arms…whilst the OH enjoyed the pork knuckle and pistachio terrine with apricot chutney and scratchings.

The Cadogan ArmsAnd for main, I stayed with seafood and chose the steamed Shetland mussels with Jugged Hare pale ale, smoked bacon, garlic, leeks and  hand cut chips. For both my starter and main, what struck me the most about these dishes was the freshness of the ingredients. The flavours of the mussels really brought the sea closer to Chelsea, it was quite wonderful.

The Cadogan ArmsThe Cadogan ArmsWith both my starter and main, I enjoyed a glass of Macon Davaye. 

The Cadogan ArmsMeanwhile, the OH ordered the roast Iberico pork shoulder with almond purée, pickled plums and pork jus, which was fantastic. This dish was rich in flavour and very tasty, according to the OH who also remarked upon the quality of the meat.

The Cadogan ArmsI had every intention of not ordering dessert. After all, I had sworn myself off sugar. But I was also intrigued by the popcorn démode cocktail that was new on the menu. The ingredients for this cocktail included popcorn infused Buillet Bourbon, Luxardo Maraschino, sugar and Peychaud’s Bitters …

The Cadogan Arms… which I had with the hot chocolate pudding, blood orange syrup and mascarpone. Oh yes, I was going for it!

The Cadogan ArmsAs for the OH, he ordered an espresso martini which was matched to accompany a selection of ice creams on the dessert menu.

The Cadogan ArmsThe OH requested two scoops of burnt honey with thyme and one scoop of salted caramel. I didn’t taste the latter but the burnt honey with thyme was a real delight to try. I loved the thyme element especially.

The Cadogan ArmsOverall, it was a fantastic meal. The pub was packed with a mixed crowd and there was even a conversation about how The Cadogan Arms has changed over the years. Thinking back to my teen years, this pub has come a long way and I really like the direction it’s heading in.

Good work with the new menu, Sam!

The Cadogan Arms, 298 King’s Road, London, SW3 5UG. 0207 352 6500.

Disclaimer: The meal was complimentary for the purpose of the review. This didn’t sway my opinion in any way. The busy dining room was testimony to the pub’s delicious offerings.

Last Thursday saw the first Chelsea tweet up take place at The Cadogan Arms. The night started off with champagne cocktails as we anticipated the delicious looking menu for the evening.

For starter, I had the pickled Devon crab, blood orange, fennel and citrus vinaigrette, which I enjoyed thoroughly. And for main, I tried a gluten free Venison (no Wellington), which was accompanied by potato gratin and red wine jus. For sides: red cabbage, honey roast parsnips and mixed leaf salad arrived on the table – although I refrained from venturing onto the sides. Given that we are still in January, I was attempting to practise some level of restraint. But all self-control was quickly diminished by the time dessert arrived: white chocolate parfait and raspberry compote. Praline crisps also accompanied the non-gluten free dishes.

I devoured the rich dessert as if chocolate were the source of life in an Arabian dessert. It was a pure melt in your mouth sensation and I savoured every moment of this experience – like I said, it is January.

The wine chosen for each course were also very well selected and by the time our digestifs arrived in the form of either Espresso Martinis or brandy, I was ready for a game of pool upstairs. Given the number of years I have visited The Cadogan Arms, it really is a wonder why I hadn’t even stepped into the billiards room before then. And what larks were had!

The night was a real hit, even if my pool skills weren’t. The food and wine provided a great feast and as for the Espresso Martinis, surprisingly spot on. Last Thursday night made me realise that whilst life is full of many wonders, even regular haunts on the King’s Road like to keep us locals on our toes.