Category Archives: Cities

HOLY GUACAMOLE! – Cielo Blanco

Cielo Blanco – Trinity Leeds

Hey guys, I just thought I’d give myself a brief introduction before I jump on in and start rambling! My name is Natalie, but I also go by Lea, it depends on where I’m geographically located as to what people call me. I’m 21 and a graduate of Leeds Uni. I studied Law as an under grad, but am now doing my LPC (lawyer training) and also my business MA, at BPP in Leeds. You’ll normally find me eating (I’m a hopeless cook, but I love to try new food), listening to some form of soul/funk/jazz, travelling, or doing something/anything to do with cars. I live with my flatmate and a small herd of rabbits just outside of Leeds City Centre, but I’m also found knocking about in Manchester, Preston and York from time to time. I write about anything and everything, so check in from time to time and see what I’m ranting on about? It’s nice to meet you, so drop me a comment and say hi? 🙂


It’s not often that I have a craving for Mexican food, but since some seriously good tacos in Vegas earlier this summer, I’ve definitely been swayed towards the stuff. I managed to contract man flu from said man in my life last week, but on Sunday I felt human enough to paint my face, curl my hair and head out for some food. We initially wanted to try out Trinity Kitchen, but for some unknown reason, they shut at 5pm on Sundays (apparently this might change soon though). Having given up on vietnamese food we took a wander over to the main part of trinity, and into Cielo Blanco, which is tucked into the corner, to the right hand side of Giraffe.


20131020_191020It’s hands down one of the prettiest places to eat in Leeds, but if you’re outside, try to grab one of the big tables with the patio heaters, it’ll pay off as it gets later.



We settled on the Mexican Street Food, chose 6 between us, and then grabbed something minty and sweet to drink while we were waiting for the food to arrive. Mine was the non-alcoholic mojito, purely down to the antibiotics, but it was pretty damn good all the same.

Untitled3The food arrived really quickly, and it smelt amazing. Taking photos involved some serious self restraint!

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We had homemade Guacamole and Sour Cream, Mexico City Pulled Pork and Grilled Pineapple tacos, Chicken Tinga and Smoked Tomato Salsa Quesadillas, Spicy Tiger Prawns with Chipotle and Lime Sour Cream, Shredded Chicken Empanadas, and Smoked Chorizo Sausages in a Ranchero Salsa.

The Empanadas were seriously good, as was the guacamole. Everything on the table was sweet and spicy, all with the creaminess of the sour cream thrown in. But that wasn’t the best part…

20131020_185857Anyone who knows me, knows that I have a serious sweet tooth, and Churro’s have to be one of my favourite desserts. They were perfectly crispy on the outside, with a soft and fluffy inside, dipped in sugar and served with warm chocolate and vanilla bean ice cream. The only other place I’ve come across Churro’s in Leeds has to be in Chiquito, but these beat them hands down. It’s worth dropping in if only for coffee and dessert.

We had a fantastic night at Cielo Blanco, the atmosphere was brilliant, the food was incredible and the service was fast and friendly. It’s definitely possible to have a main (or several like we did), a drink, and dessert for under £20, which ain’t so bad if you ask me. Their sister company, Neon Cactus, on Call Lane is pretty good too, but you’ll pay crazy prices for their cocktails and they don’t serve Churro’s.

I’ll definitely be going back for more, but next time, there will be tequila…

Written by Natalie Upchurch.


Live at Leeds

Friday 4th May. May 4th on Friday. The 4th of May which is a Friday. Either way you look at it, its the same thing, and its going to happen. To many people it will mean nothing, to others like me, it is the day us third years have been waiting for, for coming up to three years. It is the day we hand in what has been the parasite that has eaten away at our sanity second after second, simmering at the back of your mind, and laughing in a shadowy corner rubbing its dirt filled hands together in glee. This is the day we are reunited with our freedom, with our social lives, and our loved ones. But it will also be a day in which many students in Leeds will unite to create a crowd of thrill thirsty children ready to suck at the nipples of Leeds excitement again. Dozens of students will be gasping for air after successfully surviving the tidal wave of deadlines, and what will be there on the shoreline to rescue us? The 4th of May happens to be the start of Live at Leeds, only the best music event to scatter its life all over the best venues of Leeds; Big or small, Dark or light, dingy or up class, its going to be massive…


For just 20 flipping pound you bag a wristband that grants you access to a host of gigs with some great names in music, such as Marina and The Diamonds, The Enemy, Ghostpoet, Ladyhawke, The Subways and many more, with a long list of up and coming bands ready to get you dancing all your stresses away.

Live at Leeds is an annual music event stretching over the first bank holiday weekend every May, in which not only opens the door for budding musicians and bands, but also ensures that those of us with music addictions, or just in search of a celebratory blowout to wave goodbye to University work, fulfill every musical need to have you regenerated in no time.

Look at all this talent!


To kick off this amazing weekend Live at Leeds is holding what is referred to as The Unconference on Friday 4th May, this gives practical advice on how to enter the music industry with information provided from a host of experienced professionals ready to give you all the advice you like!


Whats more, if you fancy a good kick-about the 5- a- side tournament returns to Goals on Kirkstall Road.

For any information on tickets, or to dip you feelers further into this amazing weekend of musical fulfillment click on this link to be taken straight to the Live at Leeds website.


For only a twenty note, this is one hell of a bargain!


Written by Charlotte Owen, Leeds Metropolitan University.


The perfect Sunday Roast

Easter Holidays. A celebration of the resurrection of Jesus Christ, OR for a student,a chance to recharge ones batteries. Days are filled with the brushing off of responsibilities, and the procrastination acceptable of a Sunday. However, what makes Easter Sunday? I believe even the Easter Bunny would have a Sunday Roast, and even though not every student can fork out for a roast every week, Easter is the best excuse to make your tummy sigh with happiness. So here are some tips on how to bag the key ingredients for a cheap student roast in Leeds.



Regardless of whether you enjoy chicken, or Beef (a major debate within my student house), as previously mentioned in one of my articles, the best place for best fresh meat, at a student friendly price, is the market. Most of the butchers within the market will provide you with a months worth of all kinds of meat, for under £10, absolutely perfect for a meat hungry student.


It is worthwhile exploring the vegetable shops surrounding your halls/accommodation, as I live in Headingley, I have found a cute little vegetable shop with a fresh catalogue of vegetables for your desires. A small bag of parsnips and broccoli comes to 50p! These shops are also great for other meals, for example, eggs are just 10p each! If yo do not have any vegetable shops surrounding you, which is unlikely, you always have the vegetable stalls at the market to rely on.


I like to bake, therefore I pick up some eggs from the vegetable shops, and other ingredients from a local supermarket at a small price. Baking is great to enable you to explore some hidden culinary skills, is a great distraction from anything you would rather not think about, and is extremely fun to do with friends. However, if you are stricken with Lazyitus, local shops provide cheap ice lollies or ice creams and cakes at a good price.


Every Sunday lunch needs entertainment, and I have found a great way to pass time! It may sound pretty sad, but trawling charity shops for board games is great when you find Cluedo for £1.99, it has passed many hours for the housemates and I when we have rejected the daily responsibilities in preference to resting our overtired brains. Plus you can play these board games while your food goes down!

Now I don’t know about you, but I have a Sunday Roast to make, and a murder to solve… Happy Easter guys.

Written by Charlotte Owen, Leeds metropolitan University.

Leeds Fest 2012 Anyone?

So it’s that time of year again, where every breath I take is a gasp of anticipation at the question of whether or not I can afford to be part of the underlying culture in which binds all students, and music enthusiasts in Leeds into a compound of ecstatic zombies hungry for body tingling beats. You can almost hear the subject vibrating in your ears, echoing through the library corridoors, and student residences, smell the moisture of mud in the air, living in fear at the thought of millions of wellies and bare bodies sliding through pools of its produce to the hypnotising sounds simmering in the humid stench of sweat and alcohol. Many a student spends their nights tossing and turning, trying to persuade the fear of not being able to afford a ticket to this event to return to the back of their minds, shivering in worry, and the subject of this highly contemplated fire of ear kissing sparks threatening to distract one from their studies.

The event to which I am referring to is of course none other than Leeds Festival, of which is returning for another year of eclectic fascination and one hell of a big hat full of tricks prepared to blow the socks well and truly off it’s willing followers.


Each year this festival offers headliners that fulfil’s the impossible, and out does the previous years selection of amazing talents. When I first stumbled across the poster for 2012’s offering, I almost frothed at the mouth in eagerness, who could ask for more than a weekend spent in the same company as The Foo Fighters, Katy B, Metronomy, The Cure, Paramore, Kasabian, and many more? I know I couldn’t.

Seven stages providing the satisfaction of your musical thirst once, twice, three, ten times over, and one massive reason to let all of your beautiful hair down and let the cold shivers of fascination rush all over your body. This event is not exclusive to Leeds lovers, the people at Leeds Fest welcomes everyone with open arms, in the mutual appreciation of great music.

Aswel as pulse raising music, Leeds festival also offers football tournaments, a cinema tent, bars, late night entertainment, food stalls, a pharmacy, toilets and showers, and many more facilities, even a Pink Moon camping package- for all those Glampers out there!

If you thought Leeds Festival 2011 couldn’t be beaten, you really need to check it out this year, it is going to be massive. Best start saving for this ticket then…

Tickets are available now from;

Selected HMV stores.

Online on; SeeTickets, Gigantic, LMDC, National Express,,,  Stargreen, Ticket Factory, Ticketline, Ticketmaster, Tickets Scotland.

And in person in selected music stores in primarily Sheffield and Leeds.

Written by Charlotte Owen, Leeds Metropolitan University.

Reach out and touch faith

It is incredibly easy for a student at University to forget their motivation for being there in the first place. What with all the addictive  student club nights, harrowing hangovers, and the confusing rush of new opportunities taunting your interest and inviting your attention elsewhere, in to all kinds of directions. The student life is a hard habit to shake off, and it is hard to see an end to the constant parties, and late nights with the dissilusion that you will be able to flunk life when it finally calls with a little pro plus and an enthusiastic gulp of energy drink.

This is where I was a few weeks previously, missing the bigger picture, and forgetting just how much I want to succeed in music journalism, and preferring to indulge my passion in the many delights of Urban Outfitters. Then I looked at my phone as it flashed in the shadow of my distraction, and the light bulb immediately switched back on. As I opened the email on my Blackberry, I bubbled inside with excitement. I was invited to an open lecture with the guest speaker being that of a widely popular writer who provides articles for The Guardian and has contributed to Q magazine, having written her first novel, and in the process of writing her second. I practically jumped off my chair after reading how the lecture would consist of this talented journalist explaining her passion towards music, and the path in which she walked down to get to the position she was in now, and immediately set an alarm for it.

On the day of the lecture I arose bright and early with apprehensive nerves, and carefully considered what I could wear that would impress the speaker enough to realise that I was a great choice of protege, to follow in her footsteps (mindless daydreaming, but worth a try anyway). I spent all my break reading this woman’s work, and revelling in our combined passion for music, and when I witnessed the incessant passion for music magnificently rolling off her tongue I was reminded that I am on the right path to my dream job, I was half tempted to jump up and hug this new hero of mine, after the lecture, in gratitude for the fresh inspiration to remain in the same path.

where dreams are realised (or remembered)

This lecture is not just a one off either, another relevant email has found its way to my phone ensuring me that I was aware of a lecture with the guest speaker being a widely known DJ who will be discussing the relevance of music in today’s culture, yet another burst of  academic excitement followed, and the eagerness to meet someone who employs a wide section of  my Itunes is almost too much to bare. And it is not just us aspiring music journalists blessed with all these inspiring pep talks, students are always kept up to date with the latest guest speaker to bless willing students with their lectures covering a wide variety of occupations, genres, and subjects, so make sure you read all those boring University emails, you might see something that sparks the electric current to your own dreams and goals.

The motive for this article is to remind you that although the student lifestyle may exhume an incredible fog into your vision of the future, University itself is always at hand to feed in to your passion, and to inspire you into the depths of your dreams full capacity. You CAN make your dreams come true. Never forget that.

Written by Charlotte Owen, Leeds Metropolitan University.

Beach Break Live 2012

So it’s nearly that time of year again, festival season. Well… maybe not quite but line-ups are being released and in this cold weather what better way to look forward to the summer than by looking at festivals. Beach Break Live is the UK’s Student Festival held in Pembrey Country Park, South Wales between 14th and 18th June 2012. More details can be found on the website  but here is an overview of Beach Break Live 2012…


First off, the main reason people go to a festival, the music. 2012’s headline acts are Chase and Status, Dizzee Rascal and Friendly Fires. Other artists include Nero, Maverick Sabre, Labrinth, Ben Howard, Wretch32, Delilah and Ghost Poet to name but a few. Having seen Dizzee Rascal at a festival in the past, I can safely say that he will not disappoint and is brilliant live. With their growing success in 2011 and 2012 the other artists will provide a varied and entertaining line-up.


Beach Break Live is, as indicated in the name, set on an 8 mile stretch of beautiful sandy beaches ready to party on and situated just in front of 500 acres of woodland behind the dunes. In 2012 Lonely Planet has voted the region where Pembrey Country Park is set as ‘Best Region in the World’. In terms of getting there Beach Break have made it very easy, they provide national express coaches from many universities which you can book when you book your ticket. Alternatively there is also a shuttle bus which operates from the nearest train station to the festival so if you prefer you can just get the train there.


Like most other festivals Beach Break offers lots of alternative activities other than just music. There is a Roller Disco, Zumba classes, learn to beatbox, Burlesque dancing and workshops, extreme games and even inter-mural university extreme sports. From March you can sign up teams to play football, beach volleyball, ultimate Frisbee, touch rugby and beach cricket if you can muster the energy!

So, what better way to begin the summer than chilling out on a beach, listening to some big acts, whilst having fun with thousands of other students. Beach Break only costs £109 plus booking fee for the whole weekend and camping, great value for a festival. Most universities also have reps who can offer ‘mates rates’. At the University of Exeter RAG are selling tickets for a lower price directly. Even if festivals aren’t really your thing Beach Break has lots of other things to offer, including a hot tub which overlooks the incredible coastal views. What more of an incentive could you really want…

Valentines day in Leeds

Valentines day. A dreaded enemy of mine. A day dedicated to celebrate the love you have for someone you should be treating well every other day of the year. With shop fronts glittered with red stars and love hearts, the taste of love sizzles on my tongue like sweet venom. As you have probably guessed, Valentines day is not my favourite holiday, but hey, I’m not one to shoot cupid down so quickly! Ignore my cynicism, on the actual day I will be melting like honey with the other millions of women hypnotised or brainwashed by unrealistic fairytales of happy endings, and I become weak to the addictive haze of those rose tinted glasses.

However, I am for now unsure how I will be celebrating this over-hyped ‘holiday’; With last years highlight being hugging a pole for most of the night after a night out with as many of my single friends I could find, and the year previous to that walking to the supermarket with my then ‘sweetheart’ (eurgh, Valentines day lexis) so that I could purchase as much chocolate as I could possibly consume to Dirty Dancing (a girls best friend) whilst the guy in question went to play rugby instead. So, while I wonder if  this years Valentines day makes history and is actually happily celabrated, I thought I would check out some events in Leeds that people of all relationship types could get up to on this magically romantic day (I’m trying). Whether you are a single pringle, or in a happy relationship, there are so many events prepared and waiting for you to enjoy in conjunction with the big old V day.

Tiger Tiger 

For all you partiers:

If an eclectic mix of playful games, affordable prices, and one hell of a fun night is what you are looking for this valentines day, get yourself over to Tiger Tiger on Tuesday the 14th of Feb for the perfect celebration/distraction. With playful games such as a lock and key party, Traffic light stickers; Red for couples, Amber for maybe’s, and Green for you singletons wanting to have some fun, an excitingly competitive slave auction for you to choose the next hot victim to adorn you with attention, and not forgetting some classic speed dating. Tiger Tiger blends the perfect valentines day for everyone, not only do you have a chance to enjoy a three course meal, and entry to the club at £20 per person, but you get to experience a night that only happens once every year. When do you ever get a chance to buy that hottie you have had your eye on for months’ attention for the night? You can also get a free taxi to the event before 11pm! Get yourself down here and experience valentines nights at Tiger, it will have you growling with enjoyment!

Kendells Bistro

For the food enthusiasts:

So you are planning a romantic night out to treat your other half, or just yourself and a bunch of friends. You are wanting somewhere different with a relaxed environment, and exotic menu’s to cause your taste buds to bubble and burst with excitement. Take a journey to Kendells Bistro. This place has a massive focus on good quality of food, and not only does it have friendly and helpful staff (instead of all the awkward upper lip business in most posh restaurants) but it provides you with a beautiful french bistro atmosphere. The glimmer of the candles stretch over the chalked menus on the side of the restaurant, and beautiful paintings, tiles and decor adorn the venue to help you feel as if you have strolled into a restaurant in le paris! The bearer of many prestigious awards such as best European restaurant, and Best Leeds restaurant, it is a wonder that anyone would want to leave! This place is the ideal destination for those who want to experience good food, and a cosy Valentines, with a taste of something different in your mouth.

With the demand for this hugely popular destination extremely high, the Valentines menu is £55 per person, however, Valentines day is only once a year, and if you are looking to impress, as the menu says, Kendells Bistro is ‘the most romantic restaurant in Leeds’.

Take a dip in these rosy waters on their website:

mouth-wateringly romantic

Ice Cube

For all you thrill seekers:

Why not cool all this valentines day hotness with a little bit of ice? Ice cube has returned to the strikingly stunning Millennium square in Leeds, and it is even better this year! This time, not only is it a chance to bust out some moves you have taught yourself in the front room whilst watching Dancing on Ice (and lets face it, probably failing), you can now catch some wind sliding down the new 30 metre dry slope snow slide, AND experience what it would be like to be flying down an incredibly high mountain of snow in Ski’s, or a bobsleigh in the simulator. What better day to do all of these cool (excuse the pun) activities than Valentines day. It is a perfect excuse to hold your valentines hand under the pretense that you can not keep stable in your skates, and a great chance to snuggle up to them in order to keep warm. For more information check the website, don’t miss out on the chance to impress your date with your originality, and skating skills! Snow joke! (sorry, again).

Happy Valentines day guys, I am starting to feel like my ideal Valentines day would be all three of these.
Written by Charlotte Owen, Leeds Metropolitan University.