Search Results for: label/ice cream

I Scream, You Scream, We All Scream for Ice Cream

Fanny’s seems to be synonymous with Hanoi. Before I travelled to Vietnam I had seen numerous mentions of it in travel guides, not to mention videos of people sampling the creamy iced delights in a range of flavours (durian fruit being the most unappealing, apparently). So I wasn’t surprised when I got to Vietnam and several of my new-found travelling friends had also heard of it. Unfortunately the branch in Saigon seemed to totally elude us (although to be honest, we never really went looking for it; we were too busy drinking beer). But as Hanoi turned out to be warmer than we had anticipated, we decided a cooling ice cream treat would be just the ticket. Luckily, the Hanoi parlour is located on a street facing HoanKiemLake, which is where we had had lunch earlier on the day in question and so we were still in the vicinity. We stepped in to the air conditioned, very Westernized-looking shop and took our seats, salivating at the thought of what is supposed to be the best ice cream in Vietnam.

Now, I know what you’re thinking. The Vietnamese aren’t exactly known for their ice cream. But after you’ve spent any amount of time in a country which really doesn’t specialise in desserts other than fruit (“mmmmm, oranges again……yay”), the cravings can quickly creep up on you. A gelateria in Naples this was not, but our cravings for sugary goodness allowed us to overlook this fact. I have to say, I was sorely disappointed. Not only were the prices pretty high by Vietnam standards, but I just couldn’t get enthusiastic about the flavour combinations of the sundaes (probably because I had just had a big lunch, but we’ll overlook that for now). My dining companions all seemed to feel the same. I had thought my time in Vietnam had made me into a cheapskate when I initially balked at the prices, but they seemed to be expressing the same surprise, making me feel slightly better (although not much, that lunch didn’t seem to be settling so well on last night’s bia hoi). In the end we ordered a measly amount. I chose a small sundae from the kids menu. This in itself is a first; anyone who knows me will know that I love desserts and would never order a meagre child-sized portion. It was a Mickey Mouse sundae, which was basically a scoop of chocolate ice cream with a humorous chocolate button face sat on a bed of squirty cream and fruit salad. The cuteness I could appreciate. But it still left a sour taste in my mouth. The reality of Fanny’s had definitely not lived up to the hype.

fanny's ice cream

Another of my companions also ordered the ‘Mickey’, whilst a couple of others just ordered a double scoop combination of flavours from the menu. These turned up in paper cups (similar to those you get in the cinema) and the ice cream was already half melted. Big fail. For the price, they at least expected a nice ice cream glass and proper spoon.

All in all I’d say that if you’re craving ice cream and are willing to splash out on a dessert then Fanny’s would be worth the trip. But unfortunately it seems as though the chain (as it has now become) relies on this kind of attitude from willing tourists to keep it going. If it’s yummy (and cheaper) desserts you’re looking for, head to Hoi An, which has a great range of patisseries and coffee shops.

Note from author: I in no way consider myself to be a food critic, nor do I regularly write reviews on places I have eaten on my travels, but felt compelled to write this post because of all of the good things I had heard about this particular ice cream chain. The comments and opinions are my own and not my fellow companions’ or anyone who may be in any way connected to my blog. I can only comment on my personal experience at the Hanoi branch; the shop in Saigon may be superior.

USA Travel: The Good, The Bad and the Ugly

USA Travel: The Good, The Bad and the Ugly

I freely admit to everyone who’ll listen that I love the US. 

My last visit there at the beginning of this year would have constituted my ninth visit to the country. I love the people, the food, the differing cultures and the rampant loyalties to political parties/sports teams/states (even if it sometimes does seem a little crazy to me). I actually can’t think of a bad experience I’ve ever had when visiting the USA (please don’t let that change, ‘Merica).

But as with every country, it has its stand-out positives and its negatives, too. Hey, we can’t all be perfect. So here’s my rundown of the good, bad and ugly I’ve come to love and live with when it comes to USA travel.

The Good

The Road Trips

America is the land of the roadtrip. Coming from a country that sucks at road trips and road travel in general, I am in awe of a country where people don’t even think twice about jumping in their car and driving ten hours to get somewhere. And they make it so damn easy for you, too. All the service stations selling wonderfully unhealthy food, the motels (for when you’re falling asleep at the wheel) and the funny roadside billboards and attractions to keep you amused. God bless you and your huge-ass cars.
USA Travel: The Good, The Bad and the Ugly

Taking Care of the Concrete in Your Home


Concrete is a popular material to use in homes, as it is both strong and durable. If you have an unfinished basement, the concrete can be unsightly and ugly. What can you do about the concrete floors in your home? How can you care for your concrete driveway to prevent it from getting cracks? Here are some tips to help you care for the concrete in your home.

Clean the Concrete

The driveway is exposed to the elements, making it vulnerable as heat and cold takes their toll over the years. It is important to care for the concrete by cleaning it and keeping it free of things that can compromise its quality. Adding a concrete sealant to the driveway is a great way to extend its lifespan. There are a variety of concrete sealants you can use to protect it. Some people choose patterns or colors, while others opt for a basic clear coat to protect the concrete from the elements. Always read the instructions to apply the sealant properly to prevent problems. It is recommended by several companies to apply new sealant to your driveway every 2 or 3 months. Allow the sealant to dry for at least 24 hours before you drive or walk on that area.

Why I Want to Visit New York at Christmas Time

Now that the festive period is drawing to a close (booo), I’ve been reflecting back at the Christmassy experiences I’ve had this year, of which there have been many.

I’ve drunk gluhwein at markets in Germany, I’ve sung carols at a Dickensian Christmas in St Louis, and I’ve eaten my body weight in roast potatoes and stuffing in Manchester. Honestly, it’s been perfect.

But there’s one place that I’ve always wanted to visit around Christmas time (maybe the movies have sucked me in) and that’s New York. This feeling was compounded by watching the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade while I was in Arizona this year and it left with me a longing to head back to the Big Apple, a place I haven’t been since 2011. Here’s why I want to visit New York at Christmas time one year.