What to do with The Parents

Published in The Boar 16th July 2013

Helen Cobby shares her tips on how to entertain your family on a quick Warwick university visit.

When ‘The Parents’ say they are coming to visit does that send you into a panic? How to keep them occupied all day? What to do with them? How to get them out of your hair? Well here is my guide on how to survive and ensure you all have a good and harmonious time in Leamington, whether you are going to be entertaining the family as a Fresher in October or during Graduation this summer.

There are many unique and unusual independent cafes in Leamington with the right ambience and high quality boosts of caffeine or sugar to put everyone in a good mood. If the weather behaves, Bar Angeli is my number one recommendation with its outdoor seating in the cobbled courtyard of Regent Court. Their hot chocolate is the best in town, and their pastries and muffins would be perfect for a morning snack or a late, indulgent breakfast. Bar Angeli is Italian run, making for a vibrant yet chilled atmosphere, complete with unique rustic décor. Keeping with the Italian theme, Café Corleone also does amazing hot chocolate and superb coffee, and is of the same high standard as Bar Angeli, being owned by the same people. Alternatively, Gusto Ricco can make for a fun experience. It has several higgledy-piggledy floors with odd furniture. Watch out for their delicious carrot cake. Lastly, Blueberry Hill Patisserie on Chandos Street is a cutesy option with a fresh feel to it due to the simple, open décor. I’ve yet to try any of their cakes, but they all look invitingly homemade.  Continue reading

Leamington Spa’s taste of Little Italy

Published in The University of Warwick student newspaper, The Boar, in March 2013

Looking for an escape from the limited restaurant selection on campus and the generic chain restaurants out in the real world? There is no place quite like La Coppola.

Whether you live on campus or in Leamington, La Coppola will make for a unique treat out with friends or an unforgettable date. It provides a refreshing restaurant experience that goes beyond  the food.

Family owned and with all Italian-speaking waiters, it immediately feels like a special place. As you open the door you are greeted with warm smiles. Your walk to a table will be lit up by fairy lights draped among blossom branches running along the ceiling.

Murals on the walls depicting rural Italian scenes add to the feeling that you have stepped out of cold, wet England and into a delicious holiday. Even the outside of the restaurant is full of promise, stimulating the imagination with lavish displays of colourful fruit and vegetables – a beautiful display with the promise of healthy eating.

The menu is refreshing, with choice ranging from brochette starters, pizzas, risottos, different meat dishes, and they specialize in fish. Even for vegetarians, there is plenty to choose from. My favourite is Melanzana Parmigiana, which is baked layers of aubergine and parmesan in a rich tomato sauce, topped with buffalo mozzarella. There are many side dishes available, ranging from chips to some healthier options.  Continue reading