Fitness, festive food and first class gigs - another month in the life of Leeds party planner Jordan Odu

Having my DNA test down at Fitness Space just before party season has been both a blessing and a curse as far as I’m concerned.

On the plus side, I now know which foods to avoid and which ones to eat more of, however, not many of my good foods have been popping up on these delicious festive menus.

Boxing clever.

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I’ve really embraced the Christmas spirit in 2018, and am currently on a mission to eat my way through everything Leeds has to offer. The festive gorging and feasting began at Restaurant Bar and Grill, where I chewed down on the fried chilli squid starter, followed by the traditional oven roasted turkey with all the trimmings.

I’m talking pigs in blankets, chestnut stuffing, roasties and several glasses of red wine. As ever, the food was complemented with excellent hosting and an electric atmosphere. Another place ticked off my Leeds foodie list was The Ivy. I feel like we’ve been late to the party on the back of the York and Harrogate openings, but boy was it worth it.

Here, I had a bit of a ‘you only live once’ moment, and went in for the kill with the grilled whole lobster, served with garlic and parsley butter and thick cut chips. Washed down with a glass or two of the good stuff, this was an absolute treat and all the better that it wasn’t my turn to pick up the bill. Talk about tactics, I’ve got the skills (or just a lot of bare-faced cheek)!

Of course, there’s more than just the culinary delights of Leeds to get you in the mood for Santa. I’ve loved walking around the city centre since the lights were switched on, as the decorations this year are next-level. Victoria Gate have won the race in my eyes, with the huge tree outside John Lewis and the awesomely gigantic reindeer by the entrance opposite Man Behind the Curtain.

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When it comes to the holiday playlist, my favourite festive tune of all-time has to be ‘All I Want For Christmas Is You.’ It really gets me in the mood, which is why I’m mega-exited to be going to see Mariah Carey belting it out live at the First Direct Arena. I’ll be in the VIP box singing every single word, knocking back a sherry for good measure.Speaking of Mariah, it’s really been all about divas for me lately.

Just last week I went to see the legendary Lauren Hill in Manchester dropping her solo hits, alongside all the Fugees classics which were such a big part of my coming of age in the 90s. And, whilst we’re on the topic of the 90s, who has managed to get their hands on some Spice Girls tickets?

I was lucky enough to get what I really, really, want and will be shaking my zig-a-zig-ah in Manchester come summer 2019. I’m a bit gutted Posh isn’t gonna make it, but my fave lady’s got a fashion empire to run. As I’ve been working on the Popworld, Lower Briggate launch recently, I’ve been getting myself ready for a dose of girl power by re-living all of their greatest hits.

We threw them an almighty opening party recently, which went off big time. Because, as they always say, there ain’t no party like a Pink Gorilla party! That’s it for now, I’m off back down to Fitness Space for Sweat Box (boxing in 40 degree heat I kid you not).

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I’ve got a date planned tomorrow with my Lindt advent calendar and need to prepare my temple like bod to take the damage. See you next month for my year round up and to celebrate a year working with Leeds City Buzz…………

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