Autumn afternoons were made for cosy knits, meeting up with best friends, jumping into leaf piles... and of course eating! My best friend of ten years finally came to visit me from Munich and we explored the colorful winding roads of Notting Hill. Laughing, chatting and marveling at the golden autumn colors against the pale blue sky on the way to brunch at Tom's Kitchen.
If these photos don't make you want to call your mates for a group-date, then you're inhumane!
It is insane to think that only yesterday we were getting ready for summer and dreaming of lounging on island beaches...all of a sudden the trees are changing colors and Xmas is creeping up at as very very quickly! I can't wait for the streets to start glittering with fairy lights and to drink mulled wine at any time of the day.
After you have explored Notting Hill, visit Kate Middleton and Price William at Apartment 1A in the Kensington Gardens which has recently been refurbished for £12 million. The royal grounds were constructed by Charles Bridgeman in the early 18th century and are open to the public for free so help yourself to a cup of tea and write your Nan a postcard!
OTTOLENGHI (££): Ottolenghi's first restaurant opened in Notting Hill on 63 Ledbury Road. Think rosewater and pistachio syrup on pancakes, fat and fluffy french toast serves with crème fraîche and a thin berry and muscat compote. Not a sweet tooth? Order the new take on a full English; chorizo on baked beans served with sourdough and fried eggs. My friend from South Africa took me here as she was studying at Le Corden Bleu and I've been going back since!
Tom's Kitchen (£££): Opened in 2006 by Michelin starred chef Tom Aikens, this Modern British brasserie is just a ten-minute walk from South Kensington or Sloane Square Underground station. We had the classic Eggs Benedict and Brioche French Toast with caramelised apples and cinnamon cream. Here's the brunch menu!
Granger & Co. (£££): Australian Bill Granger is a restaurateur and author of a number of cookery books, opening his first brasserie in Notting Hill. They have a no-booking policy so you will always find that queues form here at weekends for brunch, but it's well worth the wait if the English weather permits. My favorites are the ricotta hotcakes with banana & honeycomb butter and the tea smoked salmon, poached eggs with avocado and cherry tomatoes. How could you resist? Check it out!
Recipease by Jamie Oliver (£££): The best idea for a fun night out with friends! Have a laugh and learn the tricks of the trade at Jamie Oliver's restaurant. I've booked in for the Thai Feast with my housemates in December and can't wait!
Beach Blanket Babylon (££££): One of the coolest eclectic interiors you will set your eyes on in London. The very best of Cool Britannia in an environment of sheer decadence with chandeliers, velvet sofas and open fireplaces, a very different vibe from their restaurant in Shoreditch. Approach with caution however, as I celebrated my birthday here a few years ago and the waiter actually spilt a whole tray of red wine down my white silk dress! Maybe just wear black ;)
The Rum Kitchen (£): Best. Chicken. Ever! This is a Caribbean eatery serving beach shack food and cocktails in the middle of London. The also do a bottomless brunch every Saturday and Sunday for £30 with unlimited rum punch, bloody marys and bellini's for two hours.
Polpo (££): A Venetian restaurant serving simple food and local wines. The interior is minimalstic, housing brick walls, wood bits and metal ceilings as you would perhaps find in New York's Soho. The dish that reminded me the most of my travels in Venice was the cuttlefish strips in black ink and encrusted with gremolata. Don't dare smile when you are eating this dish unless you want to scare your date away!
Let me know if you decide to give these restaurants a try and share your thoughts! What are your favorite spots in Notting Hill? Please share!