A lifetime ago (ok, we’re talking 7 years) West London was my stomping ground. I shared a room with two of my best friends in a Shepherd’s Bush basement. This was while they were building Westfield and instead of going to their lovely champagne bars we could more often than not be found in Belushi’s and the Walkabout (even that’s gone now!). We were 25 and having a total blast and I wouldn’t change those days for the world.
One of my favourite things about living in Shepherd’s Bush was just how close it was to Holland Park and Notting Hill – in other words, wonderful places to mooch around on the weekends. It was probably these two suburbs that really sold me on London. I dreamed of days when I would come back, marry a Russian oligarch and move into one of those pastel coloured houses you see in the movies.
I didn’t marry a Russian oligarch but I am ok with that, Mr Man is pretty cool and we’ve probably had a bit more fun by being broke but bohemian in our East End Abode. I was never the type to spend my days in yoga classes trying to fit into Hermes string bikinis – but each to their own.
Recently I decided to meet up with my friend Tricia for brunch. Tricia left academia and the world of corporate consulting to set up Flow Mind and Body a couple of years ago and is a very talented reflexologist (I know this first hand) and is just hands down amazing. My brunches with her always turn into several hours so when we turned up to Daylesford Organics on Westbourne Grove we were pleased to just be left to enjoy our delicious flat whites and toast with fruity jams, eyeing up the amazing produce on our way out.
I commented to her how different everyone in Notting Hill looks to those of us rushing around the East End. We agreed that’s what London so brilliant and unique – these neighbourhoods that are such contrasts, reminding us that London really is made up of so many villages. Here’s an example – tanned and skinny people with bouncing blow dries and yoga mats tucked under their arms vs my people watching at Shoredtich’s Box Park where some looked like they were on their way to a dress-up party but at 2pm.
A couple of weeks later I was back in Notting Hill for Zomato’s foodie meet-up at Notting Hill Kitchen on Kensington Park Road. Men with great hair and immaculate suits were seated next to the windows with women in beautiful clothes and excellent blow dries. I felt a bit haggard in comparison having Boris Biked it in a hurry to make it through Hyde Park after work, but we were in for an awesome night.
Unfortunately I was batting a never-ending cold so had to leave before the desserts but this did not sway me from falling in love with this outstanding Portuguese tapas restaurant with the well-tailored clientele. I would love to go back there on a date with Mr Man.
The food was so unique. We had savoury doughnuts with spider crab mousse, cerviche made by the gods, mini cod burgers, croquettes and an exceptional pork main which was so tender and served with asparagus risotto which I couldn’t get enough of.
Unfortunately at that point I had to leave as the cold and flu drugs were wearing off and I couldn’t disguise it any more but I had such a brilliant evening there – great food and awesome company that you always get when you gather a bunch of London bloggers together.
Notting Hill, you have kept up your reputation with LLC. Perhaps I’ll make the trip out your way again soon, but next time I’m getting a blow dry on my way…
Daylesford Organics can be found at 208-212 Westbourne Grove, London W11 2RH, we paid just over a fiver each for a flat white and toast and a great dose of people watching.