Thursday, 26 May 2011

Dixon's design paradise

Another great place worth visiting on a sunny day (as well as any other day) is Tom Dixon’s very cool kitchen and design studio. It’s right on the canal in Ladbroke Grove between Notting Hill and Kensal Rise and makes you think of the Otis Redding’s song Sitting on The Dock of the Bay. The restaurant The Dock Kitchen offers a new lunch menu every day and it’s inspired by season and the mood of the staff. The last part ought to add some surprises on the plates.
The front of the building is designed with huge windows creating a stunning effect, when the cool building reflects in the water.
While visiting you should check out the famous designers own design or Piet Hein Eek, Danish Made A Mano or Copenhagen Lab among others. If you are interested in design this is the place to go right now.
Should you find this too expensive or too design glam, you could follow the track of a local artist. When I visited him across the street from Dixon’s design temple, he took me to a local cafe just a few steps down the street and ordered jacket potatoes with baked beans and cheese.
That’s British style with a much more traditional touch than Tom Dixon.
You gotta love them both!

Tuesday, 17 May 2011

Sunshine & parsnip cakes

I had a baby a little while ago and all of a sudden my radar is fixed on cafes with easy access preferably with outside tables. Especially considering the gorgeous spring or more accurately summer weather we have been blessed with recently.
Petersham Nurseries just outside Richmond ticks all the boxes. You can sit outside on rusty iron chairs among blooming lavender, roses and all kinds of plants and flower.
Sorry for mentioning this place again. But it’s just a fab gem. Several new great things have happened, since I last mentioned the nursery with the cosy teahouse and popular restaurant. The chef Skye Gyngell has received at Michelin star for her superb seasonal, earthy and hearty cooking. I am so pleased for her, and it’s so great that the Michelin people are also starting to acknowledge that sort of more basic and personally cooking.
Secondly the teahouse is now serving food from the kitchen. I tested it with my good friend yesterday. She is probably Petersham Nurseries number one fan. We shared bruchetta with roasted tomato and mozzarella and spicy lentils with spinach. Very tasty lunch, but not very satisfying portions, as another friend added after having eaten there.
She is right. But I guess that is how a café makes you buy the cake too.
Everything they bake is delicious too – with a very homemade look and often made with vegetable. Who would have sort that you could make a divine cake with parsnips!