Brunch Review: Caravan

Caravan is situated just a short walk away from the station in the kings cross Partnership Development. We walked from Baker Street as it was only a 30 minute walk but had to walk through kings cross station to get to Caravan.

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We visited Caravan one Sunday on a beautiful sunny day, we arrived at 11AM and headed inside to ask for a table, we opted to sit outside because of the lovely weather and were told it was a 30 minute wait which was fine by us we were not in a rush anyway.

We headed to the bar to order a drink while we waited to be seated. We had only been waiting for 10 minutes when the waitress came over and told us our table was ready- amazing.

The bar area was pretty cool it wasn’t in the middle of the restaurant but it also wasn’t situated at the back so you could walk the entire way around the bar and order from both sides which was quite cool.

The toilets were communal at Caravan, there were separate cubicles for males and females but the rest was communal. We have started to see this more and more in London so maybe it will become the norm soon.

The inside is rather dining room like (this definitely isn’t a bad thing we love it), there are long communal tables which immediately reminded us of being back at school. The high ceilings and pipes that are on display gives Caravan an industrial look which gives it a slightly edgy vibe.

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The atmosphere inside was energetic and lively it looked like everyone was having the best time whilst potentially recovering from the night before with great food in a vibrant establishment. If we were not able to get a seat outside then we would have been more than happy to sit inside on the long communal tables.

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It was so lovely being able to sit outside in September (especially as it had been so cold the week before), but we soon noticed that it wasn’t so great for taking photos (dam shadows), we actually ended up putting our food on the floor in the shade to get a decent photo of our food oh the things we do for a good Instagram shot.

Annie ordered the Banana, Date, Tamarind, Cocoa Nib, Almond Milk smoothie it was very sweet and almost tasted quite artificial. Rach went for the Cucumber, Apple, Parsley, Spinach which was quite watery and sadly was no where near as good as her homemade green juices.

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If we are completely honest we didn’t love the juices we both didn’t enjoy them as much as we had hoped and didn’t end up finishing them either. They cost £4.50 so below average for a juice or smoothie in London but if we were to return to Caravan we would definitely opt for an iced coffee instead.

For food Annie ordered the Chapel and swan smoked salmon, soft scrambled egg on grain toast which was absolutely incredible. They were very generous with the portions and it kept me full for the rest of the day which is always a bonus. This dish cost £9 which is actually very good value for London considering it had smoked salmon on it.

Rach ordered the Avacado, Chilli, Lemon & olive oil on sourdough bread but she also added a side of bacon which was undeniably delicious and they were very generous and gave three thick slices of bacon. The dish cost £7 and the bacon was an additional £4 so again it was only £11.

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Over all we were really impressed with Caravan and we loved the relaxed and quirky vibes. We would definitely recommend a visit, there is so much more on the menu that we need to try so we are sure we will be back again soon.

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London Bucket List

Sometimes its just nice to write things down, we feel that when we write things down we will actually do it, so we have decided to write our London bucket list. Despite living in London, we sometimes feel that we take it for granted and do not appreciate the amazing city we live in. There are so many things we want to do in London and by writing them down, hopefully we will one day we will be able to tick all things off the bucket list. We apologise its a very random list!

We also have a long long list on the notes section on our phones (we have become addicted/reliant on our notes!) of places we want to brunch, but we won’t share that one with you as it will ruin our Brunch Series posts.

Let us know if you would recommend these places, or what we should add to the list!

1) Climb over the O2 – we have wanted to do this for ages and ages so will definitely be climbing over this iconic building soon

2) Dalloway Terrrace – this place looks like bloggers paradise and the food also looks divine. Check out their Instagram and you’ll want to visit too!

3) Madison – based at St Pauls with views on London we really want to go here for a drink or two

4) Run the London Marathon – now this is probably our most crazy idea on the list, but its something we have always wanted to do. We enter the ballot every year with no luck, but hopefully one day we will get the chance to run the marathon.

5) Sky Garden – this is free to visit with beautiful views on London. Crazy that we haven’t been yet, maybe Christmas will be a magical time to go.

6) Bottomless Brunch – we aren’t really fussy as to where to go for this, but we have never attended a bottomless brunch so this is a MUST DO!

7) Ministry of Fitness Class – as if you can go to Ministry of Sound for a fitness class. How amazing would the atmosphere and workout tunes be!

8) Swim in the Serpentine – so they use the Serpentine in Hyde Park for triathlons but you can also pay to swim in a small section of it yourself. Its only £4.20 for adults, and although does look quite disgusting, it would be something very different to do!

9) Afternoon Tea Bus Tour – b bakery offer the opportunity to sit on a London Bus that takes you on a tour of London whilst eating afternoon tea, how amazing does that sound! The same company also offer a gin lovers tour, we could be tempted!

10) Watch the sunset from Primrose Hill – we love Primrose Hill and its so easy to get to from Baker Street. A lovely walk through Regents Park, past ZSL London Zoo and up the hill and boom, the most stunning view of London.

11) Go for a run through Richmond Park – we love Richmond Park, and once went on a walk through the park to see the deer, we really want to run through the park.

12) Go to Protein Haus for a smoothie – we have followed these on Instagram for a while now and keep meaning to head to Canary Wharf to try one.

We know we shall be adding to this list as the months/year/blog goes on!

Brunch Review Hally’s

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We were so excited to try out Hally’s as we had been following their Instagram for a while so when we got the opportunity to go we couldn’t turn it down.

We booked a table for midday on Saturday and arrived on a beautiful sunny day. There were people sat outside with a glass of Prosecco in hand enjoying the beautiful weather. We were taken to our table inside the decor was lovely, simple but stylish.

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We decided to go for the bottomless brunch which is available at weekends. It seemed like a great offer, you get a choice of pastry or cookie, any main dish, tea/coffee and bottomless Prosecco or mimosa.

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We enjoyed a chocolate croissant and an almond croissant and both opted for an iced coffee. The menu stated there was a supplement for iced drinks, however we were not actually charged the extra, which was a bonus!

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There was so much choice for the mains and it was really hard to decide, however in the end Rach opted for the Smashed avocado on sourdough toast with ricotta, feta, mint & lemon with a side of chilli jam which was very yummy, although did have a kick to it!

After spying what someone else had ordered Annie went for the Corn fritters with crispy bacon, avocado, poached egg & creme fraiche. They were incredibly generous with the crispy bacon and served the fritters with 2 poached eggs. Its safe to say Annie was definitely stuffed by the end of it.

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We also enjoyed bottomless glasses of Prosecco and mimosas. It was weird because you couldn’t mix and match, once you picked Prosecco you always had to have Prosecco. Therefore we decided to order one of each so we could mix and match. Sometimes you fancy a little orange with your Prosecco and sometimes you don’t so we were very happy – but did find this a teeny strange!

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The location of Hally’s is amazing, we had never been to Parson’s Green before and loved it. It was such a quaint little street on the edge of Chelsea with gorgeous looking buildings and shops. Opposite Hally’s is Little H which is the same chain but more of a takeaway with a couple of high stools to sit at.

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We had missed going for brunch in London and Hally’s was the perfect place to visit.

 

Say Goodbye To The Summer Blues

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We have already started to wave goodbye to the care free warm summer nights where evenings were spent in the garden catching some rays and sipping on a cold beverage hoping and wishing the hot weather would last forever. Unfortunately it didn’t and as we say hello to September we can already feel autumn in the air. We are already mentally preparing ourselves for the cosy evenings spent by a fire watching The X Factor and eating our body weight in chocolate (yes supermarkets are already selling chocolate tins swear it gets earlier and earlier every year).

Now don’t get us wrong we love autumn, well in fact we love all the seasons in the UK we just wished that the cold months didn’t last as long and that we actually had a proper summer and not just a hot day here and there. Living in the UK though means we are going to have to get over this though unless we migrate to another country where summer is there to stay for the majority of the year… dreams.

Just because summer is coming to an end in the UK as much as we don’t want to admit or believe it it doesn’t mean our moods have to as well. We have collated a list of top tips to help you get over the summer blues, if you have any others then please do share them with us!

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1). Keep living your summer life- why is it that everyone goes into hibernation during the winter months and cannot be bothered to socialise? This year we are going to keep living our summer social lives well into the winter months, okay so a glass of Pimms may be swapped for a mulled wine and a pair of sunglasses for a bobble hat but that’s okay we can deal with that.

2). Book a getaway- why not book a getaway so you have something to look forward to. It doesn’t even have to be in a hot country it could be a ‘staycation’ after all aren’t these the new ‘vacation’? We are going to make sure we have lots of fun things crammed into our diaries at the weekends so we have lots of things to look forward to.

4). Start a new hobby- why not start a new hobby during the week after work so you have things to look forward to after work. We all remember that horrible feeling of going to work in the dark and leaving work in the dark, so make sure you have something to look forward to in your spare time. We are going to try some new fitness classes in London this winter to help keep us motivated.

5). Get outside- just because its winter doesn’t mean you have to stay inside, wrap up warm, show off your new winter coat and get outside. We love walking in the winter and always like to visit new national trust places, the UK is just as beautiful in the winter as it is in the summer.

6). Get a good night’s sleep- make sure you get enough sleep, it will leave your body and mind feeling refreshed, revitalized and motivated to beat the summer blues!

 

 

Blogging As A Pair 

We take our hats off to those of you who blog on your own, how do you do it? There is always so much to get done and things to tick off that never ending to do list. We constantly feel snowed under with the amount of work we have to do and there is two of us to share the load.

When we first started blogging we would never have guessed what it would really entail and how much goes on ‘behind the scenes’. We spend every spare moment on our blog which we love doing and wouldn’t change it for the world. We come home from work only to start work all over again, this time doing something we are so unbelievably passionate about.

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A blogger never really stops working, although we don’t always think of it as working because we love what we do but It’s nice to work together at the weekends. We can bake, attend events, write posts, have admin evenings, workout together, photoshoots, film YouTube videos and the list goes on. We can imagine this could become quite lonely being a solo blogger and we can really see why it is so important to mix with other bloggers and make blogging friends because like some of your other friends that don’t blog they will ‘get it’.

We take our hats off to those bloggers who attend events alone it must literally be terrifying. We have been lucky enough to be able to attend events together because otherwise we still probably wouldn’t have been to one yet! We can imagine it’s like all things though the more you go to them the easier it becomes and the more bloggers you get to know. It can be hard to sometimes juggle our calendars around one an another and sometimes we have to miss really good events if one of us is busy but that’s life and we blog as a pair so want to attend events as a pair.

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We both have our own jobs with the blog for example Annie edits the photos and Rach edits the vlogs. If we didn’t have our own responsibilities thing would be chaotic. We haven’t necessarily split out all aspects of our blog like emails some things we both chip in on to make sure we are both in the know.

People always asks us who writes the blogs and how do you choose which one of you is going to? We both write the blogs and at times one of us may write more than the other but it always evens out. We always make sure we read each others blog posts as we think it’s important to have a fresh pair of eyes read over the post before we schedule it to go live.

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We love blogging as a pair, we support each other daily. We encourage one another to step outside of our comfort zones daily and say yes to things we would usually shy away from. One of our favourite parts about blogging together is the fact we get to enjoy this incredible journey together. Things surprise us everyday in this crazy blogging world and we are just happy we have one another to experience it with.

 

Barry’s Bootcamp London Review

This is the room where everything becomes possible. Where you push through the “I can’t’s” and “If Only’s.” Where you run faster, lift more, lean out, quiet down. This is what transformation looks like. Where you become the best version of yourself. – Barry’s Bootcamp

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We had wanted to try Barry’s Bootcamp for a really long time and we finally got round to purchasing a class.  We booked ourselves into the 11:00am full body class one Saturday and we were super excited to to try the workout that has been the talk of London town for a while.

We had read on the website that we needed to turn up to the class 15 minutes before the class so being super keen beans we somehow managed to turn up 40 minutes before hand (we blame google maps it always says it takes longer than it does!). When we arrived we were checked in and each given towel- luxury.

After checking out the post workout shake menu we headed straight to the changing rooms and we were already impressed. When people say it is the small things in life that make you happy they are certainly right, the changing rooms were equipped with GHD straighteners, hair dryers, hair spray, deodorant, tampons- you name it they had it.

As it was our first time the instructor took us into the room beforehand, the lights were dimmed and there were bright red lights lighting up the room. The instructor Briefed us on how to use the treadmills before inviting the rest of the class to join.

When booking into a class on Barry’s you have to decide whether or not you want to start on the treadmill or on the floor, we opted for the treadmill. The class was a mixture between interval and strength training. We sprinted until our legs nearly fell off and lifted weights heavier than we would usually opt for, we pushed our bodies and it felt blooming fantastic.

When people say Barrys Bootcamp is hard they certainly were not lying! It was the sweatiest we have ever been and probably the hardest workout we have ever been to but we loved it and we cannot wait to go back again!

After the class we jumped in the shower, which by the way were amazing the shampoo smelt incredible. Once we were dressed and refreshed and the last ones out of the changing rooms we headed to the refuel bar to order a shake. We stupidly didn’t order them before our class so we had to wait about 20 minutes as they were busy making lots of shakes ready for the next class so top tip pre-order your shake guys. The shakes were reasonably priced costing us £5.00 each and trust us when we say they were a decent size as well.

Barry’s costs £20 per class but you can also purchase packages and the more classes you buy at once the cheaper each class becomes. We definitely think it is worth the money but it isn’t something we would choose to go to every week as it would become incredibly expensive, we will be returning though!

We Vlogged the day we went to Barry’s so if you want to see more you can catch up on our vlog here.

How to spend a healthy day in London

We love spending a healthy day in London. A typical day for us would be the below, we love trying new classes and new food especially brunch food!

Attend a class/ visit a new gym- There are so many great fitness classes in London, it would be impossible for us to name them all but some of Londoners favourites include; Barry’s boot camp, F45, unit London, Kobox and bests bootcamp. You can also look on the app ‘class pass’ where you will discover hundreds more classes. If classes aren’t really your thing you could always look on the ‘payasugym’ app where you can search by location for a gym.

Go for brunch- Brunch is massive in London, everyone seems to be having brunch these days which is great if you love breakfast food as it means you can eat it for both breakfast and lunch. Some of our favourite brunch spots in London include; daisy greens which is behind Marble Arch, Mauriels kitchen in South Kensington, The good life eatery, Daylesfood farm in Marylebone high street, Grind (lots of locations), Chiltern Firehouse and so many more!

Rent a boris bike- Renting Boris bikes or Santander bikes is so much fun and a great way to explore London. It is an absolute bargain as well, it only costs £2 for 24 hours meaning you could cycle your way around London. We especially love cycling through the London parks as cycling on the busy London roads can be slightly terrifying to say they least!

Walk- don’t use the tube- We have a rule that when we are visiting London we walk everywhere! We hate getting the tube it’s so busy and also can get really expensive if you are using it all the time. Most places in London are a lot closer to each other than you probable think. Next time before you hop on the tube open your google maps and look at how far away you are, you’ll be surprised at how little time you save getting the tube. Walking also means you get to explore parts of London that you perhaps wouldn’t have seen otherwise. We always like to take the scenic route in the hunt to find the hidden gems of London.

A toursits’ guide to London

Despite both living close to London we do love having a touristy day out in London and exploring the amazing city. London is incredible because there is so much to do regardless of your age and there is also so much history to the city.
We have decided to pull together some ideas if you are planning a day out in London. You can pick your favourites from the below list and tailor the day to suit your needs. The great thing about London is that a lot of it is walking distance away from each other and the best way to explore a city is by walking. When you walk somewhere you find areas that you wouldn’t normally discover and really explore the city.

Central Tourist locations:
Buckingham Palace – get off the tube at Green Park and walk to Buckingham Palace to see one of the most famous sites in London. This place is swamped with tourist so be careful in the crowds, but make sure you get that good shot. The best time to go is to see the changing of the guard at 11am.

Trafalgar Square – You can walk to Trafalgar Square along the tree lined Mall from Buckingham Palace, or the closest tube is Trafalgar Square. You can visit the National Gallery here or the National Portrait Gallery and also take pictures of Trafalgar

Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament – You can easily walk to Big Ben from Buckingham Palace or from Trafalgar Square, or the closest tube station is Westminster. Big Ben is so iconic so you have to visit here when coming to London. If you are lucky you may see lots of protestors outside too. Make sure you walk along Waterloo Bridge to get a good shot and this bridge then takes you to the London Eye

London Eye – The London Eye is a great tourist attraction and personally we think the best time of day to go on it is at dusk so you can watch the sun set over London. The London Eye may be slightly expensive but if you haven’t been on it before then its highly recommended. You can spend your visit pointing out the iconic buildings across the skyline.

Sea Life Aquarium – a great day out for the family is the aquarium which is right by the London Eye. For those who love aquariums and sea creatures this is a fun day out!

Tower Bridge & London Bridge:
These locations are very close to each other so it’s a good idea to visit all these places together

Borough Market – Borough Market is foodie heaven and the closest tube is London Bridge. The best time to visit the market is early in the day as it is less busy, however the market is only open Wednesday to Saturday There are so many different food stalls here to purchase food from but also street food stalls to purchase delicious hot food. You could spend hours here tasting samples of different cheeses, meats and sweet treats. Make sure you visit Rabot 1745 for the most incredible hot chocolate.

The Shard – the tallest building in London is guaranteed to provide you with incredible views of London. You can be on the 72nd floor of this building admiring the London skyline with 360 degree views. To visit the viewing gallery you need to book in advance, but you could also visit one of the many bars or restaurants for dinner and drinks with a difference.

HMS Belfast – the HMS Belfast is moored between London Bridge and Tower Bridge and is such a fun day out for the whole family. There is so much to do and see on board the ship and of course great views of the iconic Tower Bridge. On the HMS Belfast you will learn all about live at sea but also about World War Two.

Tower of London – Tower of London to see the crown jewels is an excellent way to spend the afternoon in London. To make the visit enjoyable for kids you can download an interactive app to keep the kids encouraged throughout the visit. The great thing about a visit to the Tower of London is that you can spend as little or as long as you like here.

Tower Bridge – one of the most famous bridges that people often think is called London Bridge, but make sure you do not mix the two! Tower Bridge is a suspension bridge that consists of 2 bridge towers tied together at the upper level by 2 walkways and you can visit Tower Bridge and climb to a glass floor walkway for impressive views of London. Your ticket also included a visit to the engine room to learn about the inner workings of the bridge.

Covent Garden/West End/Soho:
Covent Garden – you have to visit here purely to see how beautiful it is, the covered market place is gorgeous especially at Christmas. You will also see some amazing street performers here

Theatre – a trip to London isn’t complete without a trip to London’s West End to see a play or a musical. There are so many amazing shows on at the theatre you will want to see them all! Aladdin is incredible and so is Lion King if you are a Disney Fan. Mamma Mia is an amazing sing a long musical that is guaranteed to make you feel good. Matilda is also incredible and highly recommended. Les Miserables and Phantom of the Opera are also excellent choices

Eating – There are SO many restaurants in this area that you are spoilt for choice. There are too many to put here, but look out for a post about pre-theatre menus in London soon. However, many restaurants offer excellent value pre-theatre menus so make sure you research or book in advance.

Regents Park/Camden:
London Zoo – London Zoo is amazing if we do say so ourselves! It’s such a big zoo so you could easily spend the day here. Nestled in Regents Park and close to the stunning Primrose Hill this is a great place to visit with the family. There are lots of events on throughout the day in particular learning about different animals. We love bringing a picnic to the zoo, however there are plenty of places to buy food too.

Madame Tussauds – Madame Tussauds is on the edge of Regents Park and is part of the famous wax work museum chain. You can take your picture with a number of famous people and pretend to be mingling with the celebs! The wax works change of a regular basis. When booking your ticket online you get to pick a time slot, its advised to book in advance otherwise you could be queuing for hours to gain entry.

Camden – Camden is very very close to the beautiful Regents Park. Camden is a very vibrant and eclectic part of London right by a beautiful lock. Camden is famous for its market so make sure you visit it for a browse. There are also many different street food stands to buy delicious food.

This is only scraping the surface of visiting London, make sure you check back for more blog posts about the best city in the world (we may be biased!).

Brunch Review Jackson and Rye

ifesWe had a day out in London so we had to try out a new spot for brunch and had been recommended to go to Jackson and Rye who serve brunch until 4.30 at weekends.

There are 6 Jackson and Rye’s and most of them are in London; Soho, City, Chiswick, Richmond, Kingston and then Guildford. We visited the one in Soho which was on Wardour Street, very close to China Town and an excellent location for all the London theatres.

According to their website their brunch is ‘legendary’ and to be fair we were really spoilt for choice and it took a long look at the menu to decide what to have. However true to form, we both went for the same thing AGAIN! This might start to become a problem, because then we don’t get to give you guys reviews of 2 dishes, however we can’t help that we have similar tastes buds and love pancakes!

Therefore we both went for the caramelised banana pancakes and were very intrigued by the maple cream. The pancakes arrived super super quick and looked very fluffy. We were given 3 pancakes each and half a caramelised banana and a pot of maple syrup creak, there was also extra syrup on the table.

The pancakes looked fluffy and tasted fluffy too and the banana complimented the pancakes perfectly as did the cream. We thoroughly enjoyed our pancakes however wish we had more banana, maybe a whole banana as it tasted so good!

The place was very dark and at first we didn’t like it but then it grew on us and we liked the dark atmosphere and the relaxing music. The menu was large with lots of choice and this place would cater for all needs.

We would definitely recommend this place at weekends for brunch and think it is great that you can enjoy brunch all the way until 4.30, who said you have to eat brunch at 11.30!!

Where shall we visit next? Please send us your recommendations!

Brunch Review Muriel’s Kitchen

We are on the hunt for the best places to go for brunch in London and Greater London and couldn’t think of a better topic to blog about. As you can probably already tell we are absolute foodies and we would say breakfast is our favourite meal of the day, you can read our blog post about it hereAt the weekend going for brunch is ideal because it means a later breakfast and you can go all out on a big meal to start the day.

We read about Muriel’s Kitchen on The Culture Trip so when we were in the area before a blogging event we just had to take a visit. We tried to book a table online but it was fully booked (we would recommend booking in advance at the weekend), however decided to risk it and turn up. We had to wait around 15 minutes for a table because the whole place was jam packed but it was worth the wait.

Firstly we ordered drinks with Rachel opting to try a juice and Annie going for the bottomless filter coffee (£2 is a bargain!). The juice was delicious and very refreshing and we like the little touch of the cucumber on the side.

 

 

We then ordered the toast to share, this came with butter and a whole jar of jam!! The bread was very tasty and there was certainly enough for us to share whilst we waited for the main event! It was so hard to decide what to order for the main brunch. We had watched all the dishes come out the kitchen whilst waiting for a table and were eying up a couple of dishes. As Rachel doesn’t like eggs it was a bit easier to decide, (most brunch dishes always include some form of egg!), and choosing the pancakes was a clear winner. It was harder for Annie to decide however in the end she also went for the pancakes.

 

When they arrived, our faces and gasps of ‘wow’ even made the waitress chuckle. The presentation wad impressive and the portion size even better! We do not know how the pancakes were made  but they were so fluffy and a bit cake like and had berries in them too. They were then topped with berry coulis, icing sugar and greek yoghurt. We were then given a very generous jug of maple syrup to pour over. I don’t think we need to write any more about because you can just drool over the pictures instead!

 

We are advocates of brunch and love trying out new places to go. This was definitely a great place to start our hunt for the best place for brunch in London and Greater London. Where would you recommend we try next?