.: A coffee week :.

Since I have been on holidays, waiting for baby to be born, I have been staying more often on my area (and that means Chiswich / Kew / Richmond), as I couldn’t risk to go that far (in case baby would decide to get out). But in a way that meant I could visit some of the places I had on my wishlist for a while, or revisit some places I really like.

One of the things I’ve been trying to do over the last few weeks is to finally catch up with my photos – you probably noticed the posts from Japan popping up recently when I went there in April. Also I’ve been writing and reading a lot more often. When home, I’ve been baking and cooking a lot more often than I ever did, being the carrot cake the winner of the week.

Apart from my daily meditation, I’ve also been doing a couple of hours detox, and by that I mean just not touching either my phone or my computer and spend more time in old-fashion pleasures such as a reading. A good way of doing that is to visit a cafe, order something nice and enjoy a book or if I feel inspired, just write – you can read some of those texts here and here.

Here’s some of the places I’ve been visiting recently:

Angie’s Little Food Shop, Chiswick 

This is a small food shop with a really good bakery selection. They are quite known for the brunch and the delicious salad options, but since I went after lunch was not that hungry. Having read the reviews though, I already knew what I wanted: the toasted banana bread with espresso butter. Such a good option I can tell you! Really tasty banana bread! Coffee was quite good as well

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They also sell their own ceramics, which are quite adorable (you can check the whole range here)

Angie's Little Food Shop Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Outsider tart, Chiswick

This is not my first time here. It’s actually one of my favourite places to enjoy a good brownie/ cheesecake and write. On the weekends it’s really busy, as they have really good brunch options, but during the week it feels so quiet (my last review here). I’ve already tried the pancakes and they are absolutely delicious.

Photo from google

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I can’t be bored of this place. Love it every single time I go there.

You can also buy some really interesting groceries there

Photo from google

Including their own American Bakery book

(Also available on amazon)

Outsider Tart Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Muriels Kitchen, Richmond

I actually went to Muriel’s Kitchen the first time for their afternoon tea (you can read all about it here), and because I loved the scones so much I knew it was just a matter of time before I would be back again for more.

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Again, was positively impressed by the friendly staff. They really make you feel welcome! Just for that alone (and because they still have a lot of cakes for me to try) I’m sure I’ll be back.

Nikki’s Bakery, Chiswick

This was also one place on my wishlist for a while. Located in Chiswick High Road, it always felt like a lovely place to get a good cake and coffee. As I can’t have that much coffee, I ended up going for a tea instead. Having read the reviews in advance, I was planning for a Carrot Cake, but as they didn’t had it that day went for the lemon cake instead.

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The cake was really fresh and delicious, although I have to say the icing was a bit too sweet for me (note that I’m the type of person that always reduces the amount of sugar in any bakery recipes I do at home)

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It was a really good place to enjoy a bit of reading in a summer day. Love the china as well. Before going back home, I’ve bought one of their breads which was quite fresh and tasty.

Nikki's Bakery Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

What is your favourite place to go for a coffee and something sweet?

.: Kalamari @ Chiswick :.

If there is a food that reminds me of home that’s calamari. I love Octopus and Squid. It’s a shame that it’s so hard to get it here in UK and if you do it tends to be fried. Although I love fried calamari (our own version of fish and chips is fried Squid (choco frito)):

I prefer Mediterranean style. My grandma used to do a delicious stuffed calamari with rice and spinach inside. Or the fresh Octopus salad

Or the oven baked Octopus (with lots of garlic, olive oil and coriander). This is a thing from the heavens (the dish is called Polvo a Lagareiro).

Because I haven’t been in Portugal for a while now – last time I was there was in march – I found myself craving for this type of food. So we’ve decided that before baby decides to come out, we had to go to a Greek restaurant I had on my wishlist for ages: Kalamari. Normally, when people go to a greek restaurant they are thinking about the houmous, the grilled halloumi and tapas in general. But, as the name suggests, they actually have a few calamari dishes which I was really craving for.

Kalamari is conveniently located in the Chiswich High Road, in the boarder with Hammersmith. The restaurant has a classic greek decor and it wasn’t that busy at all (midweek dinner I guess). So we felt quite peaceful and relaxed

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I have to admit I’ve really enjoyed the family feeling. It’s not a pretentious place, but one where you would expect to get an honest meal.

We’ve started with the octopus salad – which to me it’s not as good as the portuguese version – but the octopus was really well cooked and the salad nicely seasoned. Ah, oh I was missing this type of food!

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Then we’ve both decided to go for the calamari dishes. He went for the calamari grilled steak and I went for the stuffed calamari (again reminding myself of my grandma’s dish)

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It was really nice! I still prefer my grandma’s version, but I just couldn’t stop smiling by the realisation how much honest good food is important for me. We were both stuffed, but I wanted something sweet, so we’ve decided to share an ice cream

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Which again was really fresh.

I left with a smile on my face for having enjoyed a dinner that remind me of home, and sometimes that’s all you need!

Kalamari Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Which food do you crave the most from your childhood?

 

.: Outsider Tart Chiswick and the Gift of time :.

Since it’s that time of the year that everyone is doing resolutions, I’m doing another one. (My main one back in October was to do the things I want to do rather than adding them on wishlist, e.g. my dream trip to Japan which is already booked). My 2nd one is going to be to enjoy the gift of time and actually take proper time for myself.

Simply enjoy with no rush and no timer to control me. Sit down and read the book or simply enjoy the sun on my face.

This is precisely what I’ve decided to do today. The house was filled with warm light and it was so sunny outside I simply had to go out. After searching on Zomato for nice coffees in Chiswick I found the Outsider Tart. I had seen this place probably billions of times but never had the chance to go in. This time this was my main goal.

I’m so glad I finally did it because I had a really relaxing and delicious afternoon. As soon as I got in I loved the décor immediately. From the main entrance looks like a little grocery store. There were some really tempting goods around. But I couldn’t take my eyes of the gorgeous bakery available. Seducing cakes that’s what they are. Choice was really difficult, but ended up going for a cheesecake. So yummy! Coffee was pretty good as well.

Went to sit down on the main room and took the time to relax and enjoy a book while drinking the cappuccino. The atmosphere was really relaxed. Totally recommended and now that I know about it will be back more often. I have a lot of catch up to do with the bakery, oh yeah I do.

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Outsider Tart Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

What’s your favourite bakery?

.: A6000 experiments :.

Yap, I surrender to technology. I surrender to lighter cameras that can fit into my small bag and being carried everywhere I go. So I’ve just bought myself the A6000 as well (which is the camera he has). I thought about possibly going to a full frame like the sony’s A7 series, but then again for the type of photography that I do it’s not really worth it and that would be a bit bulkier anyway, so decided for portability instead. It’s so light on my hands! When I was carrying my Canon 60D with the lens it was more than 1.5kg around my neck. That’s not very handy in London, so here’s why I felt that I needed a lighter one.

So after the meat feast @ Pitt Cue Co, we went for a walk and I’ve managed to take some photos. Still trying to get used to the camera

Next morning we went for a walk in Chiswick

And being in Chiswick couldn’t really resist a stop at Franco Manca! (My favourite pizzas in town)

.: One week ago – Watching the sunset :.

I have to admit I’m quite delayed in my posts and in my photo editing. I guess it doesn’t help that we’ve started to pack and I’ve been away from home the whole week. Finally managed to go through my photos from last week.

Last Friday I was working from home, so after I stopped working we’ve decided to go for a walk and take some photos. It was beautiful! Such a golden skyline, ahhh, I love to live in Chiswick (well, almost!) 😀

The Pub

Dog Statue

The Swan

Quack Quack

Where’s me boat?

Enjoy your weekend! I definitely need some rest!

.: A Crepe Affair @ Chiswick :.

Ah… the joys of finding a place to live in London! I have been really lucky so far, so was not used to the stress of finding a new place. But as our current landlord decided to sell the flat, it was time for us to find our next place. We had 2 choices really, either move further out (Windsor, Reading, Maidenhead type area) but this would mean killing the social life we’ve finally managed to achieve Or pay a lot more to stay in our area (West London).

  • House nr 1 – There was a flat available in our building but the lady decided to stay 😥
  • House nr 2 – We found THE House, the perfect family place where we could imagine living there for a couple of years. The cherry on the cake: Kew!!! Seriously, just next to Kew Gardens, how perfect was that? Except we couldn’t have it because Kew is considered the max risk rating for cars and we would not get insurance…. bye bye dream of living in Kew 😥
  • House nr 3 – Near to where we live already and brand new block – finally we’ve got it! We just went to sign the paper work

With this mindset in mind, it was more than time to celebrate with some happy calories. It was a terrible week for me, very stressful with the houses and working until late every night. Yes yes, happy calories please!

A CrepeAffaire is located in Chiswick High Road, just where all the shops and restaurants are, so location wise couldn’t be any more perfect.

Decor

They have a lot more than just Crepes, but it was the crepes we wanted to have. I had the belgium chocolate whereas he had the nutella one.

Here’s a good looking crepe, yummy!

I preferred the nutella and banana in the end. Really flavourful and not too sugary. Worth a try!
Perfect place to relax on the afternoon with some happy calories 🙂

What’s your favourite crepe? Or are you more a waffle type person?

.: Eggs Benedict – Chiswick :.

Everyone knows the perfect thing for a lazy sunday is a nice brunch outside – except if the weather is crap then the perfect plan is to be lazy indoors. Today it seemed to be sunny, obviously with english weather by the time we were outside it was mostly cloudy, windy and cold. But I was keen on having a brunch outside so off we went.

I had High Road Brasserie on my wishlist for a while, having passed by hundreds of times, as it’s conveniently located in the Chiswick High Road.

Because it was a last minute decision I didn’t book it, which means there was a waiting list already to stay indoors. We’ve decided to try outdoors as they had “heating”. Forget it, I couldn’t take my jacket off, so it wasn’t as pleasant as it could have been.

The service was pretty quick (well there was almost no one outdoors anyway) and polite. We’ve ordered some capuccinos and still water to start with. The capuccinos were really tasty

I’ve also ordered the eggs benedict £9 (this is the type of brunch I wanted) plus the mushrooms £3 and he had the eggs royale £9 plus spinach £4. Again we didn’t had to wait long for the food

It was pretty tasty, but again nothing extraordinary either. We’ve paid almost £40 for a brunch… it’s a bit expensive I would say. Maybe I will try a normal main next time and hopefully indoors, but I wasn’t that much convinced with my first visit, except for the capuccino.

  • Location: 4/5 – It’s in Chiswick high road – great for walking or bus, not great to go by car
  • Service: 3.5/5 – Service was polite and quick
  • Food: 3/5 – Not memorable at all and not worth the price
  • Overall experience: 3/5 – It’s a place you will easily forget

We walked just a little bit, but it was too cold to carry on, so we’ve returned back home