Recipease – Notting Hill

Reviewed on April 29th, 2013 by Dina

It seems like we all go through phases with certain things and that can happen when it comes to going out to eat! There are times when similar types of eateries are gone to.

Brunch was something that had not been done for quite a few months. So I was more than happy to try Jamie Oliver’s Recipease when my friend suggested that we go there on a Sunday.

Recipease do not have a reservation system so be prepared to wait for a table. The staff do not rush the diners even if there is a queue of people waiting. That is a good thing in my eyes as the last thing that you want when you have gone out to eat is to feel the time pressure. When we got there, we opted to wait slighter longer so that we could have the comfy seats instead of the wooden window seats.

The ground floor of Recipease has the shop area with lots of baked items, fresh sandwiches, cakes and gifts. Unfortunately there are all on open display. On both the ground floor and the upper level, there are big areas in the centre that are used for the cooking courses.

Recipease ShopRecipeaseRecipease Shop LevelRecipease The Veggie WorksRecipease TeaRecipease The WorksRecipease Cooking AreaRecipease DisplaysRecipease Cafe

While we were there, there were several courses that were going on including a children’s party and a pasta making course. There were good aromas from the fresh cooking and surprisingly it was not too noisy.

The seating area for the cafe on the upper level borders the big cooking area. Huge windows look out onto the streets below. There are displays of books and cooking equipment on the shelves. It all looked very colourful and created a bright and happy atmosphere.

Both my friend and I were considering the Bacon and Egg Sandwich but then we thought that we might as well go full out and have The Works. I had the veggie version and my friend had the normal meat one. The only difference was that the mushrooms replaced the sausages and bacon.

The Veggie Works consisted of oven roasted garlic field mushrooms, roasted tomatoes, egg, toast, Recipease baked beans, spinach and potato tortilla. It was supposed to be a poached egg but I asked for scrambled egg instead. It was a great delicious brunch with a good variety of items. The eggs were softly scrambled and the Recipease baked beans were so tasty and homemade. The wedge of potato tortilla was a big portion. All the food was of a high quality.

Brunch would not be complete without a cup of tea. The Earl Grey tea was served by the pot, with a small bottle of milk on the side. There was plenty of tea for a good few cups.

The staff were friendly and gave service with a smile. They seemed quite busy and once they served us our food, they left us to enjoy it!

Brunch at Recipease was delightful in all aspects including the food, service, dining arrangements, atmosphere and staff!

Recipease, 92-94 Notting Hill Gate, Notting Hill, London, W11 3QB

Rating: ★★★★★

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Esarn Kheaw – Shepherd’s Bush

Reviewed on May 5th, 2011 by Dina

Thai cuisine is one that I am very fond of and I can never resist a good Thai meal! Unfortunately, Esarn Kheaw was a huge disappointment. Apart from the friendly staff, we really did not enjoy our meal and time at Esarn Kheaw.

For the starters, we had the tempura; deep fried mixed vegetables and prawns. The batter was thick and didn’t have much flavour. It was a big portion but not at all tasty and very greasy. The vegetarian spring rolls were tiny and looked like they were overcooked. I’m not sure what they were filled with but it tasted really salty.

We asked the waiter if the chicken wrapped in pandan leaves was made from frozen or fresh chicken. He told us that fresh chicken was used. Another member of staff served us the chicken. When we asked her the same question, she told us that the chicken that they used was definitely frozen. It was bad that we had been misinformed.

Pad Thai was ordered for the main dish. My expectations of a great tasting dish, full of flavour were not met. The rice noodles were rubbery and tasted very stale. It was like the dish had been cooked a while ago and then reheated. This main meal was not at all enjoyable.

For the drinks, the orange and lemonade tasted very watery and wasn’t fizzy. When we ordered the second drink, it only came after we asked the staff several times through our meal.

Esarn Kheaw seemed like a nice restaurant when we entered. It had a huge mirrored wall which made the restaurant look quite big. Also, it felt like it was a family run restaurant. It is a real shame that Esarn Kheaw did not produce good quality food.

Esarn Kheaw, 314 Uxbridge Road, Shepherd’s Bush, London, W12 7LJ

Rating: ★½☆☆☆

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Frontline – Paddington

Reviewed on January 13th, 2011 by Dina

Frontline prides itself on making food from locally sourced produce. The menu is quite small but has sufficient choice.

On this cold winter’s day, there was no doubt what was needed; a bowl of hot soup. On the menu was celeriac, Bramley apple and whole chestnut soup. The combination sounded a little strange, but I thought that it was worth a try. Whole chestnuts, chunks of apple in a creamy celeriac based soup. Surprisingly, the sweet and savoury flavours worked well together. It was not too sweet with the apple.

A small brown crusty roll was served with the soup. It tasted like it had fennel seeds in it.

I skipped the main course and went straight for the dessert. Crumble has always been a favourite of mine so I was happy that Frontline had Autumn fruit crumble on the menu.

The crumble was served in a ramekin with a small jug of custard on the side. Chunky fruit was topped with a nut based crumble. The vanilla custard had not been overdone on the sugar side of things. The whole dessert was lovely and the taste of the fruit was great.

Frontline had lots of artwork decorating the brick walls. The dining area was made of dark chairs and also seating along the walls. The waitress gave us lots of time to decide on our meal, to eat and to chat. The staff did not bother us throughout the meal, even though we were there for a good few hours. At the same time, it was easy to get the attention of the waitress if we needed anything.

Frontline is a great place to catch up with friends as well as having quality food. The restaurant was surprisingly quiet for a Sunday afternoon.

Frontline, 13 Norfolk Place, Paddington, London, W2 1QJ

Rating: ★★★★★

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