Friday in London – Full Circle

And so we come full circle to our last day in London.

I made the children get up early and help me pack the car, which we parked on the street, locked up, and then abandoned for the day.

Breakfast was a last hurrah. We went to a place that came highly recommended called Chriskitch in Muswell Hill. The chap who runs it, Chris, trained under Gordon Ramsay. Which is a pretty good recommendation. Gordon Ramsay may have an ego the size of Jupiter but I ate at his restaurant once when he was still properly cheffing there instead of being on telly and it was the best food I’ve ever tasted. And as you can tell from this blog. I eat a lot.

Chriskitch is a cafe/deli rather than a restaurant. It doesn’t open at night time. You have to pay cash for everything, and there is not a huge amount of choice, but what there is is worth scrabbling down the back of the sofa for your last farthing for. The breakfast menu basically consists of any combination of eggs and bread you want for about £8 per person. Or you can try one of the mouthwatering cakes on display.

I went for mouthwatering cake. I had banana loaf which was moist and flavourful. It had a crunchy, crumble topping drizzled with a dark caramel sauce and tasted like heaven. The portion was enormous. All the children had the flourless chocolate cake and declared it wonderful. It was wonderful.

The service was good and the staff friendly. The interior is beautifully done. You sit at butcher’s blocks and old school/office tables. The cutlery sits in repurposed canned tomato tins. The sugar lumps come in vintage lozenge tins with weeny pairs of sugar tongs. It’s pretty perfect and was an excellent way to start our last day.

We went over to Victoria after breakfast to meet our beloved friend Gina. Ambling through Victoria and into Pimlico, we talked nineteen to the dozen. We were off to the Tate Britain to see the Folk Art exhibition, and needed somewhere nearby to eat lunch. We plumped for Pizza Express in the end, as time was getting on and it was two doors down from the museum.

The exhibition was amazing. But too small. Something we all agreed on. The quilts were my favourite. Have always been my favourite. I loved the Clicker’s Quilt. Clickers are people who cut the leather for shoes. They had used the patterns as templates for white cloth, and then sewn all the pieces of the quilt with scarlet thread. It was simple, but gorgeous. 

There was nothing in the exhibition I did not either lust after, like, or was fascinated by. It’s an excellent thing.

We wandered through the rooms of Henry Moore sculptures, which I love. We stopped to say hello to my favourite sculpture of all time, Jacob and the Angel by Jacob Epstein. We coveted some Hockneys’. I forget what a rich source of beauty Tate Britain is. Even the building is gorgeous. The spiral stair case down to the ground floor, with the cupola above it is a work of art in itself.

The cafe was a work of art too, although at £8 for a single Scotch egg, which would only have been worth the money had David Hockney signed it for you, it was a bit spendy. Having said that I managed to force down a Paris Brest, which is basically like a giant profiterole/choux bun filled with hazelnut and chocolate cream filling. I also tested Gina’s rose and pistachio macaron, filled with whipped cream and raspberries. NOM.

All too soon it was time to head back to Victoria and wave Gina off. There is never enough time in the day when we meet up.

We shot across town in a cab and met up with the girl’s dad at The Real Greek in Marylebone, and ate more dinner (I know!). I’ve blogged about the Real Greek before. Always nice. Although the service was not the finest yesterday. I am in love with their lentil, beetroot and feta salad though, so I can forgive a lot.

We walked through Regent’s Park. Tilly stalked all the geese in the world and made cooing noises at squirrels until we had to ask her to cease and desist. She is growing up to be a bird botherer.

And that, with a beautiful, late summer evening, and the sun setting across the park, was the end of our mighty adventure.

And now you can see why I need to shift half a stone.

It was magnificent.

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