When it comes to cake, there’s no denying that we Londoners are spoilt to pieces! From the absolutely stunning (but slightly overhyped!) cupcakes and layer cakes served up amongst flawless pink and floral décor at some of London’s most “Instagrammable” spots, to tiny little cafes and coffee shops offering tray bakes, loaf cakes and beautifully rustic home-style bakes, London has it all. As possibly my favourite baked item (after cookies!), I’ve probably had more cakes than any other type of food in London, but it’s rare that I walk into a small coffee shop and am truly blown away by their counter! Most coffee shops have a fairly modest offering – with pastries, simple cookies, brownies or (often very sorry looking!) loaf cakes, but to find homemade cakes this impressive is definitely something I sadly rarely ever see in coffee shops around London.
Murger HanHan is the Mayfair branch of Euston’s Murger Han and the pair of restaurants are specialists in regional Chinese cuisine from Xi’an City in the Shan Xi Province – the home of the legendary Terracotta Warriors of the Qin Dynasty. Along with various other unique aspects, they’re apparently the only restaurant in Europe to serve traditional drinks from Xi’an City such as Ice Peak Orange and Xi’an rice wine.
Although it may seem like I’m always eating out (okay.. yes admittedly I do eat out a lot!) I really struggle when it comes to choosing dinner places. Often when I eat out during the week I go for simple options, and with pizza being one of my favourite foods I do end up at places like Pizza Pilgrims and Franco Manca more often than I probably should.. but they’re just so good! My decision making is poor at best, and it’s hard enough to choose a brunch spot, but when it comes to dinner options I can’t even decide on a cuisine, let alone a restaurant!
Maggie Jones’s first opened in 1964 as Nan’s Kitchen, and was reportedly Princess Margaret and Lord Snowdon’s favourite restaurant at the time. Restaurant owners say that they would slip in at around 9.30pm, sit in a discreet booth at the back on the ground floor and order their favourite dish – the chicken pie. In the early seventies the restaurant changed its name in honour of its most famous client, who used to book under the alias ‘Maggie Jones’. Over the years, it has actually welcomed most of the Royal family.
Following the huge success of the Choose Love Store in Soho, Help Refugees has teamed up with the incredible Imad Alarnab to save Hope Hospital. Imad was a successful restaurateur in Damascus with two restaurants but during the war, his restaurants were destroyed and he was forced to flee the country in search of safety for his family. When he arrived in the UK, Imad found work as a car salesman and was able to bring his family to join him in England. Over time, he began to dream of running his own restaurant again. He opened a series of pop-up restaurants in London that sold out every single night. This time round, instead of doing it for himself, he wanted to raise money for the people who really need it, through teaming up with Help Refugees.
Who doesn’t love burgers!? Tender, juicy meat sandwiched in a soft bun served with mountains of crispy fries – what’s not to love!? And whether you’re all about the patty itself or more concerned about the additions and sides London most definitely has you covered!