Before our trip to Croatia (those recaps coming soon), Matt and I spent 48 hours in London visiting two of our best friends who recently got married and moved across the pond for two years. This was our second time visiting London, and with having done all of the quintessential tourist attractions the first go-around, we really just wanted to spend some quality time with our friends and see London through a local’s eyes. A little side note, in addition to wanting to visit our friends, we realized during the planning process that it was actually cheaper for us to fly to London and then to Croatia from there so it was a win/win all around!
London is one of the most charming places (with the nicest people). Each time I am there I wish I had their accent and that New York had a little bit more of their cobblestone streets and old buildings. Our friends moved to Fulham, which is in Southwest London, and steps outside their flat the streets are filled with adorable restaurants, pubs and store fronts to pop in and out of. Matt and I kept saying that if we ever moved there, this is also where we would want to live. It just has that great neighborhood vibe. It is the sort of place where there is so much going on, so obviously not where you would want to retire! Our friends we’re talking to us about Surrey as being where they envisaged spending their twilight years after hearing of some exceptional retirement locations in the area.
Where We Dined:
Vico – We had dinner here our first night in London and the food was delicious! Known for their seasonal southern Italian food, we left stuffed and satisfied. Matt and I were a bit skeptical, as our first trip to London we didn’t care for the food all that much. This time around (and hanging with some locals) our perspectives completely changed and we didn’t have one bad meal. We ordered a variety of starters (would recommend the fried monkfish little skewer and the burrata) and pizza, which together was more than enough. Vico is tucked into a bustling part of town with a ton of options for going out at night after dinner.
Granger & Co. – Located in Notting Hill, this busy Australian brunch spot is totally worth the wait (there is ALWAYS a “que”). The scrambled eggs were some of the best I have ever had (super fluffy) and I couldn’t stop eyeing the ricotta hotcakes on the little boy’s plate who sat at the table next to us. The best part about this location is that it is in Notting Hill. Make sure to walk the street fair after brunch if you are there on a weekend and pop over to the famous pink and blue house located on Portobello road.
Duke on the Green – Likely one of my favorite interior spaces that we dined in while in London and home of the ever so famous fish & chips! Not only is this picturesque and trendy spot nestled right off of Parsons Green (a quintessential park), it also serves my favorite rosé, Whispering Angel! After grabbing a drink outside at White Horse we popped over here to grab a bite to eat and unwind.
Elbrook – The perfect spot for Sunday brunch outdoors (although they have an indoor option as well). We ate here after walking around Parsons Green for a bit and before Matt and I had to catch our flight. The menu was yummy and I opted to start with the burrata (notice a trend?!) and the avocado toast with a poached egg. Filling and fresh, both options I highly recommend. This spot is also such a cute place that is very instagram-able, although I totally forgot to take one myself!
< walking Portobello street >
Pubs and Night Life:
Archer Street – This place is a MUST if visiting London and looking for a really cool local spot. This place has amazing throwback jams, people (mostly all in business attire since many locals go out right from work on Fridays) dancing on a table, bar tenders doing a line-dance behind the bar and incredible vocalists that sing…on that same table! It is such a great and entertaining time. I left here sweaty and with shaking legs from dancing so much…in case you missed my Snapchat!
The White Horse – Known as a fun place to drink, eat and meet, The White Horse lives up to that standard. When we popped in for a drink on Saturday the outside beer garden was overflowing into the streets and everyone chatting and having a great time. While we were headed to dinner after, they did have a big BBQ going which seemed to be a huge hit. The boys opted for a classic Pimms Cup while the girls stuck with wine!
The Fulham Wine Rooms – Such a genius idea and cool experience! You fill a pre-paid card and get to choose your wine on tap and fill your glass. They have over 48 wines to choose from and you can select anything from a pour to a full glass. A great date night spot or night out with friends.
Durrel Arms – A great option to pop in for a pint and meet some new people. Everyone was so friendly and they typically have live music every Friday and Saturday night.
Just typing this post out and reliving this weekend makes me want to get back to London ASAP! While we were so sad to see our friends leave NYC, it is such an incredible experience for them and I can’t complain about having a place to stay and reason to visit! We are counting down the days until they return back home to the states, but look forward to a trip back there (or two) before that happens!
< walking around Notting Hill >