While sitting in one of my favourite tea shops in London nibbling on a scone and slurping on an iced tea, it has made me think about some of my favourite little hidden spots in my dear capital. With the city full of out of towners and a desire to reclaim the city, I thought I’d write up a Top 5 secret spots list.
Today’s list will be food and drink centric and I’ll do more themed top 5s soon.
1.Kati Roll, Poland Street
You can’t get much more central than this. Hidden on an Oxford Street side street, this humble eatery offers some fun, quick delicious food. Offering roti wraps with curried meats, eggs and potatoes. Great for a lunch or a quick evening meal after a couple of drinks, this is definitely one of my favourite places in London. But take it from me, the Chicken Unda roll is the best on the menu hands down.
2. Willow, Hoxton Street
This hidden salad bar and coffee shop was my regular lunch hangout when I worked in east London. Offering varied salad boxes and fresh cakes, this independent, two person establishment (fronting as a florists) is a great place to get fresh, tasty, healthy (ish) food. But get there fast as they’re only open Monday to thursday and sell out quickly. They also do external events and sell some really cute, interesting items to purchase.
3. Yumchaa, various locations but my favourite is Goodge Street
My current venue. Selling the best scones that have touched my lips (buttery, floury and light – just as I like them) and amazing homemade loafs, this isn’t just an ordinary tea house. With a list of teas longer than your arm and a cool, open decor (hipsters eat your heart out) Yumchaa is the perfect place for a quiet chill, delicious treat and a bit of me time. With dozens of teas to choose from and a new range of icy, refreshing beverages to combat the heat, you’d be mad not to give it a go.
4. Papaya, St Anne’s Court
Rather than going to McDonald’s for super fast, super cheap, substantial portioned food, you should try Papaya. Serving boxes of Thai dishes that are well prepared and more than plentiful, this little London hide out often has queues out of the shop (you’ll have to wait 5-8 minutes to get served on the average day) which can only mean good things.
5. Coffee plant, Portobello Road
Situated on the world famous Portabello road, Coffee Plant has to contend with the global brands that surround it but the fact that it always has more patrons than the standard Starbucks, Cafe Nero and Costa just shows why it’s on my list. With rich, organic coffee and a bohemian vibe, you can enjoy this coffee with no guilt, no resentment and no controversy.
So, which will you visit? Have I missed your favourite?