Thursday, May 2, 2013

Notting Hill

By walking to King's Cross Station this morning we found a wonderful bus run that took us all the way to Notting Hill Gate on Bayswater Road. The Tour Director managed to find the way from here, up through our old stamping ground in Pembridge Gardens, through to Portobello Road.

We found enough of interest to us, in amongst the tourist tack, to make our slow amble along this character filled street very enjoyable.

We eventually made our way as far as Golborne Road where the gentrified Notting Hill starts to return to its multicultural, much poorer roots. Rob is excited to find the Moroccan street stalls we discovered on our previous visit and we make a delicious lunch from bar-b-qued kebabs on pita.  

There's nowhere we can find to eat them in comfort - so we eventually settle for a bus shelter on Elkstone Road, for a very memorable and very funny lunch. Naturally, after we'd finished and started walking again, we find a pretty park just a few minutes on from here.

For a complete change of scenery and returning towards Bayswater Road we walk along upmarket Ledbury Road. We stop to admire The Ledbury, named this week as the number 13 restaurant in the world (Joel had celebrated his birthday here with an amazing dinner, earlier this week).....

 ..and a welcome stop at our favourite Walmer Castle Pub, where Pete tasted his first Hoegaarden beer (with a slice of lemon), then a tasty purchase from the wonderful Notting Hill Ottolenghi...

....and a browse through some of the swanky shops on Westbourne Grove.

It was getting close to 4.00pm when we caught the 55 bus from Oxford Circus back to Hackney, in time to meet up with the family (minus Claire and A) for a catch up drink at the lovely old Empress of India on Lauriston Road.

Eddie showed off his amazing iPad gaming techniques while Ollie admired him and tried to get the adults interested in playing Monopoly!!!

Too much laughter and too many drinks later we caught the 277 bus back to Islington for dinner at the charming old Barnsbury Pub not too far from Gibson Square.  A very late night for us - but so much fun.

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