For an impressive date place, look no further than The Notting Hill Brasserie
Where? 92 Kensington Park Road, London W11 2PN (020-7229 4481)
Mood? Sophisticated and upbeat
Who goes? Everyone from Jude Law and Sienna Miller to Jeremy Clarkson and Mick Jagger.
Why go? With live jazz and blues every evening, a bustling, cheerful clientele (hardly surprising given the delicious food) and low lighting (very flattering), this is the perfect date place when you’re determined to impress.
To eat? We couldn’t actually find anything on the menu we didn’t like, but if you put a gun to our heads and forced us to choose just three things it would have to be the cannelloni of lobster and freshwater prawns starter, followed by the chateaubriand roasted in a salt crust with handmade chips, and a hot chocolate fondant with lavender ice cream to finish. Mind you, the tuna starter is pretty good, too, and we couldn’t fault the monkfish. Best go with a large group of people who don’t mind sharing…
To drink? Enjoy a cocktail at the bar before dinner – the list is extensive – then champagne with dinner for a truly memorable experience.
Need to know? Head chef Mark Jankel is making waves in the industry right now, despite being only 29. As well as a number of personal accolades (he was shortlisted as one of the UK’s top five chefs recently), the Brasserie was the winner of the 2005 Restaurant Remy Award, in association with Harden’s UK Restaurant Guide. If you want to try his exquisite offerings on a budget, a special set lunch menu is on offer, priced at £14.50 for two courses or £19.50 for three*.
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(*Prices correct as at November 2006)