Pick Six – January

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Part of Living in London means finding the awesome. Each month I want to give you our top six favorites from the month. Maybe they will convince you to come visit us.

It’s a pick six list because five seems so typical and ten makes it look like we spend all of our time trying out super cool stuff and that’s just not true. Plus we got to six things this month and it seemed to fit. The list is full of the things we loved, the places we will go back to, perfect plates we managed to stumble upon. Our list may be made up of the quaint, the cosmopolitan, the oh-so-English or the surprising but regardless they will have the Hency stamp of approval – which obviously is all you really need. Obviously.

January feels like our first “real” month here. We have a place to live and we can (usually) get around the city with ease. January was a little less Chaotic Tourist and a little more Moved-in Expat. So as partially settled Texans living in London here’s what we loved in January:

The Shed – Certainly one of the best meals we have had yet. Mat found a review of this Knotting Hill spot set on creating a restaurant that “is an extension of their rural lifestyle back in Nutbourne, West Sussex. Where growing, foraging, great cooking and great company have always been the order of the day.” It’s a delicious bite of English countryside right here in London. And a bite is exactly what I mean. The expanse of countryside taste is only available in small plates. Thats good for us – we tried a whole litney of things from their nose-to-tail focused and daily changing menu. My only disappointment is knowing I might not be able to order the cockles every time.

Fait Mason – Do you have “your place” close to home? That one spot you know you go and never really be let down. As of two weekends ago we do. I had been saying I wanted to try Fiat Mason from day one – no really, from the first day we moved in. It’s purple canopy drew my attention toward a host of french pastries all lined up in the window and I wanted to share my afternoon with a pistachio macaroon. Apparently Mat didn’t know what I was talking about so he had basically been ignoring me since every time I mentioned trying it. But then something magical happened. One Saturday we needed breakfast on the go and Mat went to pick it up while I finished getting ready. He walked in and said “So that Fiat Mason place is freaking awesome.” Collectively we have visited six times now. There are multiple in London but the one on Gloucester road is “ours.”

Maltby Street Market – Disclaimer: we have only been to one market here in London. It’s been cold ok, give us a break. But last Saturday was beautiful and we met some friends for brunch and an afternoon of walking through the railway arches turned retail market in Bermondsey. We ate amazing breakfast at Bea’s diner (blueberry buttermilk pancakes with roasted strawberries – you can’t say no to that) and walked around stalls of fresh produce, honey, cured meats, cheeses, interesting sandwiches, homemade gin and we even ended our afternoon at The Kernel brewery. It wasn’t overly crowded which was great and we can’t wait to go back with a bigger appetite.

Parson’s Green/Fulham Road – I already talked to you about the Parson’s Nose here. We stumbled upon that English butcher on an afternoon walk through a part of the Fulham area. It was just fun. A small Daunt bookshop, the Local Hero Cafe, quirky boutiques and a couple pubs. A great place for a Saturday afternoon.

Making Tracks & Whirlygig Cinema – In an effort to fill a Saturday night Mat found a listing for a short films being played in the Shoreditch area. Shorts are always fun but this one had an extra bit other just short films. The sound to the films had been removed and the scores were going to be played live. When we got there we found out that theses musicians had actually written a new score and the film makers were just getting to hear it for the first time. We liked pretty much all of them but I bet the folks who came up with the idea were a little harder on the score than we were. It was packed and a lot of fun. The next one is April 12 so we probably won’t make it with the new babe and all but if you are in London you should check it out.

Department of Coffee and Social Affairs – This coffee shop has turned up on lots of London’s “best coffee” lists and I wanted to try it out so I met a new friend their one afternoon. I arrived early (yup, me, I was early) and ate lunch before CB arrived. Exposed brick walls, baristas with tattoos and a steady stream of early 90’s rap music was really all I needed for this to make the top list of the month. Faye was rockin’ out to the soundtrack as I ate lunch and am taking that as a sign of her musical acumen. By the way – the coffee was killer. So Killer that I didn’t take a picture while I was there. I was overwhelmed with this spots greatness.


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