London Calling Part 2 – A Baby Shower @The Dorchester & Brunch @Jikoni

After B’s wedding I headed back home to see the family in Kent, then on Sunday was back in London for another close friend, M’s baby shower! It was a very civilised affair at The Dorchester.

An afternoon at The Dorchester

This is M’s second baby, she already has a beautiful baby boy who is nearly 18 months old and is now expecting a baby girl in October! So exciting!

The gorgeous mummy-to-be!

A group of us joined M to celebrate her impending new arrival. The Dorchester’s afternoon tea menu is delightful. A lovely array of delicate finger sandwiches, which were scoffed before I could even get a photo, and which will be replenished to your hearts content bu the handsomely dressed and uber polite waiters!

Baby Shower Guests

After sandwiches, two scones each arrive – one plain, one raisin. Whilst we were savouring them, we debated scone-eating etiquette at the table – do you slather your jam on first and then the clotted cream or vice versa? For me, its cream, then jam dolloped on top!

Tea and Scones!

Word of warning – remember to save room for the pastries! I actually didn’t and had to take mine away in a doggy bag for later as I was so full! Look at how beautifully they are presented….

Let the Sweet Treats Commence!

And who can resist a close up shot!

A Closer Look…..

We ended our sitting with the waiters bringing over a very cute Congratulations cake for M – nothing was too much trouble and this was a lovely touch which brought an even bigger smile to her face.

Congratulations!

I think it;s safe to say she had a fabulous afternoon with some special friends! I can’t wait to meet her daughter in the coming months!

The Mama-to-be!

 

Whilst in London over the weekend, I also managed to fit in a great brunch with some friends at a really lovely spot in Marylebone called Jikoni.

Jikoni in Marylebone – how cute is this place?!

It’s fairly new on the scene, less than a year old but already making waves due to its fusion rich menu, unpretentious, warm service and eclectic decor. Jikoni’s team describe it as…. A neighbourhood restaurant by cook Ravinder Bhogal. It’s food drawing on a mixed heritage of flavours from Britain, East Africa, the Middle East & Asia. I was quite excited about the mixed heritage as my mother’s family lived in India and East Africa before moving to the UK in the 70s.

Ravinder was previously a fashion journalist before finding fame in the foodie world after appearing on a Gordon Ramsay TV show and then publishing a number of cookery books. Jikoni is her first foray into the restaurant business and personally, I think she’s made quite an impression. Her fashion/ design background can be seem in the quirky yet cosy interior she has put together at Jikoni.

Soft furnishings, lots of textures, colour and prints – a feast for the eyes as well as the palate

 

I loved this rug!

The food was delicious and I had absolutely no complaints! The brunch menu is not your standard fare, so if you’re looking for Eggs Benedict you may not find it here.

Jikoni menu

What you will find is an assortment of tastes, spices and flavours. Some of the ingredients were new even to me, despite my family having a similar background. I thought it was exciting, innovative and more importantly, everything we tried worked. There’s nothing I hate more than a restaurant trying to be eccentric at the expense of taste.

Mmmmmm…….

My friends and I order a few dishes to share. All were very, very good and some exceptional. We all loved the Bacalao Fofos (essentially beautiful saltcod fishcakes) with Poached Egg, Romesco and Pickled Cauliflower. I loved the Prawn Toast Scotch Egg with Banana Ketchup and Pickled Cucumber, and the Chickpea Chips with Fenugreek and Bengali Tomato Chutney were totally moreish!

I just had to try the Mutton Keema Sloppy Joe with Pickled Onions – comfort food at its very best. This was definitely my favourite of the bunch. I totally devoured this and would happily do so again the next time I’m back in London…..

Mutton Keema Sloppy Joe in all its glory

Afterwards, we couldn’t help ourselves and had to try the Banana Cake with Miso Butterscotch and Ovaltine Kulfi! Let me repeat that one more…….. Ovaltine Kulfi! What an amazing idea!

Look at this beat…..

Jikoni banana cake

Honestly it was heaven in a dessert bowl. And I am still dreaming of that ovaltine kulfii and wondering where on earth I’m going to find something to replicate it in New York.

I was really impressed with Jikoni. Couldn’t fault a thing foodwise and the staff were so lovely and welcoming. I have recommended to all my family back home in London, so will keep you posted – hopefully they receive the same great service and taste the same amazing food I did.

I’ve also just seen that Jikoni is celebrating its 1st birthday later this week on the 8th October – happy birthday! They’re celebrating with a special 6 course feast cooked by Ravinder Bhogal and Observer food critic Jay Rayner. Tickets available on their website. 

Also, just to be clear, I wasn’t asked to write this review or given anything in exchange – these are my honest opinions!

Let me know if you go!

Xoxo

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