London: Day Five

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Lunch at Ottolenghi in Notting Hill

 

Day Five was our last full day together in London. We started off with breakfast at The Butter Bakery in Notting Hill. The bakery is located across from our apartment, so it was an easy walk across the street for our hand pies and coffee.

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The Butter Bakery in Notting Hill

 

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Plum and apple hand pies

 

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Delicious cappuccino

 

After breakfast we walked to Ottolenghi, also in Notting Hill. We’re fans of Yotam Ottolenghi’s cookbooks and were excited to try one of his restaurants. This location has a daily changing menu and I recognized a lot of the dishes from his cookbooks. You can take the food to go, or enjoy your meal at the table in the back. It was a bit of a gamble – only 10 seats and no reservations. Luckily we only had to wait about half an hour but we easily amused ourselves browsing the shelves and menus. Definitely recommend if you’re in the area!

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Ottolenghi

 

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My plate clockwise from the top 1) Basmati and wild rice with sautéed chestnut mushrooms, mixed nuts za’atar and crispy onion 2) Roasted baby potato and parsnip with mango salsa and coriander 3) Sweet potato wedges with roasted endive, saffron and orange yoghurt, fennel seeds and hazelut

 

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Koen’s plate clockwise from the top: 1) Cauliflower, kale, red quinoa and apple slaw with whole grain mustard, walnutes and bitter leaves 2) Char-grilled broccoli with chilli and garlic 3) Mixed green beans with edamame, soy, roasted peanuts and lemongrass

 

Once we finished lunch, we headed to the Natural History Museum for our reserved virtual reality showing of David Attenborough’s Great Barrier Reef Dive. So bizarre and cool! It was the first time for both of us and I didn’t really know what to expect. I’m sure I was really annoying to the woman next to me because I kept wanting to see everything around me haha. After the show we went exploring and learned too late that the dinosaur visit is awful and made for children and you can’t leave until you get to the end. After the dinosaurs, we spent a lot of time at the beautiful scientific illustrations exhibition. I could fill the whole house with these prints!

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Natural History Museum

 

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Entrance

 

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Walking through the Whale Hall

 

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Our first virtual reality experience!

 

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Getting ready to begin

 

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Koen in VR

 

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Me in VR (it’s as heavy as it looks)

 

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Virtual Reality and Real Life

 

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Entering the dinosaur exhibit

 

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An electronic T-Rex…

 

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Gallimimus; a fast-running ‘ostrich dinosaur’ that ate anything it could catch with its grasping hands and sharp, toothless beak

 

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Albertosaurus; a smaller, lighter relative of the T-Rex

 

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Busy guy

 

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European insects, attributed to Jan van Kessel the Elder

 

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Birds by John Gerrard Keulemans

 

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Magnolia by Georg Dionysius Ehret

 

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Blue swimmer crab by Ferdinand Bauer

 

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Latin American lady’s-tresses by Franz Bauer; to understand the complex structure of orchids such as this one, Franz would dissect them and paint individual parts from several angles

 

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Color chart from the papers of Thaddäus Haenke, considered to be the one used by the Bauer brothers

 

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The dodo, attributed to Roelandt Savery

 

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Charles Darwin

 

We had some time to kill before dinner, so we decided to go to a pub for a pint. I mean when in London, right? After a quick search on google, we found The Hereford Arms in Chelsea, about halfway between the museum and our dinner reservation. So nice! We had  a couple of pints and fried pickles haha. Definitely going to try this at home!

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The Hereford Arms

 

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Inside

 

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Heritage cider and London sea salt and malt vinegar crisps for me

 

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Wonderful company too of course

 

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Enjoying my cider

 

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Fried pickles!

 

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Next pint: Alcoholic ginger beer

 

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Koen’s Meantime Yakima Red

 

For dinner we made reservations at The Harwood Arms, the only pub in London with a Michelin star. I actually found the restaurant after doing a google search for the best scotch eggs in London. Needless to say we started our meal with a scotch egg! Yum!! Very cozy and the food was delicious!

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The Harwood Arms

 

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Inside

 

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Aperitif: Hepple gin with rosemary served with a pomegranate and basil tonic

 

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Scotch egg!

 

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My starter: Baked beatroot with goat cheese, pistachio, blackberry and bitter leaves

 

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Koen’s starter: Berkshire wood pigeon faggots with carrots cooked in bone marrow and crispy shallots

 

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My main: Haunch of Berkshire fallow deer with smoked bonemarrow tart and baked celeriac

 

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Koen’s main: Fillet of Cornish stone bass with white anchovy, cauliflower, kale and seaweed

 

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Koen’s dessert: British cheeses with oat cakes

 

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My dessert: coffee and donuts!

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