Monthly Archives: September 2013

The Barber Shop - Earls Court Life

The Barber Shop – Earls Court Life

Posted by Caroline Lofts

I have decided that hair is the Earls Court theme this week although this time it’s for the boys.

It’s rare that you see a straight-up, bonafide barber shop in these parts but Michael’s has been here for over twenty years. You wouldn’t know it from stepping inside though as this barber shop is as space age as they come. The seats look as if each one may, at the flick of a switch, transform into a space pod and take off.

The Barber Shop - Earls Court Life

The prices are as you would expect, nothing over £15 and there is no need to make an appointment. Also it is worth noting that you aren’t condemned to a ‘clipper only’ experience as these fine technicians are good with their scissors as well.

The team offer threading, beard trimming as well as a traditional straight razor cut. Not bad for a little barber shop around the corner…

 

54c Kenway Road, Earls Court, SW5 0RA
020 7370 6983
Mon: 09:00 – 18:00
Tue: 09:00 – 18:00
Wed: 09:00 – 18:00
Thu: 09:00 – 19:00
Fri: 09:00 – 18:00
Sat: 09:00 – 17:00
 

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Hair by Neighbourhood - Earls Court Life

Hair by Neighbourhood – Earls Court Life

Posted by Caroline Lofts

I have been visiting the Neighbourhood Salon in Earls Court for years. You know why? Because they do great hair.

Now I know everybody has their own set of preferences when it comes to choosing the right coiffeur; my mother will follow her stylist through every career twist and salon shake up and seemingly to the ends of the earth, my husband refuses to spend more than a tenner on his hair and it often shows, my friend Jojo cuts her own hair which is a terrifying prospect to me. Mine, in no particular order, are as follows:

  1. You must be able to walk in on any given day and trust that if your favourite stylist isn’t available that the B Squad know what they’re doing.
  2. There must be coffee and after five, wine.
  3. There must be lighthearted banter.
  4. Dogs and children should be welcome.
  5. The chairs must be comfortable.
  6. My barnet should be the envy of all as I leave the salon and head out to face the world.

Simples!

Neighbourhood nails every one of the above requirements for me and remains one of the only places I will get my hair done. And now, because I would never steer you wrong, it will become one of the only places you get your hair done too. You’re welcome.

Hair by Neighbourhood - Earls Court Life

This is Millie. She is lovely and will sit on your lap if you ask nicely.

 Neighbourhood
60 Kenway Road, Earls Court, SW5 0RA
020 7373 9666
Monday Closed
Tues-Fri 10:00 am – 8:00 pm
Saturday 9:00 am – 6:00 pm
Sunday Closed 

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The Little French Restaurant - Earls Court Life

The Little French Restaurant – Earls Court Life

Posted by Caroline Lofts

Have you had enough rain yet Earls Court? Are you soaked through, feeling the damp and cold right to the bone?

Well then, can I interest you in some steaming hot French Onion Soup followed by a delicious Coq au Vin with a side of the crispiest french fries? Let’s polish that off with a warm French Apple Tart and a scoop of vanilla ice-cream. Sounds good, right? There’s just one hitch. It’s all going to cost you under a tenner. That’s right folks, £9.95 to be exact. So, if you need to quickly check the address and postcode to make sure you’re still in Kensington & Chelsea; please take a moment to do this now.

The Little French Restaurant - Earls Court Life

Everything cushdy? Great!

Some red wine you say? Why certainly. There is a generous wine list for you to peruse but there’ll be nothing on here that costs more than £25. Yes, I am aware that’s usually about where wines prices start on most menus.

But that’s the thing about this long standing but tiny eatery tucked away in the Kenway Passage, they pride themselves on being cheap and good. At the same time! Can you imagine?

You’ll need to book if you’re hoping for dinner any time between 7pm and 10pm but it’s such a lovely little place and the food is so traditional and warming that I’d recommend it every time.

And, as much as it’s a romantic date venue (that won’t burn through your wallet at hyper speed), this restaurant is also lovely for larger groups as well, ask about their upstairs room, all dark wood carvings, panelled walls and candlelight.

For a feast that’s not a fortune, book now.

 

The Little French Restaurant
18 Hogarth Road, Earls Court, SW5 0QY
020 7370 0366

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No.10 - Earls Court Life

No.10 – Earls Court Life

Posted by Caroline Lofts

From the outside No. 10 looks like your standard Chinese restaurant in Earls Court. But if you peer a little closer you will notice a solid stream of native Chinese diners frequenting the restaurant. Dig a little deeper and you will find out that No.10 has a reputation, far and wide, for offering some of the best traditional Sichuan food in the city of London.

And the rumours are true.

Step inside the door of the restaurant and  you will be faced with a dimly lit dining area decorated with dark wood floors and tables and deep blue tiles on the walls. Traditional Chinese ornaments denoting good fortune and safe travel are dotted about but other than that not much is going on.

Service is friendly, fast and to the point. All questions will be answered and you will be offered a choice of chopsticks or knife and fork with no judgement.

The menu is varied, everything is delicious but my favourites have always been a combination of the Dry Fried Green Beans with Minced Pork (sensationally spicy), Dan Dan Chicken Noodles – this dish is served cold but is absolutely lovely – or Bean Sprout Noodles.  I then head a bit more down the main stream and order a portion of Crispy Shredded Chilli Beef. This normally has me about set to burst but I can never seem to stop myself having just one more mouthful…

No.10 - Earls Court Life

If you are an adventurous type of foodie then I must let you know a secret. On the far right hand side on the wall you will see a small white board with a list written in Cantonese. This is what makes this restaurant so popular with the native Chinese clientele. If you can understand it you are suddenly privy to an array of traditional Sichuan daily specialties. If you know to ask there is often an English translation to hand somewhere behind the bar.

No.10 - Earls Court Life

Be prepared for a choice of Pig Intestines with whole Savoury Garlic or Spare Ribs and Pickled Cabbage in Broth. Fried Green Pepper, Potatoes and Aubergine Northeast China style was a hit on our table but I do plan to be a little braver next time I visit.

Prices are reasonable and the location is three doors down from me. Given that some have been known to cross bodies of water to dine here I feel pretty darn lucky myself…

No. 10 Restaurant
10 Hogarth Place
Earls Court
SW5 0QT
020 7373 7000

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Ashbee’s Wine Bar – Earls Court Life

Posted by Caroline Lofts

Elizabetta has owned and run this Earls Court bar since what seems the beginning of time. Wander down an unmarked alleyway and then down a small staircase, shrouded in foliage from a tree that shouldn’t be thriving given it’s below street level location, and you will find yourself in Ashbee’s; one of London’s hidden gems.

I bring it up now because the timing is so perfect, the weather is turning, we are all begrudgingly putting on our coats and scarves (not me, I love the fall) and we need something hearty and warm in our bellies lest we all fall unconscious from the sudden cold. So I give you a wine bar like no other.

The decor has remained unchanged since opening, pine-panelled walls, dated and flaking murals, creaky wooden chairs and tables and red checkered table cloths all go a long way to making you wonder if you haven’t accidentally slipped through some sort of time seam and ended up in Switzerland circa 1968.

Elizabetta will show you to your seat and ask quite abruptly, “What you want?”

Don’t be alarmed. This Polish princess has seen it all and has little time for pleasantries at first. But the ice can be melted. A little warmth and charm can very soon break down the seemingly indefatigable walls built up around Elisabetta and believe me, it’s worth the effort. She will tell you stories of time gone by that will make your ears pop. She can read your fortune and tell you all about your star sign. She will drink you under your table. Be warned.

But even though she is the star, there are other attractions vying for your attention; namely the wine list and the fondue.

Ashbee's Wine Bar -  Earls Court Life

The wine list is long and awesome. The fondue hot and cheesy and epic, served in generous portions and accompanied by a basket of soft, delicious fresh bread.

Come here for an evening drink and let time stand still. If you become a regular you might find yourself the recipient of a glass of Polish mead courtesy of the house. Leave filled with cheese and wine and ready to brave the long winter ahead.

 22-24 Hogarth Rd, London SW5 0QY
020 7373 6180

 

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