10 for Atmosphere

February 03, 2013

10 for Atmosphere

I don’t know if it’s just me, but I can always remember the places where I’ve caught-up with old friends, even if it’s just for a coffee as they’re passing through town. Not just any old friends, but the kind that you know will always be there for you when you need them, regardless of how many moons have passed since you last saw them. I was at Frankie and Benny’s in Nottingham the last time I saw this friend, and at the Pret Cafe in King’s Cross Station the time before that. This time it was the Kensington Creperie near South Ken tube station.

Their website doesn’t do them justice, and the state of their menus lets them down, but that’s all part of the charm. They don’t scream ‘we’re set for world domination’ like the ‘Crepe Affairs’ of the world. Instead they give off the impression that they’re perfectly happy where they are in life. And that is quite nice.

Tables are packed in and there’s barely room to take your coat off as you come in from the cold but the staff are so friendly and it’s almost like you’ve been seated in a room of people you know, rather than strangers. I had the ‘Pesto Galette’ for main – filled with cheese, sundried tomatoes, olives and pesto. Too much cheese if we’re being critical but the pesto and tomato flavours were delicious. For sweet I asked the waitress for Nutella and strawberries with a side of ice cream, which bizarrely wasn’t on the menu. A delicious dinner, and the friend I was catching up seemed to be in heaven judging by the compliments she passed on to our waitress, and the audible ‘mmmm’s with every bite.

From our seats you could see behind the counter where the crepes were prepared (all fresh which makes for a very pleasant change!) – icing sugar was dusted so generously it floated all over the floor; and liquors and creams were drizzled from a height as if being poured into cocktails behind a swanky bar. It was heavenly.

As well as preparing the crepes fresh, this place scored well against a few others of my bugbears… they gave you actual plates and cutlery (believe me this is rare!), and the best thing? You didn’t feel rushed! We stayed 3 hours. We cried, we laughed, we ranted. It was utter bliss.

The places you eat and drink are not just serving a purpose of refueling you. Hell they’re not even simply serving the purpose of a sense of occasion and a treat. They let you connect with the people in your life and that is very special.



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