Core by Clare Smyth, Notting Hill, London

That’s to give it the full title, by the way. Notting Hill is the hip place man – as we like to say up in Yorkshire. Well, it is for us. We describe it in ways that are probably as familiar to Londoners as Medieval English. Hip – that’s still a word surely?

A place of very varying cultures. Yes, the Notting Hill Carnival rubs shoulders with the gentrification that epitomizes the Royal London Borough of Kensington and Chelsea – Alan Bennett still lives there but it’s not the same without the Lady in the Van. All quinoa, fatoush and chia seeds – and Bentleys and Porsches leaning up against every lamppost. And lots of other things about which we’ve only heard rumours up north. And the spectre of Grenfell Tower – truly a borough of extreme contrasts.

The Ledbury and Marianne – to name but two excellent but wallet-emptying locations, are now joined by Clare’s ‘Core’. Clare Smyth held 3 Michelin Stars at Gordon Ramsay’s Royal Hospital Road. And excellent it was too. And friendly. It was only a matter of time before she nailed her name above her own restaurant, and Notting Hill is the lucky recipient of the venture. Two tasting menus and still an à la carte, surprisingly.

Very friendly and stunning, simply stunning food.

* Stop press – straight in with 2 Michelin Stars – very well deserved.

Restaurant Core by Clare Smyth

Clare and team…

Chef’s table…and the pass visible to all

The signature jacket potato…

One of the simply wonderful puds…

The restrained decoration in the restaurant…hallowed ground

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