One of my favorite brunch spots is The Abingdon gastropub hidden on a Kensington side street. The walk down from the High Street is just darling, and takes you through one of London’s quaintest neighborhoods. When you’re strolling along Abingdon Road, The Abingdon appears like a picturesque destination on a movie set. Pretty little London in all its glory.
Once you first enter the Abingdon, however, you wonder what happened to the classic British charm you saw outside with its strong blue and white paint job, muraled window scenes, and beautiful detailed door. Where did it go? Because what you’re faced with at first is like a pseudo-wine bar you would find in a chain hotel. The first area is just full of bad design choices. There’s awkward low cocktail seating, a stiff bar, and tacky, swirly decorative items. But, WAIT, do not fear. It gets better, right around the corner.
Upon entering, at first glance, my husband and I were so put off by the atmosphere that we thought about slowly backing out the door. Luckily the host quickly came over and made up our minds for us. He took us through the basic area and around a corner where suddenly the experience was looking up. We walked through two long rooms that gave less of a NYC happy hour vibe and more of a sunny French bistro scene. The first room had a large private party occupying the full space, so we headed all the way down to settle into a darling booth in a room brightened with skylights and fresh flowers.
After deciding I loved The Abingdon and that we hadn’t made a mistake, we looked over the brunch menu which had a little bit of everything–sweet, savory, breakfast, lunch. It was great. I had a classic egg breakfast and my husband enjoyed the moules frites (which I think is a gross morning choice, by the way.) This was all after the most amazing bread and butter! The fresh bread really deserves a “do” post on its own, it was that good. These items were delivered to us by a couple knowledgeable servers who didn’t miss a beat.
We had refreshing cocktails, strong coffees, great food and competent service in a cozy little booth on a Sunday morning. My version of Heaven right there.
So, while the cover is charming, don’t judge a book by its–er–front page? Turn it and dig right in to all The Abingdon has to offer. Enjoy!
54 Abingdon Road
London W8 6AP