Dinner with Cottons, Notting Hill, London
Believe or not but I have never really tried real Caribbean food before. Not sure why but just having a general love of English pub grub and Italian food may have meant I missed this opportunity. Always willing to try something new, I wanted to try Caribbean food and the new Cottons restaurant in Notting Hill seemed like the perfect place. Surrounded by bars, chains and independents in the heart of Notting Hill, Cottons does certainly stand out against the grey but for all the right reasons.
With large windows welcoming the outside world in, the restaurant has a Caribbean injection in the interior but it is modern and city-adapted. Dark wood is throughout giving the place a more stylish twist while Tropical art work and painted scenery gives a nod to a more relaxed look. Even the crockery had a hint of beach life to it but they still felt trendy and was probably something John Lewis would design.
I took my friend Phiroza along to Cottons as we were in a desperate need of a chat up and I knew she would appreciate a meal right near her flat.
Once we sat down and spoke to the staff, we were given a menu each and also a word guide. Now as someone who has never tried Caribbean before, a word guide was a stroke of genius. Instead of pestering the waiters every six seconds, Phiroza and myself would scan this helpful document and know exactly what we were ordering.
So keen to get stuck in, we ordered our starters and mains. I went for the Barbecue pork belly to kick off while Phiroza opted for the Mezze platter. For a main we decided to share a mixed meat plater as we really wanted to leave room for a yummy desert.
So not long after ordering, our starters arrived, I must say that Phiroza’s seafood dish looked amazing and the colours and textures really jumped out. My pork belly was utterly attractive too and was presented so beautifully. Even though it was a small position, the meat was divine. It was succulent, fresh but sadly was eaten too quickly.
Now even though my starter was a small position, the Meat plater we ordered was the perfect amount for two. Served with Banana (I think fried and were SO DELICIOUS), the combination of pork ribs, lamb and chicken was ideal. All the meat was cooked well and the herbs and flavouring made this meal so tasty.
Now dessert is always my favourite time of a meal and when our chocolate praline bar cake arrived at our table, we were both pleased we left some room. Presented more like a piece of art, this beautiful cake as thick with flavour and the texture was incredible. It was the best part of the meal for me and was the perfect end to a perfect meal.
If you love Caribbean or would like to try it, Cottons is a great place to visit. Full of character and flavour, it is a must for all Londoners to visit and I will definitely be visiting again with the husband.