Tag Archives: Chiltern Firehouse

Chiltern Firehouse

Restaurant review – Chiltern Firehouse, Chiltern Street, W1U


So the morning after we got engaged (yeah, yeah, still going on about it) Andrew and I woke up and had champagne on our epic balcony!

Then he had bought some smart clothes for me to wear the next day and said we’re going somewhere nice for brunch. We strolled through the sunny Sunday Soho streets and jumped on a tube to Baker Street.

Andrew led the way (quelling rumours he has no sense of direction in the process) until we ended up on Chiltern Street (he took me a winding way to throw me off). I looked at him in surprise. Had he booked Chiltern Firehouse? How would he even know about the Chiltern Firehouse (although he is addicted to the Mail’s sidebar of shame).

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As we were whisked into the courtyard of the restaurant by a man in an excellent hat it seemed, yes, Andrew had been doing his research. We had a table for brunch.

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We were seated on some lovely 1920s-style banquettes and the windows of the dining room were wide open as it was a lovely sunny day. The service was really, really slow, but we were happy to take our time and chat about being engaged…

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We ordered champagne cocktails to start. I got a strawberry and hibiscus number while Andrew went for an apricot and peach one. Mine was definitely better.

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We also ordered some freshly made cornbread with smoked salmon crème fraîche, which took its sweet time arrive, but was incredibly good. Such a savoury, fishy and sharp flavour. I could eat those bad boys all day.

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I then went for potato and herb hotcakes with smoked salmon and poached eggs. This was really good. The waitress tried her best to convince me to have toast with it, but I’m glad I didn’t as we totally didn’t need it.

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Andrew went for lobster scrambled eggs, which were ridiculously good. So rich and full of shellfish flavour.

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Ahem. Then we got some buttermilk pancakes to share. That came with fresh blueberries and blueberry compote, which were great (I love pancakes) but I’m glad I got something a bit different as my main choice as pancakes are pancakes are pancakes.

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I have no idea how much the food cost (thanks Pea!) but I imagine it was pretty spendy. But the atmosphere was so lovely and it was such a special meal. Great people watching, slow service but a lot of fun.

Service: 3
Venue: 5
Value: 4
Overall: 8/10

Chiltern Firehouse, 1 Chiltern St, Marylebone, London W1U 7PA

Nearest tube: Baker Street (10-min walk)

Chiltern Firehouse on Urbanspoon

Square Meal

 

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How I got engaged

So I thought I’d tell you guys a bit of news from my life that doesn’t entail eating burgers the size of my head; I got engaged on Saturday. Yeah, that’s right – someone asked me to be his wife. Shall I tell you the story? Oh alright then.

I thought I was meeting Andrew and our close friend Amy for lunch on Saturday. Andrew was going to the gym so I said I’d meet him there. “How late with you be?” I asked, knowing that he is permanently late. “Not late at all,” he told me.

So I met Amy (pictured below) for lunch. Thirty minutes later Andrew hadn’t appeared. I moaned to Amy.

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As soon as I finished my food Amy said, “So Andrew isn’t coming for lunch but he asked me to give you this” and she produced an envelope with his writing on. “Um, what’s going on?” I said to her, feeling panicked and a bit sick. Amy shrugged as she watched me open the envelope. Inside it said…

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I looked at Amy who was armed with my first clue: find a dog, preferably a sausage dog and text him a photo of it. I flew out onto Upper Street in the search for a dog. The first dog I saw was this guy:

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His baffled owners let me take a photo of him, which I sent to Andrew. The next clue arrived:

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This took me to a beauty salon next to the Breakfast Club in Camden Passage. When I got there (Amy dropped me off and waved goodbye) they told me I was there for a manicure. And some bubbles… Andrew had booked it all for me.

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The ladies who worked in the salon were VERY excited. “He’s going to propose!” they screamed when I told them the story. “I don’t think so,” I said.

I had my nails done – unfortunately one of my nails broke last week (Andrew was so cross and now I know why!) so it looks crap but the rest are lovely.

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I sent this picture to Andrew and then I got another clue:

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He was panicking a bit as my nails took longer than he thought (even if they are stubby guys!). I got to Covent Garden and got this message:

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I got to the blowdry bar and they were ready for me, and gave me a beautiful blowdry. They also were convinced Andrew was getting me ready for a proposal after I told them the story. “I’m not sure,” I said.

I send Andrew a pic of my blowdry:

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And got another clue:

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I got home and a dress was laid out for me with this note on it:

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When I lifted the dress up there was a present under there. It was this book:

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We’ve been listening to the audio book of Wind in the Willows as we fall asleep recently.

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I sent him a photo of the book and then the final clue arrived:

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This took some working out. Kenneth Brannagh is who reads the book on our audio book, where as the author is called Kenneth Grahame. I googled where he lived between 1901 and 1908 and it was Phillimore Place in Kensington. Andrew’s surname is Phillimore. I hopped on a tube across London…

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And trotted through the streets. As I got to the corner of Phillimore Place I saw Andrew, and we smiled at each other but then he ducked down. I rounded the corner and he was down on one knee with a ring in his hand. I immediately started to cry!

He explained he had brought me to Phillimore Place to ask me if I would be a Phillimore and marry him. I said yes, of course!

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The ring fit perfectly and was my absolute dream engagement ring – I couldn’t believe he knew me so well. It turned out Amy had gone ring shopping with him back in Easter when I was at a friend’s hen do. Sneaky sneaky!

Andrew had then booked us a meal at Beast in Marylebone, so we jumped in a black cab there. We called our parents and siblings and drank champagne and ate LOADS of food.

Then he had booked us a hotel room, so we got in another cab to Dean Street in Soho where he’d got us the penthouse suite at Soho Hotel.

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We had cocktails in the bar and then fell asleep in a massive amazing bed. I want that bed!

In the morning I woke up to this:

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We had champagne on the balcony and then he’d booked for us to go to a surprise brunch, which turned out to be at Chiltern Firehouse! The brunch was amazing, but I’ll post that another time.

We then travelled home where Andrew had arranged for some of our friends to come over a celebrate. It was absolutely amazing! I kept telling people “Things like this don’t happen to me!” And I still can’t believe it did – it feels like a wonderful dream.

I can’t wait to marry this amazing man and be Mrs Zoë Phillimore!

This is a terrible photo of us just after he’d proposed! He looks a bit stunned and I look crazed. Haha.

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