Summer is here! The city is more alive than ever – a true pleasure for those who can stand the heat, that is! For us Danes 34 degrees is a bit too much, so at the moment I’m mostly looking for places where I can have a taste of the sun, but still stay under the shadow! It can actually be a bit difficult to find lovely outdoor hang-out places, because “we are in rainy London – not Paris!” (quote Frenchie)
I haven’t come across many beautiful outdoor cafés and restaurants here in London (well of course there are some, don’t misunderstand me – but when the sun is out everybody wants to be at those places, so you really, really need to book in advance)
Last week my Mum was here to see me. We had such a lovely time as always!
One evening when my Mum was here, we all decided to go out for a real “taste” of London outdoor restaurants! I googled and I googled! As mentioned earlier it is not a problem to find an outdoor place, but it can be a problem if you are a “last-minute” kind of person, who only wants the best! Luckily I succeeded in finding the most wonderful little place in South Kensington within a walking distance – so no need to struggle with hot tubes, ubers or cabs. Joy, oh joy!
Welcome to Daphne´s on quiet Draycott Avenue
I’m actually surprised that I never heard about this very romantic and beautiful place before, as I live so close by, but let me tell you it was a wonderful surprise to find out, that I can satisfy my cravings for Italian food a few steps from home!
What I like about is place is, that you are actually both indoor and outdoor at the same time! You can eat your meal without the sun melting your food – and still feel, that “nobody puts you in the dark corner”!
We were warmly welcomed by the lovely staff! The service here is definitely a strong point!
Pre-drinks enjoyed at a bar like this is always a good idea, right?
Daphne’s originally opened by theatre agent Daphne Rye 50 years ago. It is a high-end Italian restaurant that, once visited, will not be soon forgotten. You are led onto a newly redesigned European-style bar and dining room. The interior design is a tasteful, subtle combination of modern and classic, from the marble-topped bar and vintage Italian chandeliers to the privately curated European modern art on the walls
Colourful prints depicting scenes from all over the peninsula: Portofino, Firenze and Lake Como.
Frenchie on the hunt for wine! If you are in doubt, the waiter will be more than happy to suggest a suitable wine from the impressive cellar, which is well-stocked with a variety of fine Italian wines.
In truly Italian style we had a basket of warm bread and olive oil, while choosing wine and starters. Really delicious!
“To a great evening!”
This is the a la carte menu! It may not be the cheapest place to go for dinner, but you don’t have to go all in! Daphne’s also offers a set menu that boasts very good value for this area
Here we are with our beautiful starters! (Frenchie still has to work on his photography skills – unless he intendedly wanted to be in the picture!)
Vitello Tonatto – so good, you don’t want to share!
I have been looking high and low for this starter in London! And it is not easy to come by! Ever since I was a teenager I always wanted Vitello Tonatto for my birthday (and it wasn’t my birthday, but it sure felt like it!)
Probably the most beautiful dish of the evening! This is Octopus Carpaccio with Datterini and Capers! Frenchie was happy!
Another toast! I continued with my white wine, while Frenchie and my Mum went for a beautiful red! (I hope that one day I will learn to appreciate red! Being French and all Frenchie is highly unsatisfied with my lack of knowledge and taste for red wine!)
Because it was so warm outside none of us felt like having a big meal! So even though Daphne´s offer some amazing seafood and steak dishes, I actually just went for a bigger sized starter as a main – The classic Beef Carpaccio with Rocket and Parmesan…
– Accompanied by tasty Zucchini Fritte! (This is a side – and there is plenty for two!)
Another very well-presented dish! This is Spaghetti alle Vongole!
My Mother had Rigatoni with Veal Ragu! (The picture makes the dish looks small, but honestly my mother couldn’t finish it – so I had to help her. Not a problem as it was really good!)
Meanwhile on the other table a fish was being beautifully prepared for serving!
– And people were having a good time!
As you can see it was a VERY hard choice to make when it came to desserts – especially since we were all full, but wanted to share just one of these beauties!
But I got my way – and we had an extremely delicious classic Tiramisu! (This is a big portion and perfect for sharing!)
I would like to thank everybody at Daphne´s for a really lovely evening out! This is a highly recommendable place to go, if you are looking for a romantic evening out, an indoor/outdoor feeling – and lovely Italian food and wine!
Do you have any experiences with outdoor restaurants, cafes or bars in London? I would love to know! Please leave a comment below and enlighten me. Enjoy the sun (with a bit of shadow!)