Bites: Park life
Saturday 06 May 2000
Burlington's CafÃ©, Chiswick House, off Burlington Lane, London W4 (020-8742 7336). Daily 10am-5pm. The basic-looking park cafÃ© distinguishes itself all day with big breakfasts through wholesome home-cooked lunches to own-made cakes and teas. Club sandwiches and tuna melts are £4.50, and they bake the ciabatta to fill with chicken and avocado or humus, tomato and feta. Want hot? There's roast fillet of salmon with garlic mash and mange tout or supreme breast of chicken on salad with new potatoes and Med veg.
Ston Easton Park, Ston Easton, Somerset (01761 241631). Daily lunch and dinner. Not your usual public park. Guests can arrive at the Palladian hotel by helicopter. Arrive by any means for a drink, coffee, lunch or dinner without staying the night. Lunch is almost a steal at £11 for two courses, £16 for three (plus £2.95 for coffee and petits fours), except on Sunday when it's £10 more. Dinner is £39.50 in a grand dining room overlooking the river. Start with Jerusalem artichoke risotto with truffle oil, finish with chocolate pudding and fudge sauce.
Oshobasho CafÃ©, Highgate Wood, Muswell Hill Road, London N10 (020-8444 1505). Bank Holiday Mons only, otherwise Tues-Sat 8.30am-9pm. If you go down to the woods today you're sure to find a queue extending out of the former cricket pavilion that's now a cafÃ© in a clearing. It's mobbed by alternative north Londoners and families with free-range kids. An all-vegetarian menu includes grilled vegetables on ciabatta, heaps of home-made hummous, Greek salad and pasta. Kids' penne with tomato sauce is £2.50, adults pay from £2.90 for a sandwich to £6.25 for a hot meal. More seats outside than in, but still a (peaceful) fight for them at weekends.
Tan-y-Foel, Capel Garmon, near Betws-y-Coed, Conwy (01690 710507). Mon-Fri lunch and dinner, Sat, Sun dinner. Just outside Betws-y-Coed, this country hotel has the Snowdonia National Park on its doorstep. Non residents can have light and remarkably modish lunches in a room with a view. Spicy fishcakes, baked goat's cheese and pancetta or Thai green chicken curry are typically adventurous - for £7.95-£12.95. Booking's also essential for the £25 three-course or £40 four-course dinner featuring local ingredients given skilful global treatment.
The Orangery, Kensington Palace, Kensington Gardens, London W8 (020-7376 0239). Daily 10am-6pm. Glorious setting for continental breakfast and a small lunchtime selection of soup (spinach, with a herb or cheese scone, £3.55) and salads such as chicken, orange and tarragon (£7.50). But pretty teas, also at Kensington prices, are the thing: the sandwiches, scones and cakes works for £7.50, plus other cakes and swirly, buttery sablÃ©s.
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