197 Chiswick Fire Station

Location: West London (Chiswick)

Cuisine: Modern European

Price Range: £££

LFM Score: 4/5

Bebe Friendly Score: 3/3

London Foodie Mama was delighted to attend the soft launch of 197 Chiswick Fire Station. The former All Bar One bar (and previously an old fire station as the name suggests) has been gorgeously transformed into a restaurant/all-day-café/bar. The décor is chic yet laid back and would not look out of place in Chelsea or Mayfair. We particularly liked the different types of seating arrangements guests can choose from – cosy sofas, group tables, booths, stools around the bar or alfresco dining in the garden. Edison filament lightbulbs  a plenty and numerous cactus plants scattered around finished off the swank look.

On to the food. We settled for the beef brisket roast (bit dry sadly but generous portions) and the chicken and ham hock pie. The latter was beautifully presented, with a ceramic black bird figurine poking out of the perfectly cooked puff pastry, however the saltiness of the ham hock overpowered the entire dish leaving us gasping for hydration. Speaking of hydration, try the home made elderflower lemonade. For dessert, we opted for the banana crumble which was wholly executed with a crumbly topping, however the fruit was cooked in maple syrup which was achingly sweet, even for our sweet tooth. Perhaps serving with custard instead of the ice cream would have neutralised the sweetness.

Overall, our experience was lovely. Excellent place to chill and read the Sunday papers. Staff was attentive and the spacious nature of the restaurant meant plenty of buggies could be accommodated. High chairs were provided and the kids menu was prepared at £7.50 for a main course and dessert – only criticism was that all  main meal choices were unbalanced with no serving of vegetables (not that the little one would touch it but at least they can  be teased with the green stuff).

197 Chiswick Fire Station – we welcome you to Chiswick with open arms (now if only the prices were a bit more unemployed mama friendly, then we would be a regular).



Pizza Street

Location: West London (Chiswick)

Cuisine: American

Price Range: £

LFM Score: 1/5

Bebe Friendly Score: 2/3

The thick shakes at Pizza Street were fabulous. FULLSTOP. Maybe LFM should end this review here, because frankly it goes down hill from here…

We desperately wanted Pizza Street to be good. Chiswick is crying out for venues like Pizza East – casual family dining specialising with one great dish. So we were excited as we followed the ex-grubby looking Chinese Takeaway site being transformed into an American Pizza joint with trendy hipster East London decor.

LFM attended the soft launch where Pizza Street were offering a reduced menu at half price. Perhaps we should have expected some teething issues, but surely they should have got the basic pepperoni pizza to a certain serve-able standard. The pizza was particularly blackened on the base (chefs not quite mastered the wood fired oven), pepperoni was cut too thick, the cheese was stodgy and the tomato sauce was sparse.

The restaurant layout is clever, squeezing in as many tables as possible into a relatively small floor space (not great if too many buggies present). What we did find bizarre was the vague self service instructions  – A4 paper signs with hastily typed out text – think we were  suppose to crush the pizza boxes that our pizza was served in ourselves and grab our own cutlery and water glasses, but to be honest, we thought these were signs for the staff as the self service zone was situated in the kitchen. #Confusing

Let’s hope things will get better otherwise we may have to resort to Dominos….


Saigon Saigon

Location: Ravenscourt Park (West London)

Cuisine: Vietnamese

Price Range: ££

LFM Score: 5/5

Bebe Friendly Score: 2/3

Local residents of the Ravenscourt Park/Hammersmith area in West London are treated to top quality, authentic Vietnamese cuisine at Saigon Saigon. This family run establishment have tastefully decorated their spacious restaurant with trinkets and memorabilia directly imported from Vietnam, adding to the classy dark wood ambience.

Stand out dishes were the soft shell crab appetisers and beef mince wrapped in wild betel leaves. Also worth a try is the spicy glass noodles with king prawns, scallops and squid, served in clay pot.

Staff were extremely polite and helped cater for our tag along babies – two types of high chairs available, suitable for even the smallest young munchers. Staff provided equipment to heat a baby’s milk bottle which is always a bonus. Large enough spaces between tables to slot in buggies and the owners pointed out that baby changing facilities will be installed in the near future.

Worth a trek out to West London – far more refined than than the cookie cutter Vietnamese restaurants found on Kingsland Road.


Smokehouse Chiswick

Location: Chiswick

Cuisine: Modern European

Price Range: £££

LFM Score: 5/5

Bebe Friendly Score: 3/3

Has London Foodie Mama stumbled across the best Sunday Roast in West London? Time will tell as we further explore our new neighbourhood of Chiswick.

We were rather impressed by the decor of Smokehouse Chiswick- a cross between country gastropub and Oxbridge professor college smoking room;  spot on for the local cliental. We were lucky enough to have a table in the spacious beer garden on a sunny October Sunday – well kept and perfect for family gatherings. In fact, on a Sunday, 90% of  tables had a sprog with them which added to the family atmosphere of the venue.

On to the food. Having previously tried the original Smokehouse in Islington following its rave reviews and being slightly disappointed, we tried to simmer our expectations for their second branch. Thankfully, they have definitely improved on the food here. Super fluffy Yorkshire puddings, soft tender juicy beef short ribs, and excellent trimmings. Highly recommend the sharing platters. Only disappointment was with the Double D tart – fun name, lack lustre dessert.

Staff were attentive and polite – kindly wrapped up our leftovers in an origami doggie bag. Nice touch.

The venue is large enough to house many buggies, high chairs were available (but apparently like gold dust due to the high demand so put in a request early). Off the beaten track from the main high street but that didn’t seem to put off the throngs of customers.