Hot on the Highstreet Week 190

The Christmas bonus is in the bank, the New Year festivities are over and it’s time to start that health kick and book a summer holiday… What better way to motivate you than the gorgeous, sexy, and terrifyingly skimpy heidi klein bikinis.

Last week my workmates complained as a smartly wrapped box was delivered to me at my desk. This immaculately presented present was from heidi klein, the stylish British designers who ensure you are holiday-ready all year round. The brand was launched in 2002 when Heidi Gosman and Penny Klein noticed how the British highstreet lacks holiday gear outside of the usual summer months. Their luxurious swim and beachwear offers women a fashionable, comfortable and flattering range all year round, so you can get the perfect holiday wardrobe whenever you choose to go away. And as the brand continues to flourish, the heidi klein collections continue to expand and soon menswear and children’s range will also be available.

Though every piece is beautiful, from flip flops to kaftans, it is the bikini sets which are perhaps the most desirable. Blissfully soft, stretchy and unusually comfortable, they are made from the finest fabrics to ensure the quality, shape and colour remains in top condition. Carefully and thoughtfully designed to flatter every curve and contour of the female body, I was amazed by the effects when I tried my lovely svelte black bikini on. With a girly bow at the front of the top and a folded over seam on the bottoms, I loved the detailing of the bikini. And though this design is no longer available the new 2014 collection is equally attractive, with some lovely bold bright designs to fall in love with.

So when January is good and done, reward yourself for all that exercise and lack of alcohol with a holiday abroad and a beautiful bikini  from heidi klein that will last you a lifetime.

heidi klein can be purchased online at and in store at 257 Pavilion Road, Sloan Square, SW1X 0BP and 174 Westbourne Grove, W11 2RW in London and at various boutiques and department stores globally.

For more information go to and become a friend at Facebook/heidiklein

The Rum Kitchen, Notting Hill

Where are all the Caribbean restaurants in London? After visiting this beautiful exotic area of the world last year, I developed a new appreciation for jerk chicken, rice and peas, and rum punch. Interestingly it is a cuisine I instantly forgot about when I landed back on English turf. There seem to be very few established ‘Caribbean’ restaurants in London. With this in mind I suspect Rum Kitchen in West London will be a hit; not just because it fills a gap in the market, but because it offers delicious food and drinks that will happily remind guests of their favourite holiday destination.

Located in the back streets of Westbourne Grove, it is an area which is known best for the annual Notting Hill Carnival. Caribbean recipes are extremely popular at the event so it seems like a fitting place to welcome this venue.

Cute and colourful decor makes the restaurant feel like a beach hut. Quotes cover the walls, one stuck in my head: “Talk is the Ear’s Food”. Tables take up one half of the restaurant, a casual bar the other and downstairs another bar space is available for later in the evenings or private parties. The large spacious room was almost empty when we arrived at 7pm but soon filled up, and as it became busier the service became noticeably slower so I’d recommend going early if you want a speedy meal.

The menu is short and sweet, no fuss comfort food inspired by the Caribbean way of life. We tried the following:

To start:
Salt’n’chilli squid with aioli £7.50
Jerk chix skewers with citrus dressing £7

For main:
Jerk Lamb cutlets with guava sauce’n’island veges £16.50
Confit pork belly with corn bacon’n’blackeye pea succotash & Rum Kitchen BBQ sauce £12.50

For dessert:
Chocolate Rum cake with choc sauce ‘n’ Ice-Cream £6
Caramelized Banana Puddin’ with Butterscotch Sauce £6

The food was scrumptious, really tasty, delicious smelling and comforting. The squid was fat and juicy coated in a thin crispy batter and served with creamy aioli. My jerk chicken was divine, tender meat that fell away from the stick, covered in the most wonderful crunchy salty breadcrumbed layer. The dishes are cleanly presented, and are made with the freshest ingredients.

The mains were a decent size, my lamb was cooked to perfection, very succulent and wonderfully seasoned. The guava sauce was interesting but just a little too sweet for me. The pork belly arrived with a lot of fat around it, but once this was cut away it had great flavour and texture and was complemented by the bacon and pea succotash (a corn based Caribbean dish).

Desserts were unnecessary but we thought we better try them, especially as we both had a tiny inch of tummy space left. The banana cake was the clear winner, finished in a flash, a fruity sweet moist cake with an addictively good sauce. Chocolate Rum cake was interesting but just a bit dry and plain for us.

Many visit Rum Kitchen just for the rum based cocktails, which range from classic mojito to innovative new recipes. My favourite was the Strange Fruit, a short drink shaken with light Cuban rum, fresh lime, pineapple, and Canadian maple syrup. It was very drinkable and had an intriguingly tangy flavour that I loved. The Rattle Skull Punch is also worth trying, a lovely Caribbean rum punch flavoured with spices and fruit juices.

Experience and taste the flavour of the Caribbean at Rum Kitchen, a great venue for eating, drinking and having a good time.

Cafe 202, Westbourne Grove

Café 202 has always been a trendy meeting point for Westbourne Grove shoppers and celebs. During the time I worked at a gallery here, I often wandered past spotting familiar faces and envying the appealing plates of food. Recently I’ve heard so many reports of the fabulous brunches here, that I couldn’t resist suggesting it as a meeting place for a catch up with a friend last week.

202 brings fashion, retail and modern eating together. Sitting in the centre of West London’s most stylish shopping street, 202 serves a blend of world food, modern bistro essentials and diner classics. Open from breakfast to dinner, the kitchen’s emphasis is on simplicity, quality produce and flavour – one of London’s destination eateries for modern brunch.

We sauntered in passing by (and drooling at) the gorgeous accessories and shoes to a table towards the back. The restaurant is bright and airy and there is the constant murmur of gossip being exchanged between diners. I was only intending to have a drink but the menu was so enticing, I convinced myself that brunch at 6pm is totally okay. I chose Buttermilk & Ricotta Pancakes with Fruit Compote and Crème Fraiche (£8) and my friend ordered Scrambled Eggs on Toast (£9.50). The food arrived quickly but seemed rather overpriced, especially for my pancakes which were pathetically small. The scrambled eggs looked divinely yellow but my friend wasn’t overly impressed. The pancakes tasted good, with a generous dollop of crème fraiche a dish of rather bitter and gloopy fruit compote. The orange juice was very sweet and fresh, so no complaints there, but the food definitely doesn’t receive top marks.

Café 202 is a lovely place to hang out, especially if you bag one of the hot seats outside, but the food was disappointing and there are certainly much better brunches available in London.