We have just come back from a family lunch at Bill’s Restaurant in High street Kensington. My son is finally sleeping and we could all do with a lie down after a filling hearty lunch out.
I had been to Bill’s restaurant with a friend for a light lunch before and remember thinking it would have been the perfect place to go for lunch as a family, and today proved me right.
Kensington Mums were kindly invited for a family lunch to try out Bill’s restaurant’s new spring menu. Situated in High street Kensington’s tube station, the restaurant is always buzzing.
A member of staff greeted us at the door and helped with getting the buggy into the restaurant and then kindly showed us to our table. We arrived at peak lunchtime; the restaurant was busy but not crowded. We were offered the choice of a large round table or a booth; we chose the booth, as it is normally easier to control our two year old. Despite being in full service it never got loud or felt crowded around us. In fact our baby girl who is just 3 months old slept trough the whole lunch without complaining.
As we sat down, our attention was drawn by the different decors throughout the restaurant. The style differs in each area of the restaurant but all worked perfectly together giving a warm feel throughout thanks to the wooden tables and sofa benches in the booths. There are also message boards and Bill’s branded products placed throughout the restaurant.The restaurant’s front ‘face’ is made of glass windows, which looks lovely from the outside and gives light to the inside. Hanging from the ceiling are bunches of dry chillies, which I thought were a fun alternative to flowers. Looking in from the entrance to the tube station, you can see there are several large comfortable brown leather armchairs with tables, which are perfect for a cosy, drink or if you wish to go in for a meeting or even read a book while sipping some tea.
As soon as we were seated we were each given a menu, including a children’s’ menu for my son who was happy to have his own menu to choose from. The variety on the kid’s menu was good and all dishes were healthy and included greens and vegetables.For his starter, my son had ‘Hummus, Carrots and Cucumber sticks’, a fresh and simple dish which you can’t go wrong with. It was well presented and a very good size portion for him. As a main he had ‘Spaghetti and Meatballs’ which were served with a tomato sauce and cheddar cheese. The pasta was served in a bowl and the portion was very generous.
My husband and I took a little longer to choose what we wanted. I couldn’t make my mind up with so many delicious options with a lot of variety. Bill’s lunch menu presents a great selection of starters, mains and puddings catering to all. For the meat lovers they offer sharing meat platters, mini Cumberland sausages and traditional burgers. There is just as much choice for those who prefer fish with seafood starters or whole fish dishes as mains and you can choose to have your meat or fish from the grill too. At Bill’s you also have different ethnic dishes, from falafels to Thai curries to satisfy everyone’s taste buds. For those who prefer lighter options or are vegetarian, the selection of salads is just great. There are traditional Caesar salads and super food mixes as well as soups and halloumi sticks and veggie platters to share.
My husband instead couldn’t find many gluten free options for himself. I asked the waitress if the GF signed dishes on the menu were the only options to find out that there actually was a separate gluten free menu for him. We were both pleasantly surprised because most places that cater for gluten intolerant people have very limited options.
I started my lunch with ‘Crispy Calamari’ cooked with garlic and parsley and served with tartar sauce and a red pepper tapenade. The calamari was very ‘meaty’ and the batter was crispy and well flavoured. The tartar sauce was good and I loved how it married with the red pepper tapenade. If fact I mixed the two sauces together and will definitely try to make my own at home it was so delicious.
My husband opted for a lighter starter, ‘hummus and Tzatziki’ served with gluten free bread and crudities. We were both surprised by the texture of the bread, as it was soft and consistency closer to normal bread than the usual gluten free breads you normally find. The bread was served slightly toasted and that gave it a perfect crunch to it.
As a main I couldn’t resist the ‘Slow cooked barbeque style ribs’. I love ribs and only have them when I go out and they were just perfect. I normally have ribs accompanied by chips or salad but at Bill’s they served them with sweet potatoes mash, Smokey barbeque beans and creamy coleslaw, which made for an interesting change. The sweet potato mash was smooth and gave the whole dish a sweet touch balancing it perfectly with the smokiness of the ribs and the beans. The beans were tasty and full of flavour and married really well with the coleslaw, which was different to the usual coleslaw. It was made of red cabbage and kale with creamy mayonnaise, which added freshness and a lovely crunch to my dish.
Edward opted for the ‘Crunchy Kale leaf salad’ as a main, which was packed with delicious fresh and healthy ingredients. The salad had both raw and cooked vegetables and a selection of toasted seeds and nuts sprinkled on the top, which gave different textures to the dish. Everything was well presented in a big bowl, with lovely vibrant colours from the green avocado, red onion, cabbage and the chargrilled vegetables.
As I finished my main I was sad to realise that as much as I wanted to have one of the desserts I had seen on the menu when I arrived, there was no way I could manage one more bite. Another great reason to come back to Bill’s restaurant again, this time for tea and dessert and try their ‘Blackberry and caramel apple Eton Mess (Gluten Free) and ‘Warm mini cinnamon doughnuts’.
During the lunch we were very well looked after with members of staff regularly checking on us throughout our meal. Even though the restaurant was busy; we never had to wait long for our order, which was great. We were particularly pleased with how quickly Leonardo’s food arrived, he was being a little moany before we arrived and were worried he would throw a few tantrums while waiting for his food but he didn’t have time for that.
But Bill’s is not just a restaurant. Bill’s in fact started as a tiny grocery shop in East Sussex which then turned into a shop and then a shop with a café. Now Bill’s is a restaurant, which caters ‘from breakfast to bedtime and everything in between’ but Bill’s is also that place where you can buy a vast range of high quality delicious products. From colourful candy, sweet chutneys and jams to salad dressings and authentic balsamic vinegars and much more.
During our lunch we were presented with one of Bill’s hampers as a gift. The hamper looked great with its wide selections of products you can find and buy at the restaurant; we were very happy to receive the gift and looked forward to tucking in to it later on when we got back home.
There were many interesting products in the hamper. There was some delicious fudge, a nice balsamic dressing as well as Bill’s house dressing, which is a mustard honey combo. We tried Bill´s dressing on a salad in the evening and it tasted lovely, it was light and flavorful. There were also chutneys, jams, lemon curd and marmalades in the hamper. We haven’t had a chance to taste them yet but they look delicious. For our son, there were also some very nice traditional sweets, biscuits and a milk chocolate bar. He really likes the sweets.
Overall we were treated very well. From the moment we arrived till the moment we left, the staff we attentive and considerate. The food choices were great, not only for adults (including gluten free) but also the children’s menu had enough choices to satisfy even the fussiest of eaters. We would highly recommend going to Bill’s.
Since it is open from breakfast to bedtime, there are plenty of occasions to go there. There are separate breakfast, tea and lunch/dinner menus, which means there are a great variety of options at different times of day. Another great things about the restaurant is that when the weather gets a little warmer and you want to sit outside there is seating, which is away from the main high street.
If you are looking for a family friendly meal in Kensington Bill’s is a great choice. Do not forget to try out some of their own brand products too.
Special offer for Kensington Mums. Get 20% off your bill when you show your KM app to Bill’s Restaurant in Kensington. Make sure you have it downloaded. It’s Free.