When we were introduced to Cierra Block by The Munch Brunch Kids’ very own Poppy Woodcock, we were bowled over by her deliciously detailed maps of London peppering her Instagram page @londonblockbyblock. From toddles across town with her daughter Clementine, Cierra has crafted a collection of illustrated maps outlining her favourite puds, pies and foodie pitstops (snap up her London guides in her shop).
Whilst we know she loves a good gelato around Notting Hill and makes a bee-line for hot chocolate in Belgravia, we couldn’t wait to explore where Cierra is drawn too with her family for memorable meals across London…
1. I’d like a table for…
Three please, oh and a highchair, but we might not use it as our toddler Clementine is often more interested in exploring the restaurant than sitting and eating, but it is nice to have options, right?
2. Early-birds catch the coffee at…
I am not a coffee person but I do love a hot chocolate. Gail’s has one of my favourite hot cocoa’s, but there is also a really cute place near use called Hart and Lova that makes a great hot chocolate (and all my friends say their coffee is good as well), but if you go you also have to get a pan au chocolat, it’s the rule.
3. Best brunch with kids?
My husband, Ben, and I love going to Dishoom for a family brunch. Our two favourite things to order are the sausage and egg naan roll and the house granola.
4. Children’s menu must-visits…
We are not quite at the children’s menu stage yet. But if we wanted to go to a place that we knew Clemmie would love we would go to Homeslice Pizza. We all love their pizza. Ben and I would split a whole pumpkin seed, mushroom, and ricotta pizza, and we would get Clemmie a slice of margherita pizza.
5. Where do you grab a bite with mums en masse?
When my mum friends and I get together we love to go to The Quince Tree Terrace at Clifton Nurseries. The food is delicious and the café is large. Plenty of pram parking and high chairs. I also quite like going to Pomona’s with a group. Again, lots of room and delicious food.
6. Hidden gem for treating tiny ones?
It’s got to be Udderlicious. Clemmie and I both love ice cream and Udderlicious has the best flavours. I always get half a scoop of the dark chocolate sea salt sorbet and half a scoop of whatever else catches my eye that day. I share my scoops with Clemmie for now, but pretty soon I will let her have her own.
7. Best piece of advice for dining out with kids?
Just do it. I often feel anxious when we go out to eat with Clemmie, but 99% of the time she is great. I believe that the more we expose children to different environments the more adaptable they become, so if you want a kid who is well behaved at a restaurant you need to take them to restaurants and show them how to be well behaved. But also I am not above having my toddler watch a show on my phone after she has finished eating so that she will sit while we finish up our meal.
8. Date night – takeaway or take me out?
Take me out. Ben and I both love Korean and Mexican food so if we are going out we will often go someplace like Bao, Mestiezo, Bullgogi, Taqueria, or Gogi. If we are too tired to go out but still want a nice evening in and not bother cooking we order Lebanese.
9. My earliest food memory…
Eating my grandma’s home canned peaches. She would write the year that she had canned them on the top of the jar and my brothers and I would search the pantry looking for the oldest ones we could. It was always fun to find a jar from the year you were born. We had a bowl of sweet peaches as our dessert whenever we visited her. I can’t remember anything she cooked, but I remember those delicious peaches.
10. Five mums, one table – who’s joining you?
My mom, Kathleen, my mother in law, Margarete, and my two Grandma’s, Ruth and Julia. They all live in America so if I could have any mums join us for a meal it would be them. Clemmie is also the only grandchild on both sides of the family so she gets a whole lot of love from her grandma’s who miss her dearly.