Insta-Friendly Café Culture in the West End

Insta-Friendly Café Culture in the West End

824 960 Boutique London

London’s West End never disappoints when it comes to fine dining and charming café culture, regularly hosting international socialites and the capital’s high society. However, a recent trend has cropped up on this side of town that is causing quite the stir in the culinary scene.

As social media becomes ever more influential in our day to day lives, it has naturally become a deciding factor in the places we choose to eat and drink. With diners opting for visually appealing “pop-up” eateries, many restaurants and cafes are adopting a more social-media friendly dining experience.

Today, nowhere else reaches the heights of Instagram café culture quite like Chelsea! An area already known for ritzy reality-tv stardom, Chelsea has long been prime territory for social media royalty and up and coming influencers alike. What better way to boost your following and upgrade your digital persona than with extravagant décor, pastel lattes and posh avo-on-toast? We’ve narrowed down our personal favourites to add to your to-do list this summer so get your favourite custom filter ready!

Peggy Porschen Cakes

219 King’s Rd, Chelsea, London SW3 5EJ

 

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There’s no doubt in our minds that this irresistibly photogenic street corner popped up in everyone’s feeds at least once this summer! When walking down Chelsea’s King Road, it’s virtually impossible to miss this Instagram magnet. The bubble-gum pink façade is adorned from head to toe in a seasonal floral installation all year round, and who wouldn’t be tempted to venture inside and sample some of the cakes, confectionary and cookies on display? Many of these sweet treats have their very own celebrity pedigree, having featured in some legendary A-list events, including the wedding of Kate Moss and Stella McCartney, Damien Hirst’s auction at Sotheby’s and Elton John’s White Tie & Tiara Bal.

As well as staple Peggy Porschen menu items like their rainbow and vanilla cloud drip cakes, this Chelsea edition features new and innovative dining concepts.

Peggy Porschen patisserie counter, image courtesy of peggyporschenofficial

Peggy Porschen patisserie counter, image courtesy of @peggyporschenofficial

Take for example the Chelsea Rose Room, Peggy’s own unique take on a traditional English rose garden that couldn’t be better suited to private events. Headlining this exciting dining hall is a fully bespoke skylight, designed to evoke that distinctly airy feeling of natural daylight.

Alfresco dining at Peggy Porschen, image courtesy of rock.n.fashion on Instagram

Alfresco dining at Peggy Porschen, image courtesy of @rock.n.fashion

Also new to the table is the carefully curated All Day Dining Menu, which will feature the brand’s first ever savoury offerings paired with extended opening hours. This will give you ample opportunity to capture that picture-perfect moment as you indulge in some of the capital’s finest cafe cuisine.

An off-shoot from the original bakery in Belgravia, which happens to be located less than a mile away, this is the second flagship of award-winning cake designer Peggy Porschen – who has dedicated herself to creating edible works of art in all shapes and sizes.

 

 

Elan Café (EL&N Café)

239 Brompton Road, South Kensington, SW3 2EP

Alfresco brunch at Elan Cafe, image courtesy of Elancafe

Alfresco brunch at Elan Cafe, image courtesy of Elancafe

This extra pink café has a staggering 326K Instagram followers and in many circles holds the title of “most instagrammable spot” in town with its incomparably vibrant floral wall (let’s admit it, everyone is a sucker for a bit of flora and fauna these days), plush furnishing and overall eccentricity. Despite the usual queue outside, you already know the decor will be well worth some intense documenting when you first meet eyes with the adorable pastel-coloured bike and its rose-filled basket. However, should neon lights, marble & rose gold tables and carousel horses not fit your grid for this season, a bit of pop culture courtesy of their Love Heart wall could be right up your alley. Among the classic “Marry Me” and “First Love” slogans you’ll find a few more current quotables such as “Thank You, Next” inspired by Ariana Grande.

 

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Elan has six locations, with Park Lane being the original influencers’ hangout of choice. However, their Brompton Road arm now conveniently sits on the border between Chelsea and Knightsbridge making the perfect breather after a morning stroll through Harrods or an exhibition at The Victoria and Albert Museum. The millennial brunching staples are all here, including acai bowls and avo-on toast. However, this café mainly focuses on colourful cakes, along with their quirky coffees created by three-time U.K barista championship finalist and latte artist, Joao Almeida. With a lively atmosphere stemming from the overwhelming pinkness, Elan is well-suited for a weekly catch up with friends or sharing some giggles over a smartphone.

 

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Bluebird Chelsea

350 King’s Rd, Chelsea, London SW3 5UU

Cafe & Courtyard at Bluebird Chelsea, image courtesy of Bluebird Chelsea

Cafe & Courtyard at Bluebird Chelsea, image courtesy of Bluebird Chelsea

Surprised? Indeed, while this Kings Road hotspot does lack the over-saturated aesthetics of Peggy Porschen and Elan, it’s no secret that the Bluebird is an absolute must visit for Made in Chelsea fans! But the cafe is more than just a hunting ground for the cast members, the Duchess of Cambridge and her sister Pippa have been occasionally spotted right here, making it a place to see and be seen, as well as one for the Gram!

Bluebird is a world of its own; a café, a restaurant, a bar, a wine cellar, a bakery, a florist and a food hall. Visitors can expect everything from beautifully presented buttermilk fried crab and lobster spaghetti to mushroom risotto, while gin lovers will feel right at home with a dedicated gin menu. It had recently made its way back into the headlines while hosting The Avocado Show this year. The unveiling of the Avocado Burger certainly made for some trending Insta story material: a perfectly stacked wagyu beef special wedged between two halves of an avocado.

Although it is tailored towards casual dining, Instagram enthusiasts can still take full advantage of the ultra-chic fusion of art-deco design and Victorian elements, the quirky art, the brightly coloured custom-made furniture and the charming outdoor courtyard, made all the more appealing thanks to the summer weather.

 

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Ivy Chelsea Garden

195 -197 King’s Rd, Chelsea, London SW3 5EQ

Summer floral installation at Ivy Chelsea Garden, image courtesy of The Resident

Summer floral installation at Ivy Chelsea Garden, image courtesy of The Resident

Technically, this particular entry on our list is a restaurant rather than a cafe, but all the same, Ivy Chelsea Garden is a venue not to be missed! The Edwardian house is as picturesque as they come, and taking pride of place this summer is the large outdoor garden adorning the entrance, making for one of the city’s most spectacular floral facades. A place where Alice in Wonderland meets the Garden of Eden, this showstopping display is sure to stop anyone in their tracks!

Many of the well-heeled residents will proudly refer to themselves as regulars, whether this is their top choice for al fresco dining or their go-to for an afternoon Aperol in the equally charming garden terrace toward the back. The Ivy’s very own orangery is sure to provide you with a photo-ready dream of a setting while you sit back and enjoy the age-old tradition of Sunday brunch.

 

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Farm Girl Café

9 Park Walk SW10 0AJ

Wisteria at the Farm Girl Cafe, image courtesy of farmgirlcafe

Wisteria at the Farm Girl Cafe, image courtesy of @farmgirlcafe

Flamingo sculptures, Hollywood-inspired bulbs on the walls and pug faces in your cappuccinos, what is there not to love? Farm Girl Café is a Mecca for calorie-conscious millennials and fashionistas, as are many of its neighbours, however, this café comes with the unique added bonus of being doggy-friendly. This gives you the rare opportunity to pose with your pooch in a space so warm and bright it could easily be confused with one of the Melbourne venues it draws inspiration from!

 

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For those looking to eat greener, this health heaven is inspired by Australia’s trademark café culture. The menu covers a diverse spectrum of colourful and pretty plated holistic dishes with the inclusion of rainbow vegetables. Aside from the highly rated acai bowls and oven-baked aubergine, Farm Girl’s iconic lattes are certainly one of the big secrets to the chain’s success. With specials including liquid gold, charcoal, lavender seed and rose petal options, these sought-after coffees make for an adorable #sundayfunday upload.

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