Aubaine - Selfridges
Amongst the commotion of shoppers in Selfridges, there's a little piece of Provencal France tucked away in a corner on the second floor of the busy Oxford Street department store.
The pretty French cafe is a blend of Parisian sophistication and Provencal simplicity. One can dine here with friends or one can dine alone, accompanied with tea and a good book. A bit like the provencal Belle herself!
Though there are a few of the chain restaurants dotted around London, Aubaine in Selfridges is something special because it's the only one with wonderful Wisterias decorating the walls. The sight of plush purple flowers is a pretty sight indeed, and works exquisitely with the monochrome tiled floors and exposed silver pipes.
There's lots to choose from on the menu, from traditional patisserie delicacies to afternoon tea. If you do end up dining here, ask to be served by Albion - he was one of the managers and was kind enough to have a Vegan version of their Lobster Brioche Roll created especially for me!
I was really impressed with their selection of teas, but was typically indesicive - Albion offered to let me try the 'Mysterious Marco Polo' free of charge; if I liked it then I could order the full pot and he'd put that on the bill. But since the 'Marco Polo' remained nothing more than just a mystery to me, I decided to go for the Vert Provence, which I much preferred - it's a black tea (my fave) with hints of lavender and summer berries.
Albeit for a few hours, Aubaine in Selfridges had me feeling as though my troubles were left far behind in a busy London town, as her Wisterias whisked me away to the lush lavender fields of Provence.