Chains taking over London?…

London is full of amazing places to eat lunch but what surprises me more and more everyday is just how many chains there are. Just when I thought I’ve found a new little independent cafe it’s not long before I find out there’s a second one just a few tube stops away. I have no adversity to chains as I think the likes of Pret and Starbucks are amazing business models and are great at what they do by giving the busy people of London what they want in a hurry. But for some reason I still feel a little disappointment when I hear the word ‘chain’. I think I associated chains with mass production, cheap badly sourced ingredients and little love going into prep and cooking.

 However I think I’m now realising that London offers chains of what were once little independent cafés but are so successful have been able to expand and in the process have not altered the way they originally began. This I find exciting. It means you don’t have to be a huge company with massive investors to stand up against the likes of Pret and Starbucks. It’s lowering my stigma against chains and now I find it really cool when I’m enjoying a new little find and someone tells me there’s another one a few streets away. Some great (not so chainy) chains I have come accross include:

Gail’s bakery

http://gailsbread.co.uk/bakeries/barnes/

Baker and Spice

http://www.bakerandspice.uk.com/cafes.aspx

Melrose and Morgan

http://www.melroseandmorgan.com/

Muriel’s kitchen

http://www.murielskitchen.co.uk/restaurants

Poilane bakery

http://www.poilane.com/pages/en/company_boutiques.php

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