1. Oddonos ice cream shop
An authentic Italian gelaterie making its own ice cream on site! A range of delicious flavours of ice cream and sorbet are available, with tables to sit and enjoy inside and out. Do visit if, like me, you get stuck choosing a flavour as you are usually able to try a few samples to help you decide. They also do ice cream birthday cakes (hint hint!).
As they say: “Life is too short to eat bad ice-cream”
2. Franco Manca
A small but growing London chain of sourdough pizza restaurants. Great pizzas- variety of toppings, freshly made, taste amazing, and affordable on a student budget!
3. Hummingbird Bakery
These are literally the best cupcakes I have ever tasted. So many flavours, beautifully decorated and delicious! Their shop is tempting and I doubt you will be disappointed. However it is on the upper end of the price scale. A cheaper alternative is to look out for students selling the bakery’s cakes for charity, or borrow the hummingbird cookbook from the library and get baking!
Everyone who studies at imperial must have sampled Chopsticks at some point! It’s not somewhere you’d take your parents for a meal, but it has large portions which are very satisfying after a long day.
5. Kensington Creperie
Ice cream and crepes in one place- brilliant! Often busy in the middle of the day with tourists, but quieter later in the evenings. Their ice cream milkshakes were a staple in first year.
6. V & A cafe
Across the road from campus, but miles away from the stress. A fantastic place to sit and relax with a great cake. The rooms are beautiful to sit in, it’s very peaceful and often someone will sit and play the piano. Plus, rumour has it, there is discount in the cafe with your imperial student card (although I am yet to try this to check!)
I know they are a chain, but they make a very very good hot chocolate, and although their cafe is often busy in south ken, it offers a cosy and comfortable balcony to sit and watch the world go by in the bakery downstairs.
8. The Godiva Chocolate Cafe, Harrods
An incredible treat! A whole cafe centred around chocolate and its in Harrods! Worth saving up for a trip. We celebrated here in first year, drinking a shot of hot chocolate each- Well worth it!
9. Zacks, Gloucester Road
A great cafe at Gloucester Road. Do a great ‘coffee and croissant’ deal in the mornings (including the weekend!)
10. Nandos, Gloucester Road
A staple of student life, plus a hefty 20% discount if you have an NHS workers card!