If you’re going to treat yourself, you might as well go all out… and luckily for us, Natalie Allen, MasterChef finalist and founder of Sweet Things in Notting Hill, agrees. We go behind the scenes with Natalie to discuss her second cakery and a recent visit from Notting Hill’s very own Hugh Grant

What is it?

Serious cake-dom! Following the success of the first Sweet Things shop and bakery in Primrose Hill, the Notting Hill version doesn’t disappoint. With 10 Great Taste Awards under their belt, there’s all sorts on offer from award-winning triple chocolate brownies to freshly-made sourdough sandwiches; but it has to be said, the cupcakes are what it’s all about – light with a creamy butteriness that makes them unbelievably moreish.  

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Best for…

An indulgent treat! “If you’re going to eat a cake, it might as well be a really good one,” Natalie comments. She doesn’t see the point in using anything less than the very best ingredients; you won’t find additives, substitutes or any nasties in her bakes. “It just doesn’t taste the same… it has to be pure British butter and luxury Belgian chocolate. You taste what you put into it.”

Natalie’s Top Tip…

Natalie points us in the direction of the award-winning Luxury Carrot Cake: “It’s our best seller, and I’m not going to lie, if there’s only one slice left, people could fit over it”. But Natalie’s personal favourite is the Salted Caramel Cupcake, which is injected with liquid caramel before being topped with a dark, Belgium chocolate ganache and a sprinkling of Malden Sea Salt.

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Afternoon tea and coffee at Sweet Things

Don’t miss…

The Afternoon Tea. It’s the only way to reserve a table at Sweet Things, and you’ll get a little taste of pretty much everything on offer. The cake stand we were presented with was piled high with mini sourdough sandwiches, gooey chocolate brownies and my favourite, Sweet Things’ award-winning scones, which were utter perfection – still warm from the oven and served with lashings of clotted cream and jam. You also get to pick two cupcakes, which are the star of the show.

A Few Regulars…

Sweet Things just happens to have a fan base that includes David Beckham and Jools Oliver – oh, and Hugh Grant, who popped by for lunch the other day. “I’m an 80s girl… so it was pretty surreal,” says Natalie of the stardom. It’s a friendly, local place, where Natalie flits between customers, catching up with the regulars and welcoming in the newbies.

Gluten-Free Friendly

If you have a friend who is gluten or dairy free then look no further – their gluten-free offerings are just as extensive. In fact, the GF Clementine Cake is a best seller and Natalie puts it down to her pursuit for perfection. “I only want to make cakes that taste good and these cakes are made without flour because they taste better without it, not because it’s a substitute.” And we agree, that zesty clementine cake with its thin layer of dark chocolate was the perfect ending.

Sweet Things Notting Hill | 8 Blenheim Crescent W11 1NN | 8.30am-5pm

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