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Parabola (CLOSED)

Restaurants Holland Park

Time Out says

Friendly warning! We're working hard to be accurate. But these are unusual times, so please check that venues remain open.

Please note, this venue is now closed. Time Out Food editors, July 2018.

A parabola, a quick Google search informs me, is a curve where any point along it is an equal distance from a fixed point and a fixed straight line. This Parabola – an elegant café-restaurant at the new Design Museum in Kensington – is named after just that: it’s the shape found in the museum’s bold, curved roof.

With views over Holland Park and High Street Ken on one side and exhibitions on the other, this isn’t your standard museum canteen with screaming children, cake-crumb-covered chairs and tables piled high with dirty teapots. Elegant and peaceful, with big windows, clean lines and white linen, Parabola continues the celebration of design. Food is served on wide white plates with a swirl of dark blue, the cutlery is dainty, the wine served in fine glass tumblers. It’s a rather fancy affair, and booking is recommended.

Croquettas of the day were bite-sized bursts of flavour: flaked fish with dill and a zesty finish. Sea bream, laid on slices of fennel, was seasoned well and wonderfully punchy. Baked aubergine with harissa, labneh and pomegranate was a lighter, pretty dish packed full of spice and heat. I opted for fat, hand-cut chips and Béarnaise sauce for an indulgent, salty side. Next, a chocolate and salted caramel tart – crisp pastry topped with thick, sweet and salty layers – was a delight. It’s a common flavour combination that can often be cloying; instead, this struck that sought-after balance between sugar, salt and bitter dark chocolate (though the generous, insanely rich portion is still likely to stall even the most dedicated of chocoholics).

A meal at Parabola is an aesthetically pleasing experience, but the food is a feast for the tastebuds as well as the eyes – far from a case of style over substance.


Address: 224-238 Kensington High Street
W8 6AG
Transport: Tube: High Street Kensington
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