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7 Ways To Love The Chelsea Flower Show

By Christian Rose-Day (22 May 12)
Tags: chelsea flower show, plants, menus, offers, chelsea london, west london, bars london, restaurants london, afternoon tea, edible flowers, gardening UK, gardening enthusiast, flowers London,

Header image for 7 Ways To Love The Chelsea Flower Show
It's a big week for the Chelsea suburb of London. On Saturday, Chelsea Football Club won the Champions League final against Bayern Munich of Germany to bring smiles to many a west London face; and starting today, the hugely popular Royal Horticultural Society Chelsea Flower Show 2012 begins its weeklong residency overlooking the river Thames.

Nearly 160,000 tickets have been bought for the RHS Chelsea Flower Show and the event has proved so popular with gardeners that tickets to the sold-out show were appearing on the black market recently for upwards of £300. Some internet ticketing sites even claimed they had received more enquiries for Chelsea Flower Show tickets than for tickets to concerts for bands such as Coldplay. Clearly, gardening shows in west London are big business.

With so many green-fingered floral enthusiasts piling into Chelsea this week (Tuesday 22nd - Saturday 27th May) bars and restaurants both locally and further into the centre of London have prepared a multitude of blossoming offers and menus to tempt the horticulturists of the UK to celebrate the Chelsea Flower Show in their own unique way.

See Flowers, Eat Flowers

French restaurant Le Cercle in Chelsea is embracing the power of flowers with a pop-up menu lasting until 2nd June that includes various spring flowers. For example, Head Chef Pierre Mirepoix's 5-course menu boasts pan-fried sea bass, green almond coulis, black aubergine and daisies. Guests with a sweet tooth will want to sample the dark chocolate tart and violet ice cream. The special flower-focused menu is £35pp when booked using the reservations calendar below.

Chelsea Brasserie restaurant on Sloane Square, a mere 10-minute walk from the Chelsea Flower Show amongst west London's high class shops and near to the Saatchi Gallery on the King's Road, is offering a special Chelsea Flower Show lunch and dinner menu. 2 courses are £39 and 3 courses are £45; both include a glass of Perrier Jouet Brut NV Champagne. The menu includes a starter of rabbit & foie gras terrine with dandelion salad and rhubarb chutney; a main of risotto primavera, courgettes, peas, nettles & flowers and parmesan crumbs; and a dessert of elderflower cream tart, strawberries and strawberry sorbet. Make your reservations below on the booking calendar.

Belgravia's renowned Tuscan restaurant, Il Convivio pays homage to the nearby Chelsea Flower Show with a menu inspired by herbs and flowers. Until Saturday, the Italian restaurant will alter its menu to include chilled courgette & borage soup, pappardelle with a rabbit and pea shoot ragu, roast halibut with a watercress and nasturtium sauce, or guinea fowl supreme with lemon thyme and lavender. The restaurant also has its own secluded bijoux garden. As the restaurant is so close the RHS Chelsea Flower Show, we'd recommend booking for lunch at Il Convivio and thus taking advantage of the set lunch for £17.50. Book ahead to avoid disappointment.

Feng Sushi Fulham - the closest Japanese Feng Sushi restaurant to the show - has added a special floral-inspired ‘Green foliage maki' to its menu to celebrate this year's RHS Chelsea Flower Show from 22nd May – 26th May. The maki is packed with microherbs, avocado, coriander pesto, chives and rocket costing just £5.50 to eat in. To book your table, use the reservations calendar below.

Flower Power Afternoon Tea

Although Radisson Blu Edwardian London Hotels are celebrating spring with a Floral Afternoon Tea for £25pp at all of their London hotels, we recommend tucking into the fragrant mid-afternoon lavender-infused scones (with traditional clotted cream and jam, naturally), dainty finger sandwiches, rich aromatic teas, perfumed cakes, and pastries such as the irresistible vanilla meringue, rose fruit jelly and elderflower crème brulée at the Bloomsbury Bar & Restaurant. Why? Because these floral fancies and botanical bites finish with a glass of Prosecco, by the end of which you'll have a hankering for some West End Theatreland action, handily just down the road. Afternoon Tea is served from 2-5pm and must be booked in advance using the form below.

The London Hilton Hotel on Park Lane has also created a special Chelsea Flower Show Afternoon Tea that both celebrates the RHS Chelsea Flower Show and the arrival of spring with the sights, smells and tastes that the season brings. Served in the Podium restaurant, the Flower Show Afternoon Tea includes white chocolate lolly with crystallised violet petals, passion fruit and elderflower macaroon with a crystalised rose petal, and orange cupcake with sunflower icing. The Flower Show Afternoon Tea is available from 2pm – 6pm and is priced at £32.50pp when you make the reservation using the booking form below.

Blossoming Cocktails

Chelsea Flower Show guests: you get 50% off your first cocktail this week at Juju bar in Chelsea, simply by presenting your Chelsea Flower Show ticket at the bar. Half priced Watermelon Martini or Chelsea Country Garden cocktails here we come!

Image courtesy of Flickr user HerryLawford.

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