GAIL’S artisan bakeries are scattered around London (16 in total now). When I first discovered Gail’s on The Kings Rd, Chelsea I thought it was a stand alone, cool, quirky cafe. But then it didn’t take long before I started spotting them all over central London. Now before you turn your nose up at it because it is a chain, think again. This place is REALLY NICE and it is one of my favourite places to come and work from (I am sitting in Gail’s in Notting Hill right now with my sister). Even though they’re a big chain, they still act small. The pastry displays are always fresh and immaculate, the smell of fresh bread can be smelt as soon as you open the heavy, red cedar doors and the coffee is always great.
They are really big on their breads and have won some kind of world-class loaf award, so it is always a nice picking something from the menu that includes toast or bread (I would suggest keeping it simple with the toast of the day with organic jam).
The two founders, Ran Avidan and Tom Molnar met working in London in the late 1990s. Ran had been used to artisan bread every day at home in Tel Aviv, and Tom had grown up baking bread with his grandmother in Florida. Their hunt for a good loaf brought them together. They were quick to find Gail Mejia, who had gathered around her a team of expert bakers and was busy supplying top chefs with world-class loaves.
Tom and Ran knew this bread was far too good to be confined to restaurants. It deserved to be brought to the high street, where everyone could get at it. In 2005, the first site opened in Hampstead and now 9 years later GAIL’S is a London favourite.
Below is a picture of my sister, Vanessa and I before lunch at Gail’s.