Best place for a cocktail in Chelsea?


The gorgeous Mina Zaher is behind the terrific blog  She also writes for The Notebook magazine and, most happily for us, is one of our bike heroes.  She chose a gorgeous pink and turquoise Brompton, which we at Bikeminded HQ have been rather jealous of.  Mina grew up in Chelsea and has an incredible knowledge of the area.  Today, we’re tapping into that knowledge and finding out more about the places to be and be seen in Chelsea.


So Mina, tell us why you wanted to be a bike hero?

I used to be really scared of cycling on roads, until a few years ago. It took my boyfriend to show me that cycling on streets could be fun and an easier way to get around London, compared to public transport. So, I really wanted to help increase the profile of cycling around Chelsea. It’s such a great way to get around. 


Mina with her gorgeous Brompton


And why did you choose the Brompton?

I already own a hybrid and a road bike so I wanted to try a bike that was more convenient to get around on. Having something that you can take into places with you and not have to worry about locking up outside has really helped me cycle to places I’d normally take the tube or taxi to. 


We notice you’re rather fond of a cocktail, can you tell us your favourite places to get a cocktail in Chelsea?

Umm, I have quite a list. I love Sophie’s Steakhouse for a good cocktail. There’s always such a fun vibe at Sophie’s, it’s impossible to just go there for just one or even two. La Brasserie on Brompton Road has a great cocktail bar and further afield, The Aubrey Bar at The Kensington Hotel is also a great spot for an amazing martini.


We really enjoy the foodie posts on your blog, can you recommend some good places to eat for our Bikeminded community?

Medlar restaurant on King’s Road is definitely the place to try right now. It’s located towards the World’s End, which is great for that part of the King’s Road. The staff are super friendly; the menu is prix fixe; and the food is superb. There’s a real simplicity about this place which they take to a level of excellence.


And of course, this is a website about cycling, so what tips do you have for new cyclists?

Order cycling maps from TFL and study the cycle routes. Once you discover the best streets for cycling, you’ll have so much fun on the bike and the stresses of public transport will become a distant memory. We’re lucky in London because we have so much green space. So my big tip would be to discover the cycling paths through the parks and the back streets of London. 


Kensington Gardens on a sunny day


And what is your favourite cycling route?

I love cycling to Kensington Gardens and through Hyde Park. It doesn’t matter what time it is, it’s always blissful. I love it especially when the sun is shining and I’m not in a rush. It’s great to step off the bike and have a glass of wine by the Serpentine, preferably with a friend.


What is your least favourite cycling route?

Along the Fulham Road. I try to take the back streets where possible but sometimes, it’s easier to cycle along the main road. The reason why I don’t like cycling along Fulham Road so much is because of the cars that pull out of the sides streets, sometimes at quite a speed. I usually take care when approaching the side streets, keeping my eyes peeled for cars pulling out. King’s Road is different because there’s an easier network of back streets around it, so you don’t really have to cycle along the main road.


Mina in her (current) favourite cycling outfit


Finally, tell us about your best cycling outfit.

Confession time! Until I received the Brompton Bike, I was a real cycle geek: helmet, bright yellow cycling jacket! I remember going to Paris and thinking, these guys have so much style even on bikes. Now, I’m getting into cycle chic and love it. I guess I’m still learning how to be confident on the road. But to answer your question, a pair of skinny jeans, my French Sole pumps and my Ad Hoc top (as in the photo) would be my ideal cycling outfit, right now.

1 comment

  1. Matthew Steeples says:

    Oct 8, 2011


    I agree about La Brasserie being the perfect place for a cocktail – especially as they have a happy hour from 5pm to 7pm each day. Here’s my review:

    Also worth trying for drinks are The Admiral Codrington, JAK’s bar in Walton Street and Barts in Chelsea Cloisters.

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