Visit Notting Hill’s Charming Books for Cooks

We had a few hours left in London before catching a flight to Barcelona, just enough time to take a brisk walk through Notting Hill. Some would think that we were in search of the famous travel book store that was featured in the movie Notting Hill or the extensive vintage clothing section at Portobello Market, but that was not the case. Instead we were on a hunt for Books for Cooks.

Books for Cooks is the tiniest shop in the heart of Notting Hill that specializes in…you guessed it, books especially for all types of cooks. 

This last-minute quest seemed logical since Peter and I are both restaurateurs, chefs and self-proclaimed food snobs.

Our search started with a walk through the eclectic Portobello market.
Portobello Market in Notting Hill

Portobello Market features distinct sections; Antique, Fruit & Veg, New Goods, Fashion Market and Second Hand Goods.

Though the market is most famous for its antiques, there was a substantial vintage clothing section fit for any game of dress up. Could their possibly be an old Julia Childs frock in the bunch?
Portobello Market in Notting Hill

One fruit stand was colorful, stocked with the usual perishable culprits. But, nothing out of the ordinary that would be appropriate for my adventurous bucket list consumption.

Though not a part of the market, I was taken by this genius idea of Vespa pizza delivery. That’s a job I could do well, scooting through the streets of Notting Hill. Yet, customers may be missing a slice, or two, upon arrival.
vespa pizza in Notting Hill

Even though this was not the reason we came, we did peek our heads in the independent travel book store that Hugh Grant owned in in the film, Notting Hill.

I already have a severe case of wanderlust, It was not necessary to fill my head with any more travel ideas. 
Notting Hill Travel Book Store Notting Hill Travel Book Store

Down a short side street we found what we were looking for, the charming Books for Cooks.
Books for Cooks in Notting Hill

The shop is floor to ceiling shelves crammed with every tasty title imaginable. Peter immediately started exploring, hoping to add to the 100+ cookbooks that we already have.

Though, I knew there was no room in our suitcases, so this was just going to be a case of ‘window shopping’. Poor Peter.
Books for Cooks in Notting Hill

They sardine packed hundreds of food related books into this store, from the common to unique. It would take years to recreate the recipes that were in these cases. I haven’t even come close to finishing cooking what was in the books I already own. I would be very plump if I had.

A petite kitchen sets at the back of the store, where recipes are tested everyday for the cookbooks crammed on the shelves. They then compile cookbooks featuring their favorites.

That’s the book I should have bought, the abridged version of everything else.
Books for Cooks in Notting Hill Books for Cooks in Notting Hill

It was hard not to contemplate how small bookstores survive when there is huge conglomerates like that will download directly to my Kindle.

I’m sure happy that this one did.

For me, there is something about having a physical cookbook in my hands, spotted with ingredients from my labor of love.

What types of books do you like to physically have in hand? Do you have a favorite cookbook? 

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2018-12-16T14:48:07+00:00June 15th, 2012|Categories: England, Europe, TRAVEL|Tags: , |


  1. Carla @marlonrichardson June 15, 2012 at 11:56 pm - Reply

    Ooh! I remember this place! This is the actual place where the "Notting hill" the movie was shoot! Am I right? This is where the magic was all begun.

    • Annette | Bucket List Journey June 16, 2012 at 4:06 am - Reply

      The travel bookstore is where the Notting Hill movie was shot. It’s very cute!

  2. Andi of My Beautiful Adventures June 16, 2012 at 5:53 am - Reply

    What a lovely and charming place!

    • Annette | Bucket List Journey June 16, 2012 at 6:07 am - Reply

      Charming is the best way to descreibe it 🙂

  3. Heather June 16, 2012 at 6:58 am - Reply

    I popped in there for some browsing with a few friends who LOVE the shop! I wanted to buy a few of Bill Granger's books, but it would have been silly to buy them there 🙂

    And how we managed to avoid getting a cupcake at the Hummingbird Bakery in the area is beyond me O:-)

    • Annette | Bucket List Journey June 16, 2012 at 8:08 am - Reply

      You had to mention cupcakes and now I want one for breakfast!

  4. Ruth2Day June 16, 2012 at 8:18 am - Reply

    wonderful quirky book shop.  

  5. Juliann | Browsing the Atlas June 17, 2012 at 4:21 pm - Reply

    I love cookbooks that are spotted with ingredients, too. In fact, our cookbooks are so used and messy that they fall right open to the pages we use the most.

    • Annette | Bucket List Journey June 17, 2012 at 8:41 pm - Reply

      LOL! I love that! I just don’t like when they start to get too sticky 🙂

  6. Ayngelina June 19, 2012 at 9:05 am - Reply

    I LOVE cookbooks, there is nothing better than a rainy afternoon on the couch with a giant cookbook.

    • Annette | Bucket List Journey June 20, 2012 at 9:22 am - Reply

      Completely agree, I love when they have little stories that relate to the recipes 🙂

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