Behind The Blue Door

Stylish Weekends | April 13, 2016 |

Five weekend-worthy bikes made for exploring



The resurgence of cycling has created a boom in bicycles that make style and comfort just as important as performance.

We’’ve selected the best of the modern bikes blending classic styling with contemporary technology. Plus, we’ve got the finest places to stop off for brunch during your ride.

For the sociable urbanist: Brompton

Navigating the urban jungle is easy with the folding Brompton (from around £900), described as ‘designed for real life, rather than a showroom’.

Once a quirky, off-beat choice, today the Brompton is available worldwide. Popular with city-dwellers because you can beat the thieves by folding it up and taking into bars, as well as being a flexible choice for a commute that includes cycling and the tube.

The new Black Edition is inspired by city nights. Only 5,000 have been made, so be quick.

Brunch stop: No67

Hidden away in Peckham, No67 is the cafe within the South London Gallery. A pit stop en route to the newly-revamped Burgess Park, the brunch menu focuses on seasonal food, including quinoa and buckwheat granola and roast mushrooms in white wine and thyme on sourdough.


Image source: Dourobike/Instagram

For scandi cruising: Gazelle

In 1902, Willem Kölling saw a roebuck pass in front of his home and the speed and grace of the animal’’s movement inspired him to use the name Gazelle for his new bicycle business.

The company sells itself on durability and style – we love the Tour Populair (£649) with retro styling but the benefits of modern technology. It’s available in three or seven speed versions.

Brunch stop: Snaps + Rye

Stop for a Scandi-inspired brunch at Notting Hill’’s Snaps + Rye. Cycle from Portobello Road, grab a bite to eat and perhaps a browse round the area’’s independent shops, before heading south towards Hyde Park. Honest ingredients are at the heart of this café’’s philosophy; Danish dishes such as smørrebrød and, of course, the nation’’s famous pastries are firm favourites.


Image source: Gazelle/Website

For a country adventure: Pashley Britannia

The traditional lines of the Pashley Britannia extend to the classic wicker basket, sprung leather seat and tough steel frame. Pashley is one of the few remaining bicycle-makers in Britain and the hand-built retro classics have many fans, including Lily Cole, Agyness Deyn and Helena Bonham Carter. Priced from about £600.

Brunch stop: The Five Alls

A cycling tour of the Cotswolds demands a stop at The Five Alls in the quiet village of Filkins. This inconspicuous gastro pub is reputedly a favourite of Kate Moss and the Camerons.

The refurbished coaching inn retains original features but includes modern touches. Reward yourself for all those calories you just burned with devilled kidneys on country toast or deep fried duck egg with asparagus and pea shoots.



Image source: Pashley/Website

For serious cyclists: Condor

These are serious, bespoke, professional bicycles. Fans of the brand include Sir Bradley Wiggins, Eric Clapton and Mick Jagger, but we’’ve selected a great entry level bike, the Italia Step Thru ladies road bike (£549) in baby blue.

Brunch spot: Yorebridge House

With Tour De Yorkshire fever still being felt in the county, Yorkshire has some of the best routes to explore by bike. One of our favourite pit stops for a re-energiser is Yorebridge House, in the Yorkshire Dales. It’’s along the Tour route, giving you the chance to recreate the magic of stage one, with the added bonus of indulging in brunch before tackling the heights of the Buttertubs Pass.



Image source: Condor/Website

For a leisurely ride: Mango Bikes

Mango is a youthful brand, creating bikes in playful colours with lifestyle riding in mind. Be unique and create your own, made-to-order, customised bike. From £369.

Brunch spot: Marmalade

Tour the historical city of Chester by bike then stop off at intimate Cafe Marmalade. Serving English breakfasts, paninis and a good selection of vegetarian breakfasts, it also caters for gluten-free diets.



Image source: MangoBikes/Instagram


Want to continue your gastronomic brunch adventure? Sample these classic American brunch dishes.


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For a culinary brunch adventure in your own kitchen, choose Jasper Conran's Chinoiserie White collection, featuring elegant patterns from the east.

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The Jasper Conran Tisbury collection offers a plethora of informal tableware and home accessories that allow you to mix the collection into your everyday living. The tailored shapes with renowned Jasper Conran precision combine with a resilient porcelain, glass and wood to withstand wear and tear of everyday use. Natural colour styles contribute to an effortless look and feel.

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