I am standing in the middle of London looking at the Republic of Texas.
Near No. 4 St. James Street at Pickering Place, there’s a plaque marking the building where the Texas embassy once stood. It reads, “Texas Legation: In this building was the legation for the ministers from the Republic of Texas to the Court of St. James 1842-1846.”
Reader Ann suggested a stop by this marker, and it was well worth it. From what I’ve been able to find online, popular wine merchant Berry Bros. & Rudd served as landlords to the Texas Legation in the 1840s. The plaque was installed in 1963 by the Anglo-Texan Society. There’s a bunch more great information about it on this blog.
Here’s another view of the plaque. You can see it’s small, but still really cool to visit as a Texan. (I’m also told there used to be a popular authentic Tex-Mex restaurant called the Texas Embassy Cantina in London, but it has closed.)
There’s also a spectacular hat shop located next to the plaque called Lock & Co. Hatters. Stroll through and imagine yourself preparing for the wedding of a London celebrity.
We followed up our trip to the hat company with a stop at Harrods, which was recommended by reader Whit. I knew Harrods would be impressive, of course, but I was completely floored by the size and scope of this legendary department store. Every label, every color, every variation of anything I’ve ever wanted to buy was inside that store.
And the food. Restaurants, markets, ice cream shops. It was amazing.
There’s even a dedicated Disney Cafe, where you can stop in for lunch, dinner or high tea. I recommend the high tea, because it’s less expensive than a full meal and kids still get cute Mickey or Minnie Mouse ears to keep. Here are the treats served as part of our tea.
One final place we visited that’s worth a mention was Wahaca, which serves “Mexican market food.” Obviously I’m always wary of Mexican and Tex-Mex places overseas, but we were pleasantly surprised by food and drinks here. The quesadillas with jalapenos and habanero chillies were on point, as was the chicken tinga burrito. I highly recommend it if you need a Mexican food fix while traveling London.