West London. The very words strike fear into the heart of us East Londoners. Talk to anyone in our neck of the woods, and the same words come into play. 'Yummy Mummies', 'Yuppies','Sloanes''...It's a world away from the fiercely individualistic, artsy crowd that reside in the east of the city.
But is this reputation well earned? Or are we all just a bunch of inverted snobs? In an attempt to broaden our horizons , we decided that we would take a trip into the heart of the beast. Yes - without prejudice, we would discover the joys of Chiswick.
At first, things didn't look good. It seemed like the residents of Chiswick like nothing more than to sit in their Fired Earth tiled kitchens, sipping tea from Emma Bridgewater mugs, while deciding which Farrow and Ball colour they should paint the nursery for little Chloe. So far, so conventional.
But then, just as we were about to accept that there was nothing more interesting to see than a Cath Kidston apron; like manna from heaven, we came across 'Outsider Tart'.
Outsider is right. There's nothing typical at all about this bakery.
Run by David and David, two expat New Yorkers, Outsider Tart is the fusion of highly delicious baked goods and highly unusual naive art. If you've ever fancied eating a muffin while admiring a family of 4 foot tall bunnies (constructed completely out of bottle tops) - here's the place.
Plenty of museums and galleries serve tea and cakes - but this is the first tearoom we've been to that actually is a gallery. Hobo art sits next to brownies, automatic drawings compliment the carrot cake. It's a thoroughly quirky and individual experience.
Chiswick may not be brimming with crazy characters and creative flourishes, but places like Outsider Tart make the west a little bit wilder - and long may outsiders like these thrive.