Noel Clarke has grown up at Uli in Notting Hill. The actor first came to Michael Lim’s restaurant 20 years ago, along with his girlfriend, at the invitation of director Rikki Beadle-Blair who had taken a chance on casting the unknown Clarke in his debut TV role. The Szechuan chilli prawns and perfect calamari seemed good portents and he and that girlfriend – Iris Da-Silva, now his wife and mother of his three boys – have kept coming back.
During the years that Clarke was writing and starring in his landmark film Kidulthood and its sequel Adulthood – more than a decade ago, before his boys were born – he would sit in Uli with friends and collaborators until the early hours. And as Clarke, now 43, has developed to become a director