Restaurants in London
Tradition might dictate the England is thought of as backward in the culinary department, at least in comparison to our European brethren. Times have changed though, and London has one of the most forward-thinking and varied food scenes on the planet.
Whether you eat in Michelin-starred restaurants, slurp noodles or gorge on freshly caught fish and chips you'll never have to skimp on quality. Recent years have also seen a huge increase in casual dining; restaurants serving quality food in relaxed environments. Add all this to the recent boom in craft drinks and you've got the recipe for a full gastronomic experience.
The London restaurants below have been handpicked by our guide author and are grouped into three pricing categories:
Expensive (over £50)
Moderate (£25 to £50)
Cheap (up to £25)
These restaurant prices are for a threecourse meal for one, including half a bottle of house wine or equivalent, tax and service. A service charge of 12.5% will be added to your bill in most restaurants. If service is not included, 10% tipping is customary.
Kitty Fisher’sCuisine: British
Kitty Fisher's had the dubious honour of being the smug foodie's restaurant of choice in 2015, winning the GQ award for Best Restaurant. Don't Michelin-style expect bells and whistles: everything is cooked over a tiny grill and its house speciality is Galician steak. The ambiance is one of relaxed, knockabout glamour and you'll be made to feel a million bucks.Address: Mayfair, 10 Shepherd Market, London, W1J 7QF
Telephone: +44 20 3302 1661
Restaurant Gordon RamseyCuisine: International
Gordon Ramsey might be better known for his shouting than his cooking, but he’s still got one of only four three star Michelin restaurants in the UK. Head chef Clare Smyth prepares exceptionally fine dining that combines classic British, French and Italian elements. Think ahead: you’ll need to book three months in advance.Address: Chelsea, 68 Royal Hospital Road, London, SW3 4HP
Telephone: +44 207 352 4441.
The IvyCuisine: European
The Ivy’s reputation precedes itself, being well publicised as the favoured haunt of celebrities and socialites. Its prime West End location also lends it to the pre- and post- theatre crowd, who come to feast on its modern European dishes in their droves – if they can get a seat. Safe to say: booking is essential.Address: , 5 West Street, London, WC2H 9NQ
Telephone: +44 20 7836 4751.
Kibele Restaurant & BarCuisine: Turkish
Kibele serves modern and traditional Turkish food, offering a choice of seasonal food, a selection of mezzes, vegetarian dishes and a variety of marinated meat, chicken and fish. Expect warm, friendly service and a lively atmosphere accompanied by live music and performances.
Address: , 175-177 Great Portland Street, London, W1W 5PJ
Telephone: +44 20 7436 0600.
Som SaaCuisine: Thai
Starting life as a temporary pop-up restaurant, Som Saa has established itself as the home of London's finest Thai food. Newbies to the cuisine will be as entranced as hardened lifers, and its kaleidoscope of sweet, sour, salty and fiery tastes will make believers of us all. The mu parlow curry is a must, as is leaving queuing time as they don't take bookings for small groups.Address: , 43a Commercial Street, London, E1 6BD
Telephone: +44 20 7324 7790.
St JohnCuisine: British
This restaurant helped kick off the fashion for nose to tail dining in England, and now has a second branch in Maltby Street. The menu changes regularly, but expect the likes of deep fried tripe with ketchup, crispy pigs skin with radish and watercress, and chitterlings with dandelion. Leave your preconceptions at the door and get medieval.Address: Clerkenwell, 26 St John Street, London, EC1M 4AY
Telephone: +44 20 7251 0848.
The Clink RestaurantCuisine: British, European
The Clink is a charity run restaurant in Brixton, helping prisoners get back into society helping them gain the necessary nationally recognised qualifications. At the Clink you should expect to find traditional British meals served beautifully and at a very reasonable price.
Address: , HMP Brixton , London, SW2 5XF
Telephone: +44 20 8678 9007.
There might be a spate of neo-Indian cuisine restaurants in London, but Veeraswamy offers high end Maharajah dining in the middle of Regent Street. The oldest Indian restaurant in London has been serving in 1926, and offers more traditional dishes or more contemporary creations.Address: Mayfair, 99 Regent Street, London, W1B 4RS
Telephone: +44 20 7734 1401.
Mangal 2Cuisine: Turkish
The areas around Dalston traditionally have a large Turkish population, and you can’t walk two minutes without finding a restaurant bearing that family waft of grilling kofte. Mangal 2 is one of the granddaddies of the area, and fantastically good value bearing in mind the vast portion sizes.Address: N16 7XN, 4 Stoke Newington Road, London,
Telephone: +44 20 7254 7888
Rock and Sole PlaiceCuisine: Fish and chips
Fish and chips are a British culinary institution and there are few places better batter your fish than here, London's oldest surviving chippie. Rock and Sole Plaice serves up all the usual candidates (cod, rock, haddock) as well as the likes of halibut, lemon sole, Dover sole, trout, salmon, sardines and mackerel, depending on market availability.Address: WC2H 9AJ, 47 Endell Street, London,
Telephone: +44 20 7836 3785.
Song QueCuisine: Vietnamese
The bottom of Kingsland Road is lined with Vietnamese restaurants, but Song Que is one of the originals and stands the test of time. It might only look like a canteen from the outside, but he steaming bowls of pho (noodle soup) will enrich all the gnarliest bits of your soul.Address: , 134 Kingsland Road, London, E2 8DY
Telephone: +44 20 7613 3222.