London is a foodie’s dream. It is jam packed with options for eating in or out, and you will be able to find just about anything you could wish for. Not only does the capital proudly flaunt some of the most exciting and exquisite restaurants in the world but there are plenty of options for those on lesser budgets as well. Cuisine from the entire world can be found here along with authentic British dishes. In fact dining out in London is so varied and exciting that making a decision about where to go is often the hardest part.
Whether you feel like sharing tapas with friends, grabbing a sandwich on the go, or sharing an intimate candlelit dinner with that special someone, London offers incredible food, unbelievable value and some truly unforgettable dining experiences. Though it would be an almost impossible task to list all the greatest places to try in London, we have attempted to list some of the best that should suit every appetite and budget.
So since its Christmas and we are all probably watching our purse strings a little at this time of year, let us start with the more budget friendly eateries of the city, where you can still enjoy a fine meal without digging too deep into your pockets at the end of it.
10 Greek street enjoys a well-earned reputation as one of the best affordable tapas restaurants in the area. It’s a fantastic spot to come with a lively group of friends with its fun and friendly atmosphere, you are sure to have a good time here. Situated in bustling Soho, 10 Greek Street does not try to impress with airs and graces, it is a ‘does what it says on the tin’ type of place, and that tin says ‘we serve delicious small plates, perfect for sharing, at great prices.’ It’s nicely but not overly decorated with low diner style lighting, dark wood floors and chalkboard menus. Tables are tightly packed together and you can’t book, so be prepared to be a bit squished in, but that’s all part of the charm! Though they serve some great main dishes such as Hazelnut Crumbed Lamb’s Brain, Remoulade & Sprouting Broccoli, and Venison Pie, Mash, Brussel tops & Quince, it is best known for its seasonal small plates which are perfect for sharing. Choose from mouth-watering treats like Crumbed Sweetbreads, Lentils & Salsa Verde, Boquerones, Duck Egg & Sprouting Broccoli, Fried Sprats and Charcuterie and much more. A good drinks menu works well alongside this and afterwards you can enjoy a night out in one of the greatest nightlight spots in the city!
Boqueria Tapas is another fantastic tapas restaurant which is situated in the vibrant Brixton area, within Brixton market. Hearty Spanish dishes are served here that are sure to warm you up on a cold winter’s day. It’s strangely positioned amongst Acre Lane’s tyre workshops and charity shops, but don’t let that put you off - this makes it even more worth finding. The staff is attentive and welcoming, the vibe is light-hearted and fun. Not a place for romance, however what Boqueria does provide a fantastic, light, busy space where dishes such as soft gui Ham Croquetas, Saffron-tinged Cod Fritters, and Jet-black Rice with Mussels and Squid are served without fuss and are sure to bring smile to your face –all without breaking the bank!
Burger & Lobster’s concept couldn’t be more straightforward. If you like a high class take on the old favorite of surf and turf this is the place to come. The quality it prodigious, the value is exceptional. You can tuck into a true feast for just £20 - a prime burger, lobster roll or half-lobster, with chips and salad. Since its initial opening in Mayfair the popularity of this restaurant is evident in the huge queues of people enduring the British weather to try out some of the succulent fare. Now Burger & Lobster has spread like wildfire across the capital with outlets in Fitzrovia, Harvey Nicks, Farringdon, St Paul’s and Soho. The dining areas are spacious, bright, and usually packed out creating a convivial atmosphere. Smart, fast service is welcome and doesn’t make this feel like too much of a fast food chain. If burgers is what you are in the mood for, but fancy something a little swankier than your average greasy McDonalds this is certainly a restaurant worth considering!
Hereford Road is aptly named as is situated at number 3, in the cool W2 area of the capital. If you are looking for traditional British fare at its best then this is the place to go. Wooden floors, round tables, and chairs as well as bold artworks make a casual but classy setting for customers. The menu is wide and varied and constantly being updated by head chef Tom Pemberton, whose passion lies in honest British fare. Seasonal ingredients massively influence the dishes and you can expect to find ingredients such as offal and local meats. A sample menu would see you choosing from tempting plates such as Split pea and salted pork soup, or Grilled Cornish Anchovies, Parsley and Lemon for starters, Crispy pork, chicory and mustard, Hake, roast salsify and parsley salad, or Whole Braised Roe Shoulder and Carrots for mains. And classic British deserts such as Apple and Blackberry Crumble and custard, Hot Chocolate Pudding and Vanilla Ice cream, or Treacle Tart will see you complete the meal.
La Fromagerie is as you guessed it, a restaurant that centers on one of the finest ingredients of all time, cheese. Those who enjoy sampling different weird and wonderful cheese will certainly not be disappointed and you could easily spend an entire afternoon browsing the deli counter at this fine establishment. Early birds should tuck into the ‘South West France Farmhouse Breakfast’ of cured meats and cheese at the in-house cafe. For lunch you can choose from the French, British, Italian or Cheeseroom cheeseboards and whichever you choose you aren’t likely to be disappointed!
Singapore Garden is a fantastic spot for those who want a true taste of South East Asia. Specializing in Singaporean and Malay food this little gem of a restaurant is nestled in Swiss Cottage, with a branch in Chiswick too. It has won some high praise in trusted publications such as Time Out and from reviews of many a happy customer on the restaurants own site. The Straits specialties are to die for and include perfectly cooked dishes of sambals, curries and noodles, listed under ‘Singapore and Malaysian’ section, which are superior versions of hawker dishes.
Last but not least we urge you to go for a slap up meal at the distinguished Terroirs. This classy wine bar and restaurant is situated in the heart of London’s animated West End and is the perfect stop off for small plates and gallons of well-chosen wine before heading out for a night on the town. You can choose from small plates such as ½ doz. Frenchman’s Creek Oysters, Fried Crispy Violet Artichokes, Smoked Duck, Bobby Beans, Soft Egg and Walnuts or Lincolnshire Smoked Eel with Celeriac remoulade. If this doesn’t tickle your fancy the Charcuterie certainly should, or for a more filling and leisurely meal choose from one of the faultless plats du jour such as Welsh Lamb Chops, Rainbow Chard, Anchovies & Capers, or Gilt Head Bream, Fennel and Cucumber, Brown Shrimps and Dill.
The above restaurants are certainly worth checking out for good, affordable food in London. Of course there are so many more, but you have got to start somewhere!