london restaurants

The restaurant scene in London has never been hotter. Big name chefs and restaurants from all over the world with new trends are popping up all the time and areas previously devoid of decent food are becoming hot culinary destinations.

 

London has in recent years become one of the most exciting and diverse restaurant capitals in the world.

Good Things Guy have recently launched a ‘Lifestyle’ section showcasing good things from around the world. The concept is to find the hidden gems, the good nuggets that fit into our lifestyles… so whether you’re planning a little trip somewhere or you are a local reader… our promise is to give you the good things perspective!

The team were also lucky enough to be sent to the British Capital – thanks to Virgin Atlantic, www.travel.co.za and Thompsons Tours – to compile a list of our absolute favourites from Londres city.

From cheap eats to fine dining and even the most interesting spots… this is our top 15 excellent establishments that you just need to try right now!

E Pellicci

Opened in 1904, E. Pellicci is a neighborhood cafe, located on the east side of London.

The restaurant has Italian roots and they serve a menu that includes a combination of Italian favorites with English dishes as well. One of the most popular things they serve in the morning, or even throughout the entire day, is their version of the full English breakfast.

E. Pellicci is one of London’s most remarkable institutions and will go down as one of the most memorable meals you will eat. When you’re in London, no matter what area of town you’re staying in, you should make it a point to eat at E. Pellicci.

e pellicci london

Flat Iron

Flat Iron founder Charlie Carroll believes delicious, high-quality steak doesn’t need to be eye-wateringly expensive and they deliver on taste, quality and price.

Within the restaurant, the Flat Iron team has managed to house their very own butchers, which hosts master classes and demonstrations and a gelato bar. The space also features 14 glass-fronted oak barrels displaying its house brew Yorkshire Beer made exclusively for the restaurant by Copper Dragon brewery.

One of the best steaks and burger around London. The service is just perfect, fast and very friendly.

Flat Iron Covent Garden

Typing Room

The Typing Room is located in East London’s Town Hall Hotel, built in 1910, and is named after the building’s original typing room in which all communications from the mayoral, council and judicial system were put to ink.

Chef Lee Westcott uses the best of local and seasonal British ingredients to create innovative modern European dishes at Typing Room. His cooking has been described as pure, natural and honest, presented in a relaxed atmosphere.

The room once home to the town hall’s typing pool is now dominated by an open kitchen. Choose the 5 or 7 Michelin course menu to experience earthy and elaborate cooking that’s heavily influenced by new Nordic cuisine. The tone and style of the service suit the place perfectly.

Typing Room London

The Golden Chippy

Golden Chippy is one of the most popular Fish and Chips Takeaway located in the heart of Greenwich. Voted the best restaurant in London on TripAdvisor out of over 17 000 restaurants, it certainly doesn’t disappoint with food that bursts with flavour.

The fish are fresh and fried to perfection, with a nice and thin crispy layer of batter. The chips are golden crispy from outside but soft and mushy on the inside, just right!

The staff are very friendly and always happy to help…

golden chippy london

Sophies Steakhouse

Sophie’s Steakhouse in Covent Garden has been a huge success since opening in 2008. Sophie’s has a warehouse feel with exposed brick and beautiful hanging light bulbs.

Indulge in a host of juicy cuts from the Sophie’s menu, like a 20oz chateaubriand with hand-cut chips, or the pure-bred Aberdeen Angus roast beef with traditional Sunday trimmings. Alternatives to steak are on offer at Sophie’s restaurant in London, with dishes like pork ribs, or chicken, mushroom and leek pie, and desserts include the chocolate nemesis, and a cheesecake of the day.

Set just a stone’s throw from the famous piazza, Sophie’s in Covent Garden is just 5 minutes’ walk from Covent Garden Tube Station.

sophie's steakhouse covent garden

Beach Blanket Babylon

Beach Blanket Babylon, or BBB as it is affectionately known, was established in 1990. It comprises a prominent position in an old, impressive Georgian mansion on Ledbury Road in the heart of Notting Hill.

Famous for its unique interior design blending Boho Chic, French Country style Chateau the Baroque and Rococo, the high maximalist feel never fails to inspire the un-initiated and is known the world over as a by word for opulence and glamour.

The venue has a Gaudy-esque feel and its layout is interconnected with archways and bridges making it a very unique and fairytale-like setting. Its bespoke furnishings, chandeliers and intimate open fires complete the warm and luxurious feel.

If the vintage furnishings, imposing statues and all-round extraordinary décor don’t inspire awe, the seasonal, modern European food will.

beach blanket babylon London

Dans le Noir?

Dining in absolute darkness, being hosted and served by the visually impaired, will change your perspective of the world by inverting your point of view. It is a sensory experience that awakes your senses and enables you to completely re-evaluate your perception.

Before being led into the pitch-black basement dining room by the restaurant’s blind guides/waiters, you select one of four colour-coded mystery menus: red (meat), blue (fish), green (vegetarian) and white (chef’s special). It’s a profoundly sensory food adventure that makes for a unique evening.

Unusual, you will discover a sensory journey, a human exchange & a social conviviality…

dans-le-noir London

Inamo

This Asian fusion restaurant in Covent Garden (with a sister eatery in Soho) boasts a pioneering interactive ordering system projected onto the table.

At Inamo, you can place orders via a 3D menu, choose from a selection of virtual tablecloths, find out about the local neighbourhood and even order a taxi home, all from the comfort of your seat.

The food shows influences from numerous Asian cuisines, with western touches also in evidence. Dishes are intended for sharing, and are served when they’re ready.

Inamo Covent Garden

Sarastro

Sarastro is “the show after the show” thanks to the musical entertainment played out live amongst the smiling diners. Musicians from London’s opera houses come here to perform some of the most popular arias every Sunday and Monday.

Enjoy a three-course set menu while listening to operatic trills from the comfort of one of the boxes arranged around the walls. It’s a decadent setting, with each box furnished in a different style (rococo, Gothic, Ottoman) and drapes and theatre props in abundance.

The drama continues on your plate with Turkish and Mediterranean flavours to entertain your taste buds.

sarastro london

Shaka Zulu

If you’re missing the taste of South Africa or want to treat your London friends to local flavours, book a table at Shaka Zulu, a lively restaurant, bar and nightclub in Camden.

This extravagant institution pays homage to the nineteenth-century reign of the King of the Zulus, Shaka. Imposing statues of the warrior king himself stand 20-feet high, their eyes surveying an opulent interior of mosaics, carvings, African patterns, intricate murals, water features, zebra prints and paintings.

There’s a South African slant to the food menu, with dishes ranging from biltong, boerewors and bobotie to South African game meats such as kudu, crocodile steak and springbok.

shaka-zulu-london

Cahoots

Cahoots is a late night bar that transports guests back in time, to post-war 1940s and to an abandoned underground tube station featuring dazzling cocktails, swing dancing and sing-a-longs around an old piano.

As well as serving classic cocktails, black market liquor and post-war favourites are also available, in particular rum and gin based drinks are furtively knocked back from old mugs, hip flasks, vintage milk bottles and tins, finished with ingredients half-inched from nana’s pantry, picked from the allotment and foraged from the ruins.

Based in Carnaby Street, Cahoots, will transport guests back to the 1940s, in a bid to bring Soho’s illicit and nocturnal escapades from the era back to life.

cahoots London

Aqua Kyoto Rooftop Bar

Set in the landmark former Dickins & Jones building, aqua kyoto offers sublime Japanese cuisine. As well as offering breathtaking views over London from the expansive roof terrace, a lowered kitchen indoors gives guests a view of the expert sushi chefs.

Crafted with absolute precision and sumptuously fresh ingredients, the aqua kyoto menu offers innovative flavour combinations bursting with colour and freshness. Contemporary creations at aqua kyoto restaurant include tempura prawn roll topped with grilled eel, or soft-shell crab with avocado.

Served sizzling from the charcoal grill, guests can enjoy tender meat cuts of slow-cooked pork belly with red miso and crackling, or chicken thighs with teriyaki.

aqua kyoto

Duck and Waffle

Duck & Waffle is located on the 40th floor of 110 Bishopsgate in the city of London and features wraparound floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the expanse of London and notable landmarks.

Inspired by broad European and British influences and spirit, the restaurant’s vibrant atmosphere encourages a convivial experience for guests through its array of dishes designed for sampling and sharing. Duck & Waffle welcomes guests 24/7, keeping pace with a city that’s always on the move, offering breakfast, brunch, lunch, dinner and late night menus.

With its sociable ambiance, unparalleled views, artful interpretations of regional cuisine and innovative design, Duck & Waffle embodies a truly unique dining experience.

Duck and Waffle London

Waxy O’Connors

Set in the heart of the West End, the cavernous Waxy O’Connor’s is a sight to behold. The rabbit-warren of four bars over six floors ranges from the gothic Church Bar to the fairytale Tree Room, but you can still find a cosy spot by the fire in the Cottage Bar.

Waxy’s has gained worldwide recognition for its warm hospitality, friendly staff, traditional wholesome food and extensive range of beers, spirits and coffees, making it a great venue.

Wherever you manage to find a seat, the Irish pub’s lively clientele are eternally welcoming.

Waxy O’Connors

The Ginstitute

Nestled away on the top two floors of an 19th century public house on London’s world famous Portobello Road, if you knew where to look, you would find The Ginstitute: London’s second smallest museum and home to Copernicus the Second.

The Ginstitute provides a unique and unrivalled opportunity to better understand the true spirit of London. Patrons begin their spirituous journey in the UK’s second smallest museum – The Ginstitute.

Opened in late 2011 The Ginstitute aimed to become the new home of gin in West London, welcoming gin lovers from around the world with open arms and providing them with a chance to sample not just the gins themselves but also a little of this wonderful spirit’s long and, at times, miserable story, with a unique opportunity to create their own individual gin recipe.

The Ginstitute: London's second smallest museum


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Sources: All restaurants headlines link to various establishments

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Brent Lindeque
About the Author

Brent Lindeque is the founder and man in charge at Good Things Guy.

Recognised as one of the Mail and Guardian’s Top 200 Young South African’s as well as a Primedia LeadSA Hero, Brent is a change maker, thought leader, radio host, foodie, vlogger, writer and all round good guy.

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