What to Eat in London
London used to be highly criticized for its heavy and uninspired menu items. Fish and chips (fried cod and french fries). Bangers and mash (sausages and mashed potatoes). Mince meat pies. You get the picture. Now, London is hailed as one of the world's best foodie cities. And with its melting pot of cultures, it's not difficult to see why. London offers everything from modern British to Malaysian cuisine.
To sample the best of the various cuisines London serves up, you need to know where to go. A food tour can be a great way to get your bearings. For Indian food, visit the curry houses on Brick Lane. If you want an authentic high tea experience, book reservations at The Langham, London, The Lanesborough or at Claridge's – but be sure to dress the part. If you're all about fine dining, check out the Michelin star-heavy Clerkenwell neighborhood. There you'll find St. John, the restaurant that garnered fame for utilizing the full body of meat in its dishes, coined as "nose-to-tail" dining.
If you're one for celebrity chefs, Gordon Ramsay has a number of restaurants in the city, including the Michelin-rated three-star restaurant, Restaurant Gordon Ramsay. Jamie Oliver also has four restaurants spread throughout the city. If you're looking for something a little quirky, try the two-star Michelin-rated brasserie-style Sketch, whose bathrooms are egg pods you step inside instead of traditional stalls. There's also The Attendant Cafe, which is housed in what used to be a Victorian restroom. Don't worry, it's immaculate in more ways than one. London also features great rooftop restaurants as well. For a meal with a side of vistas, head up to Sushi Samba or the 24-hour Duck & Waffle, which is billed as the highest restaurant in the U.K. from its 40th-floor perch.
Pub culture is huge in the U.K. If you're interested in getting a taste of British life that doesn't include visiting London's top attractions, it's best to grab a drink. Pubs serve much of the same drinks found in bars, but you must try a cider. There are a variety of flavors and brands available from traditional Magners or Strongbow ciders to those that are pear and strawberry flavored. Many pubs also serve meals throughout the day. You're likely to find traditional British dishes for a fraction of the price in pubs than you would in sit-down restaurants. Along with the traditional bangers and mash and fish and chips (which some argue taste better in pubs), you should make time for a traditional English breakfast and Sunday roast. Both are very hearty and a beloved culinary tradition among the Brits. If you're on the go and don't want to buy a sandwich from Pret A Manger, seek out pasty stands. Pasties are savory pastries typically packed with meat, potatoes or some vegetables. Pasties are filling and affordable and conveniently located in the larger train stations in London, such as Waterloo, King's Cross and Victoria stations.
Find the Best Restaurants in London
- #1Amrutha Lounge#1 of 29,090 Places to Eat in LondonTripAdvisor (573)$ - $$ | Indian, Asian, Healthy326 Garratt Lane Earlsfield, London SW18 4EJ EnglandRead More »
- #2German Doner Kebab#2 of 29,090 Places to Eat in LondonTripAdvisor (336)$ | Grill, Fusion, Healthy7 Fulham Broadway, London SW6 1AA EnglandRead More »
- #3Barge East#3 of 29,090 Places to Eat in LondonTripAdvisor (351)$ - $$ | British, Wine BarWhitepost Lane River Lee, Sweetwater Mooring, Hackney Wick, London E9 5EN EnglandRead More »
- #4Core by Clare Smyth#4 of 29,090 Places to Eat in LondonTripAdvisor (726)$$ | French, European, British, Contemporary92 Kensington Park Road Notting Hill, London W11 2PN EnglandRead More »
- #5Kennington Lane Cafe#5 of 29,090 Places to Eat in LondonTripAdvisor (1328)$ | Cafe, British383 Kennington Lane Vauxhall, London SE11 5QY EnglandRead More »
- #6Hiba Street#6 of 29,090 Places to Eat in LondonTripAdvisor (218)$ | Lebanese, Mediterranean, Street Food, Middle Eastern10 Tottenham Street Between Goodge Street Station and Warren Tube Station, London W1T 4RD EnglandRead More »
- #7Falafel Feast#7 of 29,090 Places to Eat in LondonTripAdvisor (85)$ | Cafe, Middle Eastern, Israeli, Fast Food, Mediterranean377 Regents Park Road opp Station Rd, by Finchley Central Station, London N3 1DE EnglandRead More »
- #8The Rajdoot#8 of 29,090 Places to Eat in LondonTripAdvisor (225)$ - $$ | Indian, Bangladeshi, Grill104 Fleet Road Hampstead, London NW3 2QX EnglandRead More »
- #9Latitude#9 of 29,090 Places to Eat in LondonTripAdvisor (117)$ - $$ | European, British, International138 Merton Road, London SW19 1EH EnglandRead More »
- #10Taste Of Nawab#10 of 29,090 Places to Eat in LondonTripAdvisor (1005)$ - $$ | Indian97 Colney Hatch Lane Muswell Hill, London N10 1LR EnglandRead More »
- #11Room 43 Bar & Kitchen#11 of 29,090 Places to Eat in LondonTripAdvisor (128)$ - $$ | Mediterranean, Middle Eastern, Persian43 Lavender Hill, London SW11 5QW EnglandRead More »
- #12The Clink Restaurant#12 of 29,090 Places to Eat in LondonTripAdvisor (995)$ - $$ | European, British, ContemporaryBrixton Jebb Avenue Brixton, London SW2 5XF EnglandRead More »
- #13Pizza Union Spitalfields#13 of 29,090 Places to Eat in LondonTripAdvisor (2853)$ | Pizza, Fast Food25 Sandys Row, London E1 7HW EnglandRead More »
- #14The Lounge Cafe#14 of 29,090 Places to Eat in LondonTripAdvisor (216)$ | BritishWelford Centre 113 Chalkhill Road The Welford Centre, London HA9 9FX EnglandRead More »
- #15Indian Room#15 of 29,090 Places to Eat in LondonTripAdvisor (980)$ - $$ | Indian59 Bedford Hill Balham, London SW12 9EZ EnglandRead More »
- #16Wild Thyme#16 of 29,090 Places to Eat in LondonTripAdvisor (160)$ - $$ | European, British, Cafe2B Thorpebank Road, London W12 0PQ EnglandRead More »
- #17Flour To The People!#17 of 29,090 Places to Eat in LondonTripAdvisor (285)$ - $$ | British, Pizza, Cafe, European573 Battersea Park Road SW11 3BJ, London SW11 3BJ EnglandRead More »
- #18Andy's Greek Taverna#18 of 29,090 Places to Eat in LondonTripAdvisor (1638)$ - $$ | Mediterranean, European, Greek23 Pratt Street Camden, London NW1 0BG EnglandRead More »
- #19EaTurkish#19 of 29,090 Places to Eat in LondonTripAdvisor (251)$ | Fast Food, Mediterranean, Turkish, Middle Eastern172 Woolwich Road, London SE7 7RA EnglandRead More »
- #20Les Douceurs de la Tentation#20 of 29,090 Places to Eat in LondonTripAdvisor (138)$ - $$ | French8 Fernhead Road, London W9 3ET EnglandRead More »
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