The Best London Restaurants
We've taken out the guess work and hand picked some of the best London restaurants for you.
The Best Steaks
Any man worth his salt appreciates a good steak. It's probably because it's such a simple, Neanderthal, pleasure: get meat, throw on fire, eat. In reality though, there are myriad things that can influence and affect what constitutes a good steak. Cuts, breeds, hang times, cooking process, temperatures and of course, how to have it cooked all play a part, but if you want to try the restaurants that we think get it right, check out these cornucopias of carnivorous delights.
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The Best Coffee
A cup of very strong, very good quality coffee is the one thing that gets us working so hard for our beloved View London. Not the riches, not the glamour and not the boss with whip in hand: just good quality coffee. There are a few spots around London that are worth recommending, so take a peek and prepare to get wired.
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The Best Cheap Eats
Nobody likes spending money. Well, we don't. Thankfully, our dear capital ensures that we don't have to. There are a remarkable number of restaurants that serve excellent food at prices that won't go anywhere near to breaking the bank, so please peruse these pocket pleasing places and discover the art of eating well for less: it really does taste good.
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The Best Takeaway Lunches
If we're allowed off our lunchtime leash, there are a few spots we head to so we can grab something to take back to our desks - though sometimes we do end up in the local supermarket buying the same tired looking sandwiches. The places below, though, are our minds' refuges - something to look forward to when we've lost a biscuit in our tea, our stomach's are rumbling and we're beginning to get eggy...
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The Best Breakfasts
As we all know, it's the most important meal of the day but few of us are ever up early enough to make our own. Praise be to the eateries of London then, who break our fasts and ease us into the day. It's obviously not always feasible to partake during the week, but there's nothing we like more than starting a Saturday off with some good scran. If we can peel ourselves out of bed, that is.
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The Best Food Markets
As much as we enjoy eating out, there's nothing quite like slaving over a hot stove and creating something with your own fair hands. Admittedly, we burn things, forget ingredients and generally make a hash of it all but there's one thing that we know we can get right - the best ingredients. The UK and indeed the capital have some amazing suppliers and many of them showcase their wares at food markets around London. These are our go-to places.
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The Best Delis
When we're feeling particularly middle class we like to stand over a deli counter, stroking our chins and saying things like 'ooh' and 'aah' and 'that looks nice'. And that's primarily because food always looks so good at delis, and with good reason. They're the kings of championing independent suppliers, and you can definitely taste all that love and care in a lot of the produce.
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The Best Brunches
We like to say that we often go out for breakfasts at the weekend but what we probably mean is that we go out for brunch. Which is actually a better option anyway as a bloody Mary is acceptable at brunch but not breakfast (well, for most). Some of us still find the concept of 'brunch' (and indeed the very word) a little bit pompous but hey, when in Rome and all that. And all that is definitely a good thing when there are such good places to visit in our fair town. These are some of our favourites.
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The Best Vietnamese Restaurants
Many Londoners grew up with little real appreciation of Asian cuisine, save for a bi-monthly ingestion of batter-heavy chicken balls washed down with some radioactive sweet and sour gloop. Praise be, then, to the Vietnamese restaurants of London town, who have shown just how vibrant, fresh and downright tasty it can be. We swear by Vietnamese salads here, but the list below comprises our favourite places for all manner of authentic Vietnamese dishes. And no, they're not all on Kingsland Road.
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The Best Afternoon Tea
Oh how very British. There are some institutions that it just seems right to continue, and however pompous and faintly ridiculous afternoon tea may be, we feel it's one of them. Clearly lots of people agree, as it remains a very popular thing to do. And with so many places doing it in London so well, it's hardly surprising.
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The Best Restaurants With A View
However good the food is, if you're staring at a wall of damp you're unlikely to be impressed. Similarly, if the food is bad then not even the most sumptuous of vistas will make it taste good. We've experienced both, but the places below are those restaurants that get both pretty much spot on, in our humble opinion.
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The Best Pizza Restaurants
There's something so deliciously simple about the humble pizza. Which makes it really rather fascinating that there can be so much deviation between those that are good, and those that are not so good. Thankfully, our fair capital now has some cracking places in which to get your fill, with all those listed below being our particular picks of pizza places.
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The Best Tapas Restaurants
Ah tapas, the ying to the stuffy dining of yesteryear's yang. If a tapas bar gets it right then there are few better delights than settling in for a lazy session of little plates and carafes of Spanish wine. London didn't used to be particularly good for tapas but there's been something of a reappraisal of Spanish cuisine in recent years. And that's resulted in a whole host of really rather excellent tapas restaurants opening right on our very doorstep.
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The Best Italian Restaurants
When many people think of Italian food they simply think: pizza and pasta. Which is obviously madness - Italian cuisine is one of the richest and most diverse of all, and Italian people are quite rightly very proud of their culinary heritage. Amongst the plethora of eateries offering homogenised rubbish are a few that showcase Italian food as it should be: delicate, beautiful and passionate.
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The Best French Restaurants
Ah, French restaurants. Although there is still the odd instance of them coming over all haughty and condescending, for the best part they're pretty damn well represented in London, especially when you start going to the high end places. That's not to say you have to pay a lot of money for excellent French fare though, and the list below shows off both ends of what's a very tasty spectrum.
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The Best Places for Cheese
Cheese, the one thing a full stomach can't say no to. Even at the end of a three course meal, with buttons bursting and breath barely being drawn, there's always room for cheese. Which is a good thing, as cheese at London restaurants can be pretty phenomenal, with everything from Cheddar and Chimay to Gouda, Gruyère, Grevenbroeker and Gamalost available for cheese-loving palates.
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The Best Burritos
Some Mexican folk lay no claim to the humble burrito, but we're very reliably informed that they are indeed very Mexican. So we're going to go with that. What we do know, is that they are great lunchtime bites, even if they are often so big that they induce a coma for much of the afternoon. So, if you fancy a siesta, check this list of places for the best burritos, and get ready for a nap.
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The Best Indian Restaurants
Serving up a list of the best Indian restaurants is always fraught with danger, as inevitably everybody's local curry house is apparently the best. Putting that to one side, this is a list of our favourite restaurants serving Indian food - be they curry houses in the middle of nowhere or high-end venues with Michelin stars.
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The Best Thai Restaurants
Thai cuisine, that beautiful marriage of sour, sweet, salty and bitter that instantly takes you back to when you found yourself on your gap year, travelling along the coast of Pattaya and Chonburi... oh to be bored by those tales again. Fret not, you won't hear too many of them in the best Thai restaurants in London, so take a look below and ready your taste buds for some deliciously authentic (and not so authentic) Thai fare.
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The Best British Restaurants
We here at View are very proud of our fair isle, not least for the fantastic food we can enjoy at the best British restaurants. British food doesn't have the best reputation around the world but those preconceptions are a little behind the times. We have some of the best chefs working with the some of the best produce, showcasing just why our reputation is growing. And growing fast.
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The Best Michelin Star Restaurants
London's culinary boom has coincided with an increase in the number of Michelin star restaurants we lucky lot have access too. And if they're good enough for those lovely folk at Michelin as they beaver away in their Parisian lair, they're good enough for us. Obviously Michelin star restaurants are expensive affairs, so we've carefully chosen those that we think are the best in order that you don't waste your hard-earned on tiny morsels of overpriced food. Bon appétite.
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The Best Sushi Restaurants
Sushi and sashimi certainly polarise opinion, with those that love it coming over just a little evangelical about it, and those that aren't fond often completely failing to understand it. We love it though, so please prepare for a love-in with evangelical undertones. Here's our list of what we think are the best sushi restaurants in London, so take a look and tuck in.
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The Best Oyster Restaurants
London has some of the best oyster restaurants in the UK. We're not too far from the Essex coast so we've got pretty good access to those delicious Maldons but whatever particular type of oyster you're partial to, loads of London restaurants will be able to help you out with considerable aplomb. So grab a glass of bubbly and enjoy the venues that we consider the best for these particular bivalves. Just remember - don't order them when there's an 'r' in the month...
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The Best Fish and Chips
Fish and Chips will never go out of fashion - at least you'd hope not, as a good cod and chips should always be one's most guiltiest of pleasures. There are some great chippies all across the capital but there are also plenty of impressive versions at restaurants too, so have a gander and start to look forward to Friday even more.
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The Best Burgers
The humble burger has come a long way in recent years, especially in our dear old city, where the chains have had to up their game thanks to a raft of excellent independents. Throw in a good number of other restaurants jumping on the bandwagon and there's never been a better time to put your face into that beautiful combination of patty and bun.
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The Best Banh Mi
To our minds, just about the best snack known to man, these delicious Vietnamese baguettes may be the product of the French colonial rule of Vietnam, but by god they’re good. The bread used in Vietnam is really difficult to replicate but the best banh mi in London manage it, filling chewy, light rolls with different bits of meat and loads of coriander, daikon radish, carrot, cucumber, black pepper and fresh, hot chilli.
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The Best Seafood Restaurants
The best seafood restaurants in London really know how to serve up the very finest fruits de mer, with the very best of those showcasing the kind of exemplary sourcing that gets fans of this sort of thing all hot under the collar. The last thing you want to do, though, is to go somewhere that doesn’t know its stuff, so take a look at the list of those venues we deem the best seafood restaurants in London and relax, safe in the knowledge that you’re getting the best the capital has to offer.
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The Best Set Menus
Just because a restaurant boasts a mountain of Michelins and a signature dish that tops £50, it doesn’t mean you can’t sample their very fine wares for a fraction of the price. However good a restaurant is, they won’t be busy all the time, and to get bums on seats they’ll offer set menus which won’t break the bank but which should showcase all those skills in the kitchen. You do have to be careful though, so take a look at those we deem the best set menus in London, and get ready to tuck in.
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The Best Service
Service can make such a difference when dining out. The best service at London restaurants can raise the mediocre to the marvellous whilst bad service can turn a two-Michelin star treat into a complete waste of money. When you get good service from staff that want to make your meal the best it can be, it genuinely makes a huge difference to your whole dining experience. So take a look at the list of the restaurants we think offer the best service, and avoid those waiters getting all haughty when you don’t take them up on their suggestion of the most expensive bottle of wine on the list.
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The Best Tasting Menus
Sometimes you just want to go to a restaurant and forget about what it might cost you. Well, if you’re either reckless or rich, that is. The best tasting menus enable you to do just that, and whilst most are excruciatingly expensive, others are actually surprisingly affordable. Whichever you choose, though, the best tasting menus offer you the chance to enjoy the very best dishes and the very best indicator of what a restaurant is all about – and of course the unadulterated joy of being lavishly, grotesquely greedy.
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The Best Turkish Restaurants
You might be forgiven for thinking that the best Turkish restaurants in London only extend to your average late night kebab – but only if you are particularly ignorant. And whilst it’s true that the best Turkish restaurants often excel in barbecuing marinated meat over flames licking up from white hot charcoal, there’s a lot more to this varied cuisine than many Brits think. So take a look at the list below, sample their wares and learn the difference between your kofte, kuzu and kagit.
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The Best Chinese Restaurants
After years of terrible gloop hiding nondescript meat, London now boasts some of the best Chinese restaurants in the land, with everything from fine dining and poncey affairs to properly authentic spots that take your tongue off with their searing chilli heat. Chinese restaurants aren’t necessarily for everyone though, especially those places that serve up those really traditional dishes (dry fried pork intestines, anyone?), but there’s definitely enough choice, not least from the selection we’ve chosen as the best Chinese restaurants in London town.
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The Best Vegetarian Restaurants
It can be very tricky being a vegetarian, with so many London restaurants being unashamedly carnivorous and offering vegetarian options merely as an afterthought at best. Thankfully though, the best vegetarian restaurants in London know that quite a few people are partial to the delicate intricacies of a well made vegetarian dish, whether or not they're veggies themselves. As the standard of dining in London has improved, as have the meat-free options, so take a look at the list of the best vegetarian restaurants in London and prepare for what may well be a very surprising meal indeed.
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The Best Japanese Restaurants
The best Japanese restaurants in London will no doubt do some very good sashimi and sushi, but they also know that there is a lot more to this diverse and delightful cuisine than just raw fish and rice. Noodles immersed in spiky hot broths; pan-fried gyoza dumplings; lines of yakitori over a robata grill; bento boxes; tempura – the list goes on. Thankfully, amidst all those venues masquerading as authentic Japanese restaurants are some genuine gems, able to knock up delectable examples of just why this cuisine is held in such high esteem. So take a look at this list of the best Japanese restaurants in London and you'll be saying Nihon ni ikitai in no time.
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The Best Hotel Restaurants
The best hotel restaurants in London rise above a raft of soulless, depressing alternatives frequented invariably by miserable loners with one eye on their paltry expense account and the other on their phone, waiting on a call from home. Obviously not all hotel restaurants offer such a bleak insight into middle-management, with those listed below the kind of places diners will cross town for. If you’re lucky enough to be staying in one of the hotels themselves then you can simply amble downstairs to sample their wares but for most of us, a meal at one of the best hotel restaurants in London is expense enough, thanks very much.
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The Best Korean Restaurants
They might not quite be as well known as some of its neighbours but the best Korean restaurants in London showcase just quite how delicious Korean food can be. From dolsot bibimbap to kimchi and authentic BBQs, the best Korean restaurants in London illustrate that this oft-overlooked cuisine can more than match the best of the rest of Asia.
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The Best Restaurants for Large Groups
Bored with dining a deux? Then you'll probably want the best restaurants for large groups in London. They can be surprisingly hard to find, especially if you don't want to hire out a private dining room, so take a look at these spots below, grab your group and tuck into some cracking fare in some very lovely surroundings.
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The Best Hot Dogs
These US imports are all the rage in London restaurants at the moment, but where should you head to get the best hot dogs London has to offer? More and more places are getting in on the act, so make sure you only chow down on the best hot dogs - they're a million miles away from those to be found sweating outside football grounds.
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The Best Dim Sum
The best dim sum at London restaurants is a tricky list to get right. So many average restaurants do dim sum well, and so many good restaurants don't. These little Chinese parcels of deliciousness are one of life's genuine joys, so take a look at the list below, pick a restaurant and prepare for the best dim sum in London.
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The Best Wine Lists
Where can you find the best wine lists in London? Right here. A wine list can make or break a restaurant, especially at those high end spots where getting these kinds of thing right is so important. But it's not just the best restaurants that do it well in London - any self respecting venue puts considerable effort into their wine list, with varying degrees of success. Thankfully many get them spot on, but none more so than those listed below, where very good drops go hand in hand with equally fine fare.
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The Best Romantic Restaurants
Want to know what the best romantic restaurants in London are? Well look no further. Whether they're romantic because they're cosy and intimate, or romantic because they're flash affairs with great views of our fair city, these are the best romantic restaurants London has to offer. So take your pick and be prepared to be wowed - and to wow.
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The Best Private Dining Rooms
London has some of the best private dining rooms in the world, allowing you to feel very VIP indeed as you dine at the chef's table or simply have your very own very private area. Obviously the best private dining rooms can cost a fair bit of wedge but all of those listed below are well worth it. Grab a few friends and enjoy dining in London like few others have.
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The Best Outdoor Dining
When the sun is out there’s nothing better than enjoying a long, leisurely lunch or casual dinner al fresco. But where are the best outdoor dining spots in London? Given the claustrophobic nature of much of London it’s perhaps surprising that there are so many good venues for outdoor dining, but we’ve handpicked our favourites for the definitive View London list of best outdoor dining restaurants in London.
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