London Restaurants

British food hasn't always had the best reputation, but nowhere in the country is that reputation being completely upturned more than in London. The city has zoomed up the global gastro charts, and can now seriously compete with the world’s top culinary heavyweights. The truth is that no other city—barring New York—has the immense range of global cuisines that London has to offer. Standards have rocketed at all price points, and every year it seems like the London restaurant scene is better than ever.

Feel like eating the most-tender Kagoshima Wagyu beef on planet Earth? It can be yours for £150 at CUT at 45 Park Lane. Want to try old English gastronomy from the time of Henry VIII with an ultramodern twist? Ashley Palmer-Watts is your man at Dinner by Heston Blumenthal. Do you only eat Sri Lankan hoppers? No worries, we’ve got just the thing: Hoppers in Soho will give you a taste of the Sri Lankan pancake, for £4.50 a pop. Can’t stand any more snobby culinary nonsense? The low-key British wild game is so good at The Harwood Arms in Fulham that they’ve earned London’s first gastro-pub-based Michelin star.

To appreciate how far London has risen in the food game, just look back to the days of Somerset Maugham, who was once justified in warning, "To eat well in England you should have breakfast three times a day." Change was slow after World War II, when it was understood that the British ate to live, while the French lived to eat. When people thought of British cuisine, fish-and-chips—a greasy grab-and-gulp dish that tasted best wrapped in yesterday's newspaper—first came to mind. Then there was always shepherd's pie, ubiquitously found in smoke-filled pubs, though not made, according to Sweeney Todd, "with real shepherd in it."

These days, standards are miles higher and shepherd’s pie has been largely replaced by the city's unofficial dish, Indian curry. London’s restaurant revolution is built on its extraordinary ethnic diversity, and you’ll find the quality of other global cuisines has grown immeasurably in recent years, with London becoming known for its Chinese, Japanese, Indian, Thai, Spanish, Italian, French, Peruvian, and west African restaurants. Thankfully, pride in the best of British food—local, seasonal, wild, and foraged—is enjoying quite the renaissance, too.

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  • 1. Chiltern Firehouse


    It can be quite tricky to get into Chiltern Firehouse, but if you do snag a table, you're in for a treat. Set inside a...Read More

  • 2. Fischer's

    $$ | Marylebone

    It almost feels like Sigmund Freud or Gustav Klimt might doff their Homburg hats and shuffle into a dark leather banquette at this evocative, early-20th-century–style...Read More

  • 3. Les 110 de Taillevent

    $$$ | Marylebone

    Dazzling classic French dishes mark out Les 110 de Taillevent as the city's top French brasserie de luxe. Housed in a chic former Coutts bank...Read More

  • 4. The Golden Hind

    $ | Marylebone

    You'll land some of the best fish-and-chips in town at this British chippy in a retro 1914 art deco café. Marylebone locals and satisfied tourists...Read More

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  • 5. The Monocle Café

    $ | Marylebone

    As the name suggests, The Monocle Café isn't quite a restaurant, but thanks to its sheer weight of personality, it still lends itself as an...Read More

  • 6. Wallace Restaurant

    $ | Marylebone | French

    Bringing the outside in, this café and restaurant is in the Wallace Collection's glass-roofed courtyard. It's open (daily 10–4:30) for breakfast...Read More

  • 7. Roganic

    $$$$ | Marylebone

    Field-to-fork, New Nordic chef Simon Rogan takes diners on a madcap journey with his bonkers 4- to 17-course tasting menu here at Roganic. Hold on...Read More

  • 8. Galvin Bistrot de Luxe

    $$ | Marylebone

    The godlike Galvin brothers, Chris and Jeff, blaze a trail for the time-tested French modern bistro formula on this fast-moving stretch of Baker Street. Loyalists...Read More

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