No visit to London is complete without taking a bite into the city’s eclectic mix of restaurants. From the smart and fancy to the cool, laid-back and quirky, this guide is full of ideas to tickle those taste buds during your trip.
Bel Canto, Hyde Park
Why you need to eat here: At this unique bistro, it’ll be the waiters who sing for your supper, as they’ll be belting out opera classics as they deliver your food! The restaurant’s professional singing waiters have been trained at some of the world’s most prestigious academies and their artistic performances are the perfect accompaniment to fine food and wine.
Top dish: we adore the lobster bisque starter and risotto-style fregola as a main course, complete with parmesan tuile on the side.
Twist, Crawford Street
Why you need to eat here: Think tapas, infused with Italian flavours. You can enjoy a range of delectable small plates, including warm octopus, Cumbrian lamb chops and fried courgette flowers stuffed with honey, lemon and ricotta cheese and an essence of mint. All of this in a rustic, charming environment with impeccable service.
Top dish: The handmade tortelli is a must! They also serve the most delicious juicy Josper-grilled sea scallops.
The Barbary, Neal’s Yard
Cuisine: Influenced by recipes from Africa and the Middle East
Why you need to eat here: If you’re a fan of flavoursome, culturally traditional food, you’ll adore The Barbary. Everything here is cooked with fire, whether it’s meat grilled on coals or breads baked in clay ovens. All of this beautifully prepared food is served in an atmosphere bursting with music and laughter.
Top dish: Everything! Our favourites include the naan e Barbari, capsicum halloumi and chicken abu kalmash.
Shuang Shuang, Shaftesbury Avenue
Why you need to eat here: No way of eating is more inviting than Chinese Hot Pot. Shuang Shuang invites you to gather around with your friends or family members to enjoy a hot pot and have some fun in this informal restaurant with a futuristic vibe.
Top dish: It’s hard to say, because it’s your menu, your way at Shuang Shuang. There are more than 40 ingredients on the conveyer belts; we recommend the pork and prawn wonton or fried tofu, as well as the spicy pig’s ear salad from the snack menu.
Farmacy, Notting Hill
Cuisine: Vegetarian and vegan
Why you need to eat here: Farmacy is the place to come for healthy comfort food, including plant-based ice cream! Everything at this cool Notting Hill restaurant is sourced from organic UK farms, and each ingredient is carefully considered for its taste and nutritional benefits.
Top dish: The Farmacy burger is delightful and comes garlic aioli and goji ketchup. There are also plenty of tasty desserts – we’re mad for the raw chocolate tart!
Pizza Union, Kings Cross
Why you need to eat here: It’s a pizza lover’s paradise! These thin and crispy delights come with a choice of tasty toppings and come at a reasonable price. There’s a great buzz at Pizza Union too, with communal, picnic-bench tables decorated with vibrant tiles and a background of lively pop music.
Top dish: The Vesuvio is a fiery favourite for spice fans, whereas the milder Tropicali is perfect for those with mellower taste buds. You can also get wicked side salads – we recommend the Pizzeria, which is packed with chicken, pepperoni and parmesan!
The Queen of Sheba, Kentish Town
Why you need to eat here: As well as getting to taste some genuine, palate-pleasing Ethiopian cuisine, you’ll fall in love with the aesthetic of this tiny restaurant. As you eat, you’ll be surrounded by Ethiopian art and furniture, making The Queen of Sheba an authentic dining experience. And the coffee is perfect!
Top dish: The kifto (raw beef immersed in aromatic spices) is a treat for the taste buds, but we also love misir we’t, a delicious spicy red lentil stew.
Need a place to stay during your trip?
Our central London hostels are a perfect place to rest your head after exploring these culinary gems. Clink78 and Clink261 are located in the lively Kings Cross area. What better place to begin your big city adventure? Get in touch today for more information.