The Maine Mayfair
Food and Drink

Best restaurants in London: 46 of the coolest dinner spots in the city to book now

Looking for an interesting and unique dining spot for your next night out? These 43 cool restaurants in London offer something different and make for some of the best dinner spots in the city.

Trying to find the perfect dining spot is never easy, no matter the occasion. But that doesn’t mean you always have to give up the search and fall back on your tried-and-tested favourite or unenthusiastically pile into the nearest possible establishment.

We’ve found an eclectic mix of 43 restaurants across London that all have that certain je ne sais quoi. So, whether you’re having an overdue catch up with old friends, celebrating getting through another week, or marking a special occasion, any one of these city-based venues is bound to make for a unique, interesting and cool setting for your evening.

  • Lina Stores

    Lina Stores
    Coolest restaurants in London: Lina Stores

    Stepping into Lina Stores is like walking into a pastel dreamland, filled with mint-hued decor and lots and lots of pasta.

    The restaurant and deli, which was founded in 1944, is known for its handmade fresh pasta, aromatic cheeses and cured meats – and the outpost in Kings Cross doesn’t disappoint.

    Start with a selection of aubergine polpette with San Marzano tomato, followed by some tasty sea salt and rosemary focaccia with Lina Stores’ very own olive oil.

    The pasta menu is pretty vast and you’re sure to find something that will tickle your fancy, from Spaghetti alla Chitarra with Amalfi lemon, pink peppercorn and grana padano to Stracciatella ravioli with datterini tomato, pine nuts and basil.

    And if you’ve still got room for dessert, there are some classic options to choose from.

    Try the mouthwateringly good Sicilian cannolo, with ricotta, pistachio and chocolate and the Fior di Latte gelato with espresso for a post-meal pick-me-up.

  • Coal Office

    Coal Office
    Coolest restaurants in London: Coal Office

    If you’re looking to embark on a cool culinary journey filled with delicious small and large plates, Coal Office is definitely worth adding to your list.

    The restaurant combines an immersive dining experience with traditional dishes found throughout the Middle East and Meditteranean and it’s a true treat for your tastebuds.

    If you’re not overly familiar with the cuisine, there are a few key dishes I can definitely recommend – starting with Kublah. The softy, doughy Yemeni brioche is a true taste of heaven and is accompanied by tahini, grated tomato and schug (you’ll probably want to order more than one and I can’t blame you!)

    Everything is designed to be shared so go wild with the small plates, from the yellowtail sashimi with mango, amba pickled okra and red chill to the amazing spicy shakshuka aduma – a tomato and pepper stew with eggs, tahini, parsley pita and feta.

    And if that’s not enough, go for Machneyuda’s polenta (Asparagus, truffle, mushroom ragout and parmesan) and lamb mesachen (leg of lamp, tropea onions, shallots, cucumber relish and lettuce cups) if you want to go big.

    Top it all off with a tasty cocktail or two (I recommend the fantasti paloma) and you’ll have the full Coal Office experience.

  • Porte Noire

    Wine lovers – this one’s for you.

    Nestled in Coal Drops Yard is Porte Noire, a continental gastronomic wine bar which is perfect for wine enthusiasts to relax around great food and wine. 

    Inspired by the winemakers in France, Italy and Spain, this bar is perfect for dimly lit date nights to evening catch up with friends – and it has a stellar wine and small plates list to boot.

    The selection is so good that it’ll be hard for you to decide just what to get. I’d suggest the mushroom arancini with sun-dried tomato pesto and roast pork belly with tamarind glaze and peanut sambal. And don’t forget to try dessert – the burnt matcha cheesecake is one for the books.

  • Ember Yard

    There are so many fabulous eateries in Soho that it can be difficult to choose just where to go.

    Luckily for you, Ember Yard has become the restaurant that has caught our attention – and you certainly won’t be disappointed.

    The restaurant has a buzzy atmosphere that is accompanied by tapas-style dishes inspired by the amazing wood-fired grills of Spain and Italy.

    From the recently added grilled octopus with squid ink polenta, saffron aioli and chimichurri sauce to the succulent barbary duck breast with broccoli puree, tenderstem broccoli and jalapeno peppers, you’ll be able to enjoy a wide selection of small dishes with friends and family.

    And if you fancy a drink after dinner, head on downstairs to The Ember Bar, which boasts an impressive cocktail list and chilled atmosphere.

    We’d recommend the delicious blood orange margarita or a classic espresso martini if you want a little pick-me-up.

  • The Maine

    The Maine
    Coolest restaurants in London: The Maine

    If glamorous underground jazz club’ is your dining vibe, make a beeline for The Maine in Mayfair – specifically the extravagant Brasserie in the basement.

    White-tuxedoed waiters whisk over platters of oysters and crab under the dazzle of a show-stopping chandelier, while a jazz band (and, later in the night, burlesque dancers) provide the entertainment.

    The seafood-focused menu has lots to offer and the portions come up large, so we’d recommend sharing a couple of starters and raw plates – the shrimp cocktail and tuna tartare with avocado and soy-ginger dressing were a big hit. 

    For the main course, you can tap into the restaurant’s New England leanings with Maine lobster or choose from the extensive steak selection, though the cedar plank salmon with sriracha butter deserves a shoutout for being cooked to juicy perfection.

    Order a dirty pickle martini and settle in for the most decadent night out.

  • Rai

    Nestled in buzzy Fitzrovia, Rai is a modern Japanese fine-dining restaurant specialising in incredibly food, impeccable service (no question is too small, the team’s knowledge is immense) and beautiful, art-like dish presentation.

    For a special occasion, the Omakase tasting menu is a sushi lover’s dream – the quality of the sourced ingredients and knowledge shared by the waiting staff and Maître d’ all make for a delicious, educational experience.

    Plus, if you’re lucky, Executive Chef Padam Raj Rai will join you for an end-of-meal toast using his homemade sake. Refined and elegant with a friendly, welcoming team, Rai is a true cut above.

  • Madera

    Enjoy the beautiful scenic views of London at Madera.

    Perched at the top of London’s Treehouse Hotel, the Mexican restaurant combines bold flavours with organic ingredients, offering a fabulous selection of dishes across breakfast, lunch, dinner and weekend brunch.

    No matter what time of the day you decide to visit, there is something for you that you are sure to enjoy.

    From the delicious Pan Plano Mexican flatbreads to chorizo bowls, you’ll be able to indulge in it all in this achingly-cool restaurant.

  • Farzi Café London

    Farzi Café has been regarded as one of London’s most exciting, pan-Indian restaurants in London and is a must-visit for those looking for contemporary yet experimental Indian cuisine.

    Diners at Farzi Café can expect to be greeted by the scent and sight of plates laden with grilled meats and fish, golden pastry topped biryanis and fragrant curries streaming from the kitchen, all naturally accompanied by sides of creamy Double Butter Dal Makhni, Potted String Greens and Traditional Indian Breads. For those with a sweet tooth, desserts include Coconut Rice Kheer with passionfruit gel & mango sorbet and Pistachio Tres Leche with pistachio mousse & mandarin jelly.

    The restaurant has also launched a zodiac-themed cocktail menu, ideal for groups of friends and family to come together to try their personalised cocktail. 

  • Warehouse at The Conduit

    Located on the ground floor of The Conduit Members Club, Warehouse is located in the heart of Covent Garden and is great for providing a tasteful ambience with creative and innovative dishes.

    Loaded with delicious seasonal dishes devised by Chef Brendan Eades, some of the standout dishes feature shitake mushrooms, peas and pelt, halibut and seaweed, along with a creative cocktail offering led by one of London’s most renowned mixologists, Walter Pintus.

  • Apricity

    Apricity is the newly-launched restaurant in the heart of Mayfair that everyone is talking about – and with good reason.

    Led by multi-award-winning chef Chantelle Nicholson, Apricity is a celebration of conscious cooking with sustainability at the heart, with the use of locally-foraged ingredients and produce from small-scale farmers.

    Despite the hype surrounding the restaurant, there’s something warm and intimate about the minimalist space, making it the perfect spot to meet with friends and family or on a romantic date night.

    On the menu is a range of dishes, with an option to indulge in Apricity’s tasting menu, which includes five (£65) or seven courses (£80) along with a wine pairing (£40- £50) for each dish.

    Highlights on the menu include the sensational miso braised cabbage, flanders wheat and zhoug, along with the crispy summer oyster mushrooms, smoked hemp cream and roasted garlic ketchup.

    From the paired back decor to thoughtful dishes, Apricity is a must-visit for those looking for a sustainable restaurant concept in west London.

    Address: 68 Duke St, London W1K 6JU

  • Roof Garden at Pantechnicon

    roof garden at pantechnicon
    Coolest restaurants in London: Roof Garden at Pantechnicon

    The Roof Garden at Pantechnicon is the summer-ready restaurant we’re loving right now.

    As you ascend to the fourth floor, guests are welcomed into a botanical-inspired space, filled with greenery and a cosy inviting atmosphere where you can unwind with drinks, a light bite or an all-out feast.

    The restaurant offers a new and exciting menu combining both Nordic and Japanese-inspired dishes, from beef short rib sando with wholegrain mustard to the succulent pork belly with apple, sage and beetroot.

    Its seasonal cocktails, crafted by head mixologist Gento Torigata, also have a botanical feel, utilising fresh produce, house-made infusions and exclusive spirits to create cocktails like the pine forest (Talus hop infused East London Kew gin, granny smith apple, lemon myrtle and idyll pine soda) and the delectable lingonberry cosmopolitan (Pantechnicon exclusive Akvavit, lingonberry, passion berry and Sassy rosé cider).

    If you’re looking for an understated spot, which combines good food with a relaxed yet chic vibe, the Roof Garden at Pantechnicon is definitely for you.

    Address: 19 Motcomb St, London SW1X 8LB

  • Luca

    a photo of inside luca restaurant in clerkenwell
    Coolest restaurants in London: Luca

    If you’re looking to enjoy the best of British seasonal ingredients through an Italian lens, Luca is just the right place.

    The hidden spot in the heart of Clerkenwell opened in November 2016 and is celebrated among locals for its timeless, sleek interiors, sensational food and amazing service.

    Enjoy one of their tasty takes on classic cocktails, such as the Luca Margarita, made with mezcal verde, Malfy Blood Orange Gin liqueur, grapefruit and orange, while dining on delectable dishes from their signature parmesan fries and rigatoni with pork sausage ragù.

    While enjoying the food, you’ll be able to enjoy the space and relax in the 19th-century building, which is designed to deliver an atmosphere that complements and elevates the culinary experience.

    Address: 88 St John St, London EC1M 4EH

  • Sachi in Pantechnicon

    Best London restaurants: Sachi in Pantechnicon
    Coolest restaurants in London: Sachi in Pantechnicon

    The newly opened Sachi in Pantechnicon restaurant celebrates a stylish blend of Japanese and Nordic food, culture, art, and design. Crafted by Roka’s head chef Collin Hudston, the extensive menu boasts ingredients from independent producers, from fresh trout and lobster to wasabi.

    With delicious sushi, meat and seafood on offer, Sachi is the place to go for beautiful food with a laid-back vibe.

    All of the details, from the decor to the lighting and music make for the perfect dinner setting in the city. For an extra special evening, their private vaulted booths, set in a Japanese garden, are also available to book.

    Address: 19 Motcomb Street, London SW1X 8LB

  • London Stock

    Best London restaurants: London Stock
    Coolest restaurants in London: London Stock

    Set against industrial decor, with intimate tables and low lights, London Stock succeeds in bringing a relaxed fine-dining concept to South London.

    Their seasonal 8-course tasting menu, priced at £70 per person, currently includes prime venison and ox cheek cuts cooked to perfection, zingy goats cheese and stone bass courses, as well as two delectable desserts for those with a sweet tooth. A full 8-course vegetarian menu is also available, tempting you with fragrant king oyster mushrooms and creamy risottos. The highlight of the menu is definitely the unexpected flavours, from earthy miso and smoky black garlic to a refreshing Brussel sprout puree accompanying classic ingredients like artichoke and cod.

    For cocktails, be sure to try their Final Fig, a tasty twist on a Kir Royale. They also offer “wine flights,” starting from £55, with a menu that will take you all over the world, from California to Chile.

    Address: 2 Bubbling Well Square, Ram Quarter SW18 1UQ

  • Aqua Shard

    Aqua Shard
    Coolest restaurants in London: Aqua Shard

    To say that the Shard is an iconic location would be putting it lightly.

    The landmark is loved by many, from locals to tourists, but beyond its architectural structure lies an array of effortlessly cool restaurants with epic views, with the Aqua Shard being one of them.

    The British restaurant and bar has everything you need for the ultimate evening out, from delicious food (the leek and potato ravioli and smoked duck breast is to die for) and delectable cocktails, right down to breathtaking views of Tower Bridge to The London Eye complete.

    And if you’re looking to visit a little earlier in the day, the Aqua Shard’s brunch and afternoon tea offerings are equally exquisite, making it a go-to location for a little luxury in the city.

    Address: Level 31, The Shard, 31 St Thomas St, London SE1 9RY

  • STK Westminster

    Most stylish restaurants in London: STK Westminster
    Coolest restaurants in London: STK Westminster

    STK are making steak dinners something worth celebrating. This US stalwart has made its way across the pond with a new London location in Westminster joining its existing restaurant at The Strand. With stunning decor and pumping music bringing the immaculate vibes for your night out, the only thing that tops the atmosphere is the food: from their famous Wagyu to roasted lamb racks, and lobster to truffle tagliatelle. 

    This is a great place to celebrate something special, or just treat yourself to some midweek luxury during their happy hour, from 3pm – 6:30pm Monday-Friday.

    Address: 30 John Islip St, London SW1P 4DD

  • Amazónico

    If you’re looking for an eclectic mix of cuisines nestled within a beautiful tropic setting, look no further than Amazónico.

    From the moment you enter the restaurant, you’ll be transported to the Amazon thanks to the jungle-inspired decor and delicious, tropical cocktails inspired by Latin America.

    Guests will be able to enjoy an array of dishes, from tequeños – marinated chicken rolls, tybo cheese and coriander sauce – to wagyu beef empanadas and tandoori-grilled meats, sushi, US-style steaks and poké.

    Complete with a live band each night and a custom music playlist, Amazonico is the star of Berkeley Square and an effortlessly cool hotspot worth visiting this summer.

    Address: 10 Berkeley Square, Mayfair, London W1J 6AA

  • The Seafood Bar

    The Seafood Bar
    Coolest restaurants in London: The Seafood Bar

    The Seafood Bar may be new on the scene (it officially opened in September 2021) but it’s already proving itself to be a hotspot in the heart of Soho thanks to its delicious seafood offerings.

    The restaurant offers guests the freshest seafood without the high price tag, with the option to dine on everything from a Fruits de Mer platter filled with oysters to lobster along with the freshest sea bream, and shrimp and much much more.

    My personal recommendation would be the mixed grill if you want to try a bit of everything, from king prawn and sea bass fillet to mussels served in a creamy tomato sauce and half a lobster. YUM.

    Address: 77 Dean St, London W1D 3SH

  • Pixo Pintxos

    Inspired by the pintxo  bars of San Sebastian and Barcelona, head to Pix for a delish array of Basque miniature tapas in the heart of vibrant Carnaby Street.

    The speciality here is small plates, delish bites held together by a skewer and served in a shot glass, ramekin dish, or on crusty bread. Think fresh crispy calamares, quince-coated chorizo with manchego cheese and mouthwatering Frozé (yes, frozen rosé) wine.

    Address: 24 Ganton St, Carnaby, London W1F 7QY

  • Six by Nico

    Set among the high rises of London’s business district, Six By Nico’s newest restaurant opening brings you decadent dining in the heart of Canary Wharf.

    Famed for their delicious six-course tasting menu, which comes in at a very reasonable £37 a head, try Six By Nico for a night of delicious cocktails, unique foodie treats courtesy of their ever-changing menus, which have included the likes of octopus and pork bolognese, tuna “from the can” and nutella and waffles.

    Address: Chancellor Passage, London E14 5EA

  • Rondo

    Coolest restaurants in London: Rondo at The Hoxton
    Coolest restaurants in London: Rondo at The Hoxton

    Cosy lighting, comfy booths and a generous menu, Rondo has the hallmarks of a neighbourhood restaurant except it’s in a prime location bang slap in the middle of Holborn. 

    The menu is seasonal so return again and again to see what new delights the chefs, lead by Chris Gillard formerly of St John, can offer you. Right now, though, you’ll find dishes such as succulent roast ‘Sutton Hoo’ chicken with moreish creamed corn or baked aubergine with chickpea and rocket. 

    The staff are genuinely lovely and very attentive, we’d recommend asking them for their favourite sharing bites and starters and even letting them pick a few for you. 

    This is the kind of place you can while away the evening, warmed by the amber glow of the bistro-style lamps, enjoying the gentle buzz of other diners and exploring the wine menu. But don’t forget about the cocktails either, they’re absolutely delicious so make sure you treat yourself to both. 

    Address: 199-206 High Holborn, London, WC1V 7BD

  • Sketch London

    Sketch is somewhat of an institution in our fair city of London. With a prime spot just off Regent Street, it attracts people from all over the world because of its unique charms. 

    Stepping into this restaurant and bar is to step out of reality and into a fabulous, eccentric fantasy. From the hopscotch at the entrance to the egg shaped toilet pods, the wonderful weirdness of this place makes it an experience in itself. 

    There are four dining rooms to choose from including the regal-looking private room, colourful parlour, enchanted glade and millennial pink gallery. It is here that art and food meet in one of the most stylish settings most have ever encountered. Apart from the blindingly obvious all-pink theme, this room is famous for the rows of David Shrigley artwork that sit on the walls. His pieces are famous for not only being comedic, but making shrewd comments on society and thanks to the restaurant’s interactive new app you can watch them come to life, dancing and playing in front of you. It’s the kind of innovative move that only Sketch would make. 

    Which brings us nicely onto the food. Sketch is not only experiential in the visual sense, the service of the staff is worthy of five stars which makes booking a meal here even more pleasurable. Pick from decadent dishes such as duckling with bitter chocolate or roasted scallops, and make sure to finish off with a big, creamy cake. 

    Address: 9 Conduit St, Mayfair, London W1S 2XG

  • Rüya London

    If you thought Turkish cuisine only included kebabs, thin pizza and Turkish delights, a visit to Rüya London is a must.

    The restaurant, located in Mayfair, is spacious yet cosy. The brass and dark wood accents, the plushy seats and the traditional oven occupying the middle of the room creates a warm atmosphere that perfectly matches the sharing spirit of the menu.

    There is so much to try, going with a large group is the best way to experience this Anatolian gem in the heart of London. From the traditional and delicious Börek (filo pastry wrapped feta with carrot, courgette and walnut) to six different types of kebaps to enjoy with a side of crunchy fried okras and pistachio rice.

    Make sure you leave some space for dessert. Their traditional Künefe – a cheese based sweet treat – is the perfect end to a delicious night. 

    Address: 30 Upper Grosvenor St, Mayfair, London W1K 7PH

  • Fischer's

    Fischer’s feels old school, in the best possible way. Tucked away on one of Marylebone’s prettiest streets – with plenty of opportunities for a spot of shopping before dinner – even the restaurant’s facade, with its ornate iron railings and gold-foiled windows, looks worthy of being in a Wes Anderson film.

    Inside, Fischer’s cinematic quality only intensifies. Butter yellow tiles cover the walls, interspersed with period portraits and typically Austrian scenes, which together have an eccentric but charming touch. This is only complemented by the flurry of vintage lamps that are dotted are around, each one giving off its own golden glow. 

    In keeping with the restaurant’s Viennese theme, the menu is filled with traditional dishes that are often laden with cheese, butter and cream. In other words, bloody delicious. From the Käsespätzle – which is a mini bowl of Austrian pasta in cream, bacon and covered in melted cheese – to the selection of schnitzels, the dishes are rich so make sure you come hungry and get stuck it. 

    Address: 50 Marylebone High Street, London, W1U 5HN

  • Circolo Popolare

    The Big Mamma restaurant group, which is already a household name in Paris, is infiltrating London’s food scene at breakneck speed. After launching the very popular Gloria in Shoreditch, the second site in Fitzrovia, Circolo Popolare, has punters queuing around the block.

     The decor is a mix-match of kitsch Italian-themed tat (in the best possible way), fairy lights, indoor foliage and glowing alcohol bottles, stacked up to the ceiling. The staff are also all Italian, and the menu is packed full of authentic Sicily-style fare with showstoppers like juicy pizzas and creamy tiramisu, so go hungry. 

    If you’re looking for a place to take your friends that is definitely in-vogue, this is the spot. Since it opened, it’s been all over our Instagram feeds, becoming a right of passage for anyone who considers themselves in the know. 

    Address: 40-41 Rathbone Pl, Fitzrovia, London W1T 1HX

  • CUB

    With sustainability at the forefront of our minds, from trying to make our holidays greener to keeping our beauty cabinets as plastic-free as possible, the trend for eco-friendly restaurants is on the rise. 

    CUB is not only based on one of East London’s edgiest streets and the work of globally recognised mixologist Mr Lyan (whose South Bank-based bar was awarded best in London), but the menu is crafted from plants that would usually be thrown away or overlooked. The set menu features a selection of food plates and carefully created cocktails, with a fascinated story behind each dish, so make sure you ask your server what you’re eating.

    The restaurant itself is intimate, so we would recommend booking a table and checking opening times as CUB is closed Sunday to Tuesday. 

    Address: 153 Hoxton St, Hoxton, London N1 6PJ

  • Hide

    Ideally located directly opposite Green Park, in the heart of Piccadilly, Hide is the latest fancy Mayfair restaurant offering from award winning chef and author Ollie Dabbous.

    Set over three floors which each have a subtly different vibe, the restaurant feels huge yet curiously intimate at the same time. The elegant ‘above’ restaurant boasts stunning views over the park, which you can enjoy while trying the 10 course tasting menu. While, the downstairs dining room is recommended for a more casual affair.

    The ‘ground’ restaurant is a charming and airy space, filled with natural light, that’s perfectly offset by the dark wood interiors. It’s hard to take your eyes off the quirky but majestic oak staircase, which is an undeniably standout feature.

    The dishes, created from the freshest seasonal produce are a delicious, visionary treat for the eyes, as well as the palette. As for the drinks, Hide is the proud owner of the largest wine list in Europe no less, and rather than trawl through 100’s of pages, the menu can be perused at leisure from a luxurious (and more sustainable) leather bound iPad. 

    Address: 85 Piccadilly, London, W1J 7NB

  • Yeni

    Turkish chef Civan Er has brought his acclaimed skills from Istanbul to London’s Soho. The modern space is juxtaposed against the bustling street it overlooks and the menu is excitingly imaginative: bulgur fritters, crispy courgette flower tempura with aged feta honey almonds and signature Manti Dumplings, salt marsh lamb with sweet and sour apricot whole lemon sole with samphire.

    Address: 55 Beak Street, Soho, London W1F 9SH

  • The Parlour, The Ned

    As The Ned’s appeal shows no signs of slowing down, it’s good news that this now infamous wonderland of restaurants and bars has a new haunt for diners to enjoy. On the venue’s lower level, The Parlour is the place to experience a mix of live jazz and cabaret acts, alongside a delicious food menu and cocktails, of course.

    On Wednesdays, Thursdays (only for members) and Fridays, you can expect to see well-known names from the jazz scene playing alongside hotly-tipped new acts. Residencies include saxophonist and clarinettist Giacomo Smith and his five-piece band; British singer, songwriter and pianist Reuben James; and Seattle native artist Kimberly Nichole. Saturday nights see performances from Black Cat Cabaret on the theme of ‘High Society’, which includes a theatrical experience with singers, comics and burlesque.

    The menu reflects the opulence of the setting with dishes such as whole lobster thermidor with brandy, parmesan and English mustard and Prime New York Strip steak with roasted bone marrow and red wine sauce.

    The Parlour’s interiors are inspired by Art Deco jazz clubs from the 1930s, with details such as jewel-toned velvet seating, Murano glass lamps and moody, high gloss-painted walls. It’s the perfect place to escape for the night, like being given a ticket to travel back in time.

    Address: 27 Poultry, Bank, London, EC2R 8AJ

  • Bombay Bustle

    Bombay Bustle is the spot for vibrant Mumbai flavours. The bar area will be transformed into a pop-up cinema, and for £52pp you can get a flavour-packed three-course dinner (including dishes like Chicken Tikka Makhini, Malabar Lamb and saffron-infused Jalebi Cheesecake) and a glass of champers. 

    Address: Bombay Bustle, 29 Maddox Street, Mayfair, London W1S 2PA

  • The Windmill Soho

    The Windmill Soho
    Cool restaurants in London: The Windmill Soho

    The Windmill in the heart of London’s Soho has a history as colourful as its spectacular theatre shows. Originally opening as the Palais De Luxe, a cinema on Great Windmill Street, the venue was purchased by renowned visionary of the day, Laura Henderson, who converted it into a theatre. It was during this phase that The Windmill introduced the concept of ‘The Revudeville,’ which is a programme of continuous live singing and dancing acts across an evening.

    And not only that, the iconic location is famed for ‘The Windmill Girls,’ who, inspired by the Moulin Rouge appeared on stage as ‘nude statues,’ in an inspired effort to get around a loophole that prevented nude performers from appearing on stage. The theatre manager reasoned that, if they did not move, they could not be classed as performers. It was these quirks that made The Windmill popular with celebrities and prominent figures of the time.

    That was then, and now, after undergoing a major refurbishment, The Windmill has reopened, offering an immersive dining experience, where diners can enjoy a menu created by Michelin starred Chef Andrew McLeish while watching a live cabaret-style show.

    The set food menu starts at £49 per person and includes decadent culinary delights, like truffle parmesan taglioni, Atilius Osietra caviar, sashimi platters and Wagyu sliders. As for drinks, the cocktail menu has been created by mixologist Andy Mil of Cocktail Trading Co. Each of the especially created cocktails pay homage to The Windmill’s vibrant history.

    Address: 17-19 Great Windmill Street, London, England W1D 7JZ

  • Cattivo

    You’re in Brixton on a Saturday night and need a plan that involves dinner, drinks AND a bit of a dance. Tick off all three at Cattivo, which is part-restaurant, part-cocktail venue, part-club. Inside the paint is peeling (albeit very chicly) and the tunes are bumping, so snuggle into a blue velvet booth and chow down on some Italian comfort food: assorted meatballs and delicious homemade pastas galore. The “slow and deep beef pappardelle” is something else. Thank us later.

    Address: Cattivo, 207 Ferndale Rd, Brixton, London SW9 8BA

  • Fare Bar + Canteen

    In the market for a gaspingly good Friday night? Check out the swanky, multi-level Fare Bar + Canteen. The upstairs pizza bar is airy and industrial, but we’d book a table in the underground restaurant, where candlelight flickers cosily off whitewashed walls. All of the food is sublime, but the juicy Denver red beef – sprinkled with mustard seeds and chargrilled around the edges – is to die for. Make sure to accompany with a whiskey highball.

    Address: Fare Bar + Canteen, 11 Old Street, EC1V 9HL

  • Pachamama East

    A short stroll from Old Street you’ll find a heavenly Peruvian-inspired spot that goes by the name Pachamama East – little sister to the OG Pachamama spot in Marylebone. We arrived at 7pm on a Thursday, and the atmosphere was already buzzing. 

    Below the bare bulbs that stream from the entrance towards a sparkly disco ball, the floors are rustic and the walls look as though they’re crumbling – and it all works, in the most tasteful way. And speaking of taste, the menu is divided into three categories: soil, land and sea (if you’re sharing – which you should – we recommend ordering two from each). 

    Don’t sleep on the crispy lamb belly, which is partnered with punchy green pepper and arrives sizzling and juicy, or the knockout octopus with black quinoa – truly tender tentacles. To finish, we recommend ordering a Chicharita cocktail; a tangy tequila and lime juice tipple hailing from Lima. That’s a lot of flavours for a single sitting.

    Address: Pachamama East, 73 Great Eastern Street, EC2A 3HR

  • Berenjak

    Iranian-inspired Berenjak is a buzzy little bare-brick joint bursting with flavour. Once you’re done swooning over the mosaics and hanging foliage, get a spirit-lifting sharbat down you (a non-alcoholic Persian fruit cordial you can choose to spike – along with the other drinks on the menu – with apricot gin). Next, order the koobideh kabab (minced goat shoulder) with a side of saffron rice (complete with goat butter). Immediate thoughts will include – but are not limited to – “smoky”, “meaty” and “downright divine”.

    Address: Berenjak, 27 Romilly Street, Soho, London W1D 5AL


    A bread-themed restaurant? We must be dreaming. Turns out we were actually in Covent Garden, holed up in Buns & Buns. Fresh from Miami, the eatery is modern and plush, with smart booths and geometric tiles surrounding the grand marble bar that stands sleekly in the centre of the room. The menu here is an inventive testament to bread that’s best shared, with. highlights including the shiitake mushroom bao bun (sticky, sweet and scrumptious) and carbonara-topped pizza (seriously special). One of London’s most exciting newcomers in yonks.

    Address: BUNS & BUNS, 5c Covent Garden Piazza, London WC2E 8RA

  • Hicce x Wolf & Badger

    Hicce (Latin for ‘current’ and pronounced ‘ee-chay’) is a new spot on the top floor of Wolf & Badger’s flagship store; entirely separate to the shop, but with a parallel sense of curation and calm. The food here (spearheaded by Murano’s Pip Lacey and designed to be shared) revolves around using the barbecue to grill, steam and smoke, so each dish is layered with flavour. The ‘jars’ of pickled loveliness, like carrot and cardamom, are a refreshing way to start; the wild red prawn ‘hotsticks’ with Hicce butter are moreish and juicy. 

    For mains, no matter what meat or fish you order (though we do recommend the mackerel with radicchio and kumquats) you must try the Brussel sprouts – cooked with hazelnuts and kohl rabi, they’re unrecognisable from the Christmas sort. The drinks menu is equally delightful, with plenty to appease Dry Janners, but the Bagleys cocktail (Don Julio Reposado, campari, passionfruit and grapefruit sherbet) stayed on just the right side of sweet.

    Address: Hicce, Coal Drops Yard, King’s Cross, London, N1C 4DQ

  • Grays and Feather

    Acclaimed purveyor of sparkling wine, Grays and Feather (who you may know from Southbank Food Market) now have a bricks and mortar establishment. And heck, is it something. You’ll find it at 26 Wellington Street, where Charles Dickens once held offices, taking over the bright and airy ground floor and the basement – a bigger, but more intimate space. On our visit we settled into The Snookery, a low-ceilinged, warmly lit room with cushions and curios – and about as cosy as you can get in central London.

    We suggest asking the sommelier for advice on your wine choices (and the stories that come with them), but we can merrily recommend the house sparkling white and the honjozo saké to surprise your taste buds. The specialists work with small and lesser known winemakers; even if you only go for a glass or two, there’s a real feeling of uncovering something special with each one you try. 

    There’s also food, served to share – the roquefort, honey & waldorf salad with salt apple crisps was a surprisingly refreshing delight. In fact, you get the feeling that the whole experience has been designed around the sense of discovery – and it is well worth finding out for yourself.

    Address: Grays and Feather, 26 Wellington Street, Covent Garden, London WC2E 7DD

  • The May Fair Kitchen

    It would be wrong to end the year without a spot that ticks off industrial lighting, natural wood and marble table tops. At May Fair kitchen, you get all of 2018’s most popular aesthetic, as well as an unexpected and exciting melding of flavours from Spain, Italy, Peru and Mexico. The food offering is reliably delicious, but make sure to sample cocktails too; the signature El Diplomat, with rum, byrhh, sangue morlacco and chocolate bitters is a warming delight.

    Address: May Fair Kitchen, Stratton Street, Mayfair, London W1J 8LT

  • The Court

    Coolest restaurants in London: The Court restaurant interiors
    Coolest restaurants in London: The Court restaurant

    Tucked just behind Kingly Street in Soho, The Court is the swanky new private members club to be seen at.

    Steeped in history, The Court was originally the legendary night club, the Bag O’Nails, favoured by artists like Jimi Hendrix, The Beatles and The Rolling Stones in the 1960’s.

    Following a major refurb, the club relaunched earlier this year, with a spectacular bar and restaurant - beautifully decked out with extremely cool artworks by revered New York street artist, Bradley Theodore.

    The food is divine, which with Michelin Star chef Tom Sellers as consultant chef, is nothing less than we would expect. What’s more, you can enjoy live piano and singing while you dine. 

    Address: The Court, 9 Kingly Street, London, W1B 5PH

  • Brera Riverside

    Brera Riverside is Canary Wharf’s knockout new Italian restaurant and we can’t commend it enough. Decked out like the sort of eatery you might find on a Napoli side street, the floors are beautifully tiled and a grand deli counter sits at the restaurant’s front, from which you can pluck fresh Italian produce. The menu is wonderfully simple and strewn with Italian classics, but the Brera lasagna reigned supreme. How good was the tiramisu? There are no words.

    Address: Brera Riverside, 31 Westferry Circus, Canary Wharf, London E14 8RR


    MILK BEACH is a taste of Bondi Beach in (much less sunny) Queen’s Park. With bright décor full of marble tables and plants, you’d be forgiven for thinking this was a lesson in style over substance. Not so. With coffee beans that can be traced back to the farm and organic wines from independents, everything has been consciously considered. MILK BEACH doesn’t take bookings so we recommend arriving early on a weekend, and definitely order the coddled eggs and sweet potato purée.

    Address: MILK BEACH, 19 Lonsdale Road, Queen’s Park, NW6 6RA

  • Gloria Trattoria

    Part of the legendary Big Mama group, Gloria is a 70s Capri-style Trattoria in the middle of Shoreditch, run by a passionate bunch of 85 people from the Bel Paese and the sunny coast of Naples.

    The explosive menu mixes old Italian classics, with amazing products direct from 180 small producers in Italy – plus a few fun twists from Chef Andrea. From the oozing pesto heart burrata, to the Osso Buco Ravioli, to the Neapolitan Pizza heated in the gigantic Marana oven, you’re in for a feast. And look out for the legendary lemon meringue pie for dessert. 

    The place gets funky at night, with house-made playlists and a cosy vibe downstairs. And Big Mama’s new payment platform, Sunday, lets you pay in under 30 seconds and easily split the payment among friends.

    Address: 54-56 Great Eastern St, London EC2A 3QR

  • 108 Brasserie, Marylebone

    Don’t be fooled by the (glamorous) look and the name, 108 Brasserie serves a lot more than elaborate French food.

    This modern British eatery champions British tradition and elevates British classics like the ultimate comfort food, fish and chips, served (why not) with some decadent creamy spinach – but that’s just the beginning. From Italian burrata and wild mushroom risotto to Thai green curry, the menu is a real journey around the world through your tastebuds.

    The little extra? The sleek decor and lots of space. 

  • Frenchie, Covent Garden

    Every single London-based foodie will have already tried to get a table at Frenchie. Or, failing this, they will have at least stared dreamily at the menu as they’ve waited for pay-day.

    So we imagine we’re preaching to the choir when we tell you that Frenchie is the first (and only, for now) UK-based restaurant of French chef Greg Marchand, Jamie Oliver’s protégé and one of France’s hottest rising chefs. And this modern French bistro has everything a millennial could dream of: Instagram-friendly industrial design, soft stools to lounge around sipping delicious pre-dinner cocktails on and, most importantly of all, mouth-watering food from across the channel.

    French classics, like the tender duck breast or the creamy foie-gras with cranberries, are served next to more experimental dishes like their famous maple syrup and bacon scones. The cherry on the cake, though, is that light and decadent banoffee dessert – which is, in our humble opinion, the most delicious way to end your day.

    Address: 16 Henrietta St, Covent Garden, London WC2E 8QH

  • Isabel Mayfair

    If you’re looking for an opulent dining experience, look no further than Isabel’s. From the fabric-lined walls to the staff uniforms created by Colombian designer Johanna Ortiz, this place screams glamour and is perfect for scratching that let’s get dressed up and go all out itch.

    Food-wise, everything revolves around a low-carb, high-protein ‘small plates’ menu that blends South American and Mediterranean influences, with on-trend lactose- and gluten-free options throughout. Whether you’d pick a grilled suckling lamb shoulder or beef tartare topped with a vibrant quail’s egg yolk, you’ll have made a good choice here.

    Address: 26 Albemarle St , London W1S 4HY

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