Get rid of your preconceptions; we eat well in Great Britain and especially in London! Every hour of the day, here is a range of culinary addresses that are both typical, traditional, exotic, and innovative in the four corners of the British capital. Let’s look into those culinary experiences in London.
1. Breakfast at the Regency Café in Pimlico
To start the day the English way, grab a good breakfast at the Regency Café in the Pimlico district. Close to Victoria, it has been offering the same type of menu since its opening in 1946. The famous Full English Breakfast and its variants to which ingredients are removed or added like Eggs Benedict (poached eggs with muffins and a Hollandaise sauce). You also have light options with toast, butter, and jam for those who are not fans of fried breakfasts and a tad bit filling.
You can also drop by for an early lunch or dinner. The cafe closes at 7.15pm, and you can also try the pies, another traditional British dish. The one art decor adorned with tiles and tables covered with Formica, the Regency seems to have evolved over time. Moreover, it is often used for film shoots. Another major advantage is low prices, despite the neighborhood English Breakfast at €6!
2. Lunch at the Restaurant of the British Museum or the National Gallery
Lunch in a large museum, especially the British Museum or the National Gallery, is a more classic alternative. These two national museums, free and essential during a visit to London and deserve to have lingered for the pleasure of mouth. Take a break before discovering other galleries of the museum or the temporary exhibitions and try those experiences.
At the British Museum, the Great Court Restaurant is sumptuous. Located in the middle of the museum, high up under the immense glass dome, it offers a large salad buffet. At the National Gallery, the National Dining Rooms restaurant provides an exceptional view of Trafalgar Square. It allows you to discover the best of British cuisine, especially with its County Menus that promote products from every geographic corner of the kingdom.
3. Indian or Bangladian Restaurants on Commercial Road
Head east for lunch or dinner! Sure, you’ll hear about Brick Lane, the famous street that runs down from Shoreditch Station to Whitechapel Road for its trendy shops and Bengladian eateries. To avoid the tourists, go to Commercial Road. The largely Bengladi or Indian clientele is an excellent sign of authenticity.
On the menu of restaurants, curries of course, and a plethora of traditional dishes that restaurateurs will describe with pleasure. Vegetarians and vegans will be delighted because the cards offer many options without meat or fish. However, be careful with spices. If you are a little sensitive, report it, and they will recommend suitable dishes.
In some cases, you will even be given a reduced dose of chili. On the other hand, if you can’t do without a small glass of wine or a beer at the table, consider bringing your own drinks. Most of the restaurants in Commercial Road do not serve alcohol. Among the best restaurants in this area, try Tayyabs!
4. Outdoor Afternoon Tea at Kenwood House
Kenwood House is an excellent place if you want to mix culture with the great outdoors, a good cake to taste it! Kenwood House Cafe in beautiful Hampstead Heath Park is adjacent to a stunning 17th-century mansion. Now a museum, one can discover free tour and whets the appetite, as does the heath walk, as Kenwood House overlooks the park.
You can looks out onto a large meadow, bordered by a stream below and a swath of trees in all ranges of green. The rural landscape is magnificent and inspiring. To recover from so much beauty, the café offers good pastries that will perk you up. If you are in the right season, take a tour of the rose garden on the other side of Kenwood House, it is simply splendid.
5. A beer by the Thames at the Mayflower
“It’s beer o’clock!” the English will say. And yes, after the snack, the British aperitif is beer at the pub! And we can’t say that the UK is lacking. While doing so, take advantage of this custom from across the Channel in an establishment with character. The Mayflower in the Rotherhithe district of Bermondsey is one of these. It does not have this name by chance. It is indeed at this location the pub is on the Thames, south side of that the famous ship.
The Mayflower was found in 1620. On entering, one has the impression of finding oneself 400 years back when the pilgrims and the crew of the merchant’s vessel were preparing to cross the Atlantic to settle in the New World. The pub has kept an authentic decor with a fireplace, small wooden tables surrounded by stools, candles on the tables, windows like ship portholes, and a terrace on the Thames. In addition to stepping back in time, the pub offers a good selection of beers, and hungry people will be tempted by traditional Fish & Chips.
6. The Best of British Cuisine at Rules
Who dares to say that in England, we eat badly? Dining at Rules is a great way to get rid of those outdated Epinal images. At Rules, in a very traditional Edwardian decor of woodwork, red velvet, and soft, subdued ocher lights will amaze you. They serve typical dishes around the game but also oysters and pies and typical English puddings.
Rules is one of the oldest restaurant in London. It was created in 1798 by Thomas Rules. Please note, this is a very popular restaurant, especially since it is located in the heart of Covent Garden, near the major theaters. Reservation is therefore compulsory. Before you sit down and even if you don’t have a table try the Cocktail Bar on the first floor. The cocktails are excellent.
7. On the Roofs of Dalston Roof Park
London is also a city where we create and where we experiment with concepts. Here is a lovely one, the Dalston Roof Park. On the roofs of this former district of warehouses transformed into lofts and other apartments, a large covered bar adjoins a terrace where you can admire the sunset over the district and over the British capital, a cocktail in hand, preferably based on Gin.
But more than a bar, the Dalston Roof Park is also a place where you can see concerts, where you can take yoga lessons and get your fill thanks to the food stalls that climb there regularly. Lounging there will also allow you to discover and walk the streets of the hipster district of Dalston and do some shopping in its vintage and trendy stores.
8. Dinner in Chinatown and Finish with a Drink in Soho
London wouldn’t be London without Soho. And in Soho, restaurants in Chinatown are probably the best places to eat. But how do you choose when one establishment literally succeeds another? The chances of getting it wrong are minimal.
However, among the best, I prefer the New World on Gerrard Place. The waitresses walk around with carts of dumplings, and you just have to choose. For basic but excellent cuisine, the soups are succulent and plentiful. And since you’re in Soho, the 24-hour neighborhood, go for a drink at one of the surviving authentic bars. Soho was sadly undergoing a big gentrification facelift like the Friendly Society on Wardour Street. It bears its name perfectly.
So what are you waiting for?
Let’s try these must-have culinary experiences in London. I know you are already thrilled to experience those moments. They will definitely amaze you with their delicious items. Also, share your favourite culinary experience in London, so it will help others as well.
Have a good day!