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Where to eat in London - a food and dining guide

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With every type of cuisine on offer you could possibly imagine, London caters for a wide range of individual palettes. Whether it’s rustic Italian pasta, spicy Mexican burritos, fragrant Thai curry or freshly-rolled sushi you fancy, London serves it all up in abundance. Head down to Brick Lane to try one of their famous curries, visit Soho’s trendy dining district to explore their wealth of international fare or tuck into traditional afternoon tea at The Ritz.

Emily Wilson

My Destination local expert on

London

British food is typically hearty and, by that, we mean stodgy. Bangers and mash, creamy chicken pies, loaded toad in the whole, mountainous roasts and deep-fried fish and chips. Not for the fainthearted, or those on a diet, these warming dishes are best enjoyed by a roaring pub fire; perfect for a brisk winter’s day. If you find yourself in the East End of London, be sure to also try a jellied eel – an 18th century English dish. Just be warned, they are as appetizing as they look.

 

Brixton

 

With its Afro-Caribbean street markets and multicultural flavour, South London has become a particularly popular place to dine. Among its collection of food hotspots is Brixton, one of the best spots in the area to sample something new. With original restaurants popping up all over the place an urban food scene has developed in Brixton, transforming it into one of the trendiest places to eat. To grab a slice of slow-cooked sourdough pizza, visit Franco Manca - a local’s favorite. Alternatively, stop by Honest Burger for a British burger bun with chips; another great spot which sees people queuing at its doors to dine.

 

• Franco Manca, Unit 4, Market Row, SW9 8DL. Tel: 020 7738 3021

• Honest Burger, Unit 12, Brixton Village, SW9 8PR. Tel: 020 7733 7963

 

Charlotte Street

 

Hidden in plain sight of central London, just a block away from Oxford Street, Charlotte Street is one of the city’s busiest dining spots. An extensive street where you’ll find a huge selection of restaurants, cafes, bars and pubs, Charlotte Street draws in the crowds for after-work drinking and dining. To tuck into a tasty Argentinian steak and a large glass of wine head to Gaucho, a fashionable place to be seen dining. Alternatively visit Bubbledogs, a trendy hotdog and champagne bar, and one of the latest additions to the bustling core of Charlotte Street.

 

• Gaucho, 60A Charlotte St, W1T 2NU. Tel: 020 7580 6252

• Bubbledogs, 70 Charlotte St, W1T 4QG. Tel: 020 7637 7770

 

Covent Garden

 

A colorful piazza filled with street performers, sweet-smelling markets and cozy restaurants, a visit to Covent Garden is an absolute must. Wander around Neal’s Yard, a narrow alleyway opening out into a sprawling courtyard, to explore the endless trinket shops and gourmet stalls. Dive into rustic-decorated Opera Tavern to get your fill of authentic Spanish tapas or stop by Hawksmoor for some of the best steaks and cocktails in the area. Then, wander along to the West End to catch one of London’s latest shows.

 

• Opera Tavern, 23 Catherine St, WC2B 5JS. Tel: 020 7836 3680

• Hawksmoor Seven Dials, 11 Langley St, WC2H 9JG. Tel: 020 7420 9390

 

Soho

 

A gritty, fast-paced, thriving part of London, Soho is a hotbed of restaurants and bars. Regenerated from its seedy beginnings, today Soho has become a haven for chic clubs, pubs and restaurants. Offering a sensory overload in terms of its cuisine choices, in Soho you can select from hundreds of popular gastronomy, including Bocca di Lupo’s upmarket Italian fare or Koya’s salivating noodle selection.

 

• Bocca di Lupo, 12 Archer St, W1D 7BB. Tel: 020 7734 2223

• Koya, 49 Frith St, W1D 4SG. Tel: 020 7836 3680