About Food in London
London offers culinary experiences to suit the simplest to the most exotic palates--ranging from gastro pubs serving seasonal British produce to Michelin-starred restaurants plating up modern-European and Asian delicacies to cheap-eat cafes serving unfamiliar vegetable dishes from West Africa.
In addition to sit-down restaurants, there's also a plethora of food markets where you can "grab and go" all sorts of wonderful grub to eat while walking and talking, to picnic in the park, or to take home to cook later. Pop-up street food events have also exploded in London's culinary scene in recent years, especially during summer months, which offer foodies the ultimate choice of inexpensive authentic and fusion cuisines. Refer to the "New & Noteworthy" page for more information about street food.
What to Eat?
For British classics you can't beat bangers and mash, pie and mash or a hearty Sunday roast finished off with pudding. Not only do such classics fill the stomach, they warm the body on a cold, wet day. Afternoon tea or "cream tea" is also one of those very British pastimes that visitors to London should partake in--but not just at the Ritz hotel. For everything in between, one must let your tastebuds do the walking. No matter the palate or budget, there is something for everyone in this epicure's epicentre.
You don't tip anywhere in the UK unless A) a service charge isn't included in your bill (then you might tip about 10 percent of the total) or B) you have exceptional service and you feel the waiter deserves a bit extra.
Price per Meal
Average cost of a main meal is £10-£20. But you can pay a lot more at a high-end or Michelin-starred restaurants.
Here's just a sample-size of recommended restaurants (a mix of budget and high-end) by area:
North London: Ottolenghi in Angel, Moro in Clerkenwell, Antepliler on Green Lanes, Harringay.
East London: The Boundary in Shoreditch, Viet Grill in Shoreditch, Poppies Fish & Chips in Spitalfields.
Central London: Yauatcha in Soho, Dishoom in Covent Garden, Hummus Brothers in Soho, La Bodega Negra in Soho.
South London: Roast in Borough, Franco Manca in Brixton, Saravanaa Bhavan in Tooting.
West London: L'Art du Fromage in Chelsea, Bumpkin in Notting Hill, Sagar in Hammersmith.
Best gastro pubs: The Anchor & Hope in Southwark, The White Horse in Parsons Green, The Garrison in London Bridge, The Wells Tavern in Hampstead, The Eastern in Clerkenwell.
For some of London's best coffee and for great atmosphere try Timberyard UK on Old Street, Caravan on Exmouth Market, Foxcroft & Ginger in Soho, the Camera Cafe at the Barbican Centre, Betty's in Dalston, Hotel Chocolat Roast & Conch in Covent Garden and Troubadour Cafe in Earl's Court.
For afternoon tea (not at a hotel), Bea's of Bloomsbury in Bloomsbury and St. Paul's, the Court Restaurant at the British Museum, the Chelsea Teapot in Chelsea, and the Tea Rooms in Stoke Newington are sure to please your loose tea and sweet tooth cravings.
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