The Best Restaurants in the City of London
Last updated: 10th February 2020 | Main Image: Blixen
390,000 people work in the City of London.
And 125,000 tonnes of fresh produce are traded through Billingsgate and Smithfield Markets a year.
…Which works out as a pretty decent ratio of 3.12 tonnes per person.
Two facts that led us to strongly suspect that someone, somewhere, that isn’t Pret, is offering high-quality nosh to the people of the Square Mile. And upon closer inspection, it seems there’s quite a few such places.
So here they are, the finest restaurants in the City of London…
CHINESE FROM THE LAUDED A.WONG: KYM’S
It’s the younger sister of Michelin-starred A Wong – an opulently-designed Chinese restaurant, boasting its own fully-grown Blossom tree. Like its sister, the food takes inspiration from all regions of China, although always with a new, creative twist. The cocktails are also Chinese-inspired, alongside Chinese lager, and a mix of New and Old World wines. READ MORE.
Address: 19 Bloomberg Arcade, EC4N 8AR
THE HOME OF NOSE-TO-TAIL EATING: ST. JOHN, SMITHFIELD
Sliiiightly pushing the geographical boundaries of the City of London, but remaining firmly on the list by virtue of it being one of the most incredible restaurants in London, full stop(.) The former townhouse/smokehouse/greenhouse now plays host to a restaurant that champions the use of offal and unusual cuts of animals – and has received a Michelin star for its troubles. READ MORE.
Address: 26 St. John Street, Smithfield, The City, EC1M 4AY
A CHOPHOUSE LIKE NO OTHER: BLACKLOCK CITY
The City. It’s the best place for bringing home the bacon. A fact clearly not lost on the ex-Hawksmoor trio behind Blacklock, who have brought the bacon right back, by opening the second of their restaurants in the City of London. They’ve set up shop in an old electricity substation that’s been built on the site of a medieval meat market – appropriate given both their chosen fare, and the fact that their Soho branch was founded in a former brothel. READ MORE.
Address: 13 Philpot Lane, Bank, EC3M 1DE
FOUR HUNDRED-PLUS WINES AND ZERO PRETENTIOUSNESS: HUMBLE GRAPE
Scientifically proven to be more delicious than humble pie, this eatery-cum-wine-bar serves light Modern European cuisine designed around their meagre 200-strong cellar. Oh, and the whole complex is set within the atmospheric three-centuries-old vaults of St. Bride’s Church, designed by Sir Christopher Wren. Not that they like to brag about it. READ MORE.
Address: 1 St Bride’s Passage, Fleet Street, Central London, EC4Y 8EJ
A GRADE II-LISTED FARRINGDON INSTITUTION: THE QUALITY CHOP HOUSE
The Quality Chop House first opened as a working-man’s caff back in 1896 and has stayed as a restaurant of some sort since, meaning it’s been feeding the good folk of Farringdon for over 150 years. The latest incarnation opened up again eight years ago, keeping all of the original features – dark wood pews and a charming black and white chequered floor – but modernising the menu to serve expertly-cooked, seasonally-led Modern British food, alongside a small but well-considered list of New and Old World Wines. READ MORE.
Address: 88-94 Farringdon Road, Farringdon, The City, EC1R 3EA
SIMPLE BUT SATISFYING ALL-DAY DINING: BLIXEN
Once a bank, now an all-day brasserie boasting three individually designed dining rooms, one of which is a leafy pergola-type space, where you can enjoy simple but satisfying comfort food, surrounded by plants. READ MORE.
Address: 65a Brushfield Street, Spitalfields, East London, E1 6AA
EXPERT BURGERS AND WHISKY GALORE: MAC & WILD
Since Pizza Pilgrims started calzone-fying mars bars, the Scots have had to come up with a new national cuisine. And you’ll find the best of it at this Scotch pop-up, which not only serves haggis pops, Venison Scotch eggs and Highland fried pheasant, they’ve also got the Burger of the Year 2016 – the Venimoo, a basement whiskey bar and er, game hunting simulators in the gun room. In short, ‘Scot everything you could need. READ MORE.
Address: Mac & Wild City, 9a Devonshire Square, Liverpool Street, The City, EC2M 4YN
A SWANKY INDIAN, FIT FOR ENTERTAINING: BRIGADIERS
There’s no stopping the Sethi Siblings. With countless Michelin-starred restaurants already under their belt (Trishna; Gymkhana; Hoppers etc.) they’re now trying their hand at Indian BBQ, served-up in a swanky, City-slicker playground with cocktails on tap and a private pool room boasting its own whisky vending machine. READ MORE.
Address: 1-5 Bloomberg Arcade, Bank, The City, EC4N 8AR
VENETIAN-INSPIRED SMALL PLATES: POLPO
The Polpo restaurants were, for a very long time, kings of the restaurant scene. And while the novelty factor has worn off a little, it doesn’t change the fact that they serve damn fine food. Nor that in this branch, there’s a dedicated Negroni bar. READ MORE.
Address: 2-3 Cowcross Street, Smithfield, The City, EC1M 6DR
Venturing further afield? Check out the best restaurants in Shoreditch and Spitalfields.