Bib Gourmands in London 2023 | Top-Tier, Wallet-Friendly Dining
When the Michelin Guide debuted, only a three Star restaurant was worth a special trip. A two Star spot was only worth a small detour, and a one Star eatery was only worth stopping at if it happened to be on the way to your ultimate destination.
Things have changed a little since then.
Standard have been raised. Like, a lot. And now, there’s a rating for restaurants that don’t quite make the cut for a Star, but which nevertheless deliver an exceptional meal. It’s called a Bib Gourmand – and here’s a list of all the London restaurants that have them, organised by area.
And yes… they’re all worth a special trip.
Fresh, surprisingly affordable pasta in a cool, industrial Covent Garden space.
If you like Taiwanese bao buns so good they generate perpetual queues, then this is your spot.
From the people behind The Palomar, a North African counter-dining spot in Covent Garden.
Soho’s own hole-in-the-wall-style Iranian kebab joint.
One of the best value meals you’ll find in London, served in a cavernous art deco space that looks a million bucks.
Highly authentic Sri Lankan food in Soho.
Excellent yakitori skewers in Soho, for which they scorch every part of the chicken.
Regional Thai food inspired by roadside eateries, that is anything but middle of the road.
Indian small plates in a laid back space.
One of our favourite restaurants in London, hands down. Israeli food, perfectly executed. Get a seat at the bar.
Fragrant Indian food in Fitzrovia, that comes with an eccentric cocktail bar below.
A smash as soon as it opened in 2019, Paradise can be found in Soho serving exceptional Sri Lankan fare in industrial surrounds.
Plaza Khao Gaeng | New for 2023
A Thai canteen that could have been plucked straight from Bangkok, with ingredients sourced either from Thailand or grown by the chef himself.
Volta do Mar
Discover the crossover between Portuguese and Goan cuisine in a grand Covent Garden townhouse.
The late Russell Norman’s “ugly but good” Clerkenwell trattoria, which has turned out to be very, very good indeed.
Punchy, modern Indian food in a stylish space.
This casual Shoreditch spot specialises in fresh pasta and fresh charcuterie, and does them both extremely well.
Quite possibly the best BBQ place in London.
St John Bread and Wine
The pioneers of nose-to-tail dining, who also happen to make the best doughnuts in the city.
This former Victorian butcher’s shop still brings the meat, with nose-to-tail style dishes.
An understated space on a pretty street, Kateh serves some gorgeous Persian food.
The Pelican W11 | New for 2023
A strikingly cosy and beautiful gastropub off Portobello Road, serving elegant Modern European small plates and dishes to share.
Some of the best, fieriest, Thai food in the city.
Hām | New for 2023 | CLOSED
A sunlight-drenched dining room with a menu of creative British fare, sadly closed due to rocketing costs.
Strangely, one of the only New Orleans-style restaurants in the city. And it’s excellent.
From the Westerns Laundry team, this stylish space is actually a former garage. Park yourself there for some of the best European small plates in the city.
A comfortable, self-described “bourgeois” brasserie, you’ll find classic French fare, and excellent wines.
Some of the best Italian food in North London, from the team also behind Padella.
Superb seafood in a modern industrial space. Everything here feels like they’ve hit the nail right on the head.
Evernight | New for 2023
A sleek, modern izakaya where Japanese culinary techniques are applied to seasonal British ingredients.
From celebrity chef Jose Pizarro, this is his tapas-heavy flagship.
South African food is a rarity in the capital, but Kudu makes you wish it wasn’t.
Hands down the best pound-for-pound meal in the city. Fresh pasta, hand-rolled each day, for extremely low prices.
A neighbourhood, roughly Mediterranean eatery and wine bar from three locals with serious restaurant credentials.
Upstairs (at Trinity)
If you don’t fancy the formality of Michelin Starred Trinity, you can always head upstairs for a more casual (but also delicious) experience.
Like Bib Gourmands? You’ll love these Michelin Star restaurants in London…