The 10 Best New London Restaurants of 2019
London’s restaurant scene has been on fire this year.
And of all the stellar openings, we’ve narrowed down the 10 absolute best, in no particular order, taking into account the best balance of styles, locations, price points, etc. And if you’re in any doubt?
Then the only thing you’ll be eating will be your words.
Davies and Brook | Mayfair
It’s not really a surprise this is up here.
In fact, it would be a huge surprise if it wasn’t. After all, its sister restaurant in New York, Eleven Madison Park, has gotten to the point where it almost cannot win any more awards. Like, seriously. It’s maxed out its Michelin Stars, and hit the number one spot on the World’s 50 Best List.
Luckily, Davies & Brook also happens to have the same head chef, with the exact same team behind him, and the considerable resources of the Claridges Hotel – which is where you’ll find it – backing them up. And it’s absolutely stunning…
Details: Open Mon-Sat | Claridge’s, Brook Street, W1K 4HR | ££££
Manteca | Soho
As pop ups go, the one that took place at 10 Heddon Street from chefs Chris Leach and David Carter this summer might be one of the best, ever. It was absolutely drenched in praise from critics & customers alike. Grace Dent called it “exemplary”, and promised that she’s follow “wherever they go next”.
Well, this is where they went.
Manteca is their permanent spot, and it’s every bit as good as their pop up, serving much the same menu of fresh pasta and house charcuterie in a low-lit, moody space…
Details: Open Mon-Sat | 58-59 Great Marlborough Street, W1F 7JY | £££
Nutshell | Covent Garden
When you’re largely responsible for creating one of the finest dining experiences in the city – the Middle Eastern hotspot that is The Palomar – it comes as no surprise that people are interested in what you do next.
Particularly when it’s another Middle Eastern style restaurant.
In a beautiful space.
In Covent Garden.
Well, Jeremy Borrow is one such person. And after learning the art of Israeli cooking for 25 years in Tel Aviv, then becoming head chef at The Palomar for a few years, before taking control of the kitchen at Covent Garden’s Nutshell when it opened this summer.
Details: Open Mon-Sat | 30 St Martin’s Lane, WC2N 4ER | £££
Trivet | Bermondsey
As the executive chef of the Fat Duck (and the Heston restaurant group) Johnny Lake has ben cooking what is literally some of the finest and most creative food on earth for almost a decade and a half now.
And now he’s opened his own restaurant.
Expectations were naturally high, but then – if you can believe it – Johnny Lake is used to a high-pressure environment. And he’s delivered something that’s truly his own. The food is often simple (‘chicken and vinegar’ is one main course) but meticulously well-executed, and occasionally delivers something quite innovative, like his now-famous potato mille feuille dessert.
And the overall impression it delivers?
Millimeter-precise perfection, in everything.
Details: Open Tue-Sat | 36 Snowsfields, SE1 3SU | ££££
Endo at the Rotunda | White City
A third generation sushi master, opening an intimate 24-seat restaurant that looks like a cloud on the 8th floor of an iconic London building ?
It’s not exactly a huge surprise that Endo at the Rotunda has already scored its first Michelin Star less than six months after it opened.
Details: Open Tue-Sat | White City House Television Centre, 101 Wood Lane, W12 7FR | ££££
Bubala | Shoredtich
If you were go in blind, without knowing anything about the restaurant, you may well not even notice that you’d just had an entirely vegetarian meal at Bubala. It’s just that good.
But it’s not that surprising when you consider the sheer amount of time the showrunners (chef Helen Graham & front of house Marc Summers) spent perfecting their recipes, drinks, and service-style at the many pop ups they’ve held over the years.
And it’s paid off in every bite.
Details: Open Mon-Sat | 65 Commercial Street, E1 6BD | £££
The Sea, The Sea | Chelsea
It looks like success isn’t the only thing that the people at Bonnie Gull have repeated.
The Sea, The Sea is one of those rare West London restaurants that feels every bit as cool and sleek as its East London cousins, but also retains its elegant edge. Thanks to the daily day-boat deliveries, the fish is extremely fresh (the place even acts as a fishmonger by day), and the dishes are absolutely first-rate. Plus, it acts as a champagne bar, too.
Details: Open daily | 174 Pavilion Road, Chelsea, SW1X 0AW | £££
Oren | Hackney
Oren is a deeply personal restaurant.
It’s named after the head chef, Oded Oren, who it happens is also the sole proprietor. In a rare move, he’s actually managed to finance the entire operation himself, meaning that everything – from the decor to the drinks – is all a reflection of Oded’s own tastes. And his taste is pretty good. In fact, Jay Rayner describes one of his signature dishes as “verging on genius”. And as usual, he’s absolutely right.
Details: Open Tue-Sun | 89 Shacklewell Lane, Hackney, E8 2EB | £££
Sussex | Soho
Sussex comes to us from the Gladwin brothers, a sibling team whose restaurants Rabbit, The Shed, and Nutbourne are all powered by organic veg, ethically-reared meat and wine produced at the family farm in – you guessed it – Sussex.
And thus, they decided to bring Sussex to Soho. And they’ve absolutely pulled it off…
Details: Open Tue-Sun | 63-64 Frith Street, Soho, W1D 3JW | £££
Peg | Hackney
The Standard said it had “deep-bore deliciousness”. The FT said it was “honestly awe-inspiring”. Grace Dent said of one dish “By God, I want it again”.
Peg has, since it opened, proven that even if you have a slightly odd concept – grilled skewers on countertop seating – you could still create something stunning.
If you don’t like it, you won’t have a leg to stand on.
Details: Open Weds-Sun | 120 Morning Lane, E9 6LH | ££
Want something to drink with that? Check out the best bars of 2019…