Rumor: British food is terrible and all you eat is fish & chips and English breakfast.
My experience: London is foodie heaven… and I didn’t eat fish & chips at all.
If you love to eat, you’ll love London. How can you not, when there are delicious places to eat on every corner, with cuisines from all over the world? I ate and nibbled and snacked my way through 3 full days in London and still feel that I barely skimmed the surface of what the city had to offer. And honestly as a result of jet lag, we ate at all hours of the day, from 9am to 5am, so I proudly and truly present to you… 72 hours of eating in London.
72 Hours of Eating in London
My favorites: Chai tea and Chicken Tikka
Dishoom is a London favorite with locations across the city. Be prepared for long waits as this restaurant is quite popular and known for it’s “British Indian” food. We waited in line for about 45 minutes before being seated, and they kindly passed out glasses of mint tea and Chai as we waited. It was absolutely worth the wait and this feast was a great way to kick off our London trip.
Price: $$$ – $$$$
My favorites: Grilled sea bream
Amaya was given as an enthusiastic recommendation along with the advice “go during lunch.” This 1 Michelin star restaurant offers set course meals that are ~90 pounds at dinner and only 32 pounds for lunch. We had a long and leisurely lunch of pomegranate noodle salad, grilled paneer, grilled sea bream, tandoori lamb, and chicken biryani – all phenomenal!
Pepe Italian Street Food
Meal: late night snack
There’s absolutely nothing special about Pepe other than 1) it serves pizza late into the night and 2) it was right by where we were staying. We visited Pepe multiple times for the London equivalent of a New York $1 slice (note: definitely not NY-style pizza, just cheap and open late). For that, Pepe gets a shout-out for being a key part of my London experience.
My favorites: Korean fried chicken and Matcha ice cream French toast
I came in with medium expectations for Shack-Fuyu, which advertises “western-style Japanese food,” but also has Korean food on the menu. Asian fusion restaurants can be very hit or miss in my experience, especially if they try to bring in too many Asian cuisines. I have to say that Shack-Fuyu’s Korean fried chicken wings blew me away. I still dream about those wings, so perfectly crisp and just drowning in sweet, sour, and spciy sauce. I just wish Shack-Fuyu were open later so I could eat those wings at 3am.
Duck & Waffle
Meal: late night snack
Price: $$ – $$$
My favorites: the original duck & waffle
First, you have to go to Duck & Waffle just for the gorgeous views. Located on the 42nd floor, this restaurant-bar gives you sweeping views across the Thames. And if the views aren’t enough, Duck & Waffle also serves fantastic food. It’s twist on the chicken and waffle is quite refined – two beautifully crisped waffle quarters paired with duck confit and mustard maple syrup. And if the food and the views aren’t enough to tempt you there, Duck & Waffle is open 24/7. You can enjoy the beautiful views and high-end food at 4am after a night out, if you so desire.
My favorites: figs with goat cheese and honey
Tapas Brindisa is a cute little tapas place with multiple locations in London. It was tasty and reminded me a bit of my travels through Barcelona and Madrid!
My favorites: dulce de leche and affogato
I’m pretty L’ETO was designed to optimize Instagram opportunities (there are even “Instagrammable” indicators on the menu to tell you which items photograph well), but luckily their desserts are as tasty as they are beautiful. Signs saying “Sorry, tonight I’m eating cake” merrily decorate walls covered with ivy and hanging flowers. I had the fanciest affogoto of my life there, complete with fresh fruit and crunchy nuts, and the sweets didn’t stop there. The dulce de leche was melt-in-your-mouth delicious and creamy.
Aqua Shard is the fancy rooftop bar on top of London’s iconic Shard skyscraper, and the drink prices are as high as the building. The drinks are beautiful and creative, and as a gin lover, I enjoyed the wide range of London-themed gin drinks. So come for the view and cry over the price of your cocktail – just make sure not to wear “trainers,” as these are against dress code.
Shoryu ramen was the perfect stop on a cloudy and drizzly day before heading to the National Gallery. All the good signs of ramen are there: rich, flavorful broth, perfectly soft-boiled egg, and they let you choose the noodle firmness to your preference.
Meal: high tea
Everything about our experience at sketch was iconic, from high tea right at 4pm to the bathrooms shaped like individual egg pods. Make sure to make a reservation, as this 2 Michelin star restaurant gets quite busy for tea. The tea room is bright pink with pink lady finger chairs and table cloths. We sat here for, no joke, over 3 hours eating our way through caviar toast soldiers, tiny sandwiches, itty bitty desserts, scones with jam and clotted cream, and Victorian sponge. You can try as many teas from their menu of 27 as you wish, and the whole time you are serenaded with live music. When your bladder is ready to burst from all the tea you’ve drank, you can check out their futuristic bathroom, where every toilet is hidden in an egg-shaped pod. Truly an incredible experience as our last meal in London
2 thoughts on “72 hours of eating in London”
Pingback: September wrap-up – Halicopter Away
Pingback: Earl Grey tea cake | Halicopter Away