Wild thing CONTEMPORARY EUROPEAN GASTROPUBS
Hidden away in Covent Garden’s quirky Neal’s Yard is Native, one of London’s most exciting wild-food restaurants. Launched by Ivan Tisdall-Downes and Imogen Davis, who met at university and have a passion for foraging, Native champions local produce. The menu changes daily and often includes venison, rabbit and pigeon – the pigeon kebab is a perfectly concocted dish. Try something more unusual, as everything is fresh and full of flavour. For the best seats in the house, ask for the chef’s table so you can find out where the ingredients are from and sample different flavours.
3 Neal’s Yard, WC2H 9DP. T: 020-3638 8214. www.eatnative.co.uk. Station: Covent Garden Hakkasan
Multi-award-winning restaurant and bar which justifies the hype. ££££. Daily L & D; Thur-Sat last orders 12.30am. www.hakkasan.com. 8 Hanway Place, W1T 1HF (and Mayfair branch). T: 020-7927 7000. D7. Station: Tottenham Court Road.
Take in glorious views across Hyde Park while enjoying superb Sichuan cuisine. ££££. Daily L & D. www.minjiang.co.uk. Royal Garden Hotel, Kensington High St, W8 4PT. T: 020-7361 1988. F3. Station: High Street Kensington.
Tasty dim sum and rice dishes, with a good vibe and prices. ££. www.pingpongdimsum.com. 45 Great Marlborough St, W1F 7JL (and branches). T: 020-7851 6969. D7. Station: Oxford Circus.
1 Lombard Street
A mouth-watering selection of gutsy, modern cooking in the brasserie and more expensive menu in the restaurant of this former bank. Brasserie: £££; Restaurant: ££££. Mon-Fri B, L & D; Sat L. www.1lombardstreet.com. 1 Lombard St, EC3V 9AA. T: 020-7929 6611. D10. Station: Bank.
Galvin at Windows
Michelin-starred restaurant serving modern haute cuisine. Booking essential; smart dress. £££. Mon-Fri & Sun L; Mon-Sat D. www.galvin atwindows.com. Hilton on Park Lane, W1K 1BE. T: 020-7208 4021. E6. Station: Hyde Park Corner.
One of London’s great restaurants and a favourite with celebrities. £££-££££. Daily L & D. Last orders at midnight. www.the-ivy.co.uk. 1-5 West St, WC2H 9NQ. T: 020-7836 4751. D7. Station: Leicester Square.
This sophisticated restaurant serves great food full of big, bold flavours. Tue-Sat L & D. £££. www.sixtyonerestaurant.co.uk. 61 Upper Berkeley St, W1H 7PP. T: 020-7958 3222. D5. Station: Marble Arch.
This restaurant in The Shard serves European dishes with an Asian influence. Daily B, L & D. ££££. www.shangri-la.com/ london. Shangri-La, The Shard, 31 St Thomas St, SE1 9QU. T: 020-7234 8000. F10. Station: London Bridge. Brits consume 382 million portions of fish and chips each year
Le Pont de la Tour
This riverside restaurant serves classic French dishes in a former tea warehouse. £££. Daily L & D. www.lepontdelatour.co.uk. 36d Shad Thames, SE1 2YE. T: 020-7403 8403. Off map. Station: London Bridge. One of London’s first gastropubs, it is still very popular. Mon-Sat L & D; Sun L. ££. www.theeagle farringdon.co.uk. 159 Farringdon Rd, EC1R 3AL. T: 020-7837 1353. D9. Station: Farringdon.
The Thomas Cubitt
Classic dining room with an adjacent bar, serving top-quality British produce. £££. Daily L & D. www.thethomascubitt.co.uk. 44 Elizabeth St, SW1W 9PA. T: 020-7730 6060. Station: Victoria.
Informal dining in this good-value restaurant. Start with chaat (street snacks), then tuck into a grand thali. £. Daily L & D (and branches). www.masala zone.com. 9 Marshall St, W1F 7ER. T: 020-7287 9966. D6. Station: Oxford Circus. In 2001, British Foreign Secretary Robin Cook called chicken tikka masala the national dish, as it reflected the country’s multiculturalism
JAPANESE & KOREAN Engawa
Small but excellent sushi spot. £££. Daily L & D. www.engawa.uk. 2 Ham Yard, W1D 7DT. T: 020-7287 5724. E7. Station: Piccadilly Circus.