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London boasts some of the best restaurants in the world. Don’t believe us? Ask Gordon Ramsay. Ask Heston Blumenthal. Ask Jamie Oliver. Ask Fergus Henderson. Ask Gary Rhodes. Ask Thomasina Miers. Ask Giorgio Locatelli. Ask Angela Hartnett. Ask Marcus Wareing. Ask Michel Roux Jr. Ask Hélène Darroze. Ask Pierre Koffmann. Ask Peter Gordon. Ask Anna Hansen. Ask Richard Corrigan. Ask Vivek Singh. Ask the Galvin Brothers. Just ask them about the best restaurants in the world.
Or, you can just ask us, the Fluid London critics. We've all sampled a restaurant or two in our time. Below, we each choose our favourite London restaurants.
Le Pont de la Tour Restaurant
London Bridge & Bermondsey / Restaurant / Cuisine: French
Since it opened in 1991 Le Pont de la Tour has always been good but now, since a 2015 relaunch, it's even better. The location still affords superb views of Tower Bridge from the terrace and window tables (try to bag table 21 to max out on the visual spectacle) and the food remains French but a new head chef has brought new tastes to enjoy. The bar offers hors d'oeuvres and sharing plates while the menus in the nautically-themed restaurant allow for a long night out. Chosen by Sean Shehan.
Notting Hill / Bar / Restaurant / Cuisine: British
Wow, what a find! It wasn't until after my visit to the busy little West London restaurant that I found out that it's run by three brothers, the Gladwin Brothers, from Sussex, who each play a role in the food cycle (farmer, chef, restaurant manager). Much of the seasonal produce (including the wine) is created on their farm which means it tastes so much more refreshing. This is the kind of restaurant I'd take someone to if I was trying to impress them. True insider knowledge here. Inspiring British food at its very best. Chosen by Christian Rose-Day.
Soho / Bar / Restaurant / Cuisine: Brasserie
From Corbin and King, the people behind The Wolseley, comes this vast dining hall at the centre of London's West End. The Art Deco interior has been improved since it was the Atlantic Bar and Grill, and the service is what you would expect from a 3-star Michelin restaurant. However, the real highlight for me is the very affordable, divine food. The presentation might be simple and elegant, but the taste is top notch. The Boeuf bourguignon was cooked to and the taste of perfection. My top tip for everyone is to come early or make sure you've made a booking. Chosen by Adasi Miskiewicz.
The Grill on the Market
City of London / Restaurant / Cuisine: British
This welcoming, friendly steakhouse does exactly what it says on the tin - source prime cuts from Farringdon Market across the road, grill them to perfection and serve them up in a seemingly never-ending cornucopia of carnivory. Simple but devastatingly effective, and with snappy lunch offers, seafood platters and excellent desserts to boot, The Grill caters to all walks of life. Some of the best steak in the City of London, in a comfortable and relaxed environment - truly a cut above! Chosen by Fergus Price. Download
Marylebone / Restaurant / Cuisine: Italian
Fucina was not my first introduction to Italian food but it's one of my absolute favourites. One for the morning after those nights before when you forgot yourself and your weekend promises, Fucina invites you to have carbs in the AM without shame. It's perfectly located around the corner from Baker Street station, so you can choose to walk in Regent's Park or get the tube back home to your duvet after stuffing yourself in meaty or fishy traditional Italian fare. Chosen by Verity Nelson. Download
Meson Don Felipe
Waterloo / Restaurant / Cuisine: Spanish
There are many reasons why this tapas restaurant in Southwark could be my favourite restaurant. It could be because the tapas are absolutely delicious and come in generous portions. It could be the buzz which comes from a restaurant so packed that it's hard to navigate your way to the toilet. If truth be told, however, it's because tucked in the corner of the room, sitting on some sort of platform, there will often be found a Spanish guitarist playing the night away. Chosen by Anna Robin.
Soho / Bar / Restaurant / Cuisine: Tapas
Dining at Barrafina is an unforgettable experience. This Michelin-starred tapas bar doesn't accept reservations: you have to queue for a while to conquer your place at the counter. Expectations and excitement mingle as you sip on a mellow glass of sherry, waiting for your turn to sit at the bar stools in front of the open-space kitchen where the magic happens. Then they come, dish after dish of delicious small bites: perfectly grilled octopus, mouthwatering tortillas, and the most succulent prawns you'll find outside the Mediterranean. Wash it down with some wonderful Spanish wine, and soak up the electric atmosphere. Chosen by Giulia Turbiglio. Download
East London Liquor Company
Hackney / Bar /
A short walk from Roman Road Market and Victoria Park, the East London Liquor Company (or ELLC to locals) is your proverbial fork in the road. Its Bow location is tucked away confusingly beside a Soho Gym, and within a car park; but step past the iron-clad gates and you'll be reassuringly welcomed by bar staff with an impressive knowledge fine gin, amaro, fernet, rum, vermouth, Italian vino, and locally brewed craft beer. They had us at fine gin! A menu of Italian plates - gourmet pizzas, burrata, giant king prawns - mean there'll be zero regrets once the cheque comes. Chosen by Glynnis Mapp. Download
Clerkenwell / Bar / Restaurant / Cuisine: Cafe
Trendy Exmouth Market is home to my favourite London restaurant-cum-cafe. The décor is chic yet minimalist and the staff are as young and hip as they are friendly and enthusiastic. The Australian/New Zealand themed food is to die for (don't leave without trying the cornbread and Gypsy potatoes), the wine list is impressive, the cocktails are prepared lovingly with fresh ingredients and there's even a roastery in the basement. And the desserts. Oh. The. Desserts! Chosen by Sophie Atkinson.
Boisdale of Belgravia
Victoria / Bar / Restaurant / Cuisine: Scottish
Belgravia - Ideally you'd arrive at Boisdale in a vintage British sports car, although perhaps unwisely so, given the plethora of whiskies on offer at this classic British restaurant. It is one for the carnivores. I find it impossible to see beyond the haggis, followed by the exceptional fillet steak. Come with an empty stomach and an emptier afternoon. Once through the doors, you'll find it difficult to extricate yourself from its charms. Chosen by Patrick Evenden.
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