If you’re traveling to England soon – or currently residing in this lively foodie town, here’s a short list of restaurants in London that serves tantalizing dishes that are both delicious and won’t negate all those calories you burned during your morning workout. Be sure to pay one (or all) of them a worthwhile visit!
1. Ottolenghi – Notting Hill, Belgravia, Islington & Spitalfields
Mouthwatering Middle Eastern food
I’m a huge fan of Middle Eastern cuisine and my husband happens to be Israeli. As a result, we have long been paying homage to Ottolenghi’s joints. I don’t think that I have ever been in one of his delis without seeing everyone photographing the gorgeous food displays! Seasonal and usually locally sourced, Ottolenghi’s food is an explosion of Middle Eastern flavor.
Here, you can find plenty of mouthwatering tahini, za’atar, sumac, and cardamom in the dishes they serve. I love that he celebrates vegetables in a way not many others do, as the main attraction of the meal. I could eat his roasted aubergine salad that is smothered in yogurt, drizzled with pomegranate seeds, spices, and fresh herbs every day.
While the Spitalfield’s location offers substantially more seating than the other three, don’t feel disheartened if you cannot score a seat. Just have your meal packed for takeaway and enjoy it on the go or as the main dishes for a delightful picnic!
2. The Providores and Tapa Room – Marylebone
Peter Gordon creates the perfect harmony of surprising flavors
The queue for the Tapa Room is always snaking out onto the street and for good reason! The mastermind behind the successful establishment, Chef Peter Gordon, creates such an eccentric fusion of cuisines which in my very humble opinion, is unrivaled in London. The flavor combinations are unexpected which often inspires me to be a little adventurous in my own kitchen.
While the menu is constantly changing, my current favorite is the lobster laksa which is served with lemongrass prawn dumplings over soba noodles. Mark this healthy joint on your list of must try!
PS. You’d be interested to know that they were onto Spirulina smoothies years before it became a health-nut mainstream.
3. Korobuta – Chelsea and Marble Arch
Japanese Grilled Mushrooms
Fresh, local ingredients compliment the intensely flavored contemporary Japanese cuisine. Do not be turn off by Korobuta’s small portions! These rich dishes hit the spot without leaving you feeling bloated. The tuna sashimi pizza is a must-try! Unlike any pizza you have had before, this one has a paper thin crust that has just the perfect amount of crunch. Treat yourself to an impressive lunch on the go with the takeaway bento box offered at the Marble Arch location.
Guaranteed to stir up some office lunchtime jealousy!
4. The Natural Kitchen – Marylebone High Street, Baker Street, Fetter Lane, Trinity Lane & Tudor Street
Check out that salad bar!
While living in Marylebone, The Natural Kitchen was my go-to hangout. Breakfast on the go, post work-out lunch, brunch or for a lazy dinner, the cafe was a staple in my lifestyle. With the largest variety of exciting salads (yes, you read that correctly!) and a juice bar serving a wonderful variety of drinks, there is something for everyone.
Between the protein powders (vegan-friendly options and otherwise), super foods and produce, you can create a made to order wild concoction. My go-to afternoon refresher is a combination of cucumber, watermelon, lychee, and mint. Looking to cater a corporate event? The Natural Kitchen will plate up something lovely to wow your pickiest of guests.
5. Tanya’s – Chelsea & Parson’s Green
Looking for Vegan and raw comfort food? Expertly crafted by wellness coach and raw food guru, Tanya Maher, you can find plenty of it here! Itching for risotto, tacos or gnocchi? Tanya’s serves up healthy decadence with zero guilt. If you are new to raw meals, you must try her dehydrated nachos that are served with wild mushroom meat, cashew sour cream, and pineapple salsa.
I love that the drinks menu is just as unique as the food with cold-pressed juices and nut milk coffees. Want to kick that girl lunch into high gear? Eye up the super food cocktail menu, you will not be disappointed! The much anticipated ‘The Uncook Book’ will be released in September and we will be able to master her recipes at home.
6. Wild Food Cafe – Covent Garden
Nestled upstairs in Neal’s Yard, The Wild Food Cafe has become a raw food institution. Nourishing gourmet vegan and vegetarian cuisine, designed to stimulate your taste. Expect wild foraged ingredients, nutrient dense dishes, and a queue! I have a slight obsession with their sandwiches and pizza. The Wild Burger’s patty is made from mushrooms and olives.
It is decked out with salsa verde, smoky baba-ganoush, and watercress. The pizza is delicious with a crust that is made from almonds and squash! Check out their blog to recreate your favorite creative dishes at home, join them on a food retreat or sign up for a very informative raw food course.
7. Makoto – Chiswick
Head to Chiswick for the freshest fish
On the hunt for fresh fish & seafood?
With sushi joints generously sprinkled across the capital, I go out of my way to W4 to cozy up in Makoto. In fact, my husband and I purposely arrange to end our long distance runs on Sundays in Chiswick, just so we can dig into Makoto’s lunch specials.
This authentic family run business is extremely popular with locals. Like us, they return for the top notch ingredients plated at very reasonable prices. I absolutely love their wakame salad and yellowtail nigiri (featured above). While the decor is nothing to write home about, the food certainly is.
Traveling across Europe soon and interested in learning how you can whip up all the different types of European cuisine in your own kitchen? Be sure to check out BookCulinaryVacations.com where you’re bound to find your dream European culinary vacation!