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Nov 28, 2005 10:53 AM

london must-stops

  • n

i'm a new york city foodie taking a trip to london next week. would appreciate food recommendations at reasonably priced restaurants with excellent food, ideally that is indicative of the london experience. again, anything on the more inexpensive side would be appreciated. favorite chinese (i hear london has some great chinese food), indian, and other highlights. pub recommendations also welcome. we're staying near hyde park, but willing to travel for fun destinations. thanks!

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  1. The Cow (Notting Hill) for pub-dining, Tamarind for indian and Patara for thai

    2 Replies
    1. re: Taylor

      Notting Hill beer go to the "Sun in Splendour" (right at te beginning of Portobello road...and maybe Geales (behind the Cinema in Nottighill) my mate lives in New York and always talks about missing fish and chips..its very good here (and close to you) and ts probably £10-£15 (which is expensive for crappy fish and chips..but these are very good)

      1. re: Taylor

        I'll second Patara for Thai. There are several branches and they're all good.


      2. It would really help if you'd say what 'reasonably priced' means to you. We all vary in our ideas about what that is. £50 for two... £100? As a former New Yorker, I've never found the Chinese food here comparable at all to what you're probably used to there. The one exception might be Hakkasan.

        1. to clarify i'd ideally like a restaurant where dinner plus a drink could be had for 20 pounds or less. more bargain places are appreciated, but i know that they're hard to come by. we're going to be staying in chelsea for two days, and near notting hill for the rest, and look forward to going to the borough market. i know about wagamama, but am looking for more neighborhood-type places, as well as any restaurants that people think can't be missed as part of the london experience, or are something that can't be found in new york city. thanks!

          5 Replies
          1. re: nycfoodie

            Sad to say, you'll have a tough time finding a good dinner and drink for £20 in London. I'd suggest looking at They often have pretty decent offers for saving some money. Last January we had a 3 course meal at the Cinnamon Club for about $23 or so and it was highly enjoyable. I often recommend people rent flats rather than hotel rooms. That way they can take advantage of the great prepared foods available at supermarkets like Waitrose or at Marks & Spencer. One can dine well in that manner and then go out to a pub for a drink!

            1. re: zuriga

              Does anyone lese think this guy needs his head examined. Stay in and eat a m&s meal rather then go out and eat. my god!!!!! even if he suggested shopping at the market and cooking but.....

              1. re: ham
                angela gilliam

                i live in london, and have to agree with zuriga. it isn't easy to find good food and drink for £20, whereas you can get decent prepared food for much less if you are smart about what you buy. sure, there are exceptions, such as tayabs, some lebanese, but there are many more cases where you will spend more for food that can't be classified as basically good.

            2. re: nycfoodie

              a) mohsen (iranian) warwick road, opposite the home base. superb iranian kebabs, daily specials. you'll eat like a prince for 20 quid a head. its byob, and you can get ale etc from the pub next door. price be damned anyway, its one of my favourites in london.

              b) al-dar (lebanese counter) on the sloane sq side of king street. very good lebanese counter, the chicken shish is a marvel. great for pita sandwiches too. 20 quid is enormous here, but once again, thats not the point. the place has the best shish in london.

              c) bosphorous kebab house, old brompton road (the south ken tube side). good counter for grilled lamb everything. eat under 10 quid, but you'll rarely get a place to sit, so you'll have to eat standing up most likely.

              d) when in notting hill, walk along westbourne grove from kensington park road eastwards. you'll pass a take-away fast food intriguing iraqi joint ( i haven't had time to explore it unfortunately), then a bit further along is al-waha, which is a down home lebanese. main course and salad (tabbouleh) can be had for less than 20 quid here. (here the kafta kash kash is to be tried). and avoid khans - no true blue indian would eat there, its bangla versions of indian food blecch.

              which brings me to the cinammon club. thats in westminster, quite a hike. and not worth it in my opinion if you want indian food. but if you want to pay over the top prices for boar spleen cooked in a tandoor and garnished with a duckbill, then maybe thats your thing.

              1. re: nycfoodie

                ok so i've come up with some with my own research... any input on the painted heron in chelsea, woodlands in marylebone, el vergel for lunch in southwark, the golden hind in marylebone or yming near chinatown? these sounded up my alley so if you have any recommendations along these lines...

              2. k
                kit williams

                When you're in Notting Hill, walk all the way up Portobello Road (preferably not on a Saturday when the crowds are there) to Golborne Road. Turn right and walk a couple of blocks to Lisboa Patisserie. Get their custard tarts (pasteis de nata) and galao (milky coffee), sit at one of the tables on the pavement, chat with the locals and enjoy. And go back in for more custard tarts to go. Very inexpensive, very addictive.

                1. Chinese>>
                  -Hakkasan for the experience
                  -4 Seasons for the duck see:
                  -Mandarin Kitchen for the lobster noodles

                  -Asadal in New Malden is excellent although I hear they have a branch in central, Tottenham Court Road I think
                  -Cheong Sol in Hounslow is passable

                  Fish and chips>>
                  Opposite Zulu's pub in Parson's Green

                  Stonemason's arms in Hammersmith.

                  4 Replies
                  1. re: pakhan

                    Try the Punjab in Neal Street, near Covent Garden, for fantastic Indian food. Its not crazy expensive, and has a lot of history. Lots of vegetarian options on there if needed, and the pakoras are excellent.
                    You can't really go wrong just walking down Brick Lane for good, cheap Indian food. Its a great experience.

                    1. re: claireh

                      Another one - don't miss the Slaughtered Lamb in Clerkenwell for a twist on fish and chips - all the menu options in this cosy pub are along the lines of gourmet fish fingers, fish pie, etc, all served with great thick cut chips. Love it.

                      1. re: claireh

                        noooooooo. not punjab, nor any of the brick lane things.

                        they're run by bangla deshis - any resemblance to anything indian is mere coincidence.

                        1. re: howler

                          Mmm - think you'll find the Punjab is owned and run by Punjabi's actually. And good, fresh tasting food it is too - certainly not up to the best of Southall, Tooting or Wembley places, but for central London, it's an excellent, unpretentious choice. Agree that Brick Lane, however, is uniformly disappointing, whatever the ethnic origin of the chefs!