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Sep 29, 2008 03:35 PM

21st birthday suggestions -- big group -- cheap (Westminster, London)

I'm with a group of 10 American students who just arrived in London and I'm in charge of planning where we eat dinner. We're all upset at the dismal exchange rate so we need somewhere cheap, but with lots of atmosphere. I'm thinking about a curry house, but most of the previous posts are bashing on 'usual curry houses.' Since most of us are new here, we don't even know what a typical curry house is, so we're in no position to be picky. Maybe some suggestions for a one that allows BYOB?

Any other suggestions for pubs that would be fun for people new to the city would be appreciated.


PS As an afterthought, does anyone know a good sushi/sake bomb place?

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  1. where abouts in town you are looking?

    can i suggest:

    Busaba Ethai - a great value / great food Thai place - a few locations around the city. Quite modern and trendy, although you can't book which might be a probelm. There is usually a queue but it moves fairly quickly.

    Tayabbs - ridiculously cheap yet amazing pakistani fayre (great curries and grilled stuff) , on fieldgate steet, near whitechapel tube. (BYO).

    Vietnamese either at Song Que or Cay Tre in Shoreditch. (kingsland rd and old street respectively).. Good coz there are loads of places to go out nearby afterwards..

    One of the turkish grill places in Dalston. Cheap as chips and a great carnivorous feast. The place on Arcola street is excellent.

    When you say Sake bombs, do you mean cocktails? To be honest, there isn't so much great sushi in London in the budget price range like there is in NY or LA. Would recommend Kulu Kulu at a push (on brewer street and also in Covent Garden) and personally I'd avoid Yo Sushi and Itsu like the plague. Pham sushi is a great mid range option, on whitecross street.. great quality and not THAT expensive.

    1. Pizza Pomodoro in Beauchamp (pronounced "beechum") Place near Harrods is your spot, no question. Live music every night and on Tuesdays they have an Elvis impersonator.

      Often well known faces to be seen.....A couple of Tuesdays ago I saw Stelios, EasyJet's founder, and a bit of a celeb. in the UK. Elvis sang "Leaving, on a jet plane" for him.

      Expect to pay £10 for a pizza, so about as budget as you are going to find. Beer & wine normal Central London prices I'm afraid. Best to get there after 10 p.m. and very often the whole place turns into a party by 11:30 or so.

      1. I don't think they sake bomb in these parts. They just don't do much dropping of any kind of shots into beers on this side of the Atlantic. No Irish car bombs, no dr peppers, and surely no sake bombs.

        Pizza Pomodoro mentioned below is a classic - though could be challenging w/ 10 people as they don't usually take reservations - though some friends have managed early ones

        In a similar vein to PP above you could consider Tiroler hut - very kitsch and a London institution.

        You could consider Geales for upscale fish and chips - still reasonably priced for London

        Your bar tab will surely exceed your food bill for a 21st so would try and negotiate BYOB or bringing in a few bottles where ever you go.

        re pubs the city is full of great ones - from old man pubs to gastro - so difficult to recommend one w/o knowing a more specific part of town of what you're looking for (authentic, vs modern, etc..)