[London] Restaurant Recs for US hound -- Indian, Gastropub, Tea, British musts?, Asian?
I'll be visiting London for the first time in the 2nd week of November from Saturday - Tuesday. So I'll need to account for about 10 meals? I'll be heading to all the usual tourist sites (London Eye, Tower of London, Buckingham Palace, Trafalgar Square, Parliament, West End for a play) so stuff near there would be preferred, or stuff that is a short tube ride away.
I'll mostly be eating alone and I've grown up in the NYC/Philly/DC area so been pretty spoiled with food options, I'm not averse to any foods, and I'm looking to spend no more than 35 pounds on a meal (not including drinks).
Here's what I've got so far
- Gordon Ramsay's Maze based on recs here
- Indian -- I've seen Tayyabs and Lahore Kebab House rec'd
- Gastropub -- St John's in Archway? Abingdon-54 in Kensington?
- Afternoon tea???
- Fish n chips -- lots of recs for Master's Superfish
- Pubs I should eat at (more interested in food than drink)??
- Other British musts -- ??
Stuff I haven't really looked into but would always eat if good:
- Chinese? Min Jiang?
- Japanese? Kikuchi?
Appreciate any help you could give me or any other posts that would be good to take a look at! THANKS!!
I'd most recommend Rasa Samudra, an Indian resto that specializes in food from Kerala. I'm pretty sure it comes in under your limit.
For gastropubs, the hot ticket is the Harwood Arms in Fulham. I haven't been yet (wrong part of town!), but everyone here loves it.
Other pubs: The Eagle in Farringdon is the original gastropub, and still worth a visit, but I prefer the Coach and Horses round the corner. In that area, I also love Moro (Spanish) and The Ambassadors (brasserie) - both are in Exmouth Market.
For British, consider St John, Corrigan's of Mayfair, Rules (for game and great cocktails upstairs) and Hereford Road.
For Indian, Needoo Grill is the new kid on the block for cheap eats in the East End. For a more upmarket experience I liked Indian Zing in Hammersmith.
The Harwood Arms is a must, and I was mightily impressed with our recent meal at Covent garden wine bar/restaurant, Terriors, really handy as a rest stop between taking in the tourist sights.
Great Queen Street is also a favorite of mine, based on full flavour, portion size, and value for money.
Rasa Samudra's menu looks great -- I don't think I've had food from Kerala -- thanks for the rec!
And Harwood Arms sample menu has me drooling. I'll definitely be adding that to my must-eat list. :)
Still on the hunt for a place with lots of tea options if anyone has suggestions. Thanks!
There are fancy teas and much less fancy tea places in London. What are you preferring? Fortnum and Mason does a nice tea, but not as fancy as Brown's Hotel, the Mandeville hotel, Sketch etc. Sotheby's Auction House has a fairly low-key and not too expensive tea. If you go for a great tea, you won't even need dinner that night!
Try Postcard Teas for a broad selection of carefully brewed teas. Outstanding pu-erh from one of the top producers in Yunnan (try their Golden Damo, available in raw and cooked forms), excellent oolongs from Wuyi (including teas made by the tea master that makes tea from the original Scarlet Robe/Da Hong Pao bushes) and Phoenix/Feng Huang (several "single bush" varieties, I'm partial to the Mi Lan Xiang). Also lovely high mountain green oolongs from Taiwan. They'll do multiple infusions of the same tea if you ask, and that's often required to get the best out of some of their teas (e.g. old pu-erhs can take many infusions before they peak. many oolongs are often at their most flavourful in the 2nd infusion etc...).