Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > U.K./Ireland >
Mar 16, 2011 08:19 AM

Staying in West end. Need some good casual lunch/dinner spots [London]


I'm staying in London for 2-3 nights. I'll be arriving this Sunday (the 20th) and staying in the West End (Langham hotel).

I like pretty much any kind of food, but my preference is for something casual, fun atmosphere, reasonably priced, with good food. Is there anything nearby (walking or short public transit ride) you could suggest?

thanks in advance.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Hi, I'd suggest Seaport restaurant ( ), which is seafood mainly, but really good food and value for money. It is about 15 min walk though from Langham.

    Otherwise, if you just go towards Goodge Street station (5 min walk) you will come across Charlotte Street, which is full of good restaurants. Actually, there's also a great tapas bar called Barrica in Goodge street, very Spanish.

    1 Reply
    1. re: ksuxa4

      Barrica's good, just past it is Saltyard which is even better, and then Fino is round the corner so if you sit up at the bars you can do your own little tapas crawl.

    2. If you do a search of the board you will find loads of places, but for starters try: Great Queen St in Covent Garden, Polpo or Polpetto in Soho for Italian, Dean St Townhouse for cool British dining, Arbutus do some great pre-theatre and lunch specials, as does their excellent sister restaurant Les Deux Salons, which has more of a buzzy atmosphere.
      for cheaper eats, try Chinatown - there's lots of suggestions on other threads for this. Or get on the tube to Brixton Market - one again another thread.

      5 Replies
      1. re: pj26

        Gourmand - you could also try:

        Yauatchua in Soho or the Royal China Club (note Club, not Royal China ordinary) on Baker Street for dim sum.

        I know locals think it a bit passe, but there's no denying Momo's on Heddon St still serves decent couscous in a very vibrant atmosphere.

        Bar Boulud in the Mandarin in Knightsbridge has been drowned out by Heston's recent opening upstairs, but it's definitely one of the best casual dining venues in the capital right now.

        I don't know what the demand is these days, but you can't go wrong with the Ivy or it's sister Le Caprice. And, of course, The Wolseley from former Ivy owners Corbin & King remains a hotspot.

        Finally, although neither are cheap, both Zuma and Nobu (but more the Mayfair one these days) continue to hum.

        Royal China
        13 Queensway, Paddington, Greater London W2 4, GB

        The Wolseley
        160 Piccadilly, London, Greater London W1J 9EB, United Kingdom

        1. re: marcus james

          As Chinese, I would not recommend Royal China Club at all. I used to be a fan but they changed the chef recently. The food qualilty has dropped significantly - not the price though. I went recently in February, I would not go back again. What a shame, it used to be so good.

          Yauatcha is bad. Appauling service and the food's average for the price. It does not deserve one Michelin star.

          Royal China
          13 Queensway, Paddington, Greater London W2 4, GB

          1. re: Winkypedia

            What are your favourite places In London for dim sum?

            1. re: zuriga1

              Phoenix Palace, just by Baker St tube, is my favourite place in London for dim sum. Huge selection, all very tasty and amazingly good value. Only let down is the xiao long bao which invariably arrive torn so there's no broth inside.

              Also impressed by Leong's Legends (great xiao long bao), though much smaller selection and less atmosphere than PP.

              Agree Royal China Club is a waste of time (I actually think Royal China - not club - is better. Yauatcha is okay, pricey but the surroundings are fun,

              Try Phoenix Palace, it will not disappoint.

              Royal China
              13 Queensway, Paddington, Greater London W2 4, GB

              Leong's Legend
              4 Macclesfield St, London, Greater London W1D 5, GB

              1. re: miss chicken wing

                I agree. Phoenix Palace is a good place for dim sum. But not for dinner as it's over-priced and very small in portion.

                I don't think the xiao long bao at Leong's Legends are good at all, nor the group's other venture- Dumplings Legend. And as already discussed at another thread here (, stay away from Beijing Dumpling. It makes me crossed that there are so many restaurants in Chinatown claiming they are dumpling experts when they are not!!

                Leong's Legend
                4 Macclesfield St, London, Greater London W1D 5, GB

      2. Reasonably priced:
        Yalla Yalla for good value Beriuty street food
        L'Autre Pied for a good value MIchelin-star lunch menu. Restaurant is a bit pokey, but the food is fab.
        Tapa Room at Providores for creative brunch. really nice spot and it's on Marylebone High Street, which is also nice for a stroll.
        Busaba Eathai for very casual (sharing tables) Thai food.
        La Fromagerie for great coffee, cheese and ham plates. It's a cafe in one of London's best cheese shops. Beautiful produce all around. A lovely spot. If you still have room, pop into the Ginger Pig for a sausage roll after.
        The Wallace (which is in The WAllace Collection museum). Soaring ceilings - great for afternoon tea or lunch. A plum spot.
        La Petite Maison is one of my fave London spots. But it's pricey. Superb Provencal food, sparkling atmosphere. Worth every penny.

        Hope that helps... many more I could suggest! All of the above are within 1km of The Langham.

        1. The original comment has been removed
          1. Many thanks. I will report back.

            Appreciate the Dim Sum recommendation. That could come in handy. Usually when I've had a lot to drink the night before, Dim Sum is the only thing that hits the spot.

            I know I could have searched, but it's easier to have "fresher" recommendations and more pleasant to engage in discussion.

            I might try L'Autre Pied. I'm a Michelin * virgin.

            2 Replies
            1. re: grandgourmand

              As a Micelin virigin, I suggest L'Atelier for a resonably priced and enjoyable meal.


              Enjoy! :)

              1. re: Winkypedia

                As I have just poster on another thread, be careful if you head to L'Atelier - might be good value if you stick to the set menu, but stray and it will get very pricey.