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May 25, 2011 03:10 PM

lunch ideas near tourist attractions - that are non touristy

now that my trip is very close i am trying to figure out a few lunch ideas

Monday: Will be by Big Ben / Houses of Parliment / Maybe the British Museum

i have Neals Market in Borough Market for after London Tower for lunch and/or there is a Wine Liberary in the biz district we could go to as well but we will probably stick with the Market

Also am trying to get Masters Superfish in there somewhere...does anyone know if that is near parliment / big ben or if that is near any other attraction

Going to be headed to st pauls cathedral and westminster abby also is there anything out that way that would be good for a quick simple lunch?

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  1. Masters is, as far as I'm concerned, very close to Big Ben. By Tube, it's a short hop to Waterloo, and the little restaurant is only a 10 minute walk up the street. Anchor & Hope is equally close to Waterloo if you'd like a good gastropub lunch.

    I haven't been, but I'm very sure that there is a well thought of restaurant now in St. Paul's. Someone here will know.

    11 Replies
    1. re: zuriga1

      The obvious place near St Paul's which actually over looks the cathedral is Barbecoa, the bbq place opened by Jamie Oliver and Adam Perry Lang. It has has fairly mixed reviews really but would satisfy with a good lunch I'm sure.

      Personally if it's just a lunch then Beas of Bloomsbury will do you a wonderful afternoon tea at One New Change right next to St Paul's. Sandwiches, cupcakes, scones, champagne etc and it's really good value. That would be my suggestion.

      1. re: ManInTransit

        oh god please don't go to barbecoa! it's so awful. definitely try bea's.

        1. re: gembellina

          I'm led to believe that Barbecoa is all in the ordering. There is enough decent stuff on the menu that a well-briefed diner can have a good meal. But there is a great deal of dross there too.

          1. re: ManInTransit

            I imagine that's possible but for a short-term visitor I'd probably recommend something less chancy!

            1. re: gembellina

              I'll take the word of someone who has been!

              Thinking about St Paul's, the obvious thing to do is to head north towards Farringdon. Within a few minutes you can be at St John for a quick lunch, Vinoteca, Smiths of Smithfield, Club Gascon, Hix Oyster Bar. All great places.

              St Johns Restaurant
              24 Sir Thomas Street, Liverpool L1 6JB, GB

              1. re: ManInTransit

                Manin - the St Johns Restaurant you link to is in Liverpool not London...! I think you mean St John

                St. John
                26 St John Street, London EC1M 4AY, GB

            2. re: ManInTransit

              Any specific tips on what's to order and avoid there?

              1. re: limster

                Sorry Limster I've just seen your message.
                From a combination of reviews and the reports of friends I'm told
                Baby back ribs starter
                Strip Steak
                Burger (albeit at £16)

                Don't eat :
                Pigs cheeks
                Crab cakes
                Pork Belly
                Picanha rump cap

                The Pulled pork divides opinion seemingly between it being a good dish and one that is too smoky and dry, depends on taste I guess.

                1. re: ManInTransit

                  Thanks, will give it a try when in the area.

        2. re: zuriga1

          Yes, Zuriga, the restaurant at St Paul's is very good so would recommend that for lunch.

          1. re: pj26

            Thanks pj... I'm going to try that one day soon!

        3. This is not at all a foodie recommendation, more of a drink-y one, but very close to St. Paul's (174 Queen Victoria Street) is a wonderful pub called The Blackfirar. The pub was built in 1870 on the site of a friary, and remodelled in 1904 in arts & crafts style, with all of the artistic flourishes in homage to the monks. There are metal relief carvings over the bar and the fireplace showing the monks in various scenes. Amazing craftsmanship-- everything is dark wood and marble with copper accents. There is a little back room with pretty vaulted ceilings and gorgeous tilework. It's one of my favourite pubs in London. Great atmosphere.

          They do a fine selection of beers, including several cask ales. They'll let you sample a few before you buy, if you can't decide. There's a basic food menu, leaning heavy on the pies. Nothing gourmet, mind you, but decent pub grub. If you're in need of lunch near St. Pauls, this is a nice place to rest your feet for a while.

          Barring that, I'd walk over the Millenium Bridge and have lunch at the Tate Modern restaurant. It is very touristy, but the view is spectacular. If you are on a short visit to London, it's a great way to take in the city.

          6 Replies
          1. re: gemuse

            I will clarify a bit more - have dinner at st johns planned already so dont want to do lunch there as well - based on the info provided so far:

            so basically i am thinking:
            monday big ben / parliment / lunch masters superfish
            tuesday london tower and borough market or wine libarary
            wednesday not in the city
            thursday shopping for the mrs so probabbly do food court at harrods just because we are in that area - and am doing high tea at browns
            friday - st pauls cathedral resto / tate modern / blackfriars / by the hotel would try Queens Arm pub for options

            everything is lunch only because we have dinner options already just trying to get a decent lunch that is simple near where we will be each day, so need to have a few ideas depending on how each day goes

            i think this gives us a pretty good chance to get in a solid variety - one of the days lunch has to be in a proper pub

            1. re: Dapuma

              If you're in the London Tower/Tower Bridge area, Maltings Cafe would be a great choice for lunch (on Tower Bridge Road, south side of the river).

              1. re: Dapuma

                I didn't think Borough Market is open on Tuesdays, though Neal's Yard will be.

                Neal's Yard
                6 Park St, London, England W1K 7, GB

                1. re: Nancy S.

                  quite a few of the permanent stalls and shops are open on a Tuesday - Ginger Pig, Monmouth, Applebys, Brindisa etc. So you will be able to find something to eat but it is limited in choice.

                  1. re: pj26

                    Is the Ginger Pig the pie shop (ie british pot pie / turnover things) that is really good?

                    If so is there a opinon on which one is the "best" or is there one that should be avoided

                    1. re: Dapuma

                      the Ginger Pig is the butchers. They have sausage rolls which are VERY good.

            2. This is the Wine Library:


              It's only a couple of hundred yards from the Tower. It's rather a cramped basement and a bit basic (hard seating, low tables etc.) but the price of the wine by the bottle is the real reason for going. Food's good too.

              This is a similar concept, 10 minutes walk west (about half way to St. Paul's Cathedral from the Tower) and would be my choice: