Top food & Drink Tips for your London weekend
London is a city very close to my heart, having lived there for six years until very recently. It’s a massive place and quite hard to navigate if you’re new to the city and, with so much on offer, it’s easy to miss the ‘hidden’ food gems in favour of the tried and tasted tourist-favourites.
Over my six years in the capital I was lucky enough to live in various districts, giving me the chance to see what each area had to offer. From Finchley in the North to Clapham and Camberwell in the South, Chelsea in the West and Hackney in the East.
If you like sushi then this little gem is definitely one to add to your list. Conspicuous in appearance, I would have walked straight past it if it wasn’t for a recommendation from a friend. Set on Trafalgar Road, about a ten minute walk from greenwich DLR, it could be mistaken for a take-away at first glance. However, if you pop your head in you’ll realise it’s quite an intimate sushi restaurant which serves authentic Japanese food at pretty reasonable prices. To add to its attraction, this restaurant promotes a BYOB (Bring Your Own Booze) policy. Make sure you book in advance otherwise you could be left disappointed.
If you find yourself waiting two hours for a table (like I did) then there is a lovely pub around the corner called The Vanburgh which I used to visit in my days as a Blackheath resident (somewhere I failed to include in my previous list of occupancies). This pub is cool, has a great garden, perfect for winter and summer and very welcoming. I’d recommend it for food even if you don’t have an hour or two to kill waiting for your sushi!
Sticking with the public house theme, this gem of a pub is located in the heart of London, just a few minutes walk from Borough tube station. Once inside you could mistake it for someones house, but that only adds to the charm. With live music, great food, and a mini roof terrace, this pub is one to settle in to. Set is a beautiful 19th Century building (rebuilt in ‘20s) you’ll find yourself eating and drinking there until the early hours.
Love Shack in Hackney (Vegan Paradise)
This relatively new space in Hackney offers a totally vegan, relaxed and inclusive experience. If sustainability is the name of the game, then these guys are winning. They’re plastic free and bad-vibes free. Having built up the area now known as the ‘Love Shack’, from scratch, it’s become a hub for yoga, healthy smoothies, cracking coffee and chilling out. If you want to spend the endless summer nights in a hammock, playing with dogs and listening to great music, head over to the Love Shack.
This pub isn’t so much unknown, but it’s slightly off the beaten track and probably somewhere you wouldn’t find if you were only in London for a few days. Set inside a square surrounded by delightful houses, it has great food, a large selection of drinks and a wonderful ‘secret garden’ which catches the sun in the Summer months for most of the day. It’s a few minutes walk from Brixton Tube Station and takes you away from the hustle and bustle of the high street. Definitely recommended for anyone wanting to spend an idle summer’s day drinking with friends.
There are loads of places I could have added to this list, but these are my top recommendations. Also, one to note, if you’re after some Argentinian food, then check out Guido’s Steakhouse in Camberwell. They have a great atmosphere here with really well priced food.