Everyone should have a food bucket list, and a new year is the perfect opportunity to refresh it.
The guide reviews the best restaurants, pubs, and cafés across the UK based on feedback from readers and expert inspections. However, while each eatery makes our mouths water, making it through the best restaurants in one city can be hard enough, let alone an entire country.
In order to help you wade through the culinary options in the capital, we’ve compiled the 15 best restaurants in London, according to Waitrose.
The restaurants are awarded a score between 1 and 10, with 1 being “capable cooking with simple food combinations and clear flavours, but some inconsistencies” and 10 being “an extremely rare accolade” with “perfect dishes showing faultless technique at every service.”
Scroll down to see the 15 best restaurants in London to try in 2018, ranked in ascending order along with their score.
15. Murano, Mayfair — 7 points. Coming in 48th in the UK, the Michelin-starred restaurant offers up melt-in-your mouth pasta dishes and Italian wines in a setting that feels like home.
14. Le Gavroche, Mayfair — 7 points. Known as “the last bastion in London of classically rich French haute cuisine,” Le Gavroche has become a London institution partly thanks to its Chef Patron Michel Roux Jr. Expect dishes like Black Pudding, Fried Egg, Raw Asparagus Salad, and Spicy Tomato Chutney.
13. Restaurant Story, Bermondsey — 7 points. Tom Sellers tells his story and the story of British food through an ever-evolving tasting menu of seasonal dishes at this south London hotspot, which gained its Michelin star only five months after opening in 2013 and has retained it ever since.
12. Restaurant Marianne, Notting Hill — 7 points. Brought to you by chef, author and BBC Masterchef: The Professionals finalist Marianne Lumb, the restaurant just just 14 covers — or five tables — so it’s an intimate experience, focused on seasonally led food and daily changing set menus.
11. The Ritz, St. James’s — 7 points. John Williams MBE, Executive Chef of the iconic Michelin-starred Ritz London, uses British produce and draws inspiration from classic dishes to make them relevant to today’s diner.
10. The Greenhouse, Mayfair — 7 points. Calling itself a “tranquil sanctuary in the heart of London,” the restaurant draws on classical French techniques to produce “exquisite, modern cuisine enhanced by unusual flavours from around the world.” Think Orkney scallops with green tomatoes, violet, verbena, and samphire or Welsh lamb, cucumber, nori, and black garlic.
9. Sketch, Lecture Room & Library, Mayfair — 7 points. You may have seen it on Instagram, but did you known that Sketch, conceived by French Masterchef Pierre Gagnaire and restaurateur Mourad Mazouz, has two Michelin stars? Situated in a Grade II listed building, The Lecture Room and Library — just one area of the restaurant — was awarded its first Michelin star in 2005 and its second star in 2012.
8. Alain Ducasse at the Dorchester, Mayfair — 8 points. Coming in 21st on the UK list and claiming to boast “contemporary French cuisine with a professional bespoke and friendly service,” the team behind the three-Michelin-starred restaurant includes Executive Chef Jean-Philippe Blondet and Restaurant Director Enrico Baronetto. It’s a “modern, light, and elegantly informal setting” with a “forward-thinking approach to haute cuisine.”
For Valentine’s Day, visit for a five-course menu which, along with a glass of rosé Champagne, is priced at £225 per person and features dishes such as “Hand-dived sea scallop, pumpkin and Jerusalem artichoke,” “Dry-aged beef, ‘Black tie’ of agria potato,” and to finish, a “Heart For Two” chocolate and raspberry dessert to share.
7. The Ledbury, Notting Hill — 8 points. The current dinner menu at this two-Michelin-starred west London establishment features dishes like Aged Pigeon, Fig, Red Leaves, and Vegetables, and Fig Leaf Ice Cream, Buffalo Milk Meringue, and Mead to finish.
6. Marcus, Knightsbridge — 8 points. The 15th best restaurant in the UK, Marcus combines two Michelin-starred cooking with a relaxed, contemporary space for lunch, a la carte dining, seasonal tasting menus, a Chef’s Table for up to 10 guests, and The Salon, a private dining room available for groups of up to 16. It just launched a new lunch menu with 5 courses for £55.
5. Dinner by Heston Blumenthal, Knightsbridge — 9 points. A homage to the history of British gastronomy, creator Heston Blumenthal worked with a team of food historians to rediscover some of the quirkiest creations to hit dinner tables through the centuries and to bring a slice of their theatre to his own Knightsbridge restaurant. Dinner’s signature dish “Meat Fruit” is a silky chicken liver parfait disguised as an orange.
4. Claude Bosi at Bibendum, Chelsea — 8 points. Despite having one less point than Dinner and only opening in March 2017, Bibendum ranks higher on the list thanks to its “unashamedly fine dining” with a “contemporary and light-hearted flair.”
3. Hedone, Chiswick — 8 points. The dishes are clean and simple at this west London restaurant, constructed in a way that lets each ingredient take centre stage. In order to accomplish perfection in its simplicity, Hedone’s menu changes daily depending on which of the freshest, best, and most intriguing ingredients come through the door.
2. Restaurant Gordon Ramsay, Chelsea — 9 points. The Gordon Ramsay group’s flagship restaurant — the 6th best in the UK — occupies three of the group’s seven Michelin stars and was the first British restaurant where a female chef held a three Michelin star accolade.
1. Pollen Street Social, Mayfair — 9 points. The best restaurant in London in 2018, Pollen Street Social is Jason Atherton’s flagship restaurant, holding a Michelin star since 2011. The fine-dining menu is inspired by the seasons with many ingredients sourced from suppliers across the British Isles. Dishes are refined, “matching the elegance of the restaurant which lends itself perfectly to romance, business, and celebratory dining,” according to the restaurant.
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