Dine out around the globe
When it comes to judging how global London is, you need only look at its restaurants. From the soaring heights of Sushisamba (Heron Tower, 110 Bishopsgate), where impressive views of the city accompany Japanese cuisine, to the traditional Spanish tapas at tiny José (104 Bermondsey Street), you’d be hard pressed to find a dining scene more diverse. In the mood for Vietnamese? Sông Quê Café (134 Kingsland Road) is the leader in a pack of pho joints lining East London’s Kingsland Road. Want Middle Eastern flavours? Head to Edgware Road, where Lebanese food is in abundance – follow up dinner at Maroush (21 Edgware Road) with a spot of shisha for the fully immersive experience.
Burgers go gourmet
The latest trend to hit London, however, is an American import – burgers. Forget greasy fast food joints full of junk; a new crop of forward-thinking restaurateurs are at the vanguard of this new trend for artisanal fare. Try Honest Burgers (4A Meard Street) where burgers made from Ginger Pig beef are accompanied by moreish rosemary-salt fries. In central London, the chilli cheeseburger and deep-fried pickles still draw queues to MEATliquor (74 Welbeck Street) two years after it first opened. Alternatively, Patty & Bun’s (22-23 Liverpool Street) inventive combinations make for intensely flavoured burgers, and the chicken wings aren’t bad either. Don’t fancy beef? Well you won’t be disappointed by the melt-in-the-mouth, pulled-pork buns at Pitt Cue Co (1 Newburgh Street).
Explore the markets
Restaurants are all well and good, but London’s food scene has exploded well beyond its dining rooms and onto its streets, with the number of local markets mushrooming in recent years. Borough Market is one of the biggest, with over 200 stalls. Here you’ll find whiffy cheeses, microbrewed ales and organic meats. If the bustle gets too much, head to locals’ favourite Maltby Street Market for moreish vanilla custard doughnuts from St John Bakery, Norwegian smoked salmon at Hansen & Lydersen and delicious cocktails from Little Birds. Over in East London, Broadway Market is where the cool kids hang out, but you won’t lack for sustenance – the cupcakes from Violet Cakes alone are worth the trip east.