It may be just one square mile, but the City of London is packed with places to eat. Don’t expect to find many budget meals here though, the area is dripping with money. You may have to open your wallet a little wider, but you get to enjoy quality food and drink in some very impressive surroundings.
Don’t go to Sushisamba expecting a quiet dinner. Everything about this restaurant is big and bold, from rocketing up 38 floors on the side of the Heron Tower, to the striking bamboo ceiling and to some pretty mega views over the city. An NYC import, Sushisamba was one of the first (and definitely the flashiest) places to serve Japanese-Peruvian-Brazilian fusion food, like black cod with sweetcorn and maize morada, and tuna ceviche with wasabi peas. You will be splashing the cash here but it’s one hell of a dining experience.
24 hour opening hours and 40 floors up, Duck & Waffle is no ordinary restaurant. The fact that you can drop in any hour of the day or night may seem like a novelty, but the cooking and cocktail making is of an extremely high quality around the clock. The menu is playful, exploring the balance between sweet and savoury, like the namesake Duck & Waffle dish of confit leg, fried egg and mustard maple syrup.
Temple and Sons is Jason Atherton’s take on a classic British grill. The place draws inspiration from the traditional grocery store, with a deli and bar where cocktails come in cans, tins and even mustard jars on the ground floor. Upstairs in the dining area, you can expect old-fashioned fare, like prawn cocktail, sausages and mash and sticky toffee pudding delivered with panache.
In addition to his places in Bermondsey, Jose Pizarro also serves his acclaimed Spanish food to city dwellers at his restaurant in the Broadgate Circle development. The menu features a mix of classics – croquetas, boquerones, tortillas and the like – as well as more contemporary dishes like Iberico pork burgers. Make it extra authentic by pairing your meal with one of their Gin Tonicas.
Sister to the Yauatcha in Soho, the Broadgate Cricle outpost of this dim sum restaurant from the Hakkasan Group may be significantly more expensive than the joints you’d find in Chinatown, but it does serve up dim sum all day. Very tasty dim sum at that, especially their famous venison puffs. As well as modern Cantonese dishes, the City site is also home to the first ever Yauatcha Patisserie, where European and Chinese flavours meet in chocolates, macarons and a range of gateaux.
For top-notch seafood cookery in the square mile, head to Michelin-starred Angler at the top of the South Place Hotel. The menu is a celebration of the finest British seafood, with Newlyn cod, Dorset crab and Cornish turbot just some of the produce on show. If you’re a real fish fan, go for one of the tasting menu options to ensure you can sample as much of the fantastic seafood as possible.
Bad Egg disappeared for six months across the back end of 2016 and start of 2017, but it couldn’t be kept down for long and with good reason – their down and dirty diner food is just too good. As you’d probably guess from the name, eggs feature heavily, cropping up in everything from Benedicts, to cheeseburger hashes and to ‘ndjua cheese fries. It’s hangover busting food at its best and if you need a little hair of the dog, Bad Egg does a mean bottomless brunch too.
Once a BBQ joint in Soho that was famous for pulled pork and long queues, Pitt Cue had a makeover in 2016, moving to a bigger site in Devonshire Square and turning into a sophisticated meat restaurant. They work with the best suppliers in the country to source rare-breed meat as well as rearing their own Mangalitza pigs, so carnivores are in for a real treat here. The specials change daily, so check the boards for the big cuts and supplement your order with a side of that insanely rich bone marrow mash. Pitt Cue also has a brewery on site too, so it’d be rude not to sample some of the beer.
A wildly successful Soho chophouse, Blacklock expanded into the City with a second and much bigger site, which was formerly an electricity substation. The menu has also expanded but their “all-in” option – the day’s skinny chop selection piled on a flatbread, with a choice of side per person for £20 – is still the best way to eat here. The bar is larger too, with wine on tap and a range of cocktails very reasonably priced at just a fiver. In fact, you may even see them being pushed around the restaurant on a trolley.