Travel

The Best Restaurants In London, According To 7 Tastemakers

European plates and a pastel palette awaits at Cafe Deco

In a city with as rich and vibrant a food scene as London, where do those in the know go to eat? From world-famous restaurants to low-key seasonal openings, eight tastemakers share their most-loved eateries in the city. By KATIE BERRINGTON

Lifestyle
With its light bites and people-pleasing bar, Café Deco has become one of Otegha Uwagba’s London go-tos

Otegha Uwagba, writer and consultant

“I recently discovered Café Deco in Bloomsbury – it’s been open for about a year now but somehow I hadn’t heard about it until a friend suggested we grab a drink there a few weeks ago. One drink turned into several, accompanied by lovely little bites – calamari, pan tomate and the like. You can also sit at the bar, which I always love doing. It gets quite busy at times, so try to go earlier in the week to guarantee a table… you won’t be disappointed.” @oteghauwagba

Petersham Nurseries in leafy Richmond is one of Hikari Yokoyama’s favorite dining spots

Hikari Yokoyama, art consultant and entrepreneur

“Two of my favorites are The River Café and Petersham Nurseries, but for something less obvious, I also love Brat on Redchurch Street for butch, unpretentious, unassailable food that is impeccably cooked on an open fire. Everything is presented simply without fanfare, but a bite of anything belies the confident, reassured hand, eye and nose of a person manipulating the most delectable ingredients. Smoke billows out into the dining room, which is enveloped in dark wood paneling that used to belong to the former pub that was here.” @hikariyoko

Laura Jackson will always book a banquette at Soho’s Quo Vadis when she’s in the mood for pie

Laura Jackson, entrepreneur and broadcaster

“I love Quo Vadis – especially for Jeremy Lee’s ‘pie of the day’. I’m always secretly hoping it’s chicken, with a side of chips and aïoli. Such a treat, but it’s a classic Soho delicacy.” @iamlaurajackson

Anna Jewsbury, designer

“Briciole on Homer Street in Marylebone is a lovely Italian trattoria and deli just a few minutes’ walk from my Completedworks studio. Happily cozy and low-key, I could spend hours there feasting on an endless stream of impeccable little dishes: think arancini con zafferano, calamari fritti and little balls of burrata. It’s always bustling with locals, so I like to take one of the outdoor tables and people-watch in between dishes.” @annajewsbury

For a fantastic vegan feast, Rachal Ama recommends Pachamama East in Shoreditch

Rachel Ama, chef

“I recently went to Pachamama East, where I had a five-course vegan tasting menu. I had the charred, caramelized aubergine and it was cooked in the most delicious, silky, scrumptious way – it’s sticky and spicy. I also had the smoked mushroom ceviche, which is one of my favorite things to eat. It’s a really exciting place and so great that it has a whole plant-based menu with lots of flavor.” _@rachelama__ _is the author of One Pot: Three Ways_

The private dining room at Pachamama East is ideal for an intimate get-together with friends

Roksanda Ilinčić, designer

“Towpath is opposite my Roksanda studio, on the canal in east London. It closes through winter but reopens for spring – and I will be so delighted to have it back. I have lunch there whenever I can. Everything on the menu is beautifully considered; I often order the monk’s beard and mozzarella.” @roksandailincic

Phoebe Collings-James has many happy memories of Vauxhall’s magnificent Brunswick House

Phoebe Collings-James, artist

“Brunswick House does deeply imaginative food, made with love. You can sense that the chefs are excited by what grows seasonally, and the sensual and aromatic relationship of food. Chef Jackson Boxer is also a dear friend, so there are plenty of wonderful memories of gathering here over the years.

“Meanwhile, Uchi is my local spot and combines the intuitions of two of my favorite places – with a Jamaican chef cooking an exacting menu of truly delicious Japanese food. My favorite things are the miso eggplant and ginger sake cocktails – this is the perfect place to eat alone or with someone special for a gossip.” @phoebethegorgon