Cheap eats in Notting Hill

Going west doesn't have to mean going broke, and our list of budget restaurants and cafés in Notting Hill should prove it

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© Ed Marshall

It's not renowned for its money-saving properties, but anyone can eat in Notting Hill once they know where to head for. This list of budget restaurants and cafés means you can easily explore both ends of west London's price range. Is there anywhere we haven't found yet? Let us know in the comments or send us a tweet.

Taqueria

  • Rated as: 4/5
  • Price band: 1/4
  • Critics choice

The word ‘taquería’ is traditionally associated with street stands churning out endless tacos. They do that here too, but in rather more salubrious surroundings and with a clipboard-toting greeter thrown in for good measure. It’s a charming, independent-feeling little place of two rooms, with dark wood floors and pristine white walls decorated with a few Mexican film posters. The food is equally unfussy: a dozen or so tacos (using corn tortillas made in-house daily), a

  1. 139-143 Westbourne Grove, W11 2RS
  2. Main courses £3.90-£8.75. Set lunch (noon-4pm...
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Books for Cooks

  • Rated as: 4/5
  • Price band: 1/4

Books for Cooks runs on a simple but very successful formula. From the small open kitchen, co-owner Eric Treuillé puts recipes (one starter, one main) from the cookbook(s) of the day to the test. There’s no choice – until it comes to pudding, when there’s an array of must-try cakes (lemon victoria sponge, raspberry and pear cake, or chocolate and orange cake, say) – but the standard of cooking is high. Pea and ricotta salad with focaccia followed by merguez, roast lamb

  1. 4 Blenheim Crescent, W11 1NN
  2. Set lunch £5 2 courses, £7 3 courses
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Fez Mangal

  • Rated as: 3/5
  • Price band: 1/4

This compact, no-frills Turkish BYO on Ladbroke Grove, is dominated by a huge charcoal grill. Deft hands move a line of hefty meat skewers (the main draw) hypnotically across its blistering surface, while billows of smoke disappear up into the cavernous copper hood. A spotless glass fridge, displays the daily variety of seasoned lamb and chicken, as well as whole sea bass or bream, and own-made doner kebabs make slow revolutions behind the counter. Scoop up simple vegetable

  1. 104 Ladbroke Grove, W11 1PY
  2. Meal for two with drinks and service: around...
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Saporitalia

  • Rated as: 3/5
  • Price band: 1/4

Saporitalia’s dining room is dominated by a handsome clay oven, the sight of which is enough to get taste buds tingling. Sure enough, our pizza was first-rate: an enormous wagon-wheel of a thing with a wafer-thin base generously topped with san daniele ham. It’s wise to opt for the pizza here, as you get more for your money; our other dishes were a bit hit-and-miss. Ravioli was perfectly al dente and had plenty of bite and a pleasantly light sauce, but it could have been

  1. 222 Portobello Road, W11 1LJ
  2. Main courses £5.50-£22.95. Set lunch...
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Gelato Mio

  • Rated as: 3/5
  • Price band: 1/4

Despite having spawned a handful of younger, shinier offshoots across London, this original branch remains popular as ever, with queues often stretching down Holland Park Avenue. Cheery staff in bright orange T-shirts dish up generous portions of gelato in a score of traditional flavours (think pistachio made from nuts dried in the Sicilian sunshine), along with sorbets, sundaes and shakes. On our visit, we sampled a terrific amareno (delicately creamy fior di latte with chunks

  1. 138 Holland Park Avenue, W11 4UE
  2. Ice cream £2.50/scoop.
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The Fish House

  • Rated as: 3/5
  • Price band: 1/4

The simple menu at this Notting Hill restaurant (opened October 2012) takes you through classics including fish cakes, scampi and, of course, cod and chips (£11.90). Our cod and ‘rock eel’ were crisp-battered and succulent, served with golden-hued fat chips and tartare sauce; the mushy peas were a slightly lurid green, but tasted no worse for it. The small dining areas are clean and attractive, the service welcoming. The Fish House is not related to Fish House in Victoria

  1. 29 Pembridge Road, W11 3HG
  2. Main courses £6.95-£13.90.
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Café Garcia

  • Rated as: 3/5
  • Price band: 1/4

It’s a simple set-up at this low-key Spanish café: queue at the glass-fronted counter, point to what you want, wait while it’s heated up and plated, then squeeze on to a table (not easy on frenetic Saturday lunchtimes). The food is equally fuss-free, with staff dispensing ladles of rich cocido madrileño stew, slabs of empanada and robust chorizo in red wine. The quality can be hit and miss; bland, dry albóndigas (meatballs) left us unimpressed, while ratatouille-like pisto

  1. 246 Portobello Road, W11 1LL
  2. Tapas £1.50-£5.
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Coffee Plant

  • Rated as: 3/5
  • Price band: 1/4

With 15 years of experience, Coffee Plant creates a range of own-roasted beans. On our visit, Peruvian beans were the pick of the day – incredibly complex, starting with roasted peanut notes swerving into apple, liquorice, butterscotch and cinnamon. There follows a slightly salty and herbaceous finish with plenty of umami. Our latte was equally enjoyable, with textured milk so thick and creamy it was almost a flat white. We did cringe at the coffee beans sitting in transparent,

  1. 180 Portobello Road, W11 2EB
  2. Espresso £1, latte £1.60
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Pizza Metro Pizza - Notting Hill

  • Price band: 1/4

Situated in Notting Hill Gate, Pizza Metro Pizza is a family restaurant with an interesting claim to fame. The sister of the first authentic Neapolitan pizzeria opened in London’s Battersea, the small Pizza Metro Pizza chain also lays claim to being the very first to offer the incredible metre long pizza, a concept now copied all over the capital. But Pizza Metro Pizza doesn’t rest on this one gimmick. Instead, the team behind this restaurant (and the restaurants in Battersea

  1. 147 - 149 Notting Hill Gate, W11 3LF
  2. £25 and under
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Pix Notting Hill

  • Price band: 1/4

Inspired by the pintxo bars of Barcelona and San Sebastian, Pix invites you to sample our tantalising array of miniature tapas, while enjoying the exceptionally friendly and vibrant atmosphere in some of London’s most iconic locations.As you’ll discover, our food and drink displays passion and creativity, but the way we deliver it creates a uniquely relaxed and free-flowing experience, ensuring you’ll leave feeling replenished on every level.

  1. 185 Portobello Road, W11 2ED
  2. £25 and under
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