Great Queen Street

  • Restaurants
  • British
Critics' choice
2 Love It
Ming Tang Evans / Time Out
Ming Tang Evans / Time Out
Ming Tang Evans / Time Out
Ming Tang Evans / Time Out
Ming Tang Evans / Time Out
Ming Tang Evans / Time Out
Covent Garden
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A product of the noughties gastropub boom, Great Queen Street still turns out dishes in the tradition of its antecedents, and of the year it was founded (2007). Yet despite the casual feel, pub-like look and cacophony of voices, this is no pub – it’s a sit-down restaurant where bookings are almost essential. The excellent location, mere steps away from central Covent Garden, ensures its perennial popularity.

The prized outdoor tables are almost never vacant, but walk-ins may find space at the bar stools towards the back, where the full menu is also served. The menu changes daily, is produce-led and is predominantly British. There’s minimal fussing with ingredients; for example, a plump piece of bone-in smoked mackerel was served with a dollop each of cooked gooseberries and horseradish. Pork had been slow-cooked before having a generous quantity of cockles added to the stew. Vegetarian dishes are sometimes less imaginative, such as a simple tart of roast pepper, tomato and new-season garlic. Puddings might include a semifreddo, or an apricot and almond tart. The dozen or so wines by the glass are relatively affordable rather than covetable, a clue to Great Queen Street’s priorities.


Venue name: Great Queen Street
Address: 32 Great Queen Street
Opening hours: Bar Open 5-11.30pm Tue-Sat. Restaurant Lunch served noon-2.30pm Mon-Sat; noon-3pm Sun. Dinner served 6-10.30pm Mon-Sat
Transport: Tube: Covent Garden or Holborn
Price: Main courses £10.80-£22
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Average User Rating

3.2 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:3
  • 4 star:2
  • 3 star:2
  • 2 star:0
  • 1 star:3
2 people listening
Marcus W

The constantly changing menu means the food veers from good to great, but the atmosphere is always excellent. 

Toby E

There are few finer spots for a crafty lunch in Central London. It's always sunny and a cheeky carafe will soon have you feeling a tad Parisienne but perhapse worrying that the client might smell booze on the breath at your afternoon meeting. Good varied ever changing range of British gastro homemade dishes on the menu, decent ales and good wine list. Tres bien.

Hale B

We certainly would not recommend anyone to come to this restaurant at all - don't waste your time here. No one needs this, there are simply much better restaurants nearby. The service was one of the worst we have ever experienced in London (as foodies, we know what we are talking about). Ambience was aweful, lost half of our appetite the second we walked in. We have already told them we needed to leave the restaurant by a a certain time for theatre in advance when we booked the table. Yet they kept hassling us about when we were going to return the table to them 15 minutes after is sitting down. Unfriendly, terribly rude, unhelpful service, never felt so dissatisfied and offended after a meal. Told us we couldn't have a wine glass to drinks wine because We ordered 'cheap wine not expensive wine' (the waitress' exact words, who certainly doesn't look anything like a diamond herself). This is a gastropub, we were hoping to have a relaxed, enjoyable experience, most certainly no need to be pretentious. Food was average at best (at least better than their service), but the Menu was incredibly dull and boring.

David E

The menu was very uninteresting and the food was awful. I had quail and it was completely raw, for 14 pounds I expected a decent meal. What I got was some coleslaw and a raw piece of quail that had no taste at all. Would definitely recommend people to stay clear of this place. Worst restaurant I have been to in London in the year I have been living here.

Ben Godfrey

One of London's hidden gems. I've eaten at Great Queen St many, many times. Sometimes it's really good, sometimes it's simply incredible, especially for the price. They keep the menu fresh and inventive. It's a great place to take a big group. The menu always has a couple of meaty slow-cooked comfort dishes for 2, 3 or 4 people as well as much lighter fare. The house wine is cheap and generally excellent. The ale changes regularly. If there's just 2 of you, you can often get a table at short notice.


Come for the atmosphere, not the food. I've been to Great Queen Street a few times now, and each time I return, I'm reminded of how disappointed I was on my last visit. It’s a great alternative to the touristy and theatre joints nearby, the bar downstairs as fantastic, and I've always received terrific service - friendly and attentive. But the food....oh the food - it’s just not good. The menu reads like a great adventure into local, seasonal cooking, and the specials continually sound as if they belong in the best of London restaurants, but when the food arrives it’s just one dreary disappointment after another. At my most recent visit, the locally-cured ham arrived looking apologetically pale and unappetizing, and then proved itself so by being far too salty to eat more than a few bites, and leaving what I can only describe as a "stank" in ones mouth. The blood orange, chicory, and ricotta salad sounded fantastic, and had much potential as a jewel-toned, sweet-and sour palate freshener. Instead, it was a sad pile of flavorless, beige-toned chicory and fennel - blood orange barely to be found. Supposedly it had “spicy” breadcrumbs on top; the breadcrumbs I saw, but the spice was nowhere on the plate. Our entrées were similarly blah: a nicely cooked piece of Hake, but served with a tasteless (and broken) cream sauce and cooked-to-death veggies, along with a “pumpkin cake” that reminded me of something I’d cook at home with cupboard of leftovers (mostly onions) on a night I’m too lazy to go to the supermarket. I really want to like this place, but will be coming for drinks only in the future, if at all (there are plenty of other places to grab a drink near by, afterall). Chef, you need to step up your game.

Larry Boyd

One of the better 'modern British' restaurants in London by a long way - and certainly one of the best in central. The menu is seasonal, and serves some of the best meat and game around, at affordable prices. The rabbit and suet pie, if it's on - is an absolute must - as is the grilled mackerel. The puddings are always sumptuous and the staff polite and smart and, more importantly, local. The decor is dark, but not gloomy; cosy, without being too soft. The bar downstairs is also a great spot for a drink before or after dinner, and the music is always one of the highlights. The barman may be slightly mad, but he makes sure you have a good time (whichever poster below intoned he has bi-polar should be ashamed of themselves). Opinion is certainly subjective: one person's genius is another person's catastrophe. But from past experience and speaking to a lot of Londoners, this establishment is a must-visit - as is its sister restaurant the Anchor & Hope in Waterloo. Great location, cool staff, delicious food (and what portions!) all at a decent price.


fabulous meal in this very busy restaurant last night but service professional, attentive and friendly, food is inspired -good sized portions very reasonable prices and great house wines. just love it!


I really don’t see what people see in this place. After booking a table for 8pm and arriving a bit early we were finally seated at 8.45 (we waited in the bar where the barman was friendly – the only positive part of the night) and by this time half the food had been taken off the menu. We ordered a roasted duck crown and were advised it would take 40 mins and would come medium rare, a friend order the hare ragu. Over and hour later or ‘roasted’ duck arrived and was unceremoniously dumped on the table by our waiter who swiftly walked off. The ‘roasted’ duck was barely warm, thoroughly over cooked, the skin was soggy and flaccid and the fat definitely hadn’t been rendered off. The accompanying chips were over salted and luke warm and our side of greens must have fallen into the mustard pot and left on the side to chill before serving. Quite frankly all unacceptable and revolting. After being asked to speak to the manager (in took 5 mins to get any attention) we were told this is how it was served and if it was a problem we would have to wait another hour before our food would be ready. She also gave the excuse of ‘were busy’ (it was a Saturday night surely you would expect to be busy!!) The manger then walked away and returned to tell us that duck was always served cooked and pretty much told me I don’t know what I am talking about. What every happened to the customer being right?? On top of this my friend that ordered the hare was also given food was luke warm. This time the hare ragu basically tasted like it had been mixed with Cadburys drinking chocolate. Disgusting. Needless to say our plate went back to the kitchen basically full no apology given and we then were charged top whack for the pleasure. I wouldn’t recommend this place if you paid me, and I DEFINITELY won’t go back, in fact I just want to warn London not to eat here, there are so many fabulous places that are better and cheaper.