J Sheekey

  • Restaurants
Critics' choice
3 Love It
Covent Garden
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This West End institution oozes old-fashioned glamour with booths and secluded tables, charming staff and a menu that's an ode to the bounty of the sea.

After well over a century of service, Sheekey’s status as a West End institution is assured. With its monochrome photos of stars of stage and screen, wooden panelling and cream crackle walls, and array of silver dishes atop thick white tablecloths, it oozes old-fashioned glamour. The separate booths and secluded tables cry out for romantic trysts – even a simple lunch has the thrill of a secret assignation.

The white-aproned, black-waistcoated staff are charm incarnate, if alarmingly numerous – half a dozen greeted us between door and table. The menu, an ode to the bounty of the sea, runs from super-fresh oysters and shellfish via old-fashioned snacks (herring roe on toast) to upmarket classics (dover sole, lobster thermidor). The fish pie – a rich, comforting treat – is deservedly acclaimed, but we feel the shrimp and scallop burger merits similar status. Densely textured and full-flavoured, it came in a lightly toasted sesame seed bun with all the trimmings, including a little silver jug of spicy mayonnaise.

Puds include Eton mess, seasonal sorbets and ice-creams (elderflower and gooseberry ripple, on our visit). Amalfi lemon semifreddo with blackcurrants was a winner, each sugar-coated fruit a bomblet of zingy intensity. You can feast on crustacea (and some dishes from Sheekey’s main menu) at the Oyster Bar next door – it’s also easier to book.


Venue name: J Sheekey
Address: 28-32 St Martin's Court
Opening hours: Lunch served noon-3pm Mon-Sat; noon-3.30pm Sun. Dinner served 5.30pm-midnight Mon-Sat; 6-11pm Sun
Transport: Tube: Leicester Square
Price: Main courses £13.50-£39.50. Set lunch (Sat, Sun) £26.50 3 courses. Cover £2
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Average User Rating

3.5 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:3
  • 4 star:2
  • 3 star:1
  • 2 star:0
  • 1 star:2
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Ros A

I've been to J Sheekey a multitude of times and I really love it. First things first - it is quitteee a smart restaurant, and a meal will usually set you back a fair whack. No cheapo diner here. That said, J Sheekey is famous for seafood, and they do it well. Be sure to reserve a table in advance as it's busy being in theatre district and all. Post theatre tables are popular, as are pre theatre. The fish pie is fantastic, and the starters are all pretty yummy. The waiters know their stuff and it's just generally a nice place for a special meal. It's also quite dark and cosy and romantic, if that's what you're after.

Alex B

There is a slightly stuffy feel to the atmosphere but once you're in the service is great and food delicious. Feels like a special occasion destination but actually the prices are comparable with most other really nice restaurants in town. Old fashioned but in a good way.

Anastasia P

My friend and I got food poisoning.... Extremely bad experience.. and they never offered to refund us! Shame...

Sir E


Good old fashioned customer service, fantastic sea food, ageless glamour! In the centre of london but feels like it's a hidden gem. Our experience was simply amazing from start to finish. Easy to book a table, greeted on arrival like a celebrity, expert staff guided us through all our food and drink choices, food arrived quickly and tasted outstanding. I just loved everything about it. Yes the bill was high, but I don't mind paying for quality. A must go!

John C

OK but nothing special. The gravalax to start was good but then things went downhill. The prawn & scallop burger was a bit bland and the bun was over-toasted (not quite burnt, but still...).  Also I asked for it without mayonnaise, but it came with it anyway. The creme brulee had, disappointingly, a powdery taste to it (the prunes on top were good though).  The service felt rushed - I think most of our table had finished eating when they started clearing the plates.  For the price bracket it's in there are better options nearby.

Sandy A

Our dinner started well, nice cocktails, decent enough starters but unfortunately the good experience ended there. Despite the many waiters wandering around the restaurant none of them came to check if our meal was ok during the meal yet charged us a cheeky 12.5% service charge at the end of the meal. I ordered the monkish and prawn curry, it was totally bland, lacked any flavour and despite a hefty price tag of £25 included 2 prawns! When my husband provided feedback the waiter was very defensive and remarked that this is a popular dish and not quite sure why I didn't like it! During our meal once we finished our bottle of prosecco finished the waiter simply removed our glasses and didn't bother to ask if we would like more drinks. I was left feeling very disappointed with my experience at this restaurant and feel that the don't belive in serving good quality food or service.


What a lovely old fashioned approach to the delivery of good food. The small together tables gives it a back street Broadway restaurant feel, which I personally love, and in fact I suppose it should, being on a back street in the West End. The Oyster bar is a must if you have the time to indulge yourself when in season, and when out of season the Sheekey Fish Pie is divine, rich, flavoursome and really filling. This time however I had the potted shrimp to start and the dover sole main course which almost meant I was too full for the pudding - but I managed to cram hat in as well. I went with friends and having raved about the restaurant they were not disappointed.


great experience ....Champs and Oysters. Fresh, tasty and excellent attention to service.Thankyou...... Gem of a place ,set in St Martins Court :).