Taste of London

Restaurants
4 out of 5 stars
(8user reviews)
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4/4

Taking place in Regent’s Park from June 13-17, Taste of London is a sprawling restaurant festival, where visitors can stuff themselves with food from a selection of 40 up-and-coming new eateries and popular old-hands.

There’s more to be announced, but restaurants already confirmed include El Pastor, Smoke & Salt, Salon, Barrafina, Hoppers and Bao with appearances by chefs as auspicious as Will Bowlby, Surender Mohan and Pip Lacey. Not piqued? There’ll be a broad range of demos, boozy tastings and cookery classes, too, as well as a trough-load of small-scale and artisanal food and drink brands plying their wares. 

Each day is split into lunch and dinner sessions, and standard entry costs from £17–£30. That’ll only grant you access to the site, though – food and drink costs more on top. VIP tickets are around double the price, but they’ll get you a glass of champagne on entry, access to the VIP lounge and a Taste recipe journal, too.

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Average User Rating

4 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:2
  • 4 star:4
  • 3 star:2
  • 2 star:0
  • 1 star:0
LiveReviews|8
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tastemaker

I love Taste of London and go every year but I must admit it is starting to go down hill a bit.  The top restaurants that used to be there like Theo Randalls and top well known chefs like Gordan Ramsey, Gary Rhodes, etc just don't seem to do it anymore. I also feel the food is now always mostly Indian or Chinese which is a disappointment as not much range to choose from now.  However it is still a nice place to go and enjoy with friends.

Tastemaker

I'd like to have given this a 3.5, but a 3 will have to suffice. I paid £50 for my entrance ticket, which meant that I could a) skip the queue, b) have £20 worth of 'taste credit' - basically £20 towards food and drink and c) have a glass of champagne and a taste recipe journal. I thought this was a pretty good deal....and then we started walking around.


It took us over 30 minutes to find somewhere where the £7 portion was larger than your little toenail. So, as I'm sure you're starting to imagine, the £20 taste credit didn't go very far. We spent around £30 over the £50 we'd already spent on the entry ticket/taste credit, just to have more than 1 plate of food and a drink!


I did have some lovely food, however. One place was giving away free slices (by 'slice', I mean approximately 1 inch by 1 inch), which was absolutely delicious - I couldn't eaten the whole pizza (obviously, because the portions were SO BLEEDING SMALL EVERYWHERE ELSE. 


I had a portion of confit of duck, with waffle and egg, from Duck & Waffle, but at £12 I felt a bit sick that I could've got a great big meal elsewhere for the same price. We also had delicious beef at another place, and a couple of other dishes that I can't remember. 


Drinks-wise, I had a glass of rose which tasted like red (it was meant to - it was delicious!), a pina colada inside a pineapple (lovely, but overpriced at £12), and we shared a bottle of prosecco. 


The atmosphere was lovely, the staff overall were friendly, but the prices were absolutely disgusting. 

Tastemaker

Taste of London 2017 could not have fallen on a better weekend - the weather has been perfect! And with that comes a great atmosphere with friendly vendors - even friendly people queueing! Saying that the queues to get some grub from some of London's best food spots were pretty ridiculous! And at least £5 a pop on top of £20 entrance tickets it all seemed a bit much to me! We only tried 2 things - Iberica & Waffles from Ametsa, which was beautiful to look at but lacked flavour, and then the fish taco from Bala Baya which was the polar opposite; packed full of fantastic flavours and textures. I haven't been to either of these restaurants before so it was brilliant to try. 

We visited on the Thursday evening so by the time we had wandered round each stall picking up the freebies (crisps, cake, cheese etc - amazing cake place and amazing ice cream place) and sussing the place out I was too full and too tired to queue for any more! I really wanted to try both desserts from Balls & Complany and Duck & Waffle as I have seen and heard good things so if you are visiting this weekend make sure you save room!

All in all I think ToL is a nice concept but waaaay too over priced - I would prefer to spend the time/money visiting a few of the restaurants. 

Tastemaker

Taste of London 2016 left big shoes to fill. Good news is Taste of London 2017 does that with ease. It helps undoubtedly that today was the most gorgeous of days – blazing sunshine and that particular shade of blue sky that only London can deliver – which meant that wandering around Regents Park eating glorious food and drinking bubbly fizz from some of the world’s best restaurants was really the perfect way to spend an afternoon.


Eight restaurant blocks where 30 of London’s hottest spots to eat have set up camp are spread out among scores of exhibitors plying you with everything from pastries to mochi to cheese. Oh and there’s gin. A whole lotta gin. Seriously, if you’re part of the love affair that the entire world is having with gin at the moment, you are gonna be seriously happy at Taste this year. Slightly pickled by the time you leave most likely but pretty damn happy. Personally I’d also recommend the English rose sparkling wine at Digby’s as an alternative; light, fizzy and fabulous, it’s a flute of pale pink perfection, ideal for sipping in the summer sun.


Onto the most important bit though – the food. You wanna know where to go and what to try? Listen up. You’re gonna wanna hit up Temper for the panko bread-crumbed mutton with gochujang and the goat tacos, Balls & Company for the squid ink arancini and manchego churros and Little Jose for the pluma iberica with piquillo aioli. You should make a beeline for both the confit duck kibbeh from Clerkenwell Boy and The Good Egg and the watermelon & masala cashew nut chaat at The Cinnamon Club whilst the courgette & mint arancini from Ember Yard and the squid ink croquettes from Little Jose are also worth a nibble.


Oklava’s baked lamb fat dauphinoise with halloumi, fried egg and sherry vinegar caramel was a real standout but it was a daily special for today so won’t be around again. Fear not though, the daily specials still to come are pretty awesome – if you go on Friday, I’d head to Bao for the Horlicks ice-cream bun, Saturday would see me running to order everything on the menu at Kricket and Sunday is the perfect day for Perilla’s set strawberry buttermilk.


For desserts, you must try the gorgeously pretty brownie ice-cream profiteroles with Persian fairy floss at Balls & Company, the sweetly sharp lingonberry ice-cream in fennel cones at Aster and the truly delicious tahini & tonka bean cheesecake cream with salted caramel, sesame crumble and banana compote from Bala Baya.


There are masterclasses, demonstrations and residencies to choose from, VIP tickets get you a glass of champagne & a recipe book plus access to the VIP lounge and ladies, you’ll be pleased to hear that clean, tidy facilities and cloakrooms are generously scattered around. You can pay by card at some places but pre-paid Taste cards are the easiest way to pay for your hours of feasting and really, do set aside hours for this because you’ll need it. Get there for the start of your session and stay until they (very politely!) kick you out; if you’re looking for the best example of the finest food in London, if you’re at all unconvinced that we have the most delicious capital city on the globe, if you simply fancy grazing around a corner of one of the prettiest parks in the UK, do not miss Taste this year.


Went to Taste of London on a friday evening with some friends. Not as many people as a expected to my own contentment. I had a lovely evening, and although my boots were full of mud, the rain got a bit shy, blessing us with a clear sky. The improvised but yet smart paths along the tents and stalls helped my shoe situation to even become worse. I cannot complain about the free samples which I've expected to be way less. I indulged myself so much with everything that I was able to find, from very commercial chocolate, to sleek and posh energy drinks, to boozy ice-cream, to everything free bars and crisps, to italian and turkish delights, that after while I couldn't have anything else. I guess that's the spirit! However, I still had a tiny bit of space in my stomach to try the exquisite crab meat, white peach & coriander salad from the Mirror Room, at Rosewood London. Despite not trying more top dishes from top restaurants, I can say that Taste of London was very well represented this year (I still regret not trying that Golden Grahams soft serve from Duck & Waflle and the vegan dishes from Amico Bio). 

 I skipped the demos as I've enough of  them in previous festivals and I just enjoyed the atmosphere and the fun things I was able to find in some stalls : russian roulette inspired games, photo booths and a foosball table. Apart from food I had good fun too (and I was boozy free!).

As one of my friends highlighted as we were about to leave the festival 'where's the Taste of London?'. I guess it was nowhere but also everywhere. And this is one of the things that I like about this city: the world tastes and flavours that come together in one big place.




tastemaker

I went to Taste of London on Friday lunch section. The weather was hot at one point then raining next minute. But with great food and free samples, who cares? Look out for #SecretService @TasteofLondon on Twitter while you there. Different workshops host in a tiny Japanese tea house (yes, you need to remove your shoes before going in) available if you RT quick enough. I was lucky and went to the one with Mast Brothers which was a chocolate tasting and making. We tasted the fresh cocoa bean, dried cocoa bean and three different chocolates. Then get my hands dirty and made a chocolate truffle out of chocolate ganache. It was a very special experience and the highlight of the show for me. Wagyu puffs with gold leaves from Chai Wu were pretty awesome, too. @ChaiWuLondon @MastBrothers 


I was very fortunate to get press passes for this which gave me free access to the event itself and to the VIP areas as well as three free tokens. I could've got a goodie bag but I wasn't keen on carrying anything around.  Anyway, it's so lively and actually well equipped for dodgy London weather.  I think three tokens is all a veggie really needs because of the carb content but for meat eaters, I think 4-5 tokens is sufficient.  Although tokens do not cover the iconic dishes which is around the double digit price point.  I would definitely recommend VIP tickets as you have clean, no-queue toilets and free-flowing alcohol... and canapes from Pizarro in the VIP Lounge.  I also recommend the following dishes: Anything from Sartoria (Italian), the Truffled Duck Egg by Club Gascon, the polenta croquettas from Duck & Waffle and the salted caramel softserve also from Duck & Waffle.  There's also a whole host of demos and stalls, be sure to have enough time to check them out.


Get your ticket for a week day rather than weekend as it represents much more value. 

The vibe is awesome. The crown system works well, but be prepared to also have some cash/card on your as it's only the restaurants that only take crowns and some of the exhibitors only take cash. 


If you're umming and arring about going - do it! You'll have a fab time, just don't think about you're wallet the next morning. You'll wake thinking what a great time, but a little pricey? But does that matter if you can say you've had an awesome experience? 


When else can you eat top food from a number of restaurants with the best dining accolades in a field. 


It's like gastro glasto!