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The best new restaurants in London

Where's hot? Where’s great? Err, this lot: London’s best new restaurants and cafés to have opened up in the last 12 months

By Tania Ballantine and Time Out London Food & Drink |
Mao Chow
Photographer: Mao Chow

Every week, a frankly stupid amount of brilliant new restaurants, cafés and street food joints arrive in London. Which makes whittling a shortlist of best newbies down to manageable size one helluva challenge. But here it is. The very best London restaurants of the last 12 months. We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: eating out in London kicks ass.

RECOMMENDED: The 100 best restaurants in London

The best new restaurants in London

Restaurants, Contemporary Global



What is it: A chic fusion restaurant serving Japanese-Italian cooking. 

Why go: For five courses of fabulousness for just £39. 

Restaurants, British

Bingham Riverhouse


What is it: A smart-casual riverside restaurant at a boutique Richmond hotel.

Why go: The food. The freebies. The flattering light. Oh, and did we mention the views?  


Restaurants, Contemporary European

Bob Bob Cité

City of London

What is it: A City sibling to Soho’s Bob Bob Ricard, styled like an Edwardian train.

Why go: Don’t worry – the champagne button’s still here.

Restaurants, British

Casa Fofò


What is it: A tasting-menu neighbourhood restaurant from an ex-Pidgin chef. 

Why go: For a home-from-home vibe, but without the washing up. 

Restaurants, British


Nine Elms

What is it: An all-day Manhattan-style brasserie with a menu from The Dairy's Robin Gill.

Why go: Pastries by day. Cocktails by night. And truffled Baron Bigod in between. 

Restaurants, Global

Da Terra

Bethnal Green

What is it: The fine-dining restaurant at Bethnal Green’s Town Hall Hotel.

Why go: For Lego people you can spread on your bread.

Restaurants, Japanese

Endo at the Rotunda

White City

What is it: An eighth-floor omakase (tasting menu) restaurant in White City.

Why go: It's the best omakase experience in London. 

Restaurants, Chinese

Fatt Pundit


What is it: An Indo-Chinese restaurant in Soho. 

Why go: Chilli cheese. Lettuce cup. Just do it. 

Restaurants, Italian



What is it: A Shoreditch pizza and pasta restaurant with OTT interiors.

Why go: To say you’ve been. Oh, and for pasta carbonara served out of a parmesan wheel.

Restaurants, British


Portobello Road

What is it: A fashionable restaurant on Portobello Road. 

Why go: To see and be seen. 

Restaurants, Contemporary European

Hello Darling


What is it: A boho restaurant, close to The Old Vic, serving small and sharing plates.

Why go: For the swede tartare. Yes, really.

Restaurants, Middle Eastern

Kebab Queen

Covent Garden

What is it: A hidden restaurant serving a kebab-based tasting menu.

Why go: The cabbage 'kebab'. With monkfish bone marrow and crisp chicken skin. Sigh. 

Restaurants, Food court

Kerb Seven Dials Market

Seven Dials

What is it: A two-floor food hall and produce market in Covent Garden.

Why go: For the food. All of it. And, the lovably laidback vibe. 

Restaurants, Indian

Lucknow 49


What is it: A homely Indian restaurant in Mayfair, from the chef behind Dum Biryani in Soho. 

Why go: The goat biryani. Royally good rice. 

Restaurants, Vegan

Mao Chow


What is it: A vegan, cash-only, Sichuan street food joint in Hackney.

Why go: The smacked cucumber. The dry-fried beans. The dan dan noodles. 

Restaurants, Chinese

Master Wei


What is it: A Bloomsbury restaurant serving food from China's Shaanxi province. 

Why go: For the traditional liangpi noodles. Chilly but brilli(ant). 

Restaurants, Contemporary European


Stoke Newington

What is it: A modern European neighbourhood restaurant with Portuguese leanings.

Why go: For things that make you go 'ooh'.

Restaurants, British

No. Fifty Cheyne


What is it: A stylish brasserie on Chelsea's posh Cheyne Walk.

Why go: For chargrilled, melt-in-the-mouth rib-eye steak. 

Restaurants, Chinese



What is it: A trendy Southwark joint serving southern Chinese cooking.

Why go: The kung pao chicken: as tender as tender gets. 

Restaurants, British


Ladbroke Grove

What is it: A smart-casual neighbourhood restaurant from chef Jackson Boxer.

Why go: The brown bread ice cream with popcorn: a £5 holy grail of puds. 

Restaurants, Spanish


King’s Cross

What is it: An outdoor terrace restaurant from Barrafina, offering tabletop grilling.

(NOTE: this restaurant is only open during summer months.)

Why go: The pork collar. The milk-fed lambs’ kidneys. That £5 baby gem salad.

Restaurants, Contemporary European



What is it: A neighbourhood restaurant in Hackney serving modern izakaya-style food. 

Why go: Records in the corner. Service with a smile. Drinking food to die for.

Restaurants, Chinese

Sichuan Grand


What is it: A smart Sichuan restaurant in Stratford. 

Why go: The jellyfish. Black vinegar, garlic and just enough crunch.

Restaurants, French


St John’s Wood

What is it: A neighbourhood bistro from the duo behind The Wolseley.

Why go: It's like a Parisian bistro, only, well, better. 

Venue says Taking inspiration from the great boulevard cafés of Paris, Soutine is an informal neighbourhood rendezvous in St John’s Wood.

Restaurants, Indian

Spice Box


What is it: A permanent restaurant for the Indian vegan street food stall.

Why go: For crowd-pleasing, filling grub that’s flavour-packed and plant-based.

Restaurants, Italian

Terra Rossa


What is it: A low-key Puglian trattoria in Islington.

Why go: For a fava bean purée you'll want to bathe in. 

Venue says Authentic Italian charm, Terra Rossa takes diners on a journey through the sun-baked region of Puglia renowned for its rich local cuisine.

Restaurants, American

Thunderbird Fried Chicken


What is it: A street-foody fried chicken joint in Brixton Market.

Why go: For the Meltdown: a phenomenal burger with melty, miso-laced cheese. 

Restaurants, Contemporary European



What is it: An innovative tasting-menu restaurant in Marylebone.

Why go: Because, admit it, you love food more than the person sitting next to you.

Restaurants, Middle Eastern



What is it: The Soho outpost of famed Istanbul restaurant Yeni Lokanta. 

Why go: Snazzy salad. Bread pudding fritters. And everything in between.

Restaurants, Global

Yopo at The Mandrake


What is it: An all-day Fitzrovia dining room with South American influences. 

Why go: For DIY tacos you won’t want to share.

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