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Acton area guide

Explore all the corners of Acton to find its best restaurants, pubs, parks and things to do

Acton folk love a good park. Gunnersbury Park is gorgeous and houses a museum which was the one-time residence of the Rothschild family, but if you want to keep it super-local, head to Acton Park. During the autumn it’s one of the prettiest green spaces in west London, with a chilled café, tennis courts, playgrounds and even a bowling green with a pavilion. Then, head to Acton Market (Crown Street), every Friday to Sunday, where you can pick up weird jams, fresh bread, local art, and some proper fruit and veg. For shops, walk up Churchfield Road, where you’ll find English Butchers (manned by an Aussie called Tim), Park and Bridge, an awesome little wine shop, and the brilliant unnamed antique store.

Love London Awards: this year's winners

North China
Restaurants Book online

North China

Venue says: “Mouthwatering Peking cuisine with an emphasis on quality. Try our chef's choice menu for £27 per person.”

Users say
  • 5 out of 5 stars
Book online
Park + Bridge
Shopping

Park + Bridge

Independent wine shop that stocks 'organic, biodynamic and minimal intervention' wines. They also have a wine bar next door, Vindinista.

Users say
  • 5 out of 5 stars
London Transport Museum Depot
Museums

London Transport Museum Depot

A cornucopia of old school treasures from London's transport past. Have a peak behind the scenes on the Time Out blog.

Users say
  • 5 out of 5 stars
Vindinista!
Bars and pubs

Vindinista!

This Acton wine bar might be a little too tucked away for some but it looks like it could be one worth hunting out. Most of the intrigue comes from a wine selection that goes big on interesting drops from small producers - with a good number available by the glass for good measure. There's bar food to soak up the booze, too. Expect small plates such as potted shrimps from Upton Smokery served with toasted sourdough, plates of fennel salami, posh cheese toasties and free-range duck rillettes with cornichons and more of that sourdough toast.  Don't be surprised to hear albums played in their entirety (if you're averse to late '70s and early '80s new wave then you might want to check what's lined up before you head down). Keep an eye out, too, for supper clubs and special events.  

Users say
  • 5 out of 5 stars
See the full results of this year's Love London Awards

Restaurants in Acton

Atariya
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Atariya

Just a few paces from Ealing Common station, this unassuming restaurant has a strong reputation for high-quality old-school sushi. The functional room is simply furnished with white-tiled floor, small wooden tables and a standard-issue sushi counter along one wall. It’s not much to look at, but it serves the purpose for a decent lunch or dinner. Sourcing the highest quality of fish is not a problem for Atariya as the company is also a fishmonger. This also enables it to offer a wider range than most, with more than 20 nigiri toppings to choose from – including lesser spotted varieties such as turbot fin, razor clam and botan prawn – all of which are handled well. Prices have gone up a little recently, eliciting a few grumbles from regulars, but sashimi and nigiri sets still represent reasonable value at £15-£23. The ‘superior’ selection featured 14 well-shaped nigiri pieces, though the fish slicing was a little uneven. Highlights included fatty tuna as soft as silk, and turbot with just the right level of resistance as you bit into it. Less pleasing was the overpowering ume paste in a plum and shiso maki roll.  

Time Out says
  • 4 out of 5 stars
Users say
  • 3 out of 5 stars
Book online
Restaurants Special offer

Le Vacherin

On a Thursday evening, this popular neighbourhood bistro, with its retro prints and mirrors, was thrumming with Chiswick’s spruce and moneyed troisième âge and a sprinkling of younger folk. It’s the sort of place where a man might dine alone, linen napkin tucked into his shirt. The menu is classically French (snails, soufflé, duck à l’orange) but with Italian elements (tortellini, ravioli, risotto) and appealing British ingredients (Maldon oysters, Suffolk asparagus, dover sole). The largely French wine list is a lovingly assembled affair. Things began well – excellent bread and anchovy butter, a smooth courgette velouté amuse-bouche, the comforting sight of waiters plating up cheese – but the momentum was quickly lost. A long delay in taking our order was followed by a stomach-rumbling wait for our mains, which we put down to the champagne-themed dinner for 30 taking place alongside us. Lamb with borlotti beans was more gastropub than fine dining – it didn’t merit its hefty (£23) price tag. A ‘rare’ rump steak (part of an admirable £11.95 steak frites deal that included a glass of wine) was tough and underdone, the chips lacklustre. Tarte tatin featuring plump, jammy-sweet apples was let down by soggy pastry. A blip? We hope so.  

Time Out says
  • 3 out of 5 stars
Users say
  • 3 out of 5 stars
Special offer
Casa Bardotti
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Casa Bardotti

Pizza restaurant in North Acton.

Users say
  • 4 out of 5 stars
Book online
Restaurants Book online

North China

Venue says: “Mouthwatering Peking cuisine with an emphasis on quality. Try our chef's choice menu for £27 per person.”

Users say
  • 5 out of 5 stars
Book online
See all restaurants in Acton

Things to do in Acton

London Transport Museum Depot
Museums

London Transport Museum Depot

A cornucopia of old school treasures from London's transport past. Have a peak behind the scenes on the Time Out blog.

Users say
  • 5 out of 5 stars
Attractions

Wormwood Scrubs Park

A 200 acre park – the largest open space in the Hammersmith and Fulham borough – with myriad facilities. Not only does this park have sports pitches for football (nine large, seven small), rugby, Gaelic football and baseball, but there's a pony centre and a model aircraft runway. Plus the Linford Christie Outdoor Sports Centre, which contains astroturf and grass pitches, an athletics track, netball court and archery area. Impressive to say the least.

Users say
  • 4 out of 5 stars

Bars and pubs in Acton

Duke of Sussex
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Duke of Sussex

Overlooking Acton Green and with a substantial beer garden at the rear, the Duke of Sussex is a handsome 1890s Victorian boozer that was given a thorough gastrofication in 2007. Now owned by its then operators Real Pubs, it has lasted well. The pub side is lively and serves good beer (including Dark Star’s smokily sweet-bitter Art of Darkness and Triple fff’s Rock Lobster), but it’s the beautiful restaurant room that really stands out, almost the whole ceiling forming a giant ‘skylight’ – with cherubs to acknowledge its loftiness. The menu majors in Spanish cuisine, with a good range of tapas and more substantial dishes, usually with twists on the familiar – such as the quince aïoli that accompanied a pork chop, which had a properly unctuous thick fat layer and came with garlicky sliced potatoes ‘a lo pobre’. Other highlights were the cheeseboard (manchego, sure, but also a smoky Basque idiazabal and picos de europa blue), coming with a Kilner jar of crackers and membrillo. The menu also has some non-Spanish pub favourites – rib of beef and chips, pies, black pudding hash cake under an egg – but there seems little point in wandering far from the Iberian peninsula.  

Time Out says
  • 4 out of 5 stars
Users say
  • 4 out of 5 stars
Book online
Dragonfly Brewery at The George & Dragon
Bars and pubs

Dragonfly Brewery at The George & Dragon

Time Out reviewed this pub favourably when it reopened after its last major refurb in 2007: the polished mahogany, soaring colonial-style statues and atmospheric front bar remain. But now it’s pouring beers made on the premises, possibly for the first time in centuries. The shiny tanks and polished pipes of their new brewery are on prominent display in the barn-like bar. This equipment is sizeable enough to suggest it’s more than just window-dressing: the products will be sold in other bars in the same ownership, from Bow to Stroud Green. Rather than a range of esoteric hop-led liquid experiments, the solid range of beers include Dark Matter London stout, Achtung wheat beer and 2 O’Clock Ordinary best bitter (a lighter lunchtime pint), all costing £3.70 on cask or £4 on keg. Food is rampantly patriotic too, although not backing England – the comfort food here is US style, with fried bar snacks, ribs, and burgers big enough to choke a dragon.

Time Out says
  • 4 out of 5 stars
Users say
  • 5 out of 5 stars
Vindinista!
Bars and pubs

Vindinista!

This Acton wine bar might be a little too tucked away for some but it looks like it could be one worth hunting out. Most of the intrigue comes from a wine selection that goes big on interesting drops from small producers - with a good number available by the glass for good measure. There's bar food to soak up the booze, too. Expect small plates such as potted shrimps from Upton Smokery served with toasted sourdough, plates of fennel salami, posh cheese toasties and free-range duck rillettes with cornichons and more of that sourdough toast.  Don't be surprised to hear albums played in their entirety (if you're averse to late '70s and early '80s new wave then you might want to check what's lined up before you head down). Keep an eye out, too, for supper clubs and special events.  

Users say
  • 5 out of 5 stars
Swan
Bars and pubs Book online

Swan

Behind a lemon-yellow façade, set on a quiet, pedestrianised corner brightened with clusters of bright flowers, this Irish-run hostelry is a real home from home. It’s pretty pub-like in feel, but the Swan is also rated for its food (salmon and dill fish cakes, roast wild pigeon breast). Drinkers are taken care of with Sharp’s Doom Bar and guest ales, and tap lagers that include San Miguel and Peroni, plus a seasonal wine list with a dozen or so choices by the glass. In the wood-panelled interior, two areas – one for dining and drinking, the other just for drinking – are divided by a professionally staffed bar. Diners are treated to bright, tasteful images of Paris by Tim Johnston, drinkers to a fire and sofa seating arrangement around a flatscreen TV. There’s also a small outside plot at the back, and festival tables at the front.

Time Out says
  • 4 out of 5 stars
Users say
  • 5 out of 5 stars
Book online
See all bars and pubs in Acton

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