Want to know which dining spots we’re raving about this month? From buzzing tequila and taco joints to sizzling smokehouses, here are some of London’s best new restaurants, guaranteed to satisfy your food fix.
This all-day restaurant, café and bakery has opened up its doors on the ever-evolving Newington Green, serving up ‘world food’ made with locally sourced, sustainable ingredients. The menu will be filled with an array of ethnic creations, inspired by global travels and local producers – think shawarma-spiced lamb belly with baba ganoush, burnt onion broth, spring leaves and hay-smoked labneh, or radicchio with blood orange and miso.
20 Newington Green, Islington N16 9PU
This cool late-night tequila and taqueria bar specialises in authentic, hand-pressed tacos and creative, flavoursome fillings. Soft tortillas come piled high with pulled chicken cooked in Mezcal and lemon; slow-cooked beef brisket with chorizo, radish and coriander; and tofu with black bean and roasted tomato in a smokey chipotle sauce. For those who want to carry on the Mexican-inspired mayhem, Cartel’s tequila bar is open until 2am and serves 70 different types of tequilas and Mezcals, with a side portion of DJ sets.
517-519 Battersea Park Road SW11 3BN
Bringing the fresh flavours of Italy to the heart of Shoreditch, Enoteca Pomaio’s organic wine-bar-cum-restaurant serves up traditional Tuscan cuisine alongside an impressive selection of small grower Italian craft wines. Owners Marco and Jacapo Rossi ensure diners receive a truly authentic Tuscan experience, from the moreish food and wine selection to the exposed brick work and stripped back interiors. Bruschettas with truffle and quail eggs and simple Italian small plates – think wild boar risotto, truffle gnocchi and mackerel Nicoise – complement the wine perfectly, and are served with chunks of rustic farmhouse bread. There’s also a great selection of craft cheese and charcuterie to choose from, including Salsiccia Stagionata, Prosciutto del Casentino, Mascalzone riserva and Lavatella. Italian feasting at its finest.
224 Brick Lane, Shoreditch E1 6SA
Pop-up chefs that brought us The Cooking Collective, Lucy Pedder and Natasha Cooke, are getting back to basics with their latest restaurant launch, Lupins, cooking traditional British food with a unique twist. Fusing classic ingredients with exotic global flavours, Lucy and Natasha have created an inventive menu of what they’ve termed ‘sunshine food’, with creative dishes on the menu including: sumac lamb scrumpets and pomegranate molasses; cornmeal-fried spring onions with smoked chilli aioli; polenta-crusted anchovies with a wild garlic and onion salad; and chipotle roast pigeon with charred baby gem and carrot. Each dish is served as a small plate and designed to be shared, and there’ll be a monthly changing cocktail list alongside a menu of natural, organic and biodynamic wines.
66-68 Union Street, Southwark SE1 1TD
Following the success of Gunpowder (which recently won a Bib Gourmand from Michelin for its delicious, reasonably priced Indian food), husband and wife team Harneet and Devina Baweja along with Head Chef Nirmal are spreading their wings to Commercial Street with a brand-new venture. Madam D’s will draw on the influences of Indian, Nepalese, Tibetan and Chinese cooking, to bring the dark oriental flavours of the Himalayas to the capital. Dishes are designed to be shared, and will include garlic coriander steamed chicken; prawn toast; and a selection of dumplings including pan-fried Tibetan duck momo and so-called gold coin dumplings, named for their shape. Dine by candlelight perched atop long wooden benches that set the scene for friendly communal dining.
2nd Floor, 76 Commercial Street, Shoreditch E1 6LY, open 8th May
Concocted by restaurateur Will Ricker (of Bodega Negra fame), Stoke House is a modern take on the great British carvery. Succulent cuts of meat – which you pay for by the weight – are smoked in a special wood burning pit to give each piece of brisket, beef short rib, chicken and pulled pork its own delicious, distinctive flavour. Championing locally sourced produce at affordable prices, this self-service carvery comes decked out with communal tables and bench-style seating, as well as classic cocktails, craft beers and wines from the barrel, to add to its easy-going atmosphere. Meat is ordered at the counter and you can choose from slowly smoked Ruby Red Suffolk beef short rib; Middlewhite pork collar brioche with fennel apple slaw and burnt apple sauce; and rare Cornish barrel rump, as well as traditional roasts on Sundays. As for extras, there’s a selection of seasonal sides including smoked cauliflower cheese; pulled pork beans and roasted balsamic beets; and fresh salads (with produce harvested from their 'living salad wall').
Nova Victoria, 81 Buckingham Palace Road, Victoria SW1W 0AJ