Where to Eat in London

Old May 12th, 2003, 02:26 PM
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Where to Eat in London

My son went to London last year and complained he couldn't find anything decent to eat. He said everything is way to greasy. The only thing he found palatable was the pasta, he said you can't screw up pasta. I also heard there is a Texas Style Steak House in London. Any suggestions?
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Old May 12th, 2003, 03:28 PM
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There are lots of good places to eat but they tend to be a little more expensive. I'd have to agree that the Italian places were the best for the money. Pizza Express has good pasta, pizzas and salads in a pleasant setting. If you want authentic it probably will be greasy!
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Old May 12th, 2003, 05:35 PM
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These are some places I enjoyed; however, this was 1999 so don't know if the prices are still good.

Carriages y Bressendon & Buckingham Palace Rd. y steak, 12 lbs + wine

Spaghetti House y on Bressendon one block in from Victoria St. - house special (calamari) includes salad & wine, 8 lbs

Wagamama's (I went to the one near the British Museum). Communal tables, good food and not expensive

Yo Sushi - food comes around on a track by your table and you just pick up what you want.

I think you need to pay a lot generally to get good food. London is just expensive.

If you put in London restaurants in the text search you will come up with a lot.
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Old May 12th, 2003, 07:50 PM
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From many other BAD reviews... STAY AWAY FROM ANGUS STEAKHOUSES.... from al accounts they are greasy, nasty, and definitely not worth the time and money.
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Old May 12th, 2003, 08:06 PM
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First of all - I don't think you have to worry about Angus Steak Houses. I'm sure I read they went into bankruptcy (almost no one but tourists ever ate there anyway)

As for the original question - I'm sorry but this is a silly concern. There are hundreds of terrific restaurants, cafes, pubs and other places to eat all over London. One has to actually have very bad luck (or only try nasty tourist joints) to not find good to absolutely terrific meals in London.

it is one of the most - if not THE most - sophisicated cities on earth and you can find any type of cuisine. Maybe your son only went to greasy spoons, fish and chip places (and some of those are VERY good) or tourist haunts.

I can honestly say I have had very many more poor meals at home in California than ever in my many trips to London.
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Old May 12th, 2003, 08:14 PM
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ps: A major hint - don't order typically American dishes. The execution won't be like "home" - but who in the States really does a good Yorkshire Pudding either?

My mom once ordered Chicken Salad in a nice pub - I tried to warn her. But she went ahead. What she got was not the creamy sandwich spread she was expecting (sort of like tuna salad) but a bed of lettuce with a chicken breast lying on top -- "Chicken Salad".

So a problem many travelers have is the unfamiliarity, not the actual quality.
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Old May 12th, 2003, 08:20 PM
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try sea shells on leesom grove north of marble arch...great fish, moderate price, family style restaurant---best fish in london.....

try ethnic food in london--thai, indian, american, etc...
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Old May 13th, 2003, 04:29 AM
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I've travelled to many countries and have always found that the only time I have a bad meal is when I don't do my research and just chance it. There are 1000s of amazing restaurants in London - but there are also many places dying to rip off the unsuspecting tourist with poor food at high prices.

Buy a book like Harden's Cheap Eats in London for guaranteed success at eating good food at the right prices ( or

I think the Steakhouse you mentioned is the Texas Embassy just behing Trafalgar Square - a pretty average place to be honest. A US restaurant with a good reputation is Christopher's in Covent Garden - but why come to London to eat US food? We have an amazing selection of international - and modern British cuisines. Branch out a bit!
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Old May 13th, 2003, 04:30 AM
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I've found that restaurant food in England has improved immeasurably over the past 40 years--baguette sandwiches at the railway station instead of a single slice of ham on 3-day-old Moother's Pride.

How old is your son and how much does he know about choosing a restaurant? You can eat badly anywhere if you don't know how to pick well.
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Old May 13th, 2003, 05:09 AM
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Yesterday, I just had a very good 2-course lunch at Michelin 1-star rated Zaika "indian influenced" restaurant near High Street Kensington tube station for 13.50gbp *incl. service fee. (the 3-course is an even better bargain at 15.75gbp). I was still too full at dinner time to bother eating before going to the theatre.

You can peruse Michelin's list at
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Old May 13th, 2003, 06:47 AM
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As others have mentioned, there really are tons of options in London. We try different restaurants each time we go, but places we know we can fall back on if we need to for basic, decent food include
-Bella Pasta (a chain - several locations - pasta, thin crusted pizza, etc.)
-Pret a Manger (a chain - locations EVERYWHERE - sandwiches - many have mayo, but they have stickers on the ones that don't)
-Belgo (Covent Garden area - Belgian food - mussels, roasted chicken, lots of beer varieties)(they have another location, but we have never been to it)
-Wagamama (a chain - basically an Asian noodle restaurant)

There are so many ethnic restaurants that are fun to discover for yourselves. We also always put together a picnic or two from one of the grocery stores (Sainsburys, Tesco, Waitrose).

I don't think you will have any problems finding good food (and then working it off by walking a lot). Good luck.
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Old May 13th, 2003, 06:56 AM
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every city you can get crap food, but agree with others speculating on where your son went. As there are so many ethnic food places in London which may not be to everyone's taste but usually cannot be accuse dof being greasy. People refer to Chinese and Indian. London has lots of Middle eastern restaurants as well.
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Old May 13th, 2003, 12:02 PM
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It's true that if you're looking for really fast, cheap food it can be difficult to find healthy eats in London if you don't know where to look. I found that their salads were rather poor. However, there are lots of fabulous, reasonably-priced places in London which offer fresh, wholesome meals. The above-mentioned Pizza Express, Wagamama and Belgo are great. My absolute favourite is Wok Wok for their thai green chicken curry with loads of veggies. A lot of pubs now offer lighter fare as well. There are also a few seafood places in Soho which are fantastic, albeit rather pricey.

For fast lunches, you can't beat Pret A Manger or Marks & Spencers which also offer tasty and healthy food at reasonable prices.
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Old May 13th, 2003, 12:13 PM
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I can't believe that everyone is recommending Pizza Express. Thats about as plain and cheap as can be. It make Pizza Hut look like a gourmet treat.

I agree with the Pret-a- Manger for cheap sandwiches "on the go". Did you know that these are also in NYC now? You'll find the combinations very interesting.

Another good stop for a picnic or food for your hotel room is Marks and Spencers grocery dept which specializes in prepared foods and a lot of other good stuff.

I find that you have to do some research too. I suggest subscribing to where you can search thru hundreds of restaurants by criteria (or buy ther book!)

Sometimes I think its best to stick to some of the hard core British specialties like sandwiches, roast meats, fish & chips and Indian food.

For a real treat try NOBU for Moderne Japanese, but be prepared for them to take a major chunk out of your wallet!
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