Dining Al Fresco: 10 of London’s Best
London is fast becoming a top contender for the food capital of the world. Michelin starred restaurants sit cheek-by-jowl to family-run cafés, and glittering bars attract city workers and hipsters alike with the most mouth-watering cocktails. And in the summer, London takes it outside. There’s so much to choose from that it helps to know where to look for the best outdoor hot spots. Here's our al fresco dining guide of London’s ten best outdoor eating options...
1). Pergola On The Roof
Providing West Londoners with a foodie hub, the company behind Pergola on the Roof aims to take unloved and unused spaces and turn them into ‘unique, big and beautiful outdoor destinations’. Not a restaurant as such, but instead a destination where several ‘restaurant kiosks’ pop up to offer their food in a relaxed, self-service and made-to-order environment. Hidden away in Paddington and on top of the Television Centre in White City, you can find some London favourites, such as Breddos Tacos, Patty & Bun and Bonnie Gull – something for everyone.
5 Kingdom St, Paddington, London W2 6PY & Multi Story Car Park, Television Centre, Wood Lane, London, W12 7RJ | pergolaontheroof.com
Pioneers of the BBQ meat trend, Smokestak has made a name for itself in East London. Now, with the addition of a sun-facing terrace that merges with the restaurant using glass-panelled floor-to-ceiling doors, diners can enjoy their pork ribs and burnt peach old fashioned under London’s sunny skies!
35 Sclater Street, London, E1 6LB | smokestak.co.uk
3). Coq D’Argent
Recently refurbished, the rooftop terrace at Coq D’Argent is reminiscent of a Paris garden with refined flower beds and elegant seating. With live jazz on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Saturday nights, this classic French restaurant is perfect for a relaxing dining experience and panoramic views.
Number 1 Poultry, London, EC2R 8EJ | coqdargent.co.uk
4). Nobu Shoreditch
The latest addition to the famous Japanese restaurant brand, Shoreditch Nobu is first and foremost be a hotel, but is also be home to a substantial outdoor terrace. Serving modern Japanese food, with a separate sushi bar and a private dining space there is space for 80 covers to enjoy the al fresco courtyard. Enjoy the Black Cod Miso favourite, Yellow tail with Jalapeno or one of the new dishes exclusive to Nobu Shoreditch.
10-50 Willow Street, London, EC2A 4BH | nobuhotelshoreditch.com
5). Barrafina Drury Lane
Barrafina is known for its tasty Spanish tapas and is popular with London diners for its counter top dining. With both parasols and heaters, the outdoor dining of the Drury Lane branch is weather-prepared. However, they have a no-reservations policy so be prepared to wait it out a little for your aperitif!
43 Drury Lane, Covent Garden, London, WC2B 5AJ | barrafina.co.uk
6). Upstairs at The Department Store
Another on-trend spot is this relaxed members club in Brixton, serving inventive food in a timber-framed dining and drinking space. Enjoy the roof terrace with far reaching views of London’s skyline while eating truffle raviolo.
Entrance on Stockwell Avenue, Brixton, London, SW9 8BQ | upstairsbrixton.com
7). The Culpeper
A garden supplying herbal tinctures for signature cocktails, a tailored grill from the London Log Company, not to mention a view across the City’s rooftops – do we really need to say anymore? Oh, and they organise regular astronomy nights where you can stargaze with hot cocktails.
40 Commercial Street, London, E1 6LP | theculpeper.com
8). Selfridges Roof Deck
The rooftop at Selfridges is reinvented twice a year, keeping it consistently popular as Londoners can’t resist checking out the newest take. The space has a retractable roof, so is weather appropriate although there isn’t much of a view. Still, surrounded by Selfridges shopping bags, there is a certain sense of style and glamour to this seasonal offering, currently Alto by San Carlo.
400 Oxford Street, London, W1A 1AB | selfridges.com
9). Granary Square Brasserie
Home to the largest outdoor terrace in north London, this tropical-themed brasserie makes for the perfect spot to enjoy the summer sun with a drink in hand. Indulge in their asparagus with truffle hollandaise, steak tartare and crème brûlée.
1-3 Stable St, Kings Cross, London N1C 4AA | granarysquarebrasserie.com
10). Sea Containers
Really the location of this Southbank restaurant of The Mondrian Hotel cannot be beaten. The ultimate spot for people watching, it is a pleasure to dine right next to the Thames on the terrace of this trendy site. Dishes are delicate, but varied, from raw scallops with sesame dressing to oven-roasted lamb meatballs with Moroccan-spiced vinaigrette. Plus, with one of the best cocktail bars in town you can go well into the evening.
20 Upper Ground, London, SE1 9PD | seacontainerslondon.com
If you would like more information or want to start planning your own tailor-made holiday to the British Isles, please do get in touch:
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