2017’s food scene has been pretty epic here in London and in no particular order here are 20 things you must put on your list to eat in 2018!
Probably the most unexpectedly brilliant meal of 2017 was at Hopscotch on Brick Lane. They do sharing small plates influenced by flavours of Europe, Asia and the middle east. It’s not possible to pick out one dish from this interesting menu so order a good mix of meat, fish and veggie dishes and you’ll be set. If I HAD to pick one thing though it would be the melting beef short rib with pickled onions.
202 Brick Ln, London E1 , https://www.hopscotchldn.com
2. Butterscotch French Toast, Burnt Toast Cafe.
Burnt Toast Cafe in Brixton does the BEST French Toast that I’ve ever eaten in London. Their homemade fig and walnut bread is soaked in a cinnamon, coconut sugar and vanilla and topped with mojito berries, Canadian maple syrup and house-made butterscotch sauce. Get all that? Good! Now go try it!
88 Brixton Village Market, Brixton, London SW9 8PS
It’s not very often you see Kanada Ya without a queue outside of eager people waiting to get their hands on a bowl of their famous steaming ramen. Their truffle version with pork collar, truffle paste and truffle oil is a seriously indulgent bowl you’ll want to slurp and is highly recommended.
3 Panton St, London SW1Y 4DL https://www.kanada-ya.com
When you don’t think chips can get any better cook them in duck fat, smother them in raclette cheese and dollop them in truffle mayonnaise. You’ve never eaten a bowl of fries so rich and indulgent as these from The Frenchie. If you’re into your cheesy chips you might like my bucket list here of other places to eat them in London.
8, The Artworks, Elephant Rd, London SE17 1AY https://www.thefrenchieuk.com/
Oliver Maki is not your typical Japanese sushi place but a whole interactive experience. From menus on IPads, salads that release a smokey haze and a dessert that looks like a houseplant it’s a sense for the eyes as well the taste buds. Each plate comes out like a work of art and this tuna carpaccio is a fine example.
33 Dean St, Soho, London W1D 4PW https://www.olivermaki.co.uk
All of the food at Taqueria is good but the fish tacos are great! Fresh Pollack is deep fried in crispy cider batter and served with chipotle mayonnaise, avocado cream and shredded cabbage. A great combo of textures and flavours that’s especially good with a tequila cocktail inside you.
141-145 Westbourne Grove, London W11 2RS https://www.taqueria.co.uk
These are not just any scrambled eggs. These are super creamy Nduja scrambled eggs served on sourdough toast and sprinkled with fresh chilli from Brixton based cafe Salon. If you’re not familiar with nduja it’s a spreadable version of salami that’s got a good kick to it and paired with eggs takes it to a whole new level. Bravo, Salon.
18 Market Row, Brixton, London SW9 8LD https://salonbrixton.co.uk
Gone are the days of vegan cakes being well … terrible. Enter Palm Vaults in Hackney and their DELICIOUS vegan banana bread. Served with coconut yoghurt and agave syrup, it’s gooey, warm and swee. Never would you know it was vegan, and the place itself is a feast for the eyes too!
411 Mare St, London E8 1HY https://www.palmvaults.com
There isn’t a roast in London that comes close to the one at Hawksmoor, in my opinion. With the most tender beef you could wish for, a huge Yorkshire pudding and lashing of bone marrow gravy. If you’re looking to go for a roast somewhere in 2018 look no further!
157A Commercial St, London E1 6BJ http://thehawksmoor.com/locations/spitalfields/
*CLICK TO PLAY THE VIDEO* Think of the cheesiest, most amazing sandwich you’ve ever eaten and times that by 1000. That’s the croque monsieur from Dominique Ansel. Two slices of bread are filled with cheese and ham, covered in a creamiest béchamel sauce and grilled until golden and bubbling. It’s so heavy with cheese that it’s actually difficult to pick up. Serious cheese overload and I’d really recommend sharing it between two. It’s HUGE.
17-21 Elizabeth St, Belgravia, London SW1W 9RP http://www.dominiqueansellondon.com
Peruvian food has taken London by storm this year and if you’re wondering where to go look no further than Pachamama. They do small plates categorised by land, sea and soil and everything is just an explosion of flavour and colour. That pork belly is incredible and make sure you get the Peruvian chocolate dessert.
18 Thayer St, Marylebone, London W1U 3JY http://pachamamalondon.com
I’ve been banging on about this doughnut for months now and there’s a good reason why. Filled top to bottom and end to end with what feels like an entire jar of Nutella. If you’re a Nutella fan, oh my gosh you need this in your life.
96 Shaftesbury Ave, London W1D 5ED http://www.doughnuttime.co.uk
Probably the most interesting thing I’ve ever eaten is the duck jam doughnut for Duck & Waffle Local – little sister to the famous Duck and Waffle that sits high up in a city skyscraper. Duck ‘jam’ is stuffed inside soft dough, deep fried and rolled in a sugary, spicy mix before being placed on an orange glaze. Its sweet, it’s spicy and it’s bloody bizarre. By god its good though!
52 Haymarket, St. James’s, London SW1Y 4RP http://duckandwafflelocal.com
Homeslice pizzas don’t skimp on size and don’t skimp on flavour. They all come in at 20 inches in size and the toppings are always unusually good. This one being beef brisket and pickled carrots. Another great one is the mushroom, ricotta and pumpkin seeds. A 2018 challenge? Finish one by yourself, I dare you!
13 Neal’s Yard, London WC2H 9DP http://homeslicepizza.co.uk
Never has there been a more controversial subject in London than avocado toast but I’m putting it out there that this is the best one I’ve had in London so far. You’ll find it at Swedish cafe Ludenwic and what makes it so different is the sprinkle of orange zest and orange oil over the top. Game changer!
45 Aldwych, London WC2B 4DW http://www.lundenwic.com
You’ll find these epic pancakes at quirky art deco café, Café Miami in Hackney. Topped with forest fruits, Ribena compote (yes, Ribena) and a dollop of crème fraiche, they don’t just look unreal but taste amazing too. Oh, and make sure you get one of their slutty brownies to go!
24 Lower Clapton Rd, London E5 0PD https://www.cafemiami.co.uk
Bleeker Street Burger is possibly London’s most talked about burger. There’s no fuss, no frills and no salad – it’s quite simply about the quality of the meat and sesame seed bun. It’s so juicy, so rich and so meaty. One to tick off the list!
205 Victoria Street, Victoria, London SW1E 5NE http://www.bleekerburger.co.uk
There are plenty of cinnamon rolls to go around in London but none like the cinnamon social from Ole & Steen. It’s got layers of traditional cinnamon sugar but the addition of little dots of custard throughout takes it to a whole new level. Best one in London. FACT.
56 Haymarket, St. James’s, London SW1Y 4RN https://oleandsteen.co.uk
The Frenchie confit duck burger is the most indulgent burger you could wish for. Shredded duck, goats cheese, truffle honey and crispy duck scratching’s all inside a sweet brioche roll. Probably my top burger of 2017 and you’ll find them at most good London markets.
Good London food markets https://www.thefrenchieuk.com
20. Sugar daddy crumpets, Brother Marcus.
In true London style, crumpets can’t just be crumpets, can they? Brother Marcus has taken them to the next level and made them into frumpets, French toasted crumpets, and they serve them with vanilla yoghurt, sugared pecans and a caramelised banana on top. One serious bressert …. (breakfast dessert!)
9 Chestnut Grove, London SW12 8JA http://brothermarcus.co.uk