In my opinion the best part of a holiday is the food. Wherever I go I make a point of finding the coolest and most popular restaurants in that area. London was no different, it has been on my “to visit” list for ages and I was so excited to make that dream a reality.
As soon as I found out about the trip I began compiling my list of “must eat” places in London. I spent hours on the net and social media making notes of all the amazing food that I came across. I didn’t make it to all 0f them, but these are the ones I did make it to and I was damn impressed.
Some of the places are NOT halaal. So we had to opt for meatless options.
maroush was one of the first places that we visited. the menu is primarily Lebanese and reminded us of home. Before we left my mother in law mentioned that this would be our go to spot especially after long days of touring. And she was pretty much spot on. after our big bus tour, we were pretty exhausted and didn’t want to go too far to grab a bite. We were lucky that Maroush wasn’t too far from our hotel and they offer a delivery service as well!
We were a bit confused at first, as there are about four branches of the Maroush franchise on one street. We chose the first one we came across, which was smaller than the others and a bit quieter. That particular branch also offered live entertainment. But we opted to be seated on the ground level instead as we were famished and too exhausted to enjoy the belly dancing.
We ordered the fattoush salad, hummus and falafel as starters. All of which were really good. For our main meal we ordered the chicken shawarma, the servings of the starters were sufficient for two people, however the shawarma was perfect for one. I really enjoyed their food it was flavourful and so fresh! It was so comforting to dig into food that reminds you of home. The service was great and our waiter Dayana was so pleasant.
We visited the restaurant on multiple occasions after that. The location and quick service was definitely one of the main reasons we kept going back.
21 Edgware Rd, London W2 2JE, United Kingdom
If you follow me on social media, you will know how excited I was about this particular restaurant. Nopi is a Soho based restaurant that boasts some of chef Yotam Ottolenghis best dishes. There is no doubt that this restaurant is filled with all sorts of sophistication and splendor, all of which you can expect from Ottolenghi. We arrived pretty early for breakfast so we didn’t need make a reservation, but the restaurant started filling up quite quickly after that.
The restaurant itself is absolutely beautiful, from the moment I stepped in I was taken by the modern interiors that are adorned with marble and rose gold finishes. Not to forget the rustic display of sour dough bread that greets you just as you enter.
We opted for a meatless option and ordered the shakshouka. My husband ordered the orange juice and I opted for an English breakfast tea. It didn’t take long for our food to arrive and we couldn’t wait to dig in. The shakshouka had tomato and capsicum, just like any other. However, it had its own distinct Smokey flavour which really gave this humble breakfast dish a new dimension. Every blog that I have read has only had wonderful things to say about this shakshouka, and they were absolutely right. It was a delight to soak up the Smokey sauce with the freshly baked sour dough bread.
This restaurant is on the pricey side as it is a bit more formal.
It’s a must try on my list.
21-22 Warwick Street London
you know that feeling you get, when theres so much hype surrounding a restaurant, that you absolutely must go there (FOMO). This was one of those. Pizza pilgrims are one of the most popular pizza joints in London and have a following of 19.7 K Instagram followers. They are hip and on trend and no doubt their pizzas are ridiculously good. This was another meatless option for us so we opted for the margarita. I wish we got to order more, but they were closing and just accommodated for one pizza for us. I was a bit ticked off, but the pizza was good enough to make up for that.
I would definitely suggest going out and giving them a try. Just get there a bit early. They have a few branches but we visited the one below.
11 Kingly St London.
I opted for vegetarian options, which were lovely but their menu was so gorgeous , it had me salivating . I haven’t confirmed their halaal status personally , You can enquire if you like.
Back to the food. Dishoom is based on Indian cuisine, so I was in heaven. I ordered the Vada Pau, (pav as I call it) and it was literally the best. I have been craving it ever since. The bun was fresh and soft and the potato patty was packed with spicy goodness. I loved the tamarind and coriander chutney that they served with it. I also ordered the bhel, which was so refreshing and had the perfect bits of sweet, tangy and spicy. There was definitely a noticeable crunch, so this one gets 2 thumbs up from me. I ended my meal with the rose and cardamom lassi, there was nothing more perfect.
22 Kingly St, London
I’m pretty sure that all the avid London tourists are aware of how good the food at the Selfridges Cafeteria is. They have 2 halaal options, Lebanese and Indian. As well as some pretty good fish and chips.
Its so convenient as all the vendors are in one area, so each member of the family can choose what they prefer to eat. I thoroughly enjoyed the fish and chips which was served with mushy peas. I also greedily finished an entire thali by myself ,courtesy of masala zone. I was super impressed by the quality of the food and I wish I spent more time eating here. (I don know if that was even possible).
I could eat at Selfridges everyday .
400 Oxford St, London
Afternoon Tea at Harrods – The Georgian
A trip to London is incomplete without the compulsory afternoon tea. I chose to have mine at Harrods. We were ushered to our table situated in the Georgian restaurant, located on the fourth floor. This is one of the best afternoon teas served in London and is highly commended by the afternoon tea awards.
The dining area is very English and elegant and promises the best dining experience. There are different options to choose from, we chose the Georgian afternoon tea. This included a selection of finger sandwiches, freshly prepared tea pastries, warm scones that were served with clotted cream, rose petal jelly and lemon curd. And a mini Harrods trifle.
We ordered one to share and our waiter was lovely enough to let me choose the sandwiches I liked. I opted for the cucumber, salmon, egg and the artichoke sandwiches . They also have a fully vegetarian selection as well as a gluten free selection. I devoured each and every one by myself. Luckily my husband wasn’t too hungry that day.
One tray was enough for two people; we did however order an extra serving of scones because they were so scrumptious ,i suggest ordering an extra serving of sandwiches as one tray only has one of each option. The rose petal jelly was so delightful; I have never had it before so I made sure to snatch me a bottle from the Harrods pantry on the ground floor.
The trifle was served to us in a dainty little bottle, it was sublime. It had everything that a good trifle should. The best part was the fresh strawberry jam that added a tart element to offset the sweetness of the sponge and the custard.
We chose the Georgian blend tea; it was a beautiful blend. it resembled english breakfast tea, however it was bolder in flavour. I was so in love with the flavor that I took some home with me. You can purchase this in the tea room on the ground floor. It has become my favorite tea and I indulge in a cup at least once a day now.
The pastries were undoubtedly divine, but it was stuffed by the time I made it to the top of the tray. So there were a few left over.
Tea at Fortnum’s
We chose to splurge on our afternoon tea at Harrods, so for our next tea we decided to visit the famed Fortnum and Mason store. we have had the Fortnum’s high tea in Dubai so we decided to enjoy an afternoon tea break at the parlor instead. The parlor is a quirky café like setting that serves up tea, cake and scones, as well as gorgeous ice creams. It is less formal than the traditional high tea (which requires a reservation). I wasn’t blown away by their scones, but the carrot cake and English breakfast tea were both superb.
You can spend hours shopping in this fascinating store, it has everything from tea to picnic baskets. a picnic basket that I am absolutely smitten by FYI!
Make sure to pick up some of your favorite teas and jams from the store as they are famous for their selection of tea time treats.
Pret a Manger
The best way thet I can describe pret is simply “pret is to UK what Starbucks is to the US”. well Starbucks is available in the UK, but there’s a Pret at every corner. And each and every one of them are busy.
Pret is a coffee/ sandwich shop, They have a selection of freshly prepared sandwiches, pastries and soups as well as the best coconut water I have ever tasted. I carried a bottle with me everywhere I went ,it was that good. We really enjoyed the tuna-mayo sandwich which was complemented with fresh rocket. The tomato and cheese croissant was so delicious, it had a lovely fresh tomato filling which was fantastic . Pret is the perfect choice for people on the move, so if you spot one, make sure to stop!
For some reason the tea in London just tastes so much better. I have learnt a few important steps in tea preparation while in London ,which I now incorporate into my morning rituals. This was unquestionably one of the best foodie experiences I’ve had thus far. I love tea and i make sure to collect different varieties wherever i go. Make sure to grab a few to add to your collection as well.
There were so many other places that I wish I had the chance to visit, but time was not on my side. If you get the opportunity make sure to check out “bread ahead” and “cereal killers’ café” .
If you’re visiting London anytime soon, make sure to search my hashtag on Instagram #rsreatslondon to see all the places I’ve mentioned in this article. I look forward to hearing your thoughts and your foodie tales.
Happy eating folks