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London's 10 Hottest New Restaurants

By Malika Dalamal
July 22, 2014

We are over halfway through the year and things are looking good on the London restaurant scene. From big chefs to small dishes, pop-ups going permanent and fine-dining local spots, these are the hottest restaurants of the year so far.

  • Barrafina

    Why It's Hot: The highly anticipated second branch of Sam and Eddie Hart's tapas bar in Covent Garden is inspired by Cal Pep in Barcelona.

    Must Order: Favourites from the Soho branch like jamón Iberico and stuffed courgette flowers, as well as new dishes including carpaccio of Mediterranean prawns with bonito and char-grilled lambs' kidneys.

    Insider Tip: Don't be put off by the line, it's well worth the wait.

    10 Adelaide St., WC2N 4HW; 020 7440 1450
     

  • Fischer's 

    Why It's Hot: The latest restaurant offering from Jeremy King and Chris Corbin — the pair behind The Wolseley, The Delaunay, Colbert and Brasserie Zedel — serves classic Austrian food in an immaculate space evocative of old-world Vienna.

    Must Order: Wiener schnitzel served Holstein-style with a fried egg, anchovies and capers on top.

    Insider Tip: A welcome change from no-reservations, no-frills spots around town, this smart restaurant has good, old-fashioned values like attentive service, tablecloths, reservations and attention to every detail.

    50 Marylebone High St., W1U 5HN; 020 7466 5501
     

  • Chiltern Firehouse

    Why It's Hot: Chef Nuno Mendes (formerly of Viajante) is the head chef at this restaurant in the long-awaited André Balazs hotel in Marylebone. Mendes brings his modern techniques and ingredient-focused cooking to the beautiful Grade II-listed Victorian-Gothic fire brigade building.

    Must Order: Crab-stuffed donuts (£5) and frozen apple panna cotta (£8).

    Insider Tip: Sit at the bar to watch a master at work.

    1 Chiltern St., W1U 7PA; 020 7073 7676

  • Beast

    Why It's Hot: An upmarket surf 'n' turfer in Mayfair from the owners of Goodman and Burger & Lobster.

    Must Order: The set menu (£75) includes Angus beef served on or off the bone followed by Norwegian red king crab, as well as an appetiser (Parmesan cheese, artichoke and pickles) and a selection of side dishes including roasted beetroot, braised fennel and smoked tomato salad.

    Insider Tip: The communal banquet tables might not be ideal for hedge fund folks who want to talk business over dinner.

    3 Chapel Pl., W1G OBG; 0207 495 1816
     

  • Fera at Claridge's

    Why It's Hot: Chef Simon Rogan's much-anticipated restaurant takes over from Gordon Ramsay who ran the restaurant in the legendary hotel for the last 12 years.

    Must Order: Grilled salad with Isle of Mull cheese and truffle custard and country-style bread served with bone marrow butter and mushroom broth.

    Insider Tip: The long tasting menu (£125 for 16 courses) takes over three hours so make sure you have time before you order it.

    Brook St., W1K 4HR; 020 7107 8888
     

  • Opso

    Why It's Hot: Compared to other Mediterranean countries, Greece is underrepresented on London's culinary scene so this modern all-day Greek restaurant in the trendy Marylebone neighbourhood is a welcome addition.

    Must-Order: Fish burger (£12) served in a black squid-ink bun with tomato jam and square chips; snail 'n' chips (£13.50).

    Insider Tip: No plate smashing; it's not that kind of place.

    10 Paddington St., W1U 5QL; 020 7935 0551
     

  • Barnyard

    Why It's Hot: The long-awaited second venture from Ollie Dabbous and Oskar Kingberg (Dabbous) serves hearty top-quality British comfort food at affordable prices.

    Must Order: Roast beef on toast with warm horseradish buttermilk (£9) followed by popcorn ice cream with smoked fudge sauce (£9) and a milkshake laced with alcohol (£6).

    Insider Tip: Get there early; they don't take bookings.

    18 Charlotte St., W1T 2LY; 020 7580 3842
     

  • Typing Room

    Why It's Hot: Chef Lee Westcott and backer Jason Atherton have filled the space left by Nuno Mendes and Viajante at The Town Hall Hotel in Bethnal Green.

    Must Order: Chicken wing drumsticks with wild garlic, potato and lemon (£5); courgette and basil profiteroles (£5) followed by pigeon smoked in pine with salt baked celeriac (£26).

    Insider Tip: Six- or eight-course tasting menus are also available.

    Townhall Hotel, Patriot Sq., E2 9NF; 020 7871 0461
     

  • Ting at The Shangri-La

    Why It's Hot: Modern European food with an Asian twist is served in the restaurant of the new Shangri-La Hotel on the 35th floor of The Shard.

    Must Order: Organic Welsh lamb from Rhug Estate, glazed with mirin, sake and soy sauce and served with root vegetables and Kentish apples.

    Insider Tip: Opt for the lounge rather than the restaurant if you are leaning toward Asian food.

    31 St. Thomas St., SE1 9QU; 0207 234 8108
     

  • Polpetto

    Why It's Hot: After a two-year break, Russell Norman and Richard Beatty (Polpo, Mishkin's, Spuntino, The Ape & Bird) have reopened Polpetto on Berwick Street with chef Florence Knight back in the kitchen cooking up a similar mix of Venetian-style small plates.

    Must Order: Hare pappardelle (£8) — a practically perfect gamey bowl of pasta that you won't want to share; scallops served on puréed and roasted cauliflower with wafer-thin layers of lardo (£12); divine maple tart (£6) to finish.

    Insider Tip: Previously famous for their no-reservations policy and long queues, the new Polpetto takes bookings at lunchtime and in the evenings for groups of six or more.

    11 Berwick St., W1F 0PL; 020 7439 8627

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Places Mentioned

Polpetto

Italian • Soho

Food- Decor- Service- CostM
 
 
 
Barnyard

British • Fitzrovia

Food- Decor- Service- CostM
 
 
 
Chiltern FIREHOUSE

Marylebone

Food- Decor- Service- CostE
 
 
 
Food- Decor- Service- CostVE
 
 
 
Beast

Steakhouse • Marylebone

Food- Decor- Service- CostVE
 
 
 
OPSO

Greek • Marylebone

Food- Decor- Service- CostM
 
 
 
Fischer's

Austrian • Marylebone

Food- Decor- Service- CostE
 
 
 
Barrafina

Tapas • Covent Garden

Food28 Decor19 Service23 Cost£42
 
 
 
 
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