The best restaurants in London

Head south of the river to London Bridge and you'll find a host of pubs, bars and restaurants - not to mention Borough Market itself at the weekends. There's a lot to choose from but the area is blessed with some of the very best restaurants in London.

 

Arabica Bar and Kitchen
Address: 3 Rochester Walk, Borough Market, London SE1 9AF
What We Know:

Arabica started out at Borough Market, armed with little more than a cool box over 14 years ago and began selling a small range of mezze from an 8ft trestle table. The vibe they're going for at their Borough restaurant is 1960s Beirut meets 21st century London.

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douro
Address: Arch 35b, Flat Iron Square, Union Street, London SE1 1TD
What We Know:

The people behind Bar Douro have used their Portuguese ancestry to bring the authentic tasted of Portugal to London. Alongside this food expect a lot of Portuguese wine too, all in a counter dining setting.

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bobs
Address: Unit Su 59, London Bridge Station, St Thomas Street, London SE1 3QX
What We Know:

Bob's Lobster are the latest to graduate from street food markets to a place they can call their own. They're setting up shop in the arches of the fully revamped London Bridge station. And yes, there will be lobster.

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casadofrango
Address: 32 Southwark Street, London SE1 1TU
What We Know:

Hoping to lure Londoners away from Nando's, this Algarvian restaurant is cooking its chicken on a wood fired grill. Oh and there's also a secret bar worth checking out.

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Casse Croute
Address: 109 Bermondsey Street, London SE1 3XB
What We Know:

Casse-Croûte is a 20 seater French bistro and is the brainchild of Herve Durochat (GM at Pizarro) + Alexandre Bonnefoy (ex-Arts Cub). He brings in Sylvain Soulard - former head chef at Morgan M. Expect tete de veau, rillettes, boudin noir, macarons, tarte aux fraises and clafoutis.

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Duddell's
Address: 9a St Thomas Street, Southwark, London SE1 9RY
What We Know:

Originating in Hong Kong where it's hugely popular, the London branch opened in a quite beautiful Grade II listed building right next door to London Bridge station. Serving up high-end Chinese food as well as a weekend dim sum lunch menu, the cocktail list is also very good here.

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El Pastor
Address: 6-7A Stoney St, London SE1 9AA
What We Know:

This is from the same people behind Barrafina and they are on a mission to do the same for Mexican food as they did for Spanish. Expect a big focus around tacos, particularly on the signature Al Pastor.

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Elliot's
Address: 12 Stoney St, Borough Market, London SE1 9AD
What We Know:

This restaurant is by Rob Green and Brett Redman, the blokes behind the super-popular Pavilion Cafe at Victoria Park. Its aim is to be 'showcasing the best of Borough Market and supporting craft and artisanal producers'.

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Flour and Grape
Address: 214 Bermondsey St, London SE1 3TQ
What We Know:

There are just eight pastas on the menu at Flour & Grape, who aim to create a beautifully pared back selection of Italian antipasti, pasta and gelato. They promise very reasonable prices, pasta to go and a very healthy (and affordable) wine list.

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Hawksmoor Borough
Address: 16 Winchester Walk, London SE1 9AQ
What We Know:

London's steak and cocktail masters chose this as their first restaurant south of the river and - like all the other - it's rather beautiful, taking over an old warehouse. As ever be quick if you want a certain cut of steak - when they're gone, they're gone.

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Hutong at the Shard
Address: Level 33 The Shard, 31 St. Thomas Street, London SE1 9RY
What We Know:

The Aqua group picked The Shard for their first European branch of Hutong - Yeo's Hong-Kong based restaurant which is known for serving up fiery Northern Chinese food. The duck is always wonderful and the red lantern crispy soft shell crab with chilli is always on the menu and worth ordering. Oh the views aren't bad either.

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José
Address: 104 Bermondsey Street, Bermondsey, London SE1 3UB
What We Know:

José Pizarro made a name for himself with Brindisa, now he's returning to his old haunt south of the river with a new sherry and tapas joint. The menu changes daily and consists of simple sharing plates such as Razor Clams 'a la plancha' and the best Jamon Iberico. The decor mirrors the style and feel of Barcelona's Boqueria market.

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Lobos Bar and Tapas
Address: 14 Borough High Street, London SE1 9QG
What We Know:

This Spanish restaurant has a big focus on meat - specifically Iberico pork - as well as tapas, Spanish wines, sherry and cavas as well as a short cocktail list.

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Londrino
Address: 36 Snowsfields Yard, London SE1 3QQ
What We Know:

Leandro Carreira first solo restaurant is to be found in a very pared-back space just behind London Bridge with a menu that calls back to his Portuguese roots. The table spacing makes it a particularly good spot for business lunches and the bar area has its own food menu.

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Lupins
Address: 66-68 Union Street, London SE1 1TD
What We Know:

Keen to break the traditional British restaurant mould, Lupins aims to serve up all the usual hearty British ingredients but with a global twist - think sumac on your lamb, roast pigeon with chipotle or spiced beef short rib.

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native
Address: 32 Southwark Street, London SE1 1TU
What We Know:

Having previously been in Covent Garden, you'll now find Native downstairs from Casa do Frango on Southwark Street. They may have moved, but they're still serving up an eclectic menu of super seasonal and local food.

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over
Address: 44-46 Southwark St, London SE1 1UN
What We Know:

This Italian restaurant just off Borough Market has a very specific speciality - they use purified seawater in their pizza dough. And they're rated as some of the best pizzas in London as a result.

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Padella
Address: 6 Southwark Street, London SE1 1TQ
What We Know:

Probably the London restaurant that's done more for this city's passion for pasta than any other recent opening, Padella comes from the Trullo stable and serves up freshly-made-each-day pasta. The only downside is the permanent queue.

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pique
Address: Tanner Street Park, London SE1 3LD
What We Know:

This Bermondsey restaurant comes from Hervé Durochat, the man behind another restaurant in Bermondsey, the ever popular Casse Croute. Here alongside a small selection of French dishes, the star attraction is the chicken - or the Poulet de Bresse to be precise.

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Pizarro
Address: 194 Bermondsey Street, London SE1 3TQ
What We Know:

Further along the same street as his popular tapas bar José, this is the Spanish chef's more formal offering, seating 40 people, with a private dining option and a communal table in front of the bar. Expect bigger dishes with an emphasis on sharing.

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Roast
Address: The Floral Hall, Stoney Street, London SE1 1TL
What We Know:

A classic London Bridge restaurant, Roast has a very British feel to the menu and - as you may guess from the name - does a mean roast dinner. It's one of the longest-serving restaurants in Borough Market with a super view over the market.

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santo
Address: 152 Tooley St, London SE1 2TU
What We Know:

This is a small two storey restaurant with a modern take on traditional Mexican from food husband and wife team Edson and Natalie Diaz-Fuentes. Expect a menu which mixes what you know about Mexican cooking with more unfamiliar dishes.

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wrightborough
Address: Borough Market, 11 Stoney St, London SE1 9AD
What We Know:

The Borough Market Wright Brothers is where the seafood restaurant first started and it's still a big draw in the area. Expect some of the best seafood in town all around an open kitchen. If you love oysters, a visit here is a must.

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