Where To Eat Alfresco In London
As summer draws even closer, the days get longer, the weather warmer and the sun brighter - now is the time to step outdoors and embrace dining alfresco. Here is our eight places to escape the city bustle and channel that holiday feeling right in the middle of the capital.
|1| Chiltern Firehouse
London's hottest opening in the last year has earned its reputation for a reason. French doors stretching to the ceiling open from the cosy bar with crackling log fires onto a cobbled courtyard, shaded with vast parasols, surrounded by greenery to keep away prying eyes and dotted with glowing lanterns and terracotta-potted plants.
Sunny afternoons or twilight hours can happily be whiled away here.
The perfect spot to avoid the shopping crowds on the Kings road, Bluebird is fast becoming the place to see and be seen - unsurprising given the delicious European delicacies and popular location - so it's always best to book, particularly if you want to dine on the picturesque terrace (trust us, you do.)
|3| Coq d'Argent
The city isn't renowned for its greenery but Coq d'Argent goes against the grain with it's panoramic London views and stretching lawns adorned with wisteria. The terrace is heated and sheltered so ideal for outdoor dining even when the weather isn't good.
Coq D' Argent
|4| The Montague On The Gardens
If sky-high dining doesn't appeal, escape the bustle of Central London in Bloomsbury's best-kept secret garden. The Montague is a stone throw from the hoards surrounding the British Museum, yet its Garden Grill offers a tranquil sanctuary and the prettiest of places to enjoy lunch, afternoon tea or dinner.
In the summer months it also offer a sumptuous evening barbecue in the open air.
|5| Queen Of Hoxton
This year-round roof terrace in the heart of East London transforms from a quirky urban lounge in the summer, where you can enjoy fruity ice-cold daiquiris and tasty barbecues, to a cosy hideaway. Complete with wigwam, mulled wine and outdoor fires for the winter months.
The theme this summer is Smokin' Graciela's Rooftop Bar, a homage to vibrant Havana - so the colours are bright, the cocktails exotic and the food sizzling, perfect for those balmy city nights.
Queen Of Hoxton
|6| Tom's Kitchen
Our favourite branch of this modern British group boasts the impressive address of Somerset House. Light meals and drinks are served on the spacious terrace, so head to the indoor restaurant for something heartier (if you can tear yourself away from the scenic views across the river) - the confit lamb to share is a must-try for any carnivore - and make sure to pop into the deli to stock up on freshly-made breads, cakes and pastries before leaving.
|7| New Street Grill
This East London eatery, minutes away from Liverpool Street station, features a characterful walled garden outside the historic 18th-century warehouse-turned-restaurant.
With monthly changing menus of different international cuisines, it isn't hard to feel transported out of the city as you dine. Get there early to snag a sofa seat, it's worth it.
New Street Grill
|8| Bonnie Gull
Take a nostalgic trip down memory lane in the middle of Exmouth Market. From the seaside-stripe awning to the succulent fish and crispy chips, Bonnie Gull's harks back to childhood holidays on the beach - right down to the ice-cream-with-flake dessert. Though, unsurprisingly, it is more suited to fish fanatics, there are options for vegetarians and carnivores too.