The temperature’s dropped, the winter coats are out, and our comfort food cravings have truly set in. Winter in London is the time to indulge in the heartiest dishes this city has to offer, and where better to do it than London’s loveliest restaurants?
From rich, creamy pasta and meaty pies to decadent sticky toffee puddings, here’s where to indulge in warming comfort food classics in luxurious surroundings.
Fries are pretty much a universal comfort food staple – especially when they’re loaded with some sloppy extras for added flavour and texture. But it’s not your local chippy you need to be headed for these days. Lately, some of the fanciest fries in town can be found in Mayfair, at the Sheraton Grand London Park Lane.
The new, loaded fries menu features five different loaded fries to enjoy, and each can be paired perfectly with a drink from the bar to maximise the flavours. Think Curry ‘n’ Chips – Indian-spiced fries loaded up with sweet potato chaat, tamarind ketchup, mint, coriander chutney and crispy onions; and Steak ‘n’ Chips topped with grilled onion, friggitelli peppers and coastal cheddar, and drenched in piping hot gravy. There’s even Pedigree Chips – a tasty treat of steamed sweet potato fries with delicious chicken breast and tenderstem broccoli for four-legged friends to enjoy.
Where: Sheraton Grand London Park Lane, Piccadilly, London W1J 7BX
Lovers of game and comforting favourites will be delighted by The Game Bird at The Stafford – think pigeon pie or roast Guinea Hen Diane for two with slow-cooked leg croquette, mustard and mushrooms.
But it’s their famous Chicken Kyiv that really steals the show, filled with 120g of truffle butter, served with creamy pomme puree, and topped with truffle shavings.
Where: 16-18, St James’s Pl, St. James’s, London SW1A 1NJ
Offering rich insulation from the cold in the most beautiful of settings is The Holborn Dining Room, where perfect pies line the menu to lift low spirits.
For the ultimate comfort, it has to be the chicken, chestnut mushroom and tarragon pie with garden peas, soaked up by a side of mash and truffle and parmesan fries. For pudding, order the ridiculously decadent 70% Chocolate mousse.
Where: 252 High Holborn, London WC1V 7EN
If you want classic British comfort food in the most luxurious of surroundings, then Kerridge’s Bar & Grill at the Corinthia should be your go to.
Tom Kerridge’s take on a scotch egg is an absolute looker – a perfect sphere stuffed with red prawn, topped with pickled mooli, on a bed of roasted shell satay.
Where: 10 Northumberland Ave, London WC2N 5AE
For those with a love for small plates, the bar at The Swan At The Globe will not disappoint, serving up delicious, hearty classic British comfort food. There’s Gloucester old spot sausage rolls, mini Gressingham turkey and cranberry pies, mini dorset crab cakes, and fried chicken wings with coleslaw.
For something larger, we recommend the tiger prawn brioche served with salad or skinny chips.
Sometimes, the cold winter nights can only be cured by one thing, and that’s risotto. Head down to The Cadogan Arms and you’ll find pearl barley and butternut squash risotto with pecorino, crispy kale and sage oil.
Order it alongside a few other dishes from their new menu to warm you up from the inside out.
Where: 11 Cadogan Gardens, London SW3 2RJ
The best things in life come with truffle on top, and the standout plate at this contemporary Greek spot is the beef brisket ‘makaronaki’. The dish may sound simple, but it has all the ingredients of a winning winter warmer: 16-hour braised beef, pasta, graviera cheese and black truffle for a true taste of Greece.
Another must-try is the rosti Greek style – crunchy potato, sunny-side-up organic egg, butter and black truffle.
What’s better than a warm, sticky toffee pudding when it’s dark and cold outside? Nothing, that’s what.
Treat yourself to this comforting favourite at The Montagu Kitchen & Lounge, where the restaurant’s signature dessert boasts a deliciously sweet caramelised sauce with dates, accompanied by Cornish ice-cream. Shared between two, it’s the perfect cosy treat.
Where: 30 Portman Square, London W1H 7BH
For maximum melty, carby goodness, it can only be raclette. What better combination than cheese and potatoes? Head to Heritage Soho, where every day of the year is an Alpine escape, and watch the melted raclette cheese being scraped on top of your steaming potatoes.
And the melting food doesn’t stop there. The sticky toffee and caramel fondant is a dessert you couldn’t possibly say no to.
Go for dinner at The English Grill at The Rubens At The Palace, and you’ll come home full and happy. Comfort food fixes include a chicken noodle soup chicken pot pie; pumpkin gnocchi with baby fennel, courgette and pine nuts; and a pulled beef blade croquette with red onion dressing, whipped horseradish and bone marrow. Plus, add seasonal truffles to any dish on the menu for £10.
As well as serving up exceptional food, The English Grill at The Rubens At The Palace adds to the spectacle with tableside specialties like hand-carved meats or smoked salmon being prepared right before your eyes and a glass wall with a perfect view of the kitchen to watch the menu come to life.
Where: 39 Buckingham Palace Rd, London SW1W 0PS
A tell-tale sign of classy comfort food, is food that’s served on a silver trolley. This is the case at The Milestone Hotel & Residences, which serves delicious daily roasts served straight from the trolley itself. There’s a range of warming signature dishes served alongside delicious British options, such as Scottish salmon cured by H.Forman & Son carved right at your table.
A must-try however, is Mrs T’s Chicken Pot Pie with creamed potato. Well worth a trip to Kensington.
Where: 1-3 Kensington Ct, London W8 5PG
Nestled deep in the beating heart of Chelsea, Sloane Place Restaurant is the place to be to celebrate festive tidings.
Their exemplary British-Javanese menu is created fresh, and specially made to tantalise the palate. Their new winter/autumn menu heralds the Christmas spirit, from classics like roasted duck with Brussels sprouts and cranberry jus to the mouthwatering Jerusalem artichoke & chickpea burger.
Where: 60 Lower Sloane Street, Chelsea, London SW1W 8BP
As well as classic comfort food fare like fish and chips, steak and hearty sides, Butler’s Restaurant at The Chesterfield Mayfair also offers a wide selection of delicious pies to savour.
We recommend the west country lamb and mint pie with buttery mashed potato, peas and lamb gravy; or the smoked haddock, parmesan and chive pie with mash, peas, and white wine cream sauce. The ultimate indulgence.
Where: 35 Charles St, London W1J 5EB
In the mood for comfort pub food but want to enjoy it somewhere other than your local? Lady Abercorn’s Pub & Kitchen is the answer. A contemporary public house located in a five-star hotel just steps away from the bustling Liverpool Street station, it’s traditional in style with a fresh attitude.
The pub’s food menu features classic and innovative dishes and revisited pub classics like cottage pie, bangers ‘n’ mash, and fish and chips.
Where: 40 Liverpool St, London EC2M 7QN
For serious South African-inspired soul food, Bbar is just the ticket.
Choose from a range of warming signature dishes like ‘chip shop’ fish and chips, London salt beef sandwich, or their famous ‘son of a gun’ burger with buttermilk chicken, spiced coleslaw and jalapeños. Perfect for warming up from the cold.
Where: 43 Buckingham Palace Rd, London SW1W 0PP