So you’ve found the perfect menu. It’s got everything you want on it – mouthwatering favourites, intriguing new creations, and an amazing reputation. The only trouble? The price. Many of the most tempting restaurants in London are out-of-reach of everyday dining. We’ve all got a list of dream restaurants, places we’d run to for lunch or dinner if those pesky price tags would only disappear. But if there’s one time you can justify spending so much on a meal, it’s payday. Nothing beats that feeling of a stocked-up bank account. Here’s our list of the best restaurants to visit when you’re in the money (at least, temporarily…)
South Kensington (0.4 miles)
What: The Wow Factor
Why: If you’re going to go for a blowout meal you want it to be one to remember. From the moment you arrive at Restaurant Ours, pass down the catwalk and emerge in the impressive fairy lit dining area, you can’t fail to be wowed. Add in critically acclaimed chef Tom Sellers and you have yourself
Where: 264 Brompton Rd, London SW3 2AS
What: Michelin-Starred Cantonese
Why: A leading fine dining Chinese restaurant, they serve up dim sum to die for, as well as an assortment of meat, seafood, tofu, vegetable and noodle dishes. Granted you can find cheaper Chinese places, but would you rather a bowl of cheap noodles or black truffle roasted duck? We know what we’d choose. Their extensive dessert menu also does not disappoint, with dishes such as their jivara bomb which requires you to pour chocolate onto a rice krispie moult to reveal ice cream…yum!
Where: 8 Hanaway Place, Fitzrovia, W1T 1HD
Bob Bob Ricard
What: Press For Champagne Buttons
Why: Inspired by the glamorous Orient Express, Bob Bob Ricard is elaborately decorated, with each booth equipped with a ‘Press for Champagne’ button, and if that isn’t enough to convince you… The menu offers caviar and oysters as well as an array of reinvented English and Russian classics, think chicken kievs and lobster, crab and shrimp pelmeni, but before all this, -18 degree Russian vodka shots. Guests are required to dress elegantly, so you’ll really feel the part. This is escapism at its finest.
Where: 1 Upper James St, Soho, W1F 9DF
Casa di Stefano
What: Authentic Italian in the Heart of Mayfair
Why: You can’t really go wrong with a good Italian restaurant, but why go to an average high street restaurant when you can go to Casa di Stefano who source all their ingredients directly from Italy. The restaurant has long standing relationships with suppliers all over Italy, with each region providing the ingredient they’re most known for, so you really know you’re getting the best. The decor will make you feel as if you’re dining on the Amalfi Coast, glass of wine in hand, fresh seafood on your plate.
Where: 20 Dover Street, Mayfair, W1S 4LU
Galvin at Windows
What: Haute French Cuisine and Amazing Views
Why: Located on the 28th floor of the London Hilton, the restaurant serves up exquisite food, in a beautifully intimate setting with floor to ceiling windows (hence their name), and they really do offer up some of the best views of London. Enjoy the finest of cocktails either at your table or at the window bar, or choose from their extensive gin and whisky lists. Michelin-starred restaurants aren’t always the cheapest, but it’s payday so treat yourself and trust us, it will be oh so worth it.
Where: 22 Park Lane, Mayfair, W1K 1BE
What: Amazing Steaks
Why: When it comes to treating yourself, nothing beats a good steak. If you’re really looking to treat yourself, and you’ve just been paid, visit M in Threadneedle Street to have your steak fix sorted like never before. M is home to two distinct restaurants, Grill and RAW, one specialising in amazing meat and the other in nutritious, intelligent raw food. Grill offer prime steak from around the world, from Normandy to Argentina. Their Kobe-grade 10+ wagyu beef costs £1 per gram, making a standard 250g serving pretty pricey. If your pay check can’t stretch that far, you can still enjoy an unbelievable 50-day aged Spanish striploin from Galician ex-dairy cow – £70 for 500g.
Where: 2-3, 60 Threadneedle Street, Threadneedle Walk, EC2R 8HP
What: Exquisite Alexandrian Fine Dining
Why: For a special meal, it’s always worth going for something exotic. Alexandrie’s brings the magic of Alexandrian cuisine to London with a fabulous menu of traditional and unfamiliar dishes. Start with a warming broth of Molokheya, a thick herb soup, followed by the slow-roasted tender shank of lamb in Egyptian spices, and finish on the Om Ali – crisp filo pastry, baked in a rich cream with a touch of vanilla, topped with baked almond flakes. A payday feast.
Where: 38C Kensington Church Street, Kensington, W8 4BX
What: Double Michelin-Starred French Restaurant
Why: If you’re going to blow your payday packet on food, do it on the very best. The Square is one of the most celebrated restaurants in London, putting it high in the running for best restaurant in the world. Specialising in ‘harmonious and classical flavours’, The Square offer sumptuous French cuisine made with traditional British ingredients like Scottish ceps, Lincolnshire Eels and Cumbrian beef. Four courses come at £105 though, so be sure you put in some overtime before booking a table.
Where: 6-10 Bruton Street, Mayfair, W1J 6PU
What: Stunning Views, Stunning Food
Why: What’s better than an excellent meal? An excellent meal with incredible panoramic views of London. It’s no wonder that Aqua Shard is such a popular location for those looking to celebrate. Even if you’re only cheering the end of the month, it’s worth it. Rhug Estate venison tartare, dry-aged sirloin on the bone, and Merrifield farm duck breast. Starters are in the late teens and mains are in the mid-twenties, but the views get a full 10.
Where: The Shard, 31 St Thomas Street, Southwark, SE1 9RY
Marcus Wareing at The Berkeley
What: A Top Chef and Top Dishes
Why: Top bucks should get you top chefs. They don’t get much better than the legendary Marcus Wareing so for a real payday extravaganza, head to The Berkeley in Victoria for a masterclass in culinary skill. Watch as simple British ingredients are transformed into elegant dishes full of craft and surprise. Three dishes cost £85, but as pay-day treats go this is surely one to remember.
Where: The Berkeley, Wilton Place, Victoria, SW1X 7RL
What: Infamous Sushi Haunt
Why: Nothing says refinement quite like Japanese cuisine. So next time your bank is bulging, celebrate by splashing the cash on sushi. Nobu is one of the most talked-about restaurants in London for a reason. From an intimate twelve-seater sushi bar to a dedicated hibachi grill, all the best things about Japanese food are brought to life with skill and finesse. Don’t get too used to it, though – the chef’s tasting menu is £95.
Where: 15 Berkeley Street, Mayfair, W1J 8DY
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