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Romantic Restaurants

 
 
 
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Maggie Jones's

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Maggie Jones's
Beach Blanket Babylon
Beach Blanket Babylon
Berners Tavern
Bob Bob Ricard
Bob Bob Ricard
Club Gascon
La Trompette
Polpo
La Poule Au Pot
City Social
Andrew Edmunds
Helene Darroze at The Connaught
Julie's Restaurant & Champagne Bar
Ella Canta
The Wellington Club
Petersham Nurseries
Norma
Valentine's Day at Frenchie
Sussex
 

 

London is a city of romance, bursting with after-dark activities, magical sights and fabulous eateries. LondonTown has chosen a selection of restaurants that are guaranteed to make your dinner date a night to remember. The service and food at each of these places are fit for royalty and will add the required romantic flavour to your evening. Paris may be known as the city of romance but London is the capital of love.

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La Poule Au Pot

Dripping candles, red wine and joie de vivre.

231 Ebury Street, Belgravia, London, SW1W 8UT

Tube: Sloane Square Station

 
 

This French bistro would be comically cliched if it wasn't, in fact, the genuine article: the hanging baskets, cramped wooden furnishings, and rustic decor have been a Chelsea favourite since it was set up by emigres in 1962. Rabbit stews, fish soups and other bistro classics come lovingly prepared, and in suitably lavish portions. Romantic dinners are a specialty at La Poule au Pot and many lovers have bonded in appreciation of their magical steak b'arnaise, fresh fish and foie gras. The vin de table is served in a magnum and you only pay for what you drink, a policy which perfectly reflects the unpretentious atmosphere.

 
 
 

Bleeding Heart Restaurant

Hidden in a cobbled courtyard, this is an excellent spot for a romantic dinner.

Bleeding Heart Yard, off Greville Street, (off Greville Street), , Clerkenwell, London, EC1N 8SJ

Tube: Farringdon Station , Chancery Lane Station

 
 

Hidden away in a cobbled courtyard from which it takes its name, Bleeding Heart is an effortlessly elegant restaurant that makes for an excellent place for a spot of romantic dining - no one does it quite like the French after all. There is an award-winning wine list and the chef cooks up market-inspired specials each day to add a pinch of variety to the imaginative a la carte menu. Bleeding Heart has two private dining rooms adjoining the main restaurant. Wine connoisseurs or just lovers of the stuff will be at home in The Wine Cellar, which seats up to 35, while The Parlour, seating 18, offers a truly intimate experience in the style of a Victorian dining room.

 
 
 

Petersham Nurseries

Let love blossom in the delightful Petersham Nurseries.

Church Lane, Petersham, London, TW10 7AG

Tube: Richmond Station

 
 

Located in what can only be described as a shed (spacious, light and beautifully furnished, but definitely a shed), Petersham Nurseries is the sort of restaurant where you'll see the chef popping out of the kitchen to pick herbs from the garden. On the evenings of the 13th and 14th of February 2020 Will Hopper and acclaimed nutritionist Hannah Richard are putting on supper club with a 10-course £70 tasting menu designed to be good for your heart - as well as your sweetheart. Utterly romantic, you can either dine all together on one table or cosy up in the candlelit nooks scattered around the greenhouse. If you can't get tickets to the supper club, as a lighter alternative, you can always settle for a cup of tea (from exotic flower teas to the traditional English Breakfast) and a nice slice of cake in the Teahouse. For somewhere more central, try sister restaurants at Petersham Nurseries Covent Garden.

 
 
 

Norma

Ben Tish presents the perfect sumptuous setting for Valentine's night with loved ones.

8 Charlotte Street, London, W1T 2LS

Tube: Goodge Street Station , Tottenham Court Road Station

 
 

Nestled in the streets of Fitzrovia, Norma offers the perfect sumptuous setting for Valentine's night with loved ones. This converted characterful Charlotte Street townhouse, brought to you by Ben Tish, has a warm and welcoming atmosphere, with affectionate Italian hospitality. For Valentine's, specials include grilled scallops, pumpkin, nduga butter and 30-day aged t-bone steak. A crudo bar at the entrance is dedicated to raw seafood, dressed in delicious olive oils and other flavourings. The main menu lists anti-pasti and pastas, larger grilled meat and fish dishes, all modern Sicilian-inspired dishes made using seasonal Italian and British produce. It's a style of cuisine in which Ben is well versed following his time with the Salt Yard group.

 
 
 

Andrew Edmunds

Rustic wooden furniture, cosy booths and dim lighting.

46 Lexington Street, Soho, London, W1F 0LW

Tube: Piccadilly Circus Station , Oxford Circus Station

 
 

Widely regarded as "the most romantic restaurant in London", the rustic wooden furniture, cosy booths and dim lighting certainly make Andrew Edmunds a great place for a date. Pretty flowers and classic drippy candles decorate the intimate (also known as small) tables and the place buzzes with loved-up vibes. The menu is a very British take on modern European dining with lots of sticky sauces, roast meats and crackly fat, as well as simple and breathtakingly fresh fish and seafood. The menu is handwritten daily and sits alongside a very pleasing wine list. Nestled in the backstreets of Soho, this townhouse bistro may lack a little modern slickness. But the friendly, efficient service and an absolute lack of pretension keep the customers coming back to this old romantic.

 
 
 
 

Valentine's Day at Frenchie

Five course menu lovingly created by famed Paris chef Gregory Marchand and his team.

Frenchie Covent Garden, 16 Henrietta Street, London, WC2E 8QH

Tube: Covent Garden Station , Charing Cross Station, Leicester Square Station, Embankment Underground Station

 

Dates: 14th - 16th February 2020

 

One of central London's prettiest restaurants, Frenchie Covent Garden is the perfect setting for a romantic Valentine's Day dinner. The venue is serving a special five-course tasting menu for the occasion, lovingly created by famed Paris chef Gregory Marchand and the Frenchie team. Guests will be welcomed with a glass of champagne and some nibbles on arrival before tucking to dishes such as foie gras, scallop en croute and carrot gnocci with yuzu and wild garlic. For dessert, there's the signature Frenchie banoffee tart with nutmeg and caramelised pecan. The meal is priced at £95 per person with the option of a wine pairing for an additional £50.

 
 
 

Sussex

The Gladwin Brothers present a restaurant which celebrates the Sussex countryside.

63-64 Frith Street, London, W1D 3JW

Tube: Tottenham Court Road Station , Leicester Square Station

 
 

On the site that used to be home to Arbutus and Bistro Bruno before that, the Gladwin Brothers present a restaurant which amounts to a celebration of the Sussex countryside. The three brothers, Richard, Gregory and chef Oliver, who have already enjoyed success with The Shed in Notting Hill, Rabbit on the Kings Road and Nutbourne in Battersea, have created Sussex as a home for both the rustic and the refined. Home-grown, heritage dishes merge with modern cooking techniques in dishes like smoked trout cornettos with blood orange pearls and dill powder, beef and horseradish crackling and homemade truffled burrata - snacks to start off with. Each goes well with fine English wines - from the Gladwin's award-winning wines made in their Nutbourne vineyard in Sussex - beers and cocktails served in the adjoining bar. Daily specials may include roasted grouse or Oliver's signature Wellington dishes with fillings like venison or hare. By day, the room is flooded with light from large windows, in the evening oak panels create a warm, intimate atmosphere. The chef's table downstairs allows up to twenty people front row seats at the theatre of a working kitchen and works just aa well as a backdrop for a butchery masterclass.

 
 
 

Julie's Restaurant & Champagne Bar

One of the loveliest spots in West London reopens with a new chef-patron, Shay Cooper.

135 Portland Road, Holland Park, Holland Park, London, W11 4LW

Tube: Holland Park Station

 
 

For half a century Julie's has been one of the loveliest spots in this corner of West London and in September 2019 the romantic restaurant reopened after an extensive refurbishment and with a new chef-patron, Shay Cooper. Not only was Shay executive chef at The Goring for five years but he also held a Michelin star at his last two posts. Julie Hodgess, the interior designer who first opened the restaurant in 1969, has been brought in to brighten up the interiors. But stand-out features like the stained-glass windows, small eating areas and Gothic wood carvings of the original remain. A London legend in the '60s and '70s, Julie's has a reputation for hosting rock stars and celebrities - the Rolling Stones, Sir Paul McCartney, Kate Moss and Diana, Princess of Wales have all eaten here - and it's good to see this local gem revitalised for 50 more years to come.

 
 
 

Bob Bob Ricard

Impress your date by ordering champagne with the press of a button.

1 Upper James Street, Soho, Soho, London, W1F 9DF

Tube: Piccadilly Circus Station , Oxford Circus Station

 
 

Headed up by French Michelin-starred chef Eric Chavot, Bob Bob Ricard (BBR) is one of the best restaurants in town providing the chance to feast on refined comfort food in a lavish David Collins designed setting. The acclaimed Soho eatery puts the emphasis on Russian and English classics with a twist offering a menu of mouth-watering dishes such chicken, mushroom and champagne pie, lobster mac and cheese, and a beef Wellington designed for sharing. Split across two rooms - The Blue Dining Room and The Red Dining Room - the restaurant exudes opulence with theatrical interiors inspired by the golden age of travel while a champagne trolley, fab late-night cocktails and the renowned 'Press for Champagne' buttons add to the glamour. New sister restaurant Bob Bob Cite has now opened in the city, putting a contemporary, futuristic spin on the original concept.

 
 
 

Maggie Jones's

This cosy little Kensington eatery has been spreading the love for over 40 years.

6 Old Court Place, Kensington Church Street, Kensington, London, W8 4PL

Tube: High Street Kensington Station

 
 

A truly beautiful restaurant, this Kensington stalwart is named after Princess Margaret who used to regularly book there under the alias Maggie Jones. A gloriously over-the-top rustic decor features cooking paraphernalia and dried food hanging from the ceiling, mismatched crockery and wobbly wooden furniture. It's particularly appropriate for cosy winter dining, and romantic meals for two. The menu is thoroughly Anglo-Saxon, with rough pates, terrines and chunky soups on the starters list, a fish-pie that more than deserves its near-legendary status in the area, and plenty of high-quality, well-sourced meat (the game of the day is usually delicious). They hardly ever make any changes to the menu or dining room, which is just how the people of Kensington like it, returning week after week to eat the same rich, comforting dishes. You'll need to book early if you want to be sure of getting a table.

 
 
 
 

The Wellington Club

Enjoy an aphrodisiac supper at one of the oldest private member clubs in the country.

91 Jermyn Street, St James's, Hyde Park, London, SW1Y 6JB

Tube: Piccadilly Circus Station , Green Park Station

 
 

Available on 14th February only, the restaurant at The Wellington Club is a serving a special set menu made with classic aphrodisiacs. Damien Hirst has created the artwork so you can sink your teeth into fillet of beef with roasted tiger prawns overlooked by a shark and graffiti love hearts. Chef Brett Duarte, formerly at the Gaucho Group, is in charge of the menu of vitamin E-packed asparagus with grilled pancetta and hollandaise, beef with triple cooked chips or onion and fig tart with black truffle. To finish, two classic aphrodisiacs are combined - caffeine-enriched chocolate and chilli - in a chocolate iced parfait with chocolate and chilli crumble.

 
 
 

Berners Tavern

With chandeliers, oak tables and a changing British menu, this is a grand romantic option.

10 Berners Street, Fitzrovia, London, W1T 3NP

Tube: Tottenham Court Road Station , Goodge Street Station, Oxford Circus Station

 
 

Jason Atherton, the man behind the Michelin starred Pollen Street Social and the Social Eating House, is responsible for the restaurant within the London Edition, a stylish Marriot hotel in Fitzrovia designed by legendary hotelier Ian Shrager. Atherton's Berners Tavern, named after the hotel which was built on this Soho site in 1908, serves modern British food using the best of British ingredients which changes with the seasons. Dishes include Orkney scallop Carpaccio, chargrilled quail served with Alsace bacon, and grass fed Baccleuch beef cooked on a charcoal grill. Shrager's dining room design includes chandeliers suspended over the tables which were inspired by NYC's Grand Central Station. Furnished with banquettes in chestnut mohair and taupe leather and round, bleached oak tables, there's a Parisian feeling to the room, a nod to the Edwardian origin of the building and London's adoration of all things French.

 
 
 

Polpo

An intimate restaurant with a Venetian style menu.

3 Cowcross Street, Clerkenwell, London, EC1M 6DR

Tube: Farringdon Station , Barbican Station

 
 

Since launching the original Polpo in Soho's Beak Street in October 2009, Russell Norman and business partner Richard Beatty have expanded the brand at breakneck speed. With Polpo Smithfield, their sixth London restaurant (and the first outside Soho) launched in 2012, they have created a mini chain under the Polpo name including Polpo Covent Garden. All three offer the same Venetian style menu on offer at the Soho restaurant. This Smithfield branch has 70 seats in the main dining area, seating for 20 outside, and a Negroni Bar in the basement. 

 
 
 

Club Gascon

This restaurant successfully combines outrageous flair with the solid virtues of a bistro kitchen.

57 West Smithfield, City, London, EC1A 9DS

Tube: Barbican Station , Farringdon Station, St. Paul's Station

 
 

If Jamie Oliver thinks that turkey twizzlers and chips are the most unhealthy food in Britain, then he obviously hasn't been to this extraordinary Michelin-starred restaurant in a former Lyons tea house in Smithfields, whose 'French tapas' style - ordering three to five small dishes per diner - fails to disguise a menu that gives your arteries palpitations. The speciality is foie gras, available on its own, as a major or minor ingredient in around a third of the dishes, and even as an ingredient in one of the puddings. Other delights include sturdy mixtures like lobster with black pudding, and the buttery pleasures of traditional French fare such as confit de canard. Club Gascon well deserves its superb reputation and raft of awards. This is food which matches outrageous flair to the solid virtues of a bistro kitchen - just don't tell Jamie.

 
 
 

Ella Canta

Martha Ortiz has curated a six-course Mexican tasting menu at the InterContinental London Park Lane.

One Hamilton Place, Park Lane, London, W1J 7QY

Tube: Hyde Park Corner Station

 
 

Especially for Valentine's Day - or El Dia de San Valentin - chef Martha Ortiz has curated a six-course menu at Ella Canta at the InterContinental London Park Lane. The menu is inspired by the Mexican celebrations of El Dia del Amor y la Amistad (The Day of Friendship and Love), when towns are painted red and balloons, roses and hearts scattered across the streets throughout the month of February. Each dish brings this Mexican spirit to life, using bold flavours and splashes of striking reds woven through each course. Sip on an alluring Mexican Seduction cocktail, which mixes tequila with lemon, cantaloupe and egg whites, included in the 70 pound price tag.

 
 
 
 

OXO Tower Restaurant

There's nothing like a little high altitude to get hearts racing.

Oxo Tower Wharf, Barge House Street, South Bank, London, SE1 9PH

Tube: Temple Station

 
 

Up the Oxo Tower drinkers and diners are treated to some of the best views in London, a gourmet menu, classy cocktails and occasional live music. Oxo Tower Restaurant is the ultimate date restaurant and the solicitous but discreet staff are well accustomed to making couples feel special. The commanding panorama which takes in the whole of London rivals the views from the London Eye. A very expensive but utterly special treat. Many may prefer to stop for a cocktail (easier on the pocket) and the bar welcomes casual drinkers, and serves the best martinis we've had in London. Their team of sommeliers will be on hand to help you select a wine from the impressive 800 strong list. An iconic spot with tons of London charm that has been put to its best possible use, the Oxo Tower Restaurant is a cut above.

 
 
 

Helene Darroze at The Connaught

The tasting menu here is a once-in-a-lifetime experience.

The Connaught, 16 Carlos Place, Mayfair, London, W1K 2AL

Tube: Bond Street Station

 
 

Helene Darroze took over at the two Michelin-starred restaurant at The Connaught hotel in Mayfair following Angela Hartnett's departure in 2007. In autumn 2019, the elegant dining room reopened following a two-month refurbishment revealing lightened wood panelling, curvy pink sofas and "enough pink touches... to make even Barbie blush" - Telegraph . The look, which includes paintings by artist Damien Hirst, has been dreamt up by Paris-based interior architect Pierre Yovanovitch and continues downstairs into the show kitchen which boasts a pink marble topped chef's table for ten. The exceptional food starts with a seasonal consomme, to cleanse the palate, and continues with mains which are chosen by their key ingredient - perhaps pigeon, cep or turbot. They're very particular about provenance (even down to the day boat for fish). Presentation shows Helene's meticulous attention to detail and some of the finest wine in the world are nestled among more than 20,000 bottles in the cellar. Armagnac is a speciality. A Darroze family business for three generations, Helene's brother Marc has been brought in to manage the cellars at this "most old-school of hotels" (Telegraph).

 
 
 

La Trompette

The best French restaurant in London within this price range.

3-7 Devonshire Road, Chiswick, London, W4 2EU

Tube: Turnham Green Station

 
 

This Chiswick restaurant is one of London's best kept secrets. La Trompette is the best French restaurant in London within this price range. Dinner for two with a good wine will leave you with a wonderfully full stomach and only a mildly depleted wallet. The menu features regional delights from around France that will please any palate. Simply sublime. Sister restaurants of the same calibre, also owned by Nigel Platts-Martin and Bruce Poole, and most certainly worth a visit for a special occasion are Chez Bruce in Wandsworth and the Glasshouse in Kew.

 
 
 

Galvin at Windows

Breathtaking views and refined cuisine make this an incredibly romantic spot.

22 Park Lane, 22 Park Lane, , Mayfair, London, W1K 1BE

Tube: Hyde Park Corner Station

 
 

Located on the 28th floor of the London Hilton Park Lane, Galvin at Windows offers dizzying 360-degree views across London and high-end cuisine, making it one the best restaurants in the capital - if you can get a seat near the window, that is. Having been open since 2006, the restaurant has long been a favourite among well-heeled diners and became famed for its exquisite classic French cuisine. Despite these classic roots, the appointment of Korean chef Jon Woo as head chef was a surprising and ingenious move from Chris Galvin that has definitely paid off. The classic dishes have now been given a subtle Korean accent, putting some excitement back into the venue and successfully keeping it relevant for today.

 
 
 

Hakkasan

Dark, sultry and seductive. Hakkasan oozes Oriental romance.

8 Hanway Place, Fitzrovia, London, W1T 1HD

Tube: Tottenham Court Road Station , Goodge Street Station

 
 

Boasting the first Michelin Star ever awarded to a Chinese restaurant, Hakkasan can justly claim to be the best of its kind in London. The food here really is exceptional. Straying from the traditional route to provide Western variations on Chinese staples the cuisine is both modern and mouth-watering. Also described as the "sexiest" restaurant in London, Hakkasan's appeal doesn't just rest with its food. Lurking underground at the end of a fairly unappealing (bordering on dingy) side-street, initial impressions aren't great. However, as you walk step by step down the dimly lit staircase, surrounded by cooling slate walls embedded with tiny ruby red lights, a whole new world opens up before your eyes. Bathed in a mysterious, icy blue light, the dining room's discretely placed arrangement of tables appear to emerge gleaming under the moonlight of an exotic Oriental night. Carefully placed screens create an air of privacy and subterfuge, further enhanced by the shadows created by flickering candles and dramatic spots of light. The suavely dressed waiters who slip silently in between tables and behind screens provide an appropriately unassuming yet attentive service, which is key to this whole dining experience. Expensive this is - it doesn't deserve to be anything else - but it's worth every penny.

 
 
 
 

City Social

Jason Atherton's City Social takes over the loftly Tower 42.

Tower 42, 25 Old Broad Street, City, London, EC2N 1HT

Tube: Liverpool Street Station , Bank Station, Moorgate Station

 
 

Jason Atherton's City Social took over the Tower 42 spot vacated by Gary Rhodes. Situated high up on the 24th floor of the famous tower, the restaurant offers fantastic views of the Gherkin, the Cheesegrater and across the city. Head chef Paul Walsh (previously sous chef at Gordon Ramsay's Royal Hospital Road) has worked closely with Atherton to design the City Social menu showcasing the best of British ingredients. Interiors have a contemporary art deco look courtesy of Russell Sage Studios - all rosewood panelled boards, chrome and smoked glass, brass and mirror accents - centered around an open kitchen. The art deco theme is also felt in prohibition era cocktails served at the 85-seat bar and made with Scotch, gin and cognac to a menu by award winning mixologist Gareth Evans, and live jazz plays in the bar every Saturday afternoon from 12noon till 4pm. Jason Atherton is behind some of London's best restaurants with the Michelin-starred Pollen Street Social, No.5 Social across the street, Social Eating House in Soho, and Berner's Tavern at The London Edition, Ian Schrager's stylish Fitzrovia hotel. With City Social the chef, the first British cook to complete a stage at Spain's famous elBulli restaurant, proves there's still room for him to go up in the world.

 
 
 

Beach Blanket Babylon

A romantic, fairytale bar/restaurant.

45 Ledbury Road, Notting Hill, Notting Hill, London, W11 2AA

Tube: Notting Hill Gate Station

 
 

This mad, gorgeous, fairytale fantasy of a bar/restaurant is usually full of glamorous young singles flirting like mad over their cocktails - but it's also hard to think of a more romantic spot for a couple to go drinking. Hundreds of candles light the way through a maze of corridors, where huge fireplaces, and crazed decor - part ancient Rome, part Versailles - leap out of the darkness. Concealed little nooks with low ceilings offer the perfect opportunity to duck away from the noise of the bar. The cocktails are excellent, the wine list interesting and fairly priced, and the decor is beyond belief. The food is overpriced, but it is very good, and you know that you're paying for more than just a meal when your choice of dining rooms include the chapel, crypt and scullery. Guests can also opt for private dining at Beach Blanket Babylon with the choice of the Ballroom, a decadent room that can seat up to 60 guests or play host to a champagne reception for 110 guests or the Chapel, a semi-private enclave within the restaurant. The beautiful ballroom, nestled away on the first floor, is one of Notting Hill's best kept secrets.

 

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