Travel Guide: Dining in Style in London

The last few years I’ve been fortunate enough to spend a fair bit of time in London, taking in the historic sites, shopping and great food. I’ve decided to share my favorite experiences with you, starting with food.

I must say, England’s reputation when it comes to its food really boggles my mind. I’ve yet to have a bad meal in the country and often times, I find the presentation of the dishes on par with that of New York.

Here are some of my favorite spots. Keep in mind– many require a reservation.

Polpo: this Italian hotspot serves tapas-style Italian food at three locations in London. My boyfriend and I love their Soho location, which is perfect for brunch and shopping. Get a bunch of different plates to share and make sure you get their meatballs. They are absolutely divine. The price points are really fair too, meaning you can splurge on a nice wine!

Hakkasan: the first time I ate at this swanky Asian restaurant was at its location in London’s Mayfair neighborhood, and since I’ve made a point to eat at the restaurant at its other location. The flavors, ambiance, drinks and feel of this restaurant are just exceptional. Makes for a wonderful date night location.

Bird of Smithfield: I love the entire Smithfield area and while walking around one evening I was lucky enough to find this gem of a restaurant. Tucked away inside a gorgeous old townhouse, The Bird of Smithfield has delicious food with really fresh ingredients from a farm near the Cotswolds. Their goat curd and tomato salad starter is a must have. Their duck was also very nice. A bonus: there’s a beautiful rooftop garden to have drinks on after dinner.

Cafe Du Marche: This French restaurant also in the Smithfield area is a great choice for a long lunch. The light and rustic restaurant really makes you feel like you’ve walked out of the city and into Provence. They have a great wine selection– I recently overindulged on some of their rosĂ©. Get the halloumi cheese starter.

The Wolseley: just near Picadilly Square lies the Wolseley, a French restaurant with a New York vibe. The high ceilings and open kitchen and dark leather booths almost have a steakhouse feel, but the food was actually very delicate and nice. Try the duck breast and king prawns. The desserts are also worth the extra calories. Keep your eyes peeled — this is a spot that attracts lots of celebs and even royals.

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