After traveling to London several times over the past five years, I’ve begun to develop favorite spots to explore in the city. On our most recent visit, we ended up selecting staying in both Shoreditch and Holborn, which are home to many amazing local spots for food and drinks. If you’re looking at staying in two different areas while on a trip to London, I would highly recommend these two neighborhoods! They both have an incredibly local, hip feel, and are really easy to access via the tube.
Since I’ve previously shared my favorite spots to stay Shoreditch and Holborn neighborhoods, here are the rest of my recommendations for places to eat and drink in the areas. Even if you’re staying in other parts of London, any of these places listed below are worth a visit!
• Dishoom Shoreditch: This Indian restaurant is known for having a long wait, but believe me, it’s WORTH IT. The Shoreditch location has an intimate feel even though the restaurant is quite spacious. The eclectic/vintage vibe is carried throughout the space and onto their covered garden patio, which is furnished with soft seating, hanging plants and market lights (I’d recommend a table out here if you can!). The wait is made pleasant with complimentary hot chai tea, and the bar area is the perfect spot to grab a cocktail and appetizer before dinner service. Ordering a range of dishes is highly recommended — and don’t forget the Chicken Tikki Masala, which is England’s national dish! We talked about this meal for the rest of the trip, so don’t miss out on this spot if you want a truly exceptional dinner.
• Radio Alice Pizzeria: Located in Hoxton near Shoreditch, this Italian restaurant serves authentic sourdough pizzas in an old Victorian school space. Their chic decor, framable menus, and vintage seating make this restaurant a delightfully Instagramable spot. If you love authentic Italian pizza, it’s definitely worth a stop, too.
• The Culpeper: This is one of my FAVORITE places in the city to grab a drink. The four story space is home to a pub, restaurant, and hotel, and is located within a historic building in the Whitechapel/Shoreditch area. The spot is incredibly popular among locals, with people spilling out into the street in the warm summer months drinking Aperol spritzes and beer.
• Leman Street Tavern: Another great spot for an evening street cocktail, Leman Street Tavern is just a block away from the Leman Locke Hotel. They have live music on the last Friday of the month, and the space is bustling with locals sipping after-work cocktails.
• Hopscotch: If you’re looking for an intimate, hip eatery in the Shoreditch area, head over to Brick Lane and try out Hopscotch. The small kitchen, which can be seen from the dining area, cooks up small plates inspired by British, Mediterranean and Middle Eastern flavors. Food is meant to be shared and comes out on colorful ceramic plates, and a basement “Drinking Den” is available for late night “proper “cocktails. This is also one of the few spots that seems to be open for late night dining!
• Drury Lane Bars and Restaurants: This street in the Holborn/Covent Garden area (close to The Hoxton Holborn) should not be missed! It’s filled with local restaurants and bars without the central London crowds. Hot spots to check out include Jar Kitchen, Barrafina, The Sun Pub, Farmstand, and Drury 188-189.
• Bread Ahead: Looking for a fun bakery in the heart of London? Bread Ahead is located at Seven Dials, and serves up fresh baked sweets and breads. Their filled doughnuts make for the perfect afternoon treat.
• Holborn Whippet: If you’re into craft beer, this public house in Holborn with an extensive beer menu is a great spot for an afternoon break. Grab a pint and hang out under the awnings outside.
• The Chicken Shop: As I mentioned previously in my post about the Hoxton Holborn, Chicken Shop is an incredible spot for rustic, homestyle food! It’s located below the hotel, but can still be accessed from the street. Don’t forget to get a slice of apple pie afterwards!