This London weekend itinerary is good for those who’ve been to the city before and want to explore it at a more leisurely pace that involves a mix of culture and good, casual restaurants. Picturesque neighborhood Marylebone will be your home base, and you’ll venture into Soho, Fitzrovia, City of London and South London. There’s no rushing from back-to-back appointments to make it to a show or see something before closing time. Stroll about, walk into some interesting boutiques that catch your eye, see an exhibit if you have time and, if not, don’t sweat it, and leave plenty of time to eat the best food.
“Let’s go to that Sri Lankan restaurant!” is probably a phrase you will never hear in New York. First of all, I’m not even sure if Sri Lankan restaurants exist in Manhattan. And even if they did, would they get the same level of attention or press that a vegan or pizza restaurant would? London, however, is more accepting of different cuisines than we are, which explains the success and popularity of Hoppers, a Sri Lankan restaurant in Soho. Read More
The Barbary is the type of place I’d come to all the time if I lived in London. It has a fun, relaxed vibe, the food is exciting, and the prices are reasonable. The open grill sits in the center of the restaurant like a stage, where diners can pull up at one of the 24 bar seats for a front row seat. Chefs expertly wield the flames to turn out perfectly cooked pieces of grilled meats and other tasty treats robataya-style.
2016 was the year of Pasquale Jones. This restaurant makes delicious, accessible food at a reasonable price point (gratuity included!) in a great downtown location. I bring friends here repeatedly so that they can try the clam pie and the pork shank, which are two of Pasquale’s outstanding signature dishes, and no one has ever been let down. The same applies to myself. I’ve been back multiple times because the food is always good.
2016 was also a great year for poke bowls. There’s been an explosion of poke restaurants in the city, and my favorite one is Chikarashi in Chinatown. Indian food is also having a great year with the openings of places like Paowalla, Pondicheri and Indian Accent. So are sexy French restaurants, which are dishing up luscious meats and seafood in all sorts of creamy, buttery sauces in the prettiest of places. Brooklyn shows no signs of slowing down, New Nordic is still a thing, and you can never have too many new sushi restaurants. 2016 for me was also noteworthy for a lot of new overhyped restaurants I didn’t quite understand–Lilia, Llama Inn and Superiority Burger come to mind–but the ones that lived up to expectations really stuck. Here’s my list of the best new eateries that I think will have staying power.Read More
If you’re suffering from a bah humbug attitude and want to get into the Christmas spirit, there’s no better cure than a holiday getaway to London. This is a city that really comes alive in December. Nearly every street and window is decorated in festive trim, and it is pretty normal to see carolers singing in retail stores. In an era where online shopping is king and brick-and-mortar shops are merely showrooms, it’s nice to see that the in-store experience is still valued.Read More